Toy Pistol

Cellos, Toy Guns and Net Art

There’s something about the late winter sunrise that automatically gets me awake later.

Toy Pistol
This is a pretty spooky toy. Glad I found one!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

I don’t love it, but it’s probably better for my body. I’m on the train, actually headed back downtown towards home. I wanted to get up to the school early so that I’d be able to set up my next videos with a quiet building and a clear head. I went to sleep at a reasonable hour (10:30 pm) and still woke up at 7 am.

I’m attempting to film two videos, tomorrow, so I had to think logistically about space and how to place the two sets so that I can film then consecutively. I think I’ll be able to pull it off.

One of my videos involves the torture called “kneecapping,” which involves using a blunt object or weak gun to target the victim’s knees, which are a part of the body especially prone to pain. I’m using a toy gun for the shoot,and I can’t stress just how disturbing this play thing is. Size-wise, it seems like a perfect replica of actual,guns, and the mechanisms by how it loads and shoots have an unnerving verisimilitude.

Studio Cam: October 27, 2016
Studio Cam: October 27, 2016

On the way uptown, I heard someone on the train ask if there was a correlation between creativity and “weirdness.” I wanted to stop him in mid-conversation and say, “there are other correlatives.” These include marginalization (which makes a person see things differently from privileged people, and plain old repetition and discipline, which allows for iteration and the  development of unique (if not original) ideas.

I was surprised that it turned out to be a rainy day. I suppose I should not have, given that we are moving into fall. Winter is on its way, and with it, precipitation.

Charlotte Moorman exhibition at NYU's Grey Art Gallery
Charlotte Moorman exhibition at NYU’s Grey Art Gallery
Wiener Schnitzel at Paulaner Munchen Pub on Bowery, NYC
Wiener Schnitzel at Paulaner Munchen Pub on Bowery, NYC

I had a Thai lunch with my friend Carter and then we walked to the Grey Art gallery at New York University to look at a show by Charlotte Moorman. She was a cellist who was very engaged with the New York Avant-Garde of the 1960s and 1970s. She worked with the famed artist Nam June Paik as well as Yoko Ono and John Lennon, along with scores of other art luminaries of the time. The show was very memorabilia-heavy and, in fact, there was another show devoted to her collections at another venue at the school.

Launch of the Net Art Anthology at the New Museum
Launch of the Net Art Anthology at the New Museum

I went home and worked some more and then went out again to the New Museum for the launch of the Net Art Anthology, which is a resource for conserving what is considered “valuable” or “important” Net Art from the 1980s until today. How is this stuff evaluated? Who knows? I saw a few people that I have run into over my years of working in the art world. That was nice. There was a panel that included Mark Tribe, who is the founder of Rhizome. He told an interesting story of its scrappy beginnings and the way that the site flourished. It was an enjoyable evening.

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