sábado, 25 de octubre de 2008

jueves, 11 de septiembre de 2008

La noche en blanco 2008 de Madrid

One night 150 artists 1.500.000 euro:
On wensday 10th of september 2008 in Matadero Madrid started a series of conferences "Reflex" to introduce some of the artists participating to "La noche en blanco" to give the audience the opportunity to meet them and get to know more about their work.
David Fernandez:
"From I want to be a terrorist to I want to be like Jesus Christ bleeding on the cross."
Again in between installations, projections, concerts in the programme appears the performance of an artist David Fernandez which work consists in "self inflicting" or demanding the audience to inflict him pain. He asks the audience to poor hot wax on his skin till his body is completely covered. At the end is even beautiful he said as he becomes a ground where the audience can play to shape the wax and him till he often looks like a christmas tree charming the grandmothers.
As soon as he mentioned hot wax I couldn't help reminiscing Madonna and Willem Dafoe in "Body of evidence" 1993.
And indeed there is nothing new about all this, actually the list of artists doing the same is largely long and that's why it made me reflect.
The question then is: if you are not saying anything new, anything personal why do you do it?
The obvious reason is that pain-torture sells almost as much as sex, it is one of the best marketing strategies of an artist.
And then it hit me. In the mind of many art is equal to many centuries of paintings of a Jesus Christ bleeding on the cross or dying in the arms of Mary. Though we may reject the political connotations of an art financed by the Pope and the Church in general, to celebrate their power, make publicity of their grandiose magnificent in short maintaing their political campain of brainwash, it stands the fact that willing or not we unconsciously associate art to the crucified Jesus Christ.
Is it this the reason why it has become so common to see artists who take upon themselves the role of Jesus Christ and other martyrs that sacrify their bodies to be tortured in front of massas?
No, but it's a fact that the desire to be God manifests in many ways and this can be called one of them.

One thing for sure David Fernandez is a great performer and a good communicator. He come well prepared to the conference, he had the whole speach rehearsed and that was honorable and a wind of fresh air and respect towards the audience.
There were some artists who come to the conference to say: "I don't know what I'm doing, why I'm doing it, I don't want to be here cause I'm agaist the whole concept of "la noche en blanco" I think it's a waste of money ..." and yet they are there. The response of the audience should only be: if you don't want to be here and you are not prepared to speak with us, don't waste our time! That's actually worse of la noche en blanco high expenses, which by the way are used to give you quality and quantity of publicity and exposure that you wouldn't be able to get making 100 of performances in the alternative theater scene. Once upon a time maybe s/he was an artist now is a burned out hypocrat.
But David on the contrary is smart, serious about his work and as I mentioned a great marketing strategist with a plan and performative talent.
His introduction flyer:
At the age of seventeen, David Fernandez wanted to be
a terrorist. He kept explosives in his mothers house.
He had a plan: to blow a place up. It was a slaugh-
terhouse, the Matadero in Madrid. Curiously he has been invited now to give a
chat in the same place. The place has changed and so
has he. But he still has a plan.

He did start the conference virtually blowing up the Matadero.
Then he said he does theater cause he doesn't have the courage to do things for real,
that theater saved him from a sure life in prison but then again he added: "My theater doesn't save me, it saves you from me." Which is a great title line.

When he described the work he will present in La noche en blanco explained that pain was his way to possess his body, a way that his body wouldn't belong to the system but to himself.
He asked us absolutely sure that the answer would be yes if when we were young we didn't play burning our skin with cigarettes or lighters or skratching our skin till bleeding. I couldn't help bursting in a laugh thinking no, not really. But then again I didn't need to think longer than a second to get aware that there are other ways to self inflict pain.
Who is free of this charge may throw the first stone.
It will not be me and I seriously doubt any stone will be thrown.

After the conference I asked him "Why don't you possess your body with pleasure?"
"Yes I could masturbate myself in front of the audience, the problem is I cannot get my dick hard in public"
Walking home the conclusion was:
It's easier to suffer than to be happy.
The brainwash of religion is still alive and kicking we all want to have God's aka the father's love and we have fallen in the trap believing that by inflicting pain upon ourselves we'll get his attention and care.

Art should free us, but maybe not yet.
by Paola Tognazzi

viernes, 22 de agosto de 2008

You don't realize when it happens by Paola Tognazzi

but it did happen and one day...

Ghosts by Paola Tognazzi

I edited playing around with effects I liked with those images when I was working at studio azzurro in Milan. It was a research about how to change the meaning and the emotional connotation of old digital images.

Underneath beauty are frozen words by Paola Tognazzi

Video installation by Paola Tognazzi commissioned and supported by the practicum generale Amsterdam in 2000.
Images recorded in Barcelona then edited and projected on a special sculpture especially designed for the visual effects of fragmentation and distortion.
The installation changes according to the point of view of the public.
The audience while moving around the projections changes and is changed by the images.
At first is an extremely beautiful woman, then the same woman though keeping still and frozen
(the images are still frames) transforms unveils in front of the public showing to everybody that something got cracked in her heart, one day maybe yesterday maybe a sunday ...maybe tomorrow...

Autopsy of a dream by Paola Tognazzi

I made this movie quite a few years ago with Mari Matre Larsen, Mathias Mooij and Jacob Plooij at the violin. It was during the times I lived in Amsterdam in the amazing space of the hotel fontana in the weteringsschaans. Now a days I'm interested in different formats and styles but the leitmotiv of investigating the insights of dreams and envision them as bodies with a life spam, bodies that live and die and that are summited to an autopsy still interests me.
In this case it was about, someone may call it feministic, being a woman, being wild, being childish, strong and weak at the same time. I'll never get tired to thank Mari Matre Larsen for her understanding her wilderness and her beauty.

W_space a collaboration between Paola Tognazzi and Tom Tlalim


Paola Tognazzi Doron Hirsh Tom Tlalim behind the camera W_(Holland/Israel/Italy)

We have been selected to develop our project W_space at medialab prado madrid in september 2008.
We hope for it to be as wonderful experience as the one I had when I participate to the Interactivos 2008 where I met great artists and pedagoges like Simone Jones, Alvaro Cassinelli, Julian Oliver.
This time is also very promising with internationally renowned figures such as Francisco López, Hans-Cristoph Steiner, or Steve Heimbecker taking part in the theoretical Seminar.

The collaboration with Tom started a year ago, we met at Steim.
As a choreographer and director of multimedia theater performances I was busy investigating the possibilities of using the wii as a movement capture and use them to create a tool for fisiotheraphy and for sound installation inducing narratives and emotions.
My work with interactive sound installations had started years before at Steim (always forever Steim!!!!) with the islandic genius Ragnar Helgi Olafsson.
The evolving step to melt sound with the body as a choreographer come very natural.
And so the idea of a musical instrument based on a method which seeks to promote awareness of the human body as a powerful technological tool, which retains an innate capability to handle complex and elaborate informations.

One of the objectives in the development of W_space... is to allow learning practices to emerge, starting from direct and immediate results, which encourage the user to play with the instrument, to deeper, more elaborate, 'hidden' possibilities, achieved when learning the instrument / body.

It's a hands on project to develop a musical instrument that cuts away the distance between the human body and technological tools. The instrument become a body extention and makes the body more aware of its states of being.

Description of the research time at STEIM in February 2008:

It was a multidisciplinary research...thus my role as dramaturge and executive producer was to analize, bring in feed back and ideas and maintain track of the points where we were at and the various directions we could take from there. Not to mention the different targets each of us was interested in achieving. And last but not least the independent life and needs of the mapping system, which has a life of its own, to which sometimes we must submit while others we like to tame.
Taming became the word! the inspiration the red thread.
The awareness of the unescapable presence of hierarchy we had to deal with, between the system the instrument and the artistic goals, lead us to define the methodology and the focus of the research.
Ultimately hierarchy, the relationship between the programmer and the wearer as well as control were the 3 issues and concepts we based our research while learning more about the instrument.

Before starting I encountered an important issue: the one of control.
How much control the wearer needs to have on the instrument.
Tom didn't want the wearer to have control, but just to produce data by moving he would use to make sounds on the computer.
In my opinion or at least for my vision and project, in order to play the user-wearer had to know how to control it.
My target during the residency was to find ways or strategies about how to achieve it.
In that time at Steim it wasn't possible so in 4 months after, I wrote new concept studied and looked for places where we could find help in programming and engineering and that's when !bingo!! I stumpt in Medialab. And a new project was born W_space, thanks to the collaboration with: pix, jaime lobato, agnese mosconi, maria chiara paganini, francesca mereu, angela ramos, carlos panero, alyssa brakin, roberto moreno moya, leo soto.


Se trata de un proyecto sonoro basado en un método que persigue motivar la atención sobre el cuerpo humano como potente arma tecnológica, capaz de manejar complejas y elaboradas informaciones de manera innata.

Uno de los objetivos es permitir prácticas que permitan emerjer profundas, elaboradas y "ocultas" posibilidades del cuerpo, partiendo de resultados directos e inmediatos que animen al usuario a jugar con el instrumento / cuerpo. El desarrollo de esta barata herramienta de captación de movimiento tipo "hágalo usted mismo" se basa en el sistema de control remoto de Wii de Nintendo, que puede permitir a los usuarios a utilizar su cuerpo para comunicar, crear y compartir estas experiencias íntimas de movimientos espaciales.

Este proyecto práctico desarrollará un instrumento musical que acorte la distancia entre el cuerpo humano y las herramientas tecnológicas. El instrumento se convertirá en una extensión del cuerpo que permita al propio cuerpo ser más consciente de sus estados.

Concept and Direction: Paola Tognazzi
Concept and music: Tom Tlalim
Master programming: Steven Pickles aka Pix
Colaboradores: Alyssa Brackin, Agnese Mosconi, Jaime Alonso Lobato Cardoso, Francesca Mereu, Maria Chiara Paganini, Carlos Panero, Ángela Ramos, Simon Dell, Roberto Moreno Moya.

W_space will be at Experimentaclub in la casa encendida till sunday 5 October 2008
Friday 3 October at 18.30 interview on television La Cuatro (dates when they will show it will be published soon)Live performances where we let the public use this instrument everyday from 19:00.Saturday and Sunday special performances with kids at LCE Madrid.Saturday 4 october 2008 interview on television TVE national spanish tv channel.On tuesday 7 October at 21.30 the project will be shown on television Localia channel.29.01.09 W_space @ Transmediale 09: A MAZE. JUMP’N RUN: BONUS CHEAT with great thanks to Flavio Escribano and Aniara Rodado.
For more informations
contact: ptognazzi@hotmail.com


I want to thanks especially Doron Hirsch.

sábado, 16 de agosto de 2008

Arte contemporanea

Where is the audience?
Whose fault is that there is no public for contemporary performative arts?
Number 1 the public has no idea there is such a thing called interactive performative arts.
That says it all.

miércoles, 13 de agosto de 2008

Do ideas have still a value in the era of copyleft?

Nintendo seems to think yes, so much that is forbidding his best videogame designer to speak publicly about his own hobbies...in order not to give hints to the competition. The world of new electronics arts says the opposite in the name of copyleft and open source...which relation in reality i don't see. The idea of who invented a software etc. has a value indipendently from his-her decision to allow the public to use it for free.
Who do you prefer? The one that gives value to ideas or who doesn't.
The reality of it it's rather simple if you have the money to bring to life the ideas than the latters are valuable, if you don't than, what happens then?