Monday, May 28, 2007

Cows LED back to Mann Street

Brown’s Cows LED back to Mann Street Gosford

An urban screen/performance/public engagement has been corralled in the Imperial Centre Mann Street shop front.
Following on …the Space Between… this installation consists of a changing series of LED texts and performances by Brown’s Cows in collaboration with people in the CBD.
It is part of “Click Here”, a long-term strategy of deploying contemporary art projects in and around the township of Gosford; and configuring Gosford itself as a contemporary art research project.
The electronic signs will be reprogrammed each day, beginning the 23rd of May 2007.

buy nothing, get one free
there is nothing you can’t buy
our loyalty program costs you nothing
nothing beats a good brown cow
we make our art for, and about, nothing
art is nothing to believe in, and nothing is real
no really, its nothing

wander wonder
wonder wander
wander wonder
art is nothing to believe in
and the cow jumped over the gate be continued

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The balloon goes up.

In the Society of the Spectacle - is resistance possible?
What spaces of resistance will be encountered in Gosford on the 16th.

Odilon Redon
Eye Balloon, 1878

The theoretical formulations presented by Guy Debord in The Society of the Spectacle, take on a new relevance in this age of blogs, surveillance, MySpace, and technically mediated relationships.

Ascent of the Balloon in the Presence of Charles IV and his Court. c. 1783

“If there's a "surveillance society" or a "society of the spectacle", I would submit that it's about informatics, and not primarily about the visual spectacle. These artifacts above are only a few instances that indicate how Things that can perform identity surveillance, tracking, tagging and wrangle some database informatics are what matter nowadays.”

Debord traces the development of a modern society in which "All that was once directly lived has become mere representation." Debord argues that the history of social life can be understood as "the decline of being into having, and having into merely appearing." This condition in which authentic social life has been replaced with its image represents, according to Debord, that "historical moment at which the commodity completes its colonization of social life." The spectacle is the inverted image of society in which relations between commodities have supplanted relations between people, in which passive identification with the spectacle supplants genuine activity. "The spectacle is not a collection of images," Debord writes. "rather, it is a social relationship between people that is mediated by images."

Ours is a world of Biennales, Art Prizes, Blockbuster Touring Shows and Festivals in which art is seen by many as an industry that provides entertainment services and boosts tourism; where its support is premised on its audience generating quality.

Art in the Gosford region will have a short life if it is based on a festival (spectacle) led “recovery”. It requires commitment to a creator based development rather than a secondary creative Industries strategy, which depends on the essential creator (artist) environment.

In describing the development of the Society of the Spectacle, Matt Kavanagh of McGill University writes:
“We live in the society of the spectacle. In the era of blogs, 24-hour news channels, and the instant celebrity of reality television, this probably goes without saying. But what does it really mean? Contrary to the list just enumerated, the society of the spectacle is not of recent invention, nor is it limited to pop culture. Instead "the spectacle" serves as a shorthand description for structural transformations in advanced capitalist societies during the post-1945 era. We might think of this as a broad shift from the factory-based industrial system of the early part of the twentieth century to the immaterial economy of today. Manufacturing has been replaced by service work and the trades have given way to symbolic labour (journalists, bureaucrats, academics) as the prevailing face of the middle-class. The key to this realignment is the increasing mediatization of society.

Most recently, the rise of the “Creative Class” as an economic force, and rapid promotion of the “Creative Industries” globally, together with knowledge-based enterprises reinforces Debord’s analysis.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Sakiko Yamaoka - New Work

New work by Sakiko Yamaoka.
As you might know Sakiko was a contributing artist to the recent Gosford project …the Space Between…
This new work “We are elegant” was part of Perfurbance #3 in Indonesia, the performance festival directed by Iwan Wijono.

"The photo is my performance-work in the cemetery with village people and some artists participated in the festival."

“Perfurbance art Festival is a performance art festival on public spaces referring to growths of urbanized society and its complication as an effort to understand a dialectical of its cause and effect. Hopefully, the festival will allow society to understand and anticipate the negativity of urbanization growth, which certainly has impacts on our growing society and environment.
When earthquake took place on Jogjakarta and Central Java last May 27, 2006, artists have joined volunteers in gathering help for victims.”
- mahatma anto

Iwan Wijono performs internationally as well as in Indonesia. He contributed to the Eco Poetics Symposium, organized by Synapse Art Initiatives, held at Somersby in 1998, as did Sakiko.

On that occasion, at a time of political turmoil in Indonesia his work was performed, to his script, by Australian artists.

Performer carrying pole (with bells), Scott Foster.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Gosford dérive

Image by Banksy, London street stencil artist (from artofthestate blog) More of Banksy at his site.

Further to the renewed interest in the Situationists and their contribution to methods pertinent to the circumstances facing artists now, is a post by Shawn Micallef, on Spacing Wire, a Toronto urban issues site, about his experiences wandering the city of Dublin. Although not writing specifically about art, he makes a link between Joyce's litterary work and the idea of the dérive.

"I was told to look out for the feet and arrows above, as they are there to evoke Leopold Bloom wandering around the city in Ulysses."

Spacing Wire also has a sample of Toronto urban intervention art.

More "walking" projects can be found on the Walking in Place site including

It seems at this time that there is a great deal of interest by artists, particularly in New York, with the art of lived-space and of reclaiming the "commons" through live interventions. Creative Time has a long history of projects of this kind. Example are two projects scheduled for the near future, Situational Drive: Complexities of Public Sphere Engagement (Conference), and Six Actions for New York City, including work by Spartacus Chetwynd who is currently showing at Artspace in Sydney.

A meeting to talk over aspects of the June 16th wander in Gosford, will be held soon.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Gosford Bloomsday dérive

Caution: Cows loose in Gosford 16th June, 2007.

Brown’s cows Art Projects will be coordinating a dérive in Gosford for Bloomsday 2007.

Just time to brush up on the Situationists and a quick read of Ulysses.

For some background information about Guy Debord and the dérive check

Anyone interested in a bit of psych-geographical mapping of Gosford, is welcome. Email your interest to be a part, and watch this space for news.