Saturday, March 31, 2018

From Euclid to Equality: Mathematician Lillian Lieber on How the Greatest Creative Revolution in Mathematics Illuminates the Core Ideals of Social Justice and Democracy.

Illustration by Hugh Lieber from Human Values and Science, Art and Mathematics by Lillian Lieber

An imaginative extension of Euclid's parallel postulate into life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

By Maria Popova

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Dandilands' by pick nick Point Commissions

You are cordially invited to the launch of 'Dandilands', a book by artist group pick nick co published by BOM DIA and Point Centre for Contemporary Art. On the occasion of the book launch, Manuel Raeder will share his experience as a publisher in collaboration with artists, museums, and art institutions, and will talk about BOM DIA’s practices. Τhe book is the culmination of 'Dandilands', a project which began by pick nick in August 2014 in collaboration with artists Marc Bijl, Mustafa Hulusi, Mahony, Jumana Manna, Michelle Padeli, Liliana Porter, Kevin Schmidt, Socratis Socratous, Kostis Velonis, and Carla Zaccagnini. Urban and natural landscapes as sites of both intimate and destabilizing experiences materialized in a standing sign. The sign which was found along a circular trail in the high forest of Troodos was imagined as both site and object; a place of intention and image; a setting of the social. The publication 'Dandilands' consists of essays by Guilherme Altmayer, Alev Adil, Sophie Houdart, Antonis Hadjikyriacou, Sofia Lemos, Marko Stamenkovic, and the Palestinian collective, The Jerusalem of Things. From different research interests, these writers meet with pick nick, metaphorically and socially, in the intimate space of the book taking walking as a metaphor around social events and public practices, generating discussions of inclusion exclusion, relations of conflict (resolution), and, around non authoritative places that practice critiquing normalisation integrated in urban and rural patterns.

BOM DIA is specialized in artist books that are conceived as an integral part of an art work or as the art work itself that, often, plays with the format of the book and reflects its medium. This event will take place in the context of pick nick’s residency at Point between 13 March and 13 April 2018.
During this time, the group will be presenting a series of activities and events. pick nick will be present every Tuesday between 15:00 19:00.

BOM DIA was founded in 2011 by Manuel Raeder and Manuel Goller in Berlin, solely run by Manuel Raeder since 2013. A focus of Bom Dia lies in publishing contemporary artists from Latin America. The books of Bom Dia are produced in close collaboration with a group of artists, among others Henning Bohl, Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, Mariana Castillo Deball, Haegue Yang, Leonor Antunes, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Danh Vo, Nina Canell, and BLESS.

Dandilands' by pick nick Point Commissions 201
Book Launch Manuel Raeder, BOM DIA,Berlin Friday, 30 March 2018/18:30

Point Centre for Contemporary Art

'Dandilands', pick nick

Saturday, March 24, 2018


Agnes Denes, Wheatfield - A Confrontation: Battery Park Landfill, Downtown Manhattan

Two acres of wheat planted and harvested by the artist on the Battery Park landfill, Manhattan, Summer 1982.

After months of preparations, in May 1982, a 2-acre wheat field was planted on a landfill in lower Manhattan, two blocks from Wall Street and the World Trade Center, facing the Statue of Liberty. Two hundred truckload of dirt were brought in and 285 furrows were dug by hand and cleared of rocks and garbage. The seeds were sown by hand adn the furrows covered with soil. the field was maintained for four months, cleared of wheat smut, weeded, fertilized and sprayed against mildew fungus, and an irrigation system set up. the crop was harvested on August 16 and yielded over 1000 pounds of healthy, golden wheat.
Planting and harvesting a field of wheat on land worth $4.5 billion created a powerful paradox. Wheatfield was a symbol, a universal concept; it represented food, energy, commerce, world trade, and economics. It referred to mismanagement, waste, world hunger and ecological concerns. It called attention to our misplaced priorities. The harvested grain traveled to twenty-eight cities around the world in an exhibition called "The International Art Show for the End of World Hunger", organized by the Minnesota Museum of Art (1987-90). The seeds were carried away by people who planted them in many parts of the globe.
The questionnaire was composed of existential questions concerning human values, the quality of life, and the future of humanity. The responses were primarily from university students in various countries where I spoke or had exhibitions of my work. Within the context of the time capsule the questionnaire functioned as an open system of communication, allowing our descendants to evaluate us not so much by the objects we created—as is customary in time capsules—but by the questions we asked and how we responded to them.
The microfilm was desiccated and placed in a steel capsule inside a heavy lead box in nine feet of concrete. A plaque marks the spot: at the edge of the Indian forest, surrounded by blackberry bushes. The time capsule is to be opened in 2979, in the 30th century, a thousand years from the time of the burial.
There are, still within the framework of this project, several time capsules planned on earth and in space, aimed at various time frames in the future.

Here ye! Here ye!

The time has come to talk of many things,
While all laid bare is seemingly forgot
Of grave unearth a corpse of hot line rings
As bells of hells awake the piping hot
Enough to boil through a bone of steel
And smelt it down into a might pen
Dueling sharp whips from an electric eel
For might foes hide not in darker dens
To raise the dead beyond the catacombs
Or fear the ghouls kept watch between the lines
For monsters be not built of styrofoams
Nor trims of meat chorus deafening whines
As mobs chew on the fat of Romeos
I am Frankenstein at the rodeo!

Alex Turgeon, 2018 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Minimalism’s Migration in the Museum

Sculpture is what you bump into when you back up to see a painting.

Attributed to Barnett Newman (sometimes Ad Reinhardt), the above quote alludes to the primacy of painting in modernist art history. Newman suggested that sculpture is visually forgettable, but also that painting’s increasingly large scale demanded more gallery space. Although nowadays sculpture is most often bumped into in order to take a selfie, Newman’s quote still resonates in the contemporary museum’s placement of sculpture.
From readymades to installations, the concept of the sculpture and its relationship to the spaces around it shifted radically in the twentieth century from the object on the pedestal to an engagement with the phenomenological and material world, what Rosalind Krauss called the “expanded field.” Many of minimalism’s forms even literalized Newman’s criticism of physical obstruction  by enlarging sculpture to the scale of architecture.
By placing works on the floor, artists like Donald Judd and Carl Andre challenged (or dared) viewers not to trip over or step onto their works. Their works created more of a physical hazard for the gallery-goer than she posed to precious objects on elevated pedestals. In short, minimalist sculpture made the viewer more aware of the physical field of the gallery and less engrossed in the visual. At least, this is what happens when installed in certain gallery spaces. In recent years I have noted the placement of minimalist sculpture in major museums following large renovations or new constructions negates these challenges to the viewer.

Text by Annie Dell'Aria

Monday, March 19, 2018

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Haltung als Handlung - Das Zentrum für Politische Schönheit

Das Zentrum für Politische Schönheit (ZPS) ist eine Sturmtruppe zur Errichtung moralischer Schönheit, politischer Poesie und menschlicher Großgesinntheit. Das ZPS gehört zu den innovativsten Inkubatoren politischer Aktionskunst und steht für eine erweiterte Form von Theater: Kunst muss weh tun, reizen, Widerstand leisten. In eine Begriffsallianz gebracht: aggressiver Humanismus. 
Die Publikation stellt erstmals alle wichtigen Aktionen des künstlerischen Kollektivs in Buchform vor und hinterfragt deren Arbeit zudem in fünf Essays namhafter Autoren – Karen van den Berg, Florian Malzacher, Mely Kiyak, Raimar Stange, Florian Waldvogel – mit unterschiedlichen theoretischen Fragestellungen. 
Ein Interview von Raimar Stange mit Shermin Langhoff und Jakob Augstein  beleuchtet schließlich die Aktionen des ZPS gleichsam aus der Außenperspektive.
Grundüberzeugung des ZPS ist, dass die Lehren des Holocaust durch die Wiederholung politischer Teilnahmslosigkeit, Flüchtlingsabwehr und Feigheit annulliert werden und dass Deutschland aus der Geschichte nicht nur lernen, sondern auch handeln muss.

Haltung als Handlung - Das Zentrum für Politische Schönheit

hg. von Raimar Stange, Miriam Rummel, Florian Waldvogel

Can we fix it? The repair cafes waging war on throwaway culture

A vacuum cleaner, a hair straightener, a laptop, Christmas lights, an e-reader, a blender, a kettle, two bags, a pair of jeans, a remote-control helicopter, a spoon, a dining-room chair, a lamp and hair clippers. All broken.
It sounds like a pile of things that you’d stick in boxes and take to the tip. In fact, it’s a list of things mended in a single afternoon by British volunteers determined to get people to stop throwing stuff away.
This is the Reading Repair Cafe, part of a burgeoning international network aimed at confronting a world of stuff, of white goods littering dumps in west Africa and trash swilling through the oceans in huge gyres.
The hair clippers belong to William, who does not want to give his surname but cheerfully describes himself as “mechanically incompetent”. He has owned them for 25 years, but 10 years ago they stopped working and they have been sitting unused in his cupboard ever since.

By Kate Lyons

Sunday, March 11, 2018

How to change the course of human history

For centuries, we have been telling ourselves a simple story about the origins of social inequality. For most of their history, humans lived in tiny egalitarian bands of hunter-gatherers. Then came farming, which brought with it private property, and then the rise of cities which meant the emergence of civilization properly speaking. Civilization meant many bad things (wars, taxes, bureaucracy, patriarchy, slavery…) but also made possible written literature, science, philosophy, and most other great human achievements.
Almost everyone knows this story in its broadest outlines. Since at least the days of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, it has framed what we think the overall shape and direction of human history to be. This is important because the narrative also defines our sense of political possibility. Most see civilization, hence inequality, as a tragic necessity. Some dream of returning to a past utopia, of finding an industrial equivalent to ‘primitive communism’, or even, in extreme cases, of destroying everything, and going back to being foragers again. But no one challenges the basic structure of the story.
There is a fundamental problem with this narrative.
It isn’t true.
First published in Eurozine
© David Graeber, David Wengrow / Eurozine

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Debunked best-sellers of days gone by

The needle, the haystack, the thread

Stringing words together while working on this exhibition at the Arts Club of Chicago, the needle, the haystack, the thread made a certain sense, made a certain space for Britta Marakatt-Labba and Lala Meredith-Vula and Aboubakar Fofana and the late Maria Lai.
If these artists and the fruits of their labors cannot be easily summarized, thematized, named, tamed, or otherwise put in a proverbial drawer of available artistic or geographic or cultural criteria, their shared story is telling and wants to be told.
It speaks of a free association that keeps the society of things and thoughts and animals and plants and minerals and materials together. Humans take part. Yet they are not necessarily the center. There is no center. There is rather an invitation to connect and consider what is sometimes called traditional work or farm work or craft work anew.
Imagine between these artists, between their works, something like the red thread handed by Ariadne to Theseus to get him in and out of the Labyrinth.
Tending to their integrated ways of working and living [grounded in distinct traditions, advancing techniques shared across continents, and resistant to the soul-draining transformations of their communities wrought by violent histories of division and conquest] becomes our common task, however temporarily.
See it also as the seed of a sur-rural imaginary in an urban context
Curated by Monika Szewczyk
The Arts Club of Chicago
March 15th- May 19

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Days Left

Days Left, 2017 
170 x 102 x 125 cm
Wood, plywood, acrylic,oil 

Saturday, March 3, 2018


Der Stein.
Der Stein in der Luft, dem ich folgte.
Dein Aug, so blind wie der Stein.
Wir waren
wir schöpften die Finsternis leer, wir fanden
das Wort, das den Sommer heraufkam:
Blume – ein Blindenwort.
Dein Aug und mein Aug:
sie sorgen
für Wasser.
Herzwand um Herzwand
blättert hinzu.
Ein Wort noch, wie dies, und die Hämmer
schwingen im Freien.

Paul Celan, 1959