I was very interested in Roddy's reference to Robert Filliou's notion of
'permanent creation,' which came up recently in an essay by Janet
Sarbanes: "The Poiegg and the Mickeymaushaus: Peedagogy and Spatial
Practice at the California Institute of the Arts." In this essay, Sarbanes
describes CalArts as influenced by the Bauhaus in its approach to the
"building" as structure for the development of new radical pedagogical
techniques in arts education as well as the synthesis of the arts. More
specifically, she points to Filliou's "Institute of Permanent Creation
where anybody might make suggestions about what kinds of things might be
investigated or looked at" as a transparent and open source approach to
teaching and learning. The idea of "education as dialogue rather than as a
transmission of knowledge" was a fundamental concept I employed in the
online course I taught at CalArts last semester entitled Open Source
Studio. (several participants of this community, including Marc Garrett,
Ruth Catlow, Annie Abrahams, and Helen Varley Jamieson, were guest
speakers in the course)
Like Roy Ascott's reference to the 'gesamtdatenwerk' in his seminal essay,
"Is There Love in the Telematic Embrace," I believe more than ever after
teaching Open Source Studio, that the network and its tools can be used to
shift art education into a less hierarchical and more peer-to-peer,
collective experience: precisely where it belongs. In this sense, Roddy's
suggestion of the political nature of networks-as-artworks also applies to
the idea of the network-as-art-school.
My own 'utopia' in this regard is the post-institutional approach to
teaching. I gave up on the idea of being "institutionalized" in my
academic career several years ago, and now freelance for several
Universities and art schools around the world. It is through this
developing network that I see the potential of bringing students into an
"open university" setting - no longer tethered to a single institution -
through video-conferencing and other forms of networked learning tools. It
is my hope that art students can reach out inter-institionally and
inter-culturally to engage in a form of collaborative research and
production that is underutilized, but well within our reach conceptually
I would be interested in related work in this area.
On 2/3/13 9:39 PM, "Roddy Hunter" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>It is my pleasure to announce the February 2013 Theme of the Month.
>Curating the Network as Artwork¹
>In 1968, artists George Brecht and Robert Filliou co-created 'The Eternal
>Network'. Arguably, this network was itself an artwork and vice versa.
>Filliou in particular explored how this network-as-artwork could enable
>collaboration, exchange and dialogue across space and time. More than
>solely a means of distribution or medium of production, 'The Eternal
>Network' became for him a conceptual context for permanent creation¹
>(Filliou 1996). Filliou¹s project is one example of many in which artists
>inhabit networks as systems of communication and exchange (Grundmann
>1984; Saper 2001). These networks are attractive to artists as
>decentralised or distributed environments bypassing institutional
>curatorial spaces. There is then often a political as well as aesthetic
>dimension to the attractiveness of networks-as-artworks. This may now,
>however, be undermined by a dependence of these networks upon the
>internet which has been argued to be the most material and visible sign
>of globalisation¹ (Manovich 2001, 6). Lovink (2002) has cited the view
>that the pace [of globalisation] has increased with the advent of new
>technologies, especially in the area of telecommunications¹ and so
>artists, activists and commercial, corporate players alike have employed
>online networks in search of their respective utopias¹. Lovink
>elaborates on this irreconcilability later that we need to develop a
>long-term view on how networked technologies should and should not be
>embedded in political and cultural practices¹. (Lovink 2012, 160) How far
>has the globalism¹ of communication sought by Filliou and others been
>supplanted by globalisation¹ in its neoliberal, doctrinal sense?
>(Chomsky 1999). Can the network as artwork be effective beyond
>conceptualisation in material terms? How can we rethink curatorial
>strategies in respect of the network-as-artwork¹s media of production,
>means of distribution and experience of reception? In short, how can we
>find ways to curate 'The Eternal Network' after globalisation?
>Chomsky, Noam. 1999. Profit Over People: Neoliberalism and Global Order.
>New York: Seven Stories Press.
>Filliou, Robert. 1996. From Political to Poetical Economy. Vancouver:
>Morris and Helen Belkin Gallery.
>Grundmann, Heidi. 1984. Art and Telecommunication. Vancouver: Western
>Front / Vienna: BLIX
>Lovink, Geert. 2002. ³A Ramble through Theories of Globalization².
>Lovink, Geert. 2012. Networks Without a Cause: A Critique of Social
>Media. Cambridge: Polity.
>Manovich, Lev. 2001. The Language of New Media. MIT press.
>Saper, Craig J. 2001. Networked Art. St Paul: University of Minnesota
>Invited respondents are:
>Artist who questions the possibilities and the limits of communication in
>general and more specifically investigates its modes under networked
>Artist born in Azerbaijan, based in London. Studied art and philosophy in
>Russia, France and UK. His work addresses the question of
>cross-circulations of knowledge through images. Exhibitions include
>Venice Biennale, Tate Modern, Haus der Kunst, München, Grazer
>Kunstverein, TN Probe, Tokyo, ICA London and Lakeside Kunstraum,
>Mideo M. Cruz
>Cross-disciplinary artist-organizer based in Manila and Southeast Asia.
>Network projects critiquing globalisation include New World Disorder in
>addition to performances internationally.
>Artist-filmmaker, researcher, lecturer and curator. He holds a doctorate
>in experimental stop-frame cinematography and teaches on BA Film
>Production at University for the Creative Arts, Farnham and the Royal
>College of Art, London. He is a founder member of Art¹s Birthday Wales,
>which annually celebrates Robert Filliou¹s fifty year-old proposition.
>University Distinguished Professor at Swinburne University in Melbourne,
>Australia. Since 1966, Friedman has been active in Fluxus. Theory,
>Culture, and Society recently published Friedman's reflections on Fluxus
>at the 50-year mark. The full text is available free at:
>Artist, curator, writer, activist, educator and musician. Co-Founder &
>Co-Director, Furtherfield, London and currently doctoral researcher in
>Art, Technology and Social Change at Birkbeck, University of London.
>Artist and journalist based in New York. Studied Ethnology and Cultural
>Anthropology in Frankfurt, graduated from Kunstakademie Düsseldorf.
>Founded Eastern Europe's first public access non-commercial TV station.
>The social geography project Worldprocessor is now in its 24th year.
>Curator and writer. Creative Director (Contemporary Art) at Horsecross,
>Perth and Research Curator at CCA, Glasgow
>Artist and researcher exploring ideas of co-research, co-production and
>co-operation. Currently doctoral researcher at 'HighWire', Lancaster
>University and visiting researcher at City University, Hong Kong.
>Performance and media artist, curator and critic teaching art history,
>performance and cultural studies at Queen's University, Kingston, Canada.
>Head and Professor of Art History, Visual Art and Theory and
>Director/Curator of the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery at the
>University of British Columbia, Vancouver.
>Looking forward to a good conversation,
>CRUMB Profile: http://tinyurl.com/cm5t3bp