Lecture Apathy

Part history lesson, part political campaign, 'Lecture Apathy' is a lecture performance that studies a 20th Century history of dissent/disobedience and subversion and identifies the 1990’s as the moment where the more overt and polar version of dissent (sticking your fingers up to authority) becomes outmoded or antiquated, which in turn leads to the suggestion of apathy as political aggressor/voice. The scripted performance by Toby Huddlestone is backed-up with fast-paced slides showing these moments of dissent leading to images of apathy and protest apathy. The performance becomes more apathetic as it continues towards an apolitical stance.

toby huddlestone

 

Swipe

SWIPE is a project developed by the collective Preemptive Media (Beatriz da Costa, Jamie Schulte and Brooke Singer) and addresses the gathering of data from drivers' licenses, a form of data-collection that businesses are practicing in the United States. Bars and convenience stores were the first to utilize license scanners in the name of age and ID verification. However, with one swipe that often occurs without notification or consent by the cardholder, a business acquires data that can be used to build a valuable consumer database free of charge. Post 9/11, other businesses,hospitals and airports, are installing license readers in the name of security. Detailed database records, of course, also benefit law enforcement officers who can now demand this information without judicial review in large part due to the USA Patriot Act. Many people are unaware that personal data is encoded on their license. SWIPE brings attention to these practices and enables people to see exactly what is stored on their mysterious strip.

Preemptive Media

Conflict Kitchen

Conflict Kitchen is a take-out restaurant that only serves cuisine from countries with which the United States is in conflict. The food is served out of a take-out-style storefront that rotates identities every six months to highlight another country.  Each iteration of the project is augmented by events, performances, and discussions that seek to expand the engagement the public has with the culture, politics, and issues at stake within the focus country. These events have included live international Skype dinner parties between citizens of Pittsburgh and young professionals in Tehran, Iran; documentary filmmakers in Kabul, Afghanistan; and community radio activists in Caracas, Venezuela. 

Conflict Kitchen.org

 

 

The Border Crossed Us

The University of Massechussets Amherst campus had divided its campus by a to-scale photographic replica of the vehicle fence that runs along the international boundary in southern Arizona. The particular stretch of fence being represented was erected in 2007 by Homeland Security and now divides the Tohono O’odham Nation – the second largest Native American reservation in the country – into two parts. What happens when we divide a territory that the community imagines as contiguous? The project was developed by Catherine D’Ignazio of the Institute for Infinitely Small Things. 

 

The Autonomous Energy Research Lab

The Autonomous Energy Research Lab is a mobile, human powered research-lab on a bicycle that the artist Jaimes Mayhew uses to collect stories about electricity production. The project is part of a larger art-research project in Iceland that investigates relationships between people, land and energy production and explores conceptions of autonomy as a departure point for investigating and documenting these relationships.

The Autonomous Energy Research Lab

 

 


 

The Waffle Shop

The Waffle shop is a neighbourhood restaurant that produces and broadcasts a live streaming talk show with its customers and operates a changeable storytelling billboard on its roof. The shop is a public lab that brings together people from all walks of life to engage in dialogue, experimentation and the co-prodcution of culture. The project functions as an eatery, a TV production studio, a social catalyst, and a business. Our customers are our funders, audience, and participants as we film during open hours, inviting interested patrons to express their unique opinions and personalities. It also runs a Conflict Kitchen than serves food from the countries with whom the United States is in conflict. 

Waffle Shop.org

 

 

 

 

Bluebeard: 911 Re-run Party 

One vivid memory of the attack on Twin Towers was the loop of video footage that was broadcast on news channels. Watching a simulation of planes repeatedly crashing into the towers was chilling but also comic. The original broadcasts were a twisted combination of slapstick and violence. This video performance by Robin Page (aka Bluebeard) in many ways encapsulates that initial disturbing experience while pointing up the grotesqueness of repetition itself within the filmic medium.  Page's piece is not cosy moralising. He does not trot out a party line about the horrors of the event. Instead, his darkly humoured home-video lays bare the perverseness of the act of witnessing what was originally, and is again here, a circular and self-referring event.

 

 

 

 

 

Putting On Collective 

Putting On is an artists' collective that explores the representation and revolutionary potential of humour in the context of the clown, not only in his age-old role as a masquerading fool, a trickster, a joker and jester but as an aesthetic, social and political metaphor. The collective have pursued a range of projects including performing a "Gagged Gag' (as pictured here) at the Circus Charivari in Berlin (2010). They have also published work such as a pirated book for 'And, Press' as part of the publishing house's Piracy Project (2011) and broadcast a radio performance of their 'Manifesto' on Resonance fm (2011).