Author Archives: S. B. Bloom

Self-Portrait Draft #2: A Map of Projecting Considered Experiances


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While conceptualizing my second iteration of my map, I chose to focus on the way in which idea/memories are filtered, curated, and relegated into the projecting ones decisions into the future. The way in which, one reflects or applies hindsight to decisions, writes most of the equati on for how their future is shape, this is true besides for the element of chaos which in unaccountable in life.

 I wanted to use the idea of  a growing viral body as my map. The virus breeds and certain of it s offspring grow bigger, and others lay dormant, described in white circles, the bigger the size just means the amount of time spent in consideration, the density of these ideas describes the

I decided to make a semi natural background, using tones which can be found in nature to translate this effect. I then assigned connective paths which are pointed into infinity. Then I have three separating boundaries which stem from the map boarder and are on the closest plane to the viewer.

The boundaries are “Out of Consideration”, “Experiential Boundary”, and “Perception LIne”, each of these separators define the actual decision to see or not see, or choose not to include ideas and experiences in future decisions.

The map is then broken up into another level of separations: “Future”, “Past”, “Present”. I wanted to add this axis for analysis to provide another aspect of my own thought process, and what weighs in on the actual decisions I make towards the future.

My map proposes a way of considering ones linear history and experiences in a new manner, one which is personal to me. The negation yet proclamation of my important past emphasize something personal about me; my tendency to avoid specificity, which is certainly clarified by the white circles. My map makes visible this very contradiction in my own persona/ality. Being human is about revealing clear contradictions within self. Mine is that I know what I am doing, yet still doing it.

 Woods, describes the function of clustering and connecting seemingly disconnected aspects of a map. I also appreciate her notion  of a system of signifiers. The artists who influenced me from the readings:  Emily Ginsburg and Jane Lackey influenced me most. Their use of minimal color and creating abstract patterns with underlying narrative maps, gave me direction. “Both used ideas of the invisible, ephemeral, unseen, and cerebral in the creation of a map”, as I said in my first post.

Self Portrait Draft #1: Map of Personal Vision of Intentions and Outcomes

Screen Shot 2015-02-16 at 10.25.27 PMScreen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.31.34 PMScreen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.33.04 PMScreen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.31.46 PMScreen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.32.00 PM                           To map oneself, there must be a certain level of understanding, that there will be an infinite level of subtraction, from ones complex reality of self, the scale or magnitude of the map is completely fabricated. In the creation of my own “map of self”, I decided to focus on the depiction of my own perception, of my experiences, and the interruptions, which I have encountered in the process of living through idealized visions of my future and the actual realization of future/contemporary self. The overall message I wish to impart is the complexity and undefinable nature of self, and its inability to be fully explained through any medium. In order to level the plane of experience, I created an initial axial diagram from which to start the reading of the image, which is also meant to represent the centered and yet undefinable “ME”.  From the “GO” point you can trace, connect, and overlay personal experiences, on top of psychologically indicative ( if not wholly realistic) vision of my own experiences, outcomes, and interruptions. I struggled with the notion of privacy in the creation of a map of self. I felt that I did not want to reveal too much of myself in the creation of this image, so I chose to label the indication each color has on the actual process of planning and experiencing. My decision to surround the picture with a sea of uncertainty was derived from my own insecurity about displaying my own convoluted and fabricated perception of self in any medium. This map is meant to depict the way in which foresight and hindsight differ, and the scale at which you view certain issues, solutions, and dreams all contradict the manner in which we measure the scale and importance, of individual experience. This map is not meant to indicate a realistic depiction of my perception, rather it is meant as a means of displaying the inherent contradiction of human thought and action, and the overall conundrum of displaying self in a world which relies so heavily on the fabrication of image and the branding of self into a synthetic and sterile compilation of textures, colors, and ideologies; which contradict our inherent complexities and contradictions. Simply defining my own terms for my map has allowed me to see the contradictions and faults in my own projection of self, making a map has created a situation in which I find myself questioning my own capabilities to adhere to hindsight and foresight as a means of perceiving my own intentions and outcomes, and the scale at which interruptions have left on me. Just as Woods describes the function of clustering and connecting seemingly disconnected aspects of a map. I chose to give homogeny to the forms I depicted, creating symbols out of shapes, scales, and colors,  which impart the magnitude of the topic without defining said topics in detail. I also appreciate her notion  of a system of signifiers, I struggled immensely with this idea and in my next iteration of the project will expand upon it. In terms of artists who influenced me from the readings I would say that Emily Ginsburg and Jane Lackey were the most prevalent. Their use of minimal color and creation of pattern based narrative maps, gave me a sense of the direction which interested me. Both used ideas of the invisible, ephemeral, unseen, and cerebral in the creation of a map ( which I found very attractive).

Conference Project: Creative Interview Initiative

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 1.12.10 PM My goal in my conference was to create a space of otherness, where ones mind can be captivated by the illusion of communal thought and belief. This power, created and allowed by mans need to withdraw from his own agency, has been used by institutions of power since the beginning of time. Organized religion, public education, the institution of capitalism, etc.  are all examples of man’s constructed centers of power with aesthetic and philosophical ideals and restrictions which give them the longevity and value to society. For my project, I wanted to play with the ideas of power, consumerism, illusion, surrealism, visual and textual storytelling, and belief. I did so by establishing an imagined institution, one which had set values, rules, and aesthetic goals. For my project, I created a pamphlet for the CII, “Creative Interview Initiative”, a group which focuses on the documentation of conversations and physical creation. The purpose was to impose values and systems for people to reevaluate their artistic practice through a communal lens. By formatting the text into fragmented and disjointed parts I was able to create a cohesive and multifaceted pamphlet to discuss my ideas, through the fabricated voice of this group. I handed out my pamphlets in the Heimbold Visual ArtsCenter and received some interesting feedback. People didn’t question the content or even want to know more. I, in fact could hardly get anyones notice of my project. I think if I were to extend the project in the future, I would set up a booth with a banner in Heimbold’s atrium and hold an information session. This would add a more official appearance to my project.

Questions of Space

Screen Shot 2014-12-14 at 3.54.47 PM Text, is not just letters combined into words, etc, it is an amalgam of predefined connotations asserted into the visual and analytical realm, and therefore there is a need to question the space which words can create, and how we wish to occupy said space. Each of us have our own inherent Leprosies, our own secrets which we sometimes feel are eating us from the outside in, our own notions of value, which can at times maybe make us feel devalued. When  constructing my text video about space, I began to question the reasons for which I had considered certain words to have a higher rank than others. I began to question the hierarchies and relationship between permanent words and the inevitable transience of others. I  chose, “Their”, as an anchor for the phrase for the rest of my composition. Then I made a conscious choice to discuss space, I began to spin a web of movements and interactions, floating words into the space, while others created and furthered the questioning and the control, over my illusionary boundaries , which, I implemented in hopes of forming new opinions and critiques of my own constructed space of text and motion. Screen Shot 2014-12-14 at 3.55.20 PM I chose to make a video and then triple the original frame, laying each of three identical animation at different angles and scales on the page; all to be played in unison at the same time. Scale, played a large role in the way in which my video was constructed, scale did not give inherent hierarchical dominance to any of the identical phrases, the size of font only gives a implication of visual importance, never an inherent dominance of meaning based on the number of pixels each letter contains. My project reverses half way through, while at the same time the letters are changed from stable solid font, to a dissolving and shimmering text, leaving its unweaving and reversed quality to tear down the meanings I had inferred in the first half of the video. My intention was to deconstruct the layers of phrases which I had spun into a complex web and choreographed visual performance. The words themselves did not only hold meaning in the context of the space I had defined, rather they became a world of their own, only enhanced by their definitions. The meaning of the phrases are only to be significant in the fact that they were connected, yet every word is worth considering on its own. every phrase. every word. every turn. every angle. The power of words in space, is underestimated, our subconscious is triggered by memory, repeatedly referencing the connotations of the words and phrases in terms of their previously defines moments in time, and their inherent meaning we have been taught since birth begins to slip away as you mature as a thinker. To use words, is a choice to express oneself, in which you assign values to solely meaningless lines. It is just the same as creating a code, any word can have an alternate meaning, and every word choice comes with the choice not to use another. Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 10.21.57 PM

Formulary for a New Urbanism

Doug Aitken

The universality and exclusions, which define modern urban space, lead to the destructive forces of post-modern architecture, to the removal of context and inclusion of exclusion in design.

There is an inherent need to re-humanize architecture, returning to smaller realities and localizing interventions and solutions. There exists a complex global structure in urban development which is becoming self referential separating it and its satellite developments as entities un-to themselves.

When considering creative practices, one should ponder the dilemma of social upheaval and how new-media technologies and networks can be used in producing alternate digital realities in physical space. Glass walls no longer provide opacity or even fluidity between the interior and exterior of structures, rather the invisible network of communication clouds the facades.

The internet provides a field of equality if the technology is provided on a universal level. The disconnect which is provided by the internet is another issue: are those who exist unplugged, living an alternate reality to those who are digitally dependent? If the answer is yes, which I am lead to believe it is, then how can architecture harness the strengths of digital media and then redirect it towards an equalizing and progressive urban space, and potentially non-urban spaces?

Radicalism is an associative term with terrorism and other destructive forces, however their is an inherent need for radicalism to grow into a form of pragmatic cultural critique. Radicalism needs a canvas, a location from which it can be projected and dispersed like an antibody into the social stratum. Radicalism in physicalized form could serve as an outlet of sacrificial crisis, providing a pragmatic framework for the reworking of flawed systems and the spread of ideological realism, furthering the promotion of truth in  contemporary society and inevitably spaces.

SpaceHiJack: Let’s Play Together

Remix the City Sketchbook211Remix the City Sketchbook210                       My box project focused primarily on the creation of an event. The event was up to the participants discretion. I simply provided the small and self referential gear in a specific location. People could wear, hit, stomp, or take any of the objects provided. However I saw that people either chose to play or do nothing at all. 4 weeks later the items are still in the location which I provided, in almost perfect condition. I wanted to make the objects and boxes uniform in their aesthetic, choosing to draw from the purchased objects the beaded pattern and colors of the flip-flops, to accentuate the uniformity and game aspect of the project. I think it was successful in the goals which I set forth.

Conference Project Post #2: Valuation Exercise

Proposed Space 1

Proposed Space 1

Current Center     Since starting my conference I have seen a need to shift towards a new idea. Originally, I was thinking about commodity and personal agency over one’s art, however I struggled to find a productive goal for the project which I had proposed. In my conference I want to address the need to question artistic intentions and thought processes; while also interrupt the flow of Heimbold in a propaganda based approach. My project is a pamphlet detailing a theoretical group, The Collective Interview Initiative (CII). I want to create a fictional landscape and narrative, in Heimbold, through both text and imagery, using a this fabricated institution as a means of  branding my ideas under a pseudo-legitimate front; with the intention of shaping the way in which people both perceive and value their artistic experiences and methods of production:

CII, sees the strength of conversation as only matched by an individuals ability to create in the physical realm. The pedagogy which is promoted by the collective, is meant to bridge the gap between conversations of: nature of physical creation, crossing over into creation of fictional realms, reality television, gender, politics, and economics.

The pamphlet will also detail the tasks and roles CII members will fill and how they relate to methods of thinking and producing which I have deemed as beneficial.

The goal of CII is to breakdown the commodification of communication and production through the individualisation of products and spaces and the autonomy of the producers.

I see this project as being highly related to Sassen’s reading of new urban conditions in ,”Making Public Interventions in Today’s Massive Cities”.  This project acts to critique weaponized urban spaces, by providing a retreat for thinking about new conditions in education and production. The project itself proposes a world where people can shape the space they live in on a small temporal scale, allowing one to transform the possibilities of producing, not only art, but also physical and spacial conditions, through both conversation and production:

The physical manifestation of the Initiative is reinvented on a bi-annual basis. So far our two iterations which have been created thus far are born out of the dreams of our archivists, who manifest a rendering, which is then produced during the last two months of the second year of habitation.

The unsettlements Sassen discusses, and the monumentalization, which has caused them in urban space, directly relates to the way in which I intend my project to question the spaces in which one thinks and produces. I intend for it to show how as individuals we should never allow for a space to remain stagnant in our thoughts or vacant of personal politicization. Space is inherently political and therefore requires revaluation on a regular basis, even on a small and personal scale.
The goal of this initiative is not to create stagnant movements but to remain in flux between the minutiae of craft and creation, and the complex and abstract nature of charged conversation.
Forming new topographies is a major focus of the project I am proposing. The ideas of digital networks and connections, is played out through the intense focus on the creation of real human interaction and the digital analysis upon which CII relies upon:

Conference Project Post #1: Valuation Day

Approach: Every ritual demands some sacrifice. For artists, sacrifice ignites a transition of their artistic output into our commodity culture, and further their commodification of themself. Art, is extracted from the artist by the market, leaving a creative gap to be filled, a void to be programmed, the artist becomes known not by the medium or quality by/at which they produce work; rather by the records of sale, the provenance which has developed around their work, and the persona which the artist projects into a commodity market setting. As an artist, how do you set your price? Where do you choose to sell your intellectually and aesthetically manifested ideas/ideals, and in which way can you define yourself in order to defy yourself? Can you take control of the opportunities provided by the market? Will you let it control your productive output? How can an artist’s personal aesthetic choices affect their work? How does their charismatic manifestation play into the price which their work reaches and the notoriety they have achieved? How can an artist’s brand affect their product? Now, the artists role is to proclaim value, to place meaning in commodity, to develop a new associative capital system derived from strong contextualization and locationality. It cannot be assumed that cultural value can be linked to the value of financial capital, in fact they could not reflect each other. The strength of art is its context, no matter if it is literal, surreal, abstract, historical, societal, or anthropological context builds character and is the foundation from which art is constructed. There is value in making connections, and that is the role of the artist. Forming webs, ebbs, and flows between thoughts and ideas, both sensorial and intellectual, acknowledged and subconscious. Conference: I plan on creating a psychologically probing intervention in the space of Heimbold, by inserting a performance into the atrium in the form of either a video or a live. I will be distributing fabricated methodologies with which to value your artistic production, based on a series of questions which lead you towards a phantasmagorical journey of self awareness. I mean to inspire questioning of why you produce, and why the value of intellectual work has been removed from our daily lives. In addition to the creation of a performance, there will be literature and documents prepared to accompany the valuation process. All elements of the project will fall under the same aesthetic umbrella, and will be presented as a uniform branding strategy for the work itself, and in turn the artist. Criteria For Evaluation: This project is inherently satirical and therefore the questions are meant to be questioned rather than taken literally or in an outwardly offensive manner, they are meant to be questioned and to probe the assumed societal norms and structures which are used to evaluate commodity values in culture. Context of the Artist: What is your name? Where are you from? What is your date of birth? Are you religious? Are your parents? Does your ethnicity affect your work? Chosen Pronoun? Where do you see your work going? Are you authentic? In a few sentences describe the space you feel most aesthetically in control of? Describe 3 objects which stick in your memory? (In detail) What do you think your value as an artist is? (scale of 1-10) Yes/Frequency or No: Do you smoke cigarettes? Do you drink alcohol? Do you take drugs? Are you mentally stable? Are you diagnosed with a personality disorder? Have you ever wanted to die? Do you think you have romantic baggage? About the Pieces: Have you ever sold a piece before? For how much? How many pieces have you made this year? In total? how long have you been practicing for? What is your chosen subject?

Questions of Space

How do we define spaces by function? Are spaces of transition not spaces of functionality? Are spaces not born out of tradition? Can spaces be redefined by a changing context? Are spaces stable? Are spaces in flux? How do we define spaces of memory? How can we separate space from memory? What is a memorial? What is a monument? In what spaces can we hide? In what spaces can we perform? Is this a space of tragedy? of clarity?

Sticker Project: Decoration/Conscious Expostulation of Modern Architectures Hidden Filth

(Simon Bedik-Bloom 2014) “Linearity at Play” We actively choose to design, decorate, and plan our spaces, making them inherently politicized. Spaces as arenas of visual perception, are direct our vision by the queues and markers which are chosen be set into them, conscious or not of the designer. Spaces are occult to the common observer, the truth behind them is never absolute, and they are filled with areas darkness where our imagination takes control of the emptiness which they provide, and we forever strive to fill. For as long as humankind has existed they have built, making conscious aesthetic and functional choices in terms of  constructed space. The need for a column, may have sprung from a greed for larger and taller buildings, but also could have simply sprung from the idea of wrapped reeds from the nile being applied in unison to bear the weight of a roofing structure. However, the column did derive its function and its form in unison, allowing it to gain the prestige it has today. As technology has developed and spaces have become more streamlined, uniform, and hidden in their true structural necessity, we have seen a rise in the amount of political weight we attach to them ( Occupy Wall Street, Street Art in General, etc.). The Greeks, are thought to have taken the technology of the column from the Egyptians, adapting it to fit their structural needs for size and monumentality. Further, the Romans may have adapted the Greek Columns to fit their cultural needs, but certainly they did not serve structural necessity. The Romans, rather chose to apply the architectural stylings of the Greeks in a manner of less permanence, and for good reason, it was not theirs to keep in perpetuity. The Romans, inscribed their social structures, political views, and religious beliefs into their ornament, creating a society constantly stimulated by decoration and ornament. The reactionary austerity, which permeated out from modern architectural movement ( ie. The Corbusier, International Style, Chicago School, etc.) was not representative of the actual cultures which inhabit them but rather depicted the function of space as a machine, and individuals as fuel for the machine. When conceptualizing a visual interruption of space, the first thing to consider is the space itself. Heimbold Visual Arts Center, is austere, rigid in its exterior envelope, and seemingly malleable in its internal format (although rarely utilized to its fullest). Heimbold, in terms of a types of spaces can be thought of as spaces of: transition, production and socializing.(However much of the space seems to utilized for transitions, but this is a digression.) There is a strict and strangely clinical aesthetic statement made by the building. Every studio starts the year empty and sterile, only to be dirtied by the sick and pollutant work of the students. Is this how a visual arts center should make one feel? Is there a need for such stringent spacial segmentation and divides between spaces. It appears that segmentation is  seemingly solely based on that of assigned function rather than interaction of producers and educators. (Maybe even the public??) In creating a sticker campaign, I saw a need to alter the way in which we perceive linear and stringent spacial assignments. I  drew from Heimbold’s linear formality, I composed an image which would both mimic and oppose the way in which linear space is perceived, focusing on corners and edges rather than flat wall space as points of interaction. My first installment of my sticker campaign is quite clear in its formal message, the goal was to simply display the inversion and transformation of formal geometric shapes with a transposed version of the same image to be displayed on an opposing corners. My second step, was to sully or modify the sterility which is Heimbold. This pursuit was driven by a  slightly darker interest; I began to dive deep into the world of online webcam sex shows, watching people feel pleasure through the sterilized lens provided by my retina screen. I gained inspiration and felt their was to be warranted defamation, of the Atrium Cafe’s, heinous yellow wall. I began to play with the textures and layers of the highly intimate image, which the voyeurs had so boldly displayed online. First, using the entire websites interface as a source of inspiration, drawing out what was organic and what was man made in the image, clearing the spaces I found devoid of meaning, hoping that they would be filled with that putrid yellow wall ,which so negatively impedes on my line of sight, when I am gasping for my first cup of coffee. "Web Clinician" For my second image I decided to refine my focus to simply to image of the two people pleasuring themselves in unison. I removed any gendered elements and focused more on the reality of human experience. I chose to extrude the gritty and dark subconscious and conscious emotions forming such an intimate image. I saw the need to remove any irrelevant part as necessary.  Choosing almost at random to change colors and textures to fit the aesthetic goal of decoration through disturbance. Screen Shot 2014-10-12 at 5.48.40 AM Just as Alexander McQueens infamous show, “Highland Rape”, disturbed and perturbed audiences; the goal was not to emit some grotesque notion or to trigger offense in any person, my goal was simply to bring forward the true grittiness created by a space used for education, creation, thinking, and the physical production of artistic work. No object is sterile, nor are we, nor is anyone. I want to mention, there is a belief in the field of Urban Studies, that when a city is built there is a parallel city created; it is either literally or metaphorically constructed to serve said  consumer city. Are we as artists residents of the consumer city? or the service city? Do we define the space we occupy? Or do we allow it to define us? Do we defy us based on the space we occupy? How can decoration, alter the way in which space is perceived, and in turn, how we are perceived in our space?