Category Archives: Remix the City

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.

Conference Project: Do You Control Space?

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 8.58.12 AM Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 8.58.05 AM The making of our conference project was definitely time consuming and harder than we thought it would be. We spent 15-16 hours straight in Heimbold, from 4pm to 8am the next morning. We thought we would be home by maximum 2am, but that did not happen… We had to cut each letter one by one, and then stick them up on the wall, one by one. Although the execution took so long, it was a great experience. I had never collaborated with someone artistically before, and it was definitely an enriching experience. Grace and I really put effort into the project and mostly the execution, and it was worth it because we are really satisfied with the outcome. This is the text we wrote and put up on the wall: Where does SPACE begin? Does SPACE control you? Or do you control SPACE? Architecture should make you feel at home in duration, not enclose you in space, nor in time measured out as if it were space. You accept the division between public and private. Will you fight or conform? FUCK CAPITALISM You must connect one possibility to another. Either REJECT industry or EMBRACE it. “Art can have no existential significance for a civilization which draws a line between life and art” The doctrine of modern architecture excludes artist. Do not let it exclude YOU. Does SPACE control you? Or do you control SPACE? When we thought we had done the “worst” part, we had to install. And installing took so much longer than we thought it would. It was definitely the greatest part of the project, though. We saw our project come together letter after letter and that was amazing. We were in such a zone, time did not matter and people around us either. We installed our project during the night to make sure we would not be bothered by people walking through the hallway, but some people were still around, and it was really interesting to see their reactions, as the project was not yet fully put together. Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 8.57.51 AM Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 8.57.58 AM   Throughout the installation, we realized that it was really a 2 person project. I could have not done this alone; the execution would have taken twice the time, and I don’t think I would have had the courage to take over the space on my own. I think we altered the visual code of Heimbold in the sense that we took over unused space and did not really give a choice to people to see it or not. We wrote our text in the second person, to make it even harder for people to not notice it. The decision of starting our story on the other end of the hallway rather at the beginning is something we were unsure of for a second, because we were worried it would not make enough sense, but I am really glad we did it that way. It followed a little bit of the Situationist’s nonsense style. The reactions to the project were really interesting and positive; I spent the whole next day in Heimbold and saw a lot of people stopping to read the text, and overheard people talking about it. Some teachers came up to me to compliment the project/to ask for some sort of explanation for what we stated, and I thought that it was really cool that faculty got involved

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

Space HiJack: Jenga

For my box project, I also started with confusion. Since we’ve been talking about cube mappings during class and the lab on gum box. I wasn’t sure what the project is. Whether making cube mapping or making a huge box and tape over it. So I take some note on what other students in the course are doing. I realized just to make boxes and interfere with the space! So I talked to my friends advises for box project. They have all crazy ideas and we came up with the Jenga idea! The unique aspect of Jenga is that it is played all around the world. (at least China and America, haha) Since we have a great amount of international crowd, having a global box project is awesome! So I installed the box here: FullSizeRender FullSizeRender_1 The result came out great. People play around with it. My friends were telling me how people interact with it while they are just hanging around in Heimbold. I am really happy with the outcome!

Questions of Space

My text project is on how to look at space, spatial relationship between abstract artwork and people. I watched the tutorials of After Effect on YouTube. I used typewriter effect, falling effect, transformed scales and positions; fade out effect, and etc. I am happy with my every first outcome of After Effect. I am definitely gonna work more on it. Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 2.33.00 AM Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 11.13.10 AM How to look at space? A man’s idea of what was “real” depended mainly on how he felt and thought about “space” Space is a relationship between things and time A drawing is a division of space A line is an edge of space Shapes and colors are spaces A painting is a flat space Architecture is the art of spaces Abstract artworks are real spaces An abstract artwork will react to you if you react to it. You get from it what you bring to it. The spatial relationship between you and the artwork is commutative. YOU ARE A SPACE, TOO.

Conference Project: 100% YC Labels

My conference project is a series of sticker labels. My idea came from the clothing label. For my project, I made stickers for chairs, staircase handles, water fountains, plants and glass windows and doors in heimbold. I am also making a bonus sticker for my suitcase. The contents of label include percentages of materials, which the object is made, instructions of cleaning, country of origin, and logo design of my initials. Here are the close up of my suitcase label and glass label Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 12.24.21 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 12.23.21 PM During the process, I had such an exciting time of playing with typography. I spent hours on searching for my ideal type for the labels. I wanted it to be fancy and unique, yet easy for viewers to read the content. The study of typography also ties to my collection assignment earlier this semester. I find the label project is related to Claire Bishop’s article on The Social Turn: Collaboration and its Discontents where the artists are interested in collaboration and engagement with social constituencies, which is a way to make artwork relate to society. I think my labels are also connected to society by adding written contents of the specific objects. The labels are significant of bring the manufactory and business of the objects. I wanted to remind people of the relationship between consumers and products when they see my stickers. After installing my sticker labels in Heimbold, I think the atmosphere of places changed. For example, I feel like shopping for chairs in Heimbold Café, every label is on center of the back of the chair which is similar to clothing labels on center on the people’s back below the necks. I hope you get the sense of being a consumer when you see my labels. 10 17 12 15 I also made a space hijack/intervention of my glass sticker in my apartment building. 08 09 Also, I spread my works on the social network. IMG_8617 Screen Shot 2014-12-08 at 12.39.44 AM New look for my suitcase! 01 22 It was such a great experience of becoming a sticker maniac!

Visual Code of Heimbold

When I first saw Heimbold, I immediately thought of the art building in my high school in Rhode Island because the major glass doors and windows and the contour of the wood structure in both buildings. FullSizeRender2013-05-27 02.45.48 I enjoy staying in Heimbold since there is always something attract me. You can see a piece of artwork in any classroom, on a particular wall, even on the vending machine. The building always took me by surprised for having so many exciting things to explore. Heimbold also strikes me with its flexibility and its possibility for people to intervene. For example, the space hijack of our class! We used our common sense of what makes a living room and brought our props and turn a space into another. It was such an exciting experience. My friends came up to me and expressed how jealous they are that I am in such a creative fun class. IMG_8057 Heimbold has the ability to accept so many messages for me to read that no other buildings in Sarah Lawrence could do.

Conference Project: MetroNorth Ad Bust

IMG_3184 My project was replacing ads on the Metro North train with my own work. With this poster, I wanted to propose an alternative path to happiness/fulfillment than those suggested by advertisements. Advertisements suggest that we can improve ourselves and our experience through the purchase of the advertised product/service/experience.  Ads sculpt this illusion that there is an alternate reality, a utopia of youth, beauty and opulence, and the ticket is just the purchase of their product. They suggest that if you modify the externalities of your life (your appearance, your shelter, your car, etc) than your internal self will be improved. It reduces the human experience to that of mere consumerism, and dramatically simplifies our desires to a reward system where self-improvement is predicated entirely on money spending. John Berger frames the relationship between society and the advertisement industry in this 1972 episode of Ways of Seeing. It’s challenging to unlearn the buyer’s high, but I think it’s just a matter of realizing that fulfillment is based on a state of mind. 1972397_10154958917220094_8550232292705487173_n This second ad was to address the one-way communicative nature of advertisements. Ads speak but don’t listen. They tell you what you want, but don’t respond to your needs. I wanted to make an ad that just listened. So I made randomtrainsign@gmail.com. I’m not sure how long it lasted but I got 2 emails within the first few hours after I put it up. I posted this picture online so it’s possible that these emails are from people who viewed it online. To me, that makes no difference because my goal was to inspire people to interact with a space that would otherwise be ignored, so if they’re doing that through web use that still accomplishes something in my book. I’m really inspired to keep going with this particular one, and make more “randomtrainsign@gmail.com” ads.  I wanted this to look handmade, rather than printed, because I wanted it to maintain a sort of holistic, person-to-person feel. In terms of the responses: The first was a [kind of] intense poem:
TERRIBLE MISTAKES ARE MADE ON THE MOVE.
SEATS FACING EACH OTHER OR NOTHING.
SUIT AND A LEATHER BOOT A LIST SO I WONT FORGET.
POLICE MAN TAKING OUT HIS HANDKERCHIEF.
PARANOID OR INCESSANT CLICKING ON THE TELEPHONE?
CHOKE ON YOUR OPINION.
A LITTLE OVERWHELMED I BEGAN WITH DOUBT.
BOTHERED ME BEFORE NOW GENERALIZED EVASIONS.
WHAT PART OF THE MIDDLE WEST IS A WRONG IDEA?
TRIED VERY HARD TO DIE.
KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF THE BATHROOM FLOOR.
PRETEND TO BE SURPRISED BETWEEN THE SHEETS.
SHE LAY PERFECTLY STILL, LISTENING, A CAR?
TOO OLD TO LIE TO MYSELF.
ETERNAL GRACELESS CIRCLES.
IMPORTANT LOOKING DOOR.
The second email was a short story:
It was my first time traveling over night on my own, and i had stopped in Newark New jersey over night. it was about 1 am and bitter cold in the city, there was not a soul to be seen. I moseyed about the main streets alone in the flickering lights of the un maintained street lamps, when a newspaper box caught my eye, it was moderately tagged with graffiti, and i had wanted to get a closer look, possible make a contribution myself. With my head so close to the box taking in the names scrawled across its front facing side, i had not the peripheral vision or the outward attention to notice the man approaching me from behind, suddenly i felt a tap on my shoulder and flung myself around in startled manner, only to be politely pushed to the side by a straggly worn down looking gentleman. The man proceeded to reach in his pockets and fumble around for something, a moment later he pulled out a hand full of change put some in the machine, pulled out 1 newspaper and handed it to me with a smile, a nod, and a god bless you. its the small things in life, that effect us in the biggest ways.
IMG_3186This third one had a pretty simple message, which was something along the lines of “this looks like a child did it and it’s still 100x more engaging than most advertisements.” Making it lo-fi, child-style was a conscious choice because I thought it would be empowering to see something that wasn’t aesthetically groomed in an ad shelter. Kind of sending a message like “trust me, you don’t need to be talented to do this. Just curious and empowered!”

Conference Post #3

infographic-01 This is my completed infographic; it’s meant to look like a news site/app within an ipad screen. One of my concerns with this project was that it would end up looking too text-heavy, and I wouldn’t succeed with the data visualization part. Since the subject is news, it’s text-heavy by nature, but I made sure that each section had a visual representation/component. I chose a red, white and black color scheme for the infographic, since breaking news banners (and the BBC and CNN logos) use red and white, and black goes with text and the ipad border. The left side represents ‘old’ media, or newspapers, and I used a Typewriter front and a newsprint-type background to distinguish that segment. I tried to use interesting visual elements to represent kind of boring facts, like the R.I.P. section, which is meant to look like a news story. For the right side, or new media side of the infographic, I used a white background and Trench font. I chose the font because it’s a pretty modern looking sans serif font, and because it’s thin, which allowed me to play around with stroke (boldness) and font size to emphasize certain points. I also drew all the images except for the social media logos and trophies, which was a little challenging, especially with making curves. Working with Illustrator was a series of huge frustrations and small victories. Nothing much changed between my sketch and my final version, though I did get rid of the timeline because there wasn’t enough space. I also tried to avoid making the graphic too complicated and noisy by keeping to two fonts and three colors, though I did use blue for the hyperlink. Overall, I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, and I don’t think there’s anything I’d do differently.  

Questions of Space

Screen Shot 2014-12-09 at 10.25.38 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-09 at 10.24.33 PM I did Questions of space for my text project, and had fun using the space of the screen as well as different fonts and effects to encapsulate the meaning or feeling of some of my questions. These were my questions: Can space contain? If space can contain, is it restrictive? Is space context? Is space destructible? If space is destructible, can it be rebuilt? Can space be atmospheric? Who/what controls the atmosphere of space? Can space be shared? Can shared spaces have an equal balance of power? Does defining space change it? Is space constant, or in a cycle of death and rebirth? Are they the same thing? How do space and time interact? Since I had 12 questions and 2 minutes to work with, I allocated roughly 10 seconds to each question, which gave me a good framework to work within. I found After Effects really fun to use once I got the hang of it, and wish we’d gotten more time to spend on it. With regard to the Struppek reading, I think it would be cool if the screens in Times Square were hijacked to display text projects like these; the ‘bright lights’ of Times Square are all ads, and I never understood why people travel all this way and get so excited to see them (probably because they were sold the idea of NYC as this romantic, bustling city and Times Square as the heart of it, a must-see). I think hijacking this very urban public space (surrounded by virtual screens) would transform it from a commercial, capitalist hellhole to a center of culture and communication.

Questions of Space

Questions of Space

With the inspiration of Bernard Tschumi, I came up with these questions of space!

Is SPACE really space?

Does SPACE get it’s own SPACE?

Where does SPACE stop and start?

Can our perception of SPACE ever be unassuming?

Is SPACE like a line, going infinitely?

Is SPACE, not SPACE?

Do experiences determine SPACE or do spaces determine experiences?

Is there SPACE outside of SPACE?

Can SPACE reveal ideas and ideologies?

Is SPACE always shared between everyone?

Questions of Space

For my post of question of space, I am going to make a manifesto on space on abstract art after a very interesting reading experience of Ad Reinhardt’s How to look at Space. Reinhardt is an abstract painter in New York who I came across in my class – Beyond Perspective: Mathematics and Visual Art. How to look at space? A man’s idea of what was “real” depended mainly on how he felt and thought about “space” Space is a relationship between things and time A drawing is a division of space A line is an edge of space Shapes and colors are spaces A painting is a flat space Architecture is the art of spaces Abstract artworks are real spaces An abstract artwork will react to you if you react to it You get from it what you bring to it The spatial relationship between you and the artwork is commutative YOU ARE A SPACE, TOO.

Conference Project: Bubble Tent

tent 2 In looking at the successes and failures of my implementation of my conference project, I wish I had been able to make a model/draft of it before installing it. The biggest problem I ran into was that I had not planned on my tent being so tall and so I ran out of bubble wrap! I returned to the store to purchase a second roll, but it was sold out. In an improvised move I used material to cover the back of the tent (which ultimately I like) but I would have liked to have known that this would happen so I could better prepare. The other problem I encountered was the resistance of the paint to the duct tape I was using to secure the tent. The tape peeled off and required substantial reinforcing which made it look less like it was floating than I had originally planned. tent 3   Where I think the projects succeeds is in my attempt to reclaim space within an impersonal structure and make something cozy and personal, much in the same way our living room did. I also feel that the affective quality of the tent is unlike most spaces on campus, in that it reflects the spirit of those inhabiting Heimbold (or my perception of them). If I could change the project I would attempt to make it more interactive, perhaps by making it bigger or by creating incentives to engage with the space (a la the success of the doughnut box). tent 4 As with several of my projects for this class, the process of creating it was a great opportunity for learning about myself and my goals for creation. Also like those other projects, the opportunity to do a second draft would have helped me in structural and logistical ways.

Conference Project Post #2: 100% YC Labels

I am sticking with my original idea of conference project, doing a series of sticker labels. My first sticker project of IKEA is to deliver the message of using forced labor in major companies. It was sort of serious and political. So, for my second attempt, I want to do something closer to my individual life. After reading Wodivzko’s Strategies of Public Address, he characterize the strategies of public art has very little to do with social practice. Art in public places want to protect the bureaucratic aestheticism, separate the artist practice from critical public issues, and then imposing the purified practice on bureaucratic exhibitionism. I feel like his description sort of fit in to my idea of my sticker label project. I focused more on things that are closer to my daily life and the autonomy of art. I consider my project as an example of liberal urban decoration. Here are some sketches of my initials and labels: 02 03

Conference Project Post # 2 : Emma’s Progress on “Brokeopoly”

Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 6.39.48 PM So! I have assembled my board. I’s wraught with cynicism… perhaps dripping with sarcasm… But I’m thoroughly enjoying myself, so there’s that. I’m using actual classes I’ve taken, and on the “property cards,” I’m explaining what a student would come to know from taking those classes: Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 6.50.54 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 8.27.26 PM My next steps are designing the “change,” “student loan” and “ineffable amounts of fake money” components…. and then printing—- a long odious process I’m sure… AND THEN, coming up with my playing pieces. A friend of mine is offering up a 3d printer, which would be SO COOL to see. I’m thinking they will be “ball and chain,” “concrete block,” among other dooming and funny narratives. This is becoming an insanely meditative, nostalgic process.. and I can’t imagine a better way to spend my last weeks at Sarah Lawrence than making this kind of a punchy project. I don’t mean to damn the idea of going to college— i just want to make it obvious that it’s been a wild ride, and one that you cannot necessarily prove or disprove whether it’s worth that amount of money. It should definitely be cheaper, and there should be wealth funding per capita, so that everyone, of every class, has every opportunity to succeed. And for the future? I have no idea what my career looks like chasing this art thing, but I know it couldn’t have happened without every one of these years in school. I just know that this place has not been my container, and I’m excited to learn where the road takes me once I’m entirely independent. Send the next post soon!  

Conference Project Post #2: MetroNorth Ad Bust

I’m excited (and perhaps a little nervous) to install my project. I’ve prepared 2 posters (and will hopefully prepare a 3rd) to replace the advertisements on the Metro North train with. My plan is to have another student come along and document while I install. Previously when I pulled the ads down, people didn’t seem to think anything of it. I got no reaction, which was nice. But I’ve never installed an ad in front of a train full of passengers, so I’m not sure if they’ll react to this. My guess is that they won’t due to the fact that the seating makes it difficult to interact with other passengers on the train. So I’m not particularly concerned about people confronting me. This project is interesting to me because it’s not explicitly illegal to hang my own work in these ad spaces since the posters are very easily removable and do not damage anything. But I think it’s visually empowering to see someone reclaim ad space for art.

Questions of Space

Does space require time? Is there an abnormal distance between whatever neurons in my head connect my thoughts to my mouth? (re: articulating myself is hard) When viewed at a microscopic level, could my mom ever really consider my room clean? Is “empty space” a relative term? Is empty space possible?   When I ‘space out’ am I actually entering a void?

Space HiJack: This Side Up

IMG_3101 For my box project, I decided to make a box that says “this side up” on every side, but pointing different ways. I installed it in the Barbara Walters Gallery because I felt like this was my only chance to show work in there (even though it’s through subversive methods). Initially, I thought the idea was funny. After I actually  made it and installed it I changed my mind and decided it felt gimmicky. I wasn’t able to get a photo of the box installed because it was gone when I came back to document it.  The other projects I saw from my classmates were really inventive. My favorites were the Turkish bazaar in the elevator, the speed-bump-box, and the “play games together” boxes with the shoes. My initial idea was to get a number of pieces of cardboard which were used (or made to look like they were used) for homeless people as “help” signs. I thought it would be visually interesting to take a number of these signs and erect a house structure. Kind of alike a metaphor for like… finding a solidarity during times of struggle. The reason why I didn’t do this is because it was raining that week and all of the cardboard I found was so gross. This idea was in part inspired by my ongoing exploration of “home” as an artistic concept, and by the work of a North Carolina graffiti writer and artist Adam Void.

Comment: AfterEffects Reflection

Working with Adobe AfterEffects has been an extremely pleasant experience, especially in contrast to the challenges I faced when working with Gimp. What I enjoyed most about Adobe AfterEffects was its easy format. A lot of the program’s functions resemble those in Photoshop, making it a relatively easy transition. Despite this initial ease, AfterEffects challenged me by forcing me to test my patience when working with a new program. I caught myself trying to get through this project as soon as possible, rather than taking the time to enjoy the process and create high quality work. After realizing this, I made sure to go back over each piece of my AfterEffects project, to make sure that my initial impatience did not affect the quality of my work. I focused the content of my work on the questions of space assignment we did via wordpress a few weeks ago. I liked the abstract questions that I proposed, and thought that it would be visually striking to have such open-ended questions rather than telling a story like in the “Dakota” video we watched in class. When it came to animating the text and bringing it to life, I tried to utilize AfterEffects’ functions to personify the meaning behind the words. For example, I ask the question “What determines where one space ends and another begins?” I chose to animate this question by having the text stretch across the screen, suggesting that space is everywhere and there are no clear divisions between spaces. Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.49.03 PM I also utilized color to emphasis words and highlight distinctions between the assorted vocabulary, such as in this photo example below: Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.49.11 PM Furthermore, AfterEffects provided me with several opportunities to both learn about myself as a worker, and learn about utilizing a new computer program to create art. I am pleased with the developments I have made regarding both, in addition to the work I have created in class all semester.