New York within Manchester

I asked him: is this  a sound experiment in post-rock or shoe- gazing?

''this was ill-prepared bullshit, dude''

Here comes a guy who first makes you feel cool about being broke, un-successful and failed (and then goes and directs the coolest parties in New York)

Below I explain how the demolished cars, demolished films and demolished Drive-In made Manchester look like the capital of psychedelic losers.

What is urban, modern and ‘successful’ about cinema? Todd Chandler and Jeff Stark, New-York based video artists, urban-cosmonauts and party-organizers launched a visual, acoustical and perfomative attack to this question. Invited to participate in Abandon Normal Devices (AND), a multidisciplinary art festival, co-organized by Fact (Liverpool) and Cornerhouse (Manchester), the group used an empty parking space in central Manchester in order to playfully sabotage the festival’s main theme ‘Success’. The idea was to stage an obsolescent and degenerate version of what used to be the most successful, popular and hip form of American entertainment: the drive-in movie theatre.

The art-collective created a mix of post-apocalyptic leisure: a cemetery of cars, videos of dilapidated landscapes, DJ’s-led sound-scapes, 1950′s consumerist bliss, deranged documentaries on ‘humaness’, 1980s sci-fi films (Robocop, Mad Max), a techno-ethereal love story (Gravity was Everywhere Back Then), post-rock soundtracks and live Mad-Max performance (Tranarchy). Taken together, all these elements constructed a haunted, funny and melancholic archaeology of failure. Casting a shadow over the future of contemporary commercial dreamscapes (malls, cinematic complexes), the ruined drive-in seemed to herald a fresh genre of cinematic fetishism. Set against the increasingly futuristic over-dominance of indoors digital entertainment, this style of movie-going reclaimed an open-air, synesthetic and ultra-material sense of past: it uncovered the hedonistic remnants of what used to be experienced as ‘future’ in the past.

This genealogy of future – a pop historicity of future – was the combined effect of setting, films and landscape. The wrecked cars did not only comply with the video projections of urban decay: they also evoked a dysfunctional (or ‘abandoned’) device of moving images. The images viewed by the window of a moving car allude to the spectatorial (and hypnotic) experience of cinema. (This similarity between car-window and screen-gazing is highly visible in many classical films and especially in Mad-Max, in which the spectator is recurrently invited to assume the viewing position of the driver.) The immobilized body of a dead car, however, is bereft of this visual illusion, in the same way that a 1980s sci-film (viewed in 2012) is bereft of the illusion of ‘future-ness’. In this respect, both cars and films looked like broken time-machines of visual pleasure. All this contrasted ironically with the plots projected on screen; there, the futuristic technology either strived to restore the fragility of human experience (Robocop, Gravity was Everywhere Back then) or to assert a neo-primitive explosion of wilderness (Mad Max). In all cases, the traumatised devices of illusion [cars, cinematic space] seemed to enact—as pseudo-historical monuments — the traumatised futures visualized on screen.

While, originally staged in abandoned buildings in New York, when set in Manchester, the event’s disturbed sense of future-ness seemed to return to its symbolic country of origin: by being the first place in the world in which the industrial became an awe-inspiring attraction, Manchester is the mother of science fiction, the birthplace of the futurology and the urban epitome of dystopian entertainment. Combined together, the ruined drive-in and the hosting city seemed to tell the story of a mythical time-space in which technology is experienced as emotion, the future as past and the failure as success.


η διπλωματία της απόλαυσης

Τι σχέση έχει το εμπορικό κέντρο στο Birmingham με τους τρούλους της Αθήνας;

Ήταν οι πρωτόπλαστοι Λακανικά σούργελα;
Τί συνδέει την ενορία σου με τα μαθηματικά της καύλας;

τα απαντάμε όλα εδώ...


Συνταγή Αγκαλιαστά Ντολμαδάκια ή Πως να Καταβροχθίζεις την Ομορφιά από τον Ουρανίσκο της Μνήμης

Πολλά χρόνια πριν στην Πάρο, είχα συναντήσει ένα θεϊκό τεκνό έξω από ένα αντίσκηνο. Χαράματα  στην παραλία. Εκθαμβωτικό παιδί σαν ακτίνα λέιζερ μέσα σε μαγιό – ασύλληπτο -- δε μπορούσες να το αγγίξεις – μόνο φως. Όταν λοιπόν κάθισε στη ψάθα δίπλα μου, αναρωτήθηκα πως είναι  να αγκαλιάζεις ένα σώμα από ακτίνες. Και επειδή  δεν είχα πάνω μου πλαστελίνη, άρχισα μετά μανίας να αγκαλιάζω ντολμαδάκια μέσα σε φέτες από κίτρινο – λαμπερό -- τυρί.
Και έτσι γεννήθηκαν τα αγκαλιαστά ντολμαδάκια: Μηχανές του χρόνου. Κάθε μπουκιά και ένα μνημείο ματαιωμένης τρυφερότητας. 
Θεία μετάληψη σαρκός πνιγμένη σε ηλιακό τυρί.


Super heroes

Πως συνδυάζεται το ξεφάντωμα και η απόγνωση; Πως γίνεται να διασκεδάζεις όταν φοβάσαι; Πώς μεταδίδεται αυτό το ερώτημα από τη μια χώρα στην άλλη;  Πώς γίνεται τα Εξάρχεια να ταξιδεύουν μέσα στο Μάνσεστερ; Φτιάξαμε ένα διηγηματικό ρεπορτάζ (docu-fiction) για τις ερωτογενείς ζώνες του πανικού – τις σύγχρονες γεωγραφίες απόδρασης. Οι νεανικές μυθολογίες της Αθήνας χύνονται μέσα μια διεθνή γλώσσα φόβου, μελαγχολίας και ονειροπόλησης. Σκοπός μας είναι να ερμηνεύσουμε αυτήν τη διάχυση σαν μια web δραματουργία: μια συνειρμική ορχήστρα από τηλεοπτικές αναμνήσεις, party animals και αγκαλιές μέσα στο κρύο.

Τα αποκαλύπτουμε όλα εδώ:


dance with me


I feel like moving within a dance-floor of fractals -- it was a crazy night in the opening of this exhibition --its nice to get drunk and terrorize, (erotically terrorize) the destitute hipsters.

Corridor 8 publishes my writing about the exhibitionhttp://is.gd/guTJar -- it describes it as ''Review''. This is bad manners -- formality sucks -- I hate reviews -- this is not a review.

it is only a re-writing of an experience--

a paranoid connection with images-- the real dancefloor of fractals is out there -- beyond the gallery.

Maurice Carlin’s current exhibition First…Next…Then…Finally… at Castlefield Gallery celebrates the ‘corruption’, the collapse and the fusion of boundaries – the boundaries between the visual and the sculptural, the digital and the material, the random and the mystical. This rearrangement is achieved through tactical interventions on paper, city-scape and mundane material. By spreading colourful inks above sheets of street-based cards, Carlin’s work assembles a psychedelic map of surfaces – a tapestry of paintings that look like x-rays of groundness. Evoking the three-dimensional landscapes of digital worlds – the abstractness of these street-portraits is simultaneously a trace and a recreation of the physical space. Here comes a form of monument that re-produces the face of a street by dissolving its trace into colour – an ethereal signature of materiality. Converging thus the visual with the sculptural, Corrupted Images develop a  geography of unstable signs, a palimpsests of impressions. Based on the unfixed symbols of fixed spaces, this dizzy vocabulary transforms the texture of the streets into encrypted dance-floor of fractals. The virtual seems to be happily superimposed upon the material. The curatorial style of demonstration, in setting side by side the video-recorded process of production and the finished piece, highlights the playful combination of randomness and control, handiness and spontaneity, simplicity and miracle. Under these terms, the act of painting becomes an impressionistic and instantaneous inversion of routinized space, one that invites the spectator/walker to sink his/her feet within a psychogeography of colour.

Seen in this way, the surfaces of the city emerge as codified secrets – riddles waiting to be unpacked. The same logic runs through other series of works: Manipulated Images reconstruct the traces left by bodies on soap (whereas Primed Displays underline the visual games embedded in the skin of boxboards). In all these cases, surfaces carve out unexpected journeys – deranged entries into outer dimensions – their sculptural visuality unfolding endless waves of encryptions, disruptions and corruptions. The game of fluid signs and urbanity expands into video art, fanzine-installation and paper sculpture (Blue (sleep mode) with David Medalla, Lever Arch Constrcutions, The Self-Publisher).  Blue captures the sleep-walking flânerie of a man (Medalla) who projects colourful light towards his body and the body of the city. Just like in the Corrupted Images a game with colour (which now made out of light) unearths a new geography of meaning beneath the surface of the mundane. Lever Arch Constructions features blank paper arranged on walls in such a ways as to create a dynamic geometry – a wall of waves. The ethereal juxtapositions of these pages – hanging from the skeletons of dossiers with no covers – exposed, unprotected and blank — articulate a strong poetic statement. Opened towards the spectators as if they were frozen wings, they create a tension between motion and immobility, emptiness and fullness, musicality and concreteness. This paper-monument of blankness – engaging with pages as if they were encrypted records of flight, explosion and poeticality – stands side by side with a paper-construct of written pages: the Self-Publisher.  This is a series of lettristic fanzines made out of random photocopies. Vibrant collages of informational leftovers, these semiotic bombs recreate sense out of no-sense. The landscape of everyday materiality is reorganized as a polysemic window to hyperreality. Alongside all the exhibition material, they seem to shout: Corruption is an endless construction!