Hal Foster · After the White Cube · LRB 19 March 2015
But this doesn’t explain the sudden embrace of live events in institutions otherwise dedicated to inanimate art. During the first boom in museums in post-1989 ‘new Europe’, Rem Koolhaas remarked that since there’s not enough past to go around, its tokens can only rise in value. Today, it seems, there’s not enough present to go around: for reasons that are obvious enough in a hyper-mediated age, it is in great demand too, as is anything that feels like presence.
museums  art  institutions  history 
13 hours ago
It’s Not Just Ferguson | The Nation
the city racks up millions of dollars each year in fines and court fees by illegally harassing its black population. What the federal government did not say, however, is that the practice of criminalizing black people to raise money for police and court systems is not rare; local governments across the country have been doing it for years—ironically, to offset the spiraling costs of the incarceration boom of the past three decades.
ferguson  prisons  corruption  police  racism 
13 hours ago
Murky Inquiry Targets Critic of N.Y.U. Role in Abu Dhabi, and a Reporter - NYTimes.com
he was told last year by United Arab Emirates security authorities that he would receive generous payments and immunity from prosecution if he would write favorably about the government. He said he had refused and had not been permitted to re-enter the country after leaving for a short period.
uae  middle-east  press-freedom  free-speech 
16 hours ago
From Microsoft, a Novel Way to Mandate Sick Leave - NYTimes.com
On Thursday morning, Microsoft announced that it would require many of its 2,000 contractors and vendors to provide their employees who perform work for Microsoft with 15 paid days off for sick days and vacation time.
labor  corporations  microsoft  work 
16 hours ago
We tried. We learned. We’re trying something new: Mayday.US, v2 — Medium
Yet the election was a bust. We had picked hard races, except for one. Beyond that one, we won just one. The other six defeats gave the skeptics no reason to doubt the conventional view that Americans don’t care about the corruption of their politics. “It’s a zero issue,” Politico quoted a political consultant after the election.
elections  lessig  politics 
17 hours ago
Deployment of Controversial Urban Sensor System Aided by Aggressive Lobbying - The Intercept
ShotSpotter sensors use microphone and satellite technology to detect, locate and report gunshots to police. Critics worry that the microphones are prone to false alarms, and more troubling, appear to vacuum up street-level conversations in the neighborhoods where it has been installed. Evidence from conversations recorded by ShotSpotter microphones has been used to prosecute criminals in court.
surveillance  audio 
21 hours ago
Closure Of Private Prison Forces Texas County To Plug Financial Gap : NPR
the destruction was so severe that the sprawling detention compound has been shut down. All 2,800 inmates were transferred.

Willacy County is now facing the question — what does it do now that its biggest moneymaker is out of business?...."What else can we do?" Alexandre says. "At the moment, we have been depending on inmates."
22 hours ago
On the detention of Cuban artist Tania Bruguera, by Coco Fusco | e-flux
therefore “Cuba hasn’t changed”—i.e. that two weeks after the announcement diplomatic relations would be restored between Cuba and the US, and the Cuban government still does not allow its citizens to express their political views in public. While the detention of an artist should be cause for concern anywhere, the assumption that a government’s policies and practices could be transformed so quickly is politically naïve or disingenuous....the Cuban government’s control over culture, media, and public discourse has been absolute for more than five decades, and vague promises of change are not tantamount to actual modifications in law or policing practices. Second, the recent agreement to swap political prisoners and reopen embassies is not in itself indicative of a political transformation in Cuba
art  activism  cuba  free-speech 
23 hours ago
What is Useful? The paradox of rights in Tania Bruguera’s ‘Useful Art’ | Art & Education
‘Useful Art’ becomes set of characteristics, which defines a genre of social practice transhistorically: it is work that is not only relational but intervenes politically. Its “utilitarian assertion” is productively considered under a Left legal critique, which accepts no universal claims of use-value, even automatically distrusts such affirmations as counter-productive. To be sure, the universalisms of rights, as Brown and others have illustrated at length, serve to conceal and facilitate existing power hierarchies.
art  activism 
23 hours ago
Why Is the Havana Biennial Afraid of Tania Bruguera and is she the Cuban Ai Wei Wei? - artnet News
“When I make my work abroad, it's good for the Cuban government, but apparently it's no good when I make it in Cuba," she told a group of Havana activists last week. “If I work with immigrants who are activists in the U.S., it's wonderful. But I can't come to Cuba and work with activists here, because those people are considered dissidents."
art  activism  cuba  free-speech 
23 hours ago
Talking the pain away
" if you can name a troubling emotion, you can immediately calm yourself and your brain down. "
Brain research indicates putting problems into words eases emotional distress.
emotions  language 
The New York Times > Magazine > Art's Last, Lonely Cowboy
Nancy Holt, the sculptor who was married to Smithson and who used to be close to Heizer, recalled traveling with the two men: ''To go outside into the landscape, that sense of liberation, just crossing the Hudson River, it was glorious. The mass media picked up quicker than the art media what was happening. This was when everyone was seeing the earth from outer space for the first time; 'ecology' was a new word. And when you look at the old photographs of us, you can see the joy in our faces.''
landscapes  art  aerials 
The New York Times > Magazine > Art's Last, Lonely Cowboy
Before I visited him the first time, he interrupted a tirade on the telephone against critics and people he contemptuously called art tourists who want to make the rounds of Earth Art. Then I heard gunshots. When he got back to the phone, he said he'd had to shoot at some coyotes. Then he just picked up the tirade where he left off. In a narrow pass along the drive across the desert this time around, I noticed someone had crudely painted ''Mike's Country Stay Out'' on a rock. The only directional sign for 35 miles was pocked with bullet holes -- used as target practice by ranchers, Heizer told me. It's a message, he speculated. Like him, he said, they just want to be left alone.
art  land-art  landscapes 
The Government War Against Reporter James Risen | The Nation
“When journalists become targets, they have a community and a lobby of powerful advocates to go to for support. Whistleblowers are in the wilderness…. They’re indicted under the most serious charge you can level against an American: being an enemy of the state.”
whistleblowers  media 
The Government War Against Reporter James Risen | The Nation
In 2004, an officer at the agency’s headquarters in Virginia mistakenly sent data to an agent that “could be used to identify virtually every spy the CIA had inside Iran,” Risen reported in his book. The mistake morphed into spook disaster when it turned out that the supposed CIA agent on the receiving end was a double agent. Wrote Risen: “The agent quickly turned the data over to Iranian security officials, and it enabled them to ‘roll up’ the CIA’s agent network throughout Iran.” But CIA leaders have no interest in acknowledging their Iran-related failures. Instead, they’ve made vague assertions that Sterling and Risen have caused harm. “All too frequently,” Risen points out, “the government claims that publication of certain information will harm national security, when in reality, the government’s real concern is about covering up its own wrongdoing or avoiding embarrassment.”
iran  cia  whistleblowers 
Jeffrey Sterling's trial by metadata: Free speech stories - BBC News
Sterling's conviction means the government can convict leakers without proving they revealed actual classified information. Instead, she contends, they only need to show that a leak allowed a journalist to unearth national security secrets at some later date.
whistleblowers  metadata 
The Government War Against Reporter James Risen | The Nation
In early March 2003, Sterling met with two Senate Intelligence Committee staffers to report that Operation Merlin—the CIA’s ill-conceived and bungled effort in 2000 to use a former Russian scientist to pass flawed nuclear-weapons blueprints to Iran—may have helped Iran’s nuclear ambitions. The government concedes that Sterling went through proper channels when he “disclosed classified information” to committee staff. (In court documents, the prosecution has complained that Sterling was unfairly critical of that operation when he spoke to committee staffers.)

The New York Times was even more deferential to government pressure on the Operation Merlin story than it was with its fourteen-month delay of the warrantless wiretap scoop: it never published the Merlin story, which finally reached the public via Risen’s book after remaining bottled up at the paper of record for more than two years. Later, in an affidavit responding to his third subpoena, which was issued on May 23, 2011, Risen said that he included the exposé of Operation Merlin in his book to help prevent another trumped-up war: “I realized that U.S. intelligence on Iran’s supposed weapons of mass destruction was so flawed, and that the information I had was so important, that this was a story that the public had to know about before yet another war was launched.”
surveillance  james-risen  cia  iran  whistleblowers 
[Image from my archives. To all those looking to decipher my location from recent posts take note that most images will be from previous dates.]
snowden  photography 
Donations to Museums Are Morally Reprehensible, Says Bill Gates
why anyone would donate money to build a new wing for a museum rather than spend it on preventing illnesses that can lead to blindness. “The moral equivalent is, we’re going to take 1 per cent of the people who visit this [museum] and blind them,” he says. “Are they willing, because it has the new wing, to take that risk? Hmm, maybe this blinding thing is slightly barbaric.”
art  market  morality 
2 days ago
Field Notes: Corporate State-Building (and a Godawful Cocktail) in Singapore | Dissent Magazine
if a CEO wishes to take his or her company public on an overseas exchange without the bureaucracy and red tape that citizens of mainland China are subjected to, one possibility is to send off a son or daughter to procure, for several hundred thousand dollars, a Caribbean passport in order to bypass these regulations. The CEO gets to stay home and run the show behind the scenes; the kid gets an island adventure, at the cost of renouncing their Chinese papers (you can’t have two, officially, if you’re Chinese); and thanks to late capitalism and good old Confucian values, the whole family ends up rich and happy.
3 days ago
DAILY SERVING » #Hashtags: The Business End of Art
This perspective goes a long way toward explaining both why a corporate raider like Simchowitz would turn from tech funding to contemporary art speculation, and why an artist like Oscar Murillo, whom Simchowitz claims to have discovered, would downplay the popularity of his market-friendly abstract paintings of late and turn to creating spectacles of labor such as a facsimile of a Colombian chocolate factory which he staged, complete with imported workers, at David Zwirner in 2014. Installations of this kind allow an artist like Murillo, raised in the working class, to engage with issues of class and race that resurface in the context of artistic labor, while creating a pretense of social responsibility that a savvy gallerist can use as large-scale promotion for the artist’s lucrative paintings.
3 days ago
ACLU Lawsuit Seeks Data on TSA's Creepy "Behavior Detection" Program | Mother Jones
Nowadays, though, your very reasonable travel emotions (anxiety, stress, fear, despondency) can earn you even more face time with the Transportation Security Administration. Since 2003 TSA has toyed with the idea of placing "behavior detection officers" in airports across America—part of a $1 billion counter-terrorism measure known as SPOT (Screening Passengers by Observation Techniques), which officially launched in 2007.
affect-computing  tsa  face-detection 
3 days ago
Misreporting of Islamic State Looting Does Damage | In the Air: Art News & Gossip | ARTINFO.com
The misrepresentation of the scale of the loss — which nonetheless included the destruction of a seventh century Ninevah winged bull and damage to the Nirgal Gate — mirrored reports of looting at the Baghdad Museum itself in the 2003 aftermath of the American invasion of Baghdad.
isis  antiquity 
4 days ago
How Apple Makes the Watch — Atomic Delights
I see these videos and I see a process that could only have been created by a team looking to execute on a level far beyond what was necessary or what will be noticed. This isn't a supply chain, it is a ritual Apple is performing to bring themselves up to the standards necessary to compete against companies with centuries of experience.
5 days ago
The Battle Is For The Customer Interface | TechCrunch
Uber, the world’s largest taxi company, owns no vehicles. Facebook, the world’s most popular media owner, creates no content. Alibaba, the most valuable retailer, has no inventory. And Airbnb, the world’s largest accommodation provider, owns no real estate. Something interesting is happening.

Since the Industrial Revolution, the world has developed complex supply chains, from designers to manufacturers, from distributors to importers, wholesalers and retailers, it’s what allowed billions of products to be made, shipped, bought and enjoyed in all corners of the world. In recent times  the power of the Internet, especially the mobile phone, has unleashed a movement that’s rapidly destroying these layers and moving power to new places.
dematerialization  supply-chain 
5 days ago
Is the iPhone a Blessing or a Curse for Art? - artnet News
(Walker herself incorporated this insight into the project, making a documentary film about visitors' interaction with the sculpture.)

For me this was an ah-ha moment similar to what Yosihara or Kaprow must have felt looking at the Pollock photos. The center of the art experience is clearly migrating to a new space.
art  iphone 
6 days ago
BBC News - The mystery of Myanmar's missing umbrella
The ministry has not commented on why the umbrella was allegedly airbrushed out of the photo. But our colleague Ko Ko Aung from BBC Burmese has one theory: "In Burmese culture, it is considered embarrassing for a man to hold an umbrella for a woman." BBC Trending contacted the Ministry of Information and we'll provide an update if they respond to us.
6 days ago
Modulor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Modulor is an anthropometric scale of proportions devised by the Swiss-born French architect Le Corbusier (1887–1965).
8 days ago
History of Fingerprints
1882 - Alphonse Bertillion, French anthropologist, devised method of  
body measurements to produce a formula used to classify individuals.

Bertillion's formula involved taking the measurements of a persons  
body parts, and recording these measurements on a card. This
method of  classifying and identifying people became known as the
Bertillion System.
8 days ago
Guiding the Blind Through London's Subway With Estimote Beacons | WIRED
This led the Society to join design firm Ustwo in creating Wayfindr, a system of Bluetooth-equipped beacons that guide the visually impaired through the Underground using audio directions. The team just finished a four-week test in Pimlico Station in the southeast of London. The goal is to eventually roll it out to larger stations, creating a citywide network that will help the blind navigate the Tube independently.
beacons  iot  accessibility  transportation  london 
9 days ago
I Can Text You A Pile of Poo, But I Can’t Write My Name by Aditya Mukerjee | Model View Culture
My family’s native language, which I grew up speaking, is far from a niche language. Bengali is the seventh most common native language in the world, sitting ahead of the eighth (Russian) by a wide margin, with as many native speakers as French, German, and Italian combined.

And yet, on the Internet, Bengali is very much a second-class citizen – as are Arabic (#5), Hindi (#4), and Mandarin (#1) – any language which is not written with the Latin alphabet.
language  unicode  standards 
9 days ago
The Body of Kenneth Goldsmith - Queen Mob's Tea House
Simply put, for Kenneth Goldsmith to stand on stage, and not be aware that his body–his white male body, a body that is a symbol loaded with a history of oppression, of literal dominance and ownership of black bodies–is a part of the performance, then he has failed to notice something drastically important about the “contextualization” of this work.
race  oetry  appropriation 
11 days ago
Free Wi-Fi in Havana Shows Cuba's Telecommunications Future — The Atlantic
When the famed artist Kcho provided wi-fi at his cultural center some weeks ago, he established the first such venue in the country's history. Now, in a rapidly changing Cuba, milestones like this have become more commonplace.
cuba  art  access 
11 days ago
Swiss Freeports Are Home for a Growing Treasury of Art - NYTimes.com
They come for the security and stay for the tax treatment. For as long as goods are stored here, owners pay no import taxes or duties, in the range of 5 to 15 percent in many countries. If the work is sold at the Freeport, the owner pays no transaction tax, either.

Once it exits the premises — either because it’s been sold or because the original owner has moved it — taxes are owed in the country where it winds up. But for as long as a work is in the Freeport, it’s as if it resides in a no-man’s land where there is no Caesar to render unto.
art  market  taxes  switzerland 
11 days ago
Court orders asset freeze in art case - FT.com
Mr Bouvier is known in the art world as the king of freeports, referring to his development of the giant tax-free warehouses that swelled in popularity for those wishing to store high-value goods ranging from art and fine wine to gold. Mr Bouvier is one of the principal operators at Geneva’s free port and the driving force behind the expansion of freeports into Luxembourg and Asia.
Mr Bouvier, who lives in Singapore, was arrested at the end of February on suspicion of price fixing and money laundering, allegations he vigorously denies. He was released three days after his arrest on €10m bail.
art  market  money-laundering  switzerland 
11 days ago
The Leonard Lopate Show: “Palaces for the People: Guastavino and the Art of Structural Tile” - WNYC
Their tile structural vaults can be seen all over New York City—at Grand Central Terminal and the famous Oyster Bar, the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, the Ellis Island Registry Hall, the Elephant House at the Bronx Zoo, the Boathouse and Tennis Shelter in Prospect Park, in Central Park, Grant's Tomb, Riverside Church, and elsewhere.
12 days ago
The Shocking Finding From the DOJ's Ferguson Report That Nobody Has Noticed | Nathan Robinson
That may seem like hyperbole, but it is a literal fact. In Ferguson -- a city with a population of 21,000 -- 16,000 people have outstanding arrest warrants, meaning that they are currently actively wanted by the police. In other words, if you were to take four people at random, the Ferguson police would consider three of them fugitives.
ferguson  racism 
12 days ago
ON LANGUAGE - Get Off My Laptop - NYTimes.com
pocketbook, notebook, laptop, personal digital assistants. and "palmtop"
words  56k 
12 days ago
Prison Visitation Buses Are the Weekend Labor of Love You’ve Never Seen — Vantage — Medium
JD: You’re on the bus all night without getting much sleep. The expectations of the visits can be tense, because the mood of your entire relationship for the next week is depending on a few hours. But the journey has also been expensive and most likely exhausted all your funds for the week. During the visit you will be watched closely by the correctional officers, some of them might be rude to you. And if you bring your kids that aspect might be particularly difficult because you’re in no position to stand your ground
prison  love  relationships 
12 days ago
so many political data online projects but no one really willing to do the upkeep....
offline  archiving  from notes
12 days ago
Buyers Find Tax Break on Art: Let It Hang Awhile in Oregon - NYTimes.com
Collectors who buy art in one state but live in another can owe thousands, tens of thousands, even millions of dollars in state “use taxes”: taxes often incurred when someone ships an out-of-state purchase home. But if they lend the recently purchased work first to museums like the Schnitzer, located in a handful of tax-friendly states, the transaction is often tax-free.
art  market  money-laundering  taxes 
13 days ago
The Never-Ending Film : NPR
IDOV: Because you were not supposed to admit that the film shoot was in fact a film shoot. Instead, everyone was operating under the notion that it's the '50s. That day it was 1952. So I needed to be made into a 1952 version of myself. They took away my clothes. They gave me a new haircut with, like, temples shaved off and gave me an incredibly itchy period suit - including the underwear.

The one thing I was allowed to keep was my watch. I had a vintage watch from 1959 and after a pretty intense discussion they decided it was OK to let me keep this watch from the future.
IDOV: I got really good at putting on my period suit with the suspenders and the cufflinks and all that and I had sweated so much into the suit it was pretty much mine. I had this sort of leisurely stroll on the set, already knowing where everything was, and I just started talking to this very beautiful girl who worked at the cafeteria. Her name was Olya(ph) and at least her character's name was Olya. But she was clearly one of Khrzhanovsky's, you know, favorites. When I asked her how long she was on set she said she worked at the cafeteria since 1949s. So for three years.

In reality she had been on the set for four months. And she invited me and the photographer over for dinner at her apartment. Her apartment was, of course, part of the set. The dinner was probably one of the most surreal experiences I've had. Everyone was trying to keep period appropriate conversation. Olya was the one who held her facade the best.
film  time 
14 days ago
The Damage Has Been Done - On The Media
With the release of their latest propaganda video featuring an apparent destruction of the Mosul Museum, ISIS got the art world fumed. ARTINFO's Mostafa Heddaya explains why western cultural institutions, like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, should be more careful in their analysis of terror propaganda.
isis  authenticity  antiquity  art 
15 days ago
Robot vs. Robot — The Atlantic
, has found that computers can use fractal analysis to distinguish between real Pollocks and imitations. Shamir and his colleagues analyzed more than 100 paintings, including 26 original Jackson Pollocks, for traces of fractal patterns. To do so, the paintings were digitized in 640,000 pixels then cut into 16 different segments. Then, the computer would analyze the paintings segment by segment and determine whether each portion’s fractal patterns matched the mathematical features in Pollock’s work. The computer, it turned out, was right about 93 percent of the time. Shamir and his team published their findings in the International Journal of Art and Technology.
authenticity  art 
15 days ago
Two border guards, one Pakistani and the other Chinese, at Khunjerab Pass. - Imgur
To answer the questions, in most Asian countries holding hands is a sign of friendship and it's totally normal for two straight men to do.
aww  borders 
16 days ago
Toile Chic - The Awl
A history of capital using labor for decoration
labor  design  ornament 
17 days ago
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