Aaron Cockle today with Black Dada; Why, Comics?; Laura Park; Ai Wei Wei (in NYC); What is Bias in Machine Learning?
Adam Pendleton and Black Dada
Here are a couple pieces about Adam Pendleton’s excellent Black Dada Reader:
Interviewed in his studio, Pendleton is quick to point out that the book, like much of his work, has always been an experiment. The Reader began its life as a spiral-bound book that lived in the artist’s studio, an attempt to create “a collage in book format” of texts that inspired him.
“Originally it was an in-studio publication, in the sense that it wasn’t really meant necessarily for a wide distribution,” he explained. “It was really meant for me to refer to in the space of the studio while I was working on different projects. But I did hand out maybe a dozen copies, maybe more, to the people who would come to the studio, or people who were interested in the work and or the concept of Black Dada.”
Here is an excerpt from Hillary Chute’s book, Why Comics?: From Underground to Everywhere, at the Lit Hub blog:
The punk scene that launched cartoonists Panter and Groening was part of a larger punk movement that hit America, and the UK, in the mid-to-late 1970s. Both political and aesthetic, the punk movement, which often registered as a visceral or even violent response to mainstream pop culture, encouraged people to create their own culture across many different forms of production. This includes, most famously, the music that came to be known as punk rock.
Punk culture often consolidated around bands, particularly their live performances, and the independent labels that developed to put out their music, along with the art and graphic design that went into their promotion—as well as the fanzines that articulated their ideas and goals. The “do-it-yourself” ethic is the defining feature of punk culture and production. As Jaime Hernandez, the creator, along with his brother Gilbert, of the famed long-running series Love and Rockets explained, he never realized he could be a cartoonist until he got involved with punk. “Then I thought, ‘Oh, this is kind of the same thing,’” Hernandez told the novelist and comics writer Neil Gaiman. “They were all the same to me, so if you could do that with punk, you could do that with comics.”
A Cartoonist’s Darkly Magical and Autobiographical Work
At Hyperallergic, Sarah Rose Sharp looks at the Laura Park exhibition and residency at the Columbus Museum of Art:
“When you’re doing autobiography, you realize our lives are very repetitive, so a sense of magical realism starts to seep in there,” said Park, who cited British-American cartoonist Gabrielle Bell as an admired peer working in a similar vein. For example, in the story “Office32F,” Park’s comic stand-in discovers a miniature and mysterious office in the walls and baseboards of her apartment, apparently devoted to the task of close-monitoring her daily existence. The tale is equal parts cute and unsettling, with the protagonist taking cues from miniature written reports, which criticize her unkempt birdcage, but also lead her to finding a tiny pair of red mittens caught in a spider web and bizarrely soaking them in bleach and flushing them down the toilet. The specificity of Park’s visual and literary descriptions adds a sense of the uncanny to even the most quotidian urban activities, like Strangers on a Train, which captures moments while riding public transportation.
Good Fences Make Good Neighbors
Public Art Fund has a great interactive site detailing the current Ai Wei Wei installation in NYC.
Ai Weiwei conceived this multi-site, multi-media exhibition for public spaces, monuments, buildings, transportation sites, and advertising platforms throughout New York City. Collectively, these elements comprise a passionate response to the global migration crisis and a reflection on the profound social and political impulse to divide people from each other. For Ai, these themes have deep roots. He experienced exile with his family as a child, life as an immigrant and art student in New York, and more recently, brutal repression as an artist and activist in China. The exhibition draws on many aspects of Ai’s career as a visual artist and architect, and is informed by both his own life experience and the plight of displaced people. In 2016, Ai and his team traveled to 23 countries and more than 40 refugee camps while filming his documentary, Human Flow.
The Trouble With Bias (in Machine Learning)
Via Boing Boing:
“The Trouble with Bias,” Kate Crawford’s keynote at the 2017 Neural Information Processing Systems is a brilliant tour through different ways of thinking about what bias is, and when we should worry about it, specifically in the context of machine learning systems and algorithmic decision making — the best part is at the end, where she describes what we should do about this stuff, and where to get started.
Vision Box – 12-19-2017 – by Cameron Arthur
—————————————————————————————————Joanie and Jordie – 12-19-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio