42. Taking The Matter Into Common Hands : On Contemporary Art And Collaborative Practices

In preparation for the next CONNECTION Lecture Series Speakers, Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese and their lecture “50 Different Minds: Art and Design in the Age of Crowdsourcing,” the library has been thinking about collaborations between artists and the political implications of such undertakings–especially since the collaborative interdisciplinary art team of Ligorano/Reese are well known for producing collaborative works that examine how such endeavors specifically impact social and political systems.

We’re extremely excited to hear more about what this artist team has to say about this topic. If you’re interested, we encourage you to attend the talk. It will be held Tuesday, January 31 from 7:00-8:30pm at the Marion L. Miller Gallery in the Portland Art Museum’s Mark Building (1219 SW Park Avenue).  It’s not to be missed!

What we find particularly interesting is the recent resurgence in collaboration in the art world, and, this week’s library pick, Taking The Matter Into Common Hands : On Contemporary Art And Collaborative Practices, addresses this issue from the inside out. It raises questions about authorship and authority, and, draws together essays from leaders in the field of collaborative art practice. As the editors note, “focusing on working conditions for artists and on collaborative initiatives with activism at their heart, the writing takes a personal, interpretive view of the subject” (jacket). Readers can learn about the motives, the history, and working methods of artists in this field from around the world. The stories are personal, inspiring, prophetic, and, often times, not without strong social and political implications.

Artists, curators, and writers in this book include: Maria Lind, Katharina Schlieben, Brian Holmes, Alex Foti, Andreas Gustavsson, Marysia Lewandowska, the SHAHRZAD Collective, Tirdad Zolghadr, Marc Neelen and Ana Dzokis, Marion von Osten, the Copenhagen Free University, Anton Vidokle (founder of e-flux), Farida Heuck, Ralf Homann and Manuela Unverdorben, Jakob Jakobsen and Simon Sheikh, IKK, Emma Reichert, Camilla Backman, Camilla Palm, B+B, Åbäke, Ayreen Anastas and Rene Gabri, and Nav Haq.


Things to do in Portland this weekend: (01/27/12 – 01/29/12) “Fujiya & Miyagi and Portland Art Museum Tour Remix”

Fujiya & Miyagi, Adventures with Might and Here Come Dots

“Fujiya & Miyagi have been together for 12 years and five albums, but that hasn’t diminished their passion for krautrock one bit. An obsession for Can and Kraftwerk can’t just vanish overnight, not even with the aid of Thom Monahan, producer of the very non-electronic Pernice Brothers and Vetiver. On Ventriloquizzing, Fujiya & Miyagi’s dark, spooky dance tunes are composed with just as much precision as ever. Elegant, thoughtfully constructed, and layered with David Best’s menacing, robotic whisper-singing—this is music that seems like it must be taken Very Seriously. That’s until you realize the seemingly profound lyrics are completely tongue-in-cheek (right?), e.g., “You go up and go down like a yo-yo” repeated over and over again. – REBECCA WILSON, Portland Mercury (here)

Where:  Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi, Portland, OR 97227

When: Sat., Jan. 28, 9 p.m. $12

Email: info@mississippistudios.com

Website:   http://www.mississippistudios.com/

Museum Tour Remix – Ted’s Talk 

“Think you know what to expect of a museum tour? Think again. Join Artist in Residence Lexa Walsh for an experimental series that remixes and re-imagines what can happen on a museum tour and encourages participants to experience the Museum and its collections in new ways.

The Museum’s own Ted Smith, long-time security guard, local radio host, and witty conversationalist, will join Walsh in leading a people’s tour of the collection that draws on his years of engaging all kinds of museum visitors in enjoying art.” (here)

Where: PortlandArt Museum, 1219 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR 97205

When: Sat, 28 Jan, 2012 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM 

Website:   http://portlandartmuseum.org

Christopher Butler quote: “after a decade of focusing primarily on the social applications …”

“After a decade of focusing primarily on the social applications of
interactive technology, we need to turn our attention to other matters
and use our many communication tools to address the interaction
problems of 21st-century urbanity: resource management,
transportation, energy, and infrastructure. It would be a shame to be
remembered as the generation that tweeted while the world crumbled
around us” (41)

Butler, Christopher. “Future Daydream: can we conceive of a postscreen
world?” Print, February 2012, Vol. 66, No.1. pgs 40 – 41.

41. Darrel Morris edited by Alison Ferris

At 12:45pm today in the Centrum Studio, OCAC’s very own Fibers Department Head & Associate Professor, Jiseon Lee Isbara,  will be giving a presentation as part of the College’s Monday talks series.

Kirsi Peltomäki, assistant professor of art history, department of art, Oregon State University, wrote the following about the artist in her article, “Jiseon Lee Isbara: Piecing Fabric and Life with Thread and Order” on the Call + Response website, supported by the Museum of Contemporary Craft:

“Hand-sewing, whether to join fabric pieces together or make a mark on them by embroidery, remains at the center of Jiseon Lee Isbara’s artistic practice, although she freely makes use of a sewing machine as well, and, on occasion, includes other techniques such as inkjet printing on fabric. A fiber-based artist by training and profession, the material and conceptual dimensions of Lee Isbara’s works simultaneously resonate with contemporary sculpture, particularly work by Eva Hesse and Mona Hatoum, and with the Korean textile tradition of pojagi wrapping cloths. Lee Isbara’s recent work involves pieced fabric stitched into patchwork forms and displayed in three-dimensional installations or two-dimensional wall arrangements. In any configuration, Lee Isbara’s work constitutes mental maps, visualizing territories that are coded and decoded in languages at once familiar and uncharted.”

More images of her recent work can be seen on her website. If you’re in the area, Don’t miss her talk!

For this week’s library pick, we have selected a title that showcases the work of Isbara’s contemporary, Darrel Morris, who is also pushing the limits of hand sewn embroidery. Darrel Morris edited by Alison Ferris. It’s part of a series put out by Telos called the Portfolio Collection, “the British publishing venture dedicated to documenting contemporary fiber art [and] prominent textile artists around the world” (from here).

In Alison Ferris’ foreword about Morris, she describes his embroidered portraitures as “poignant miniatures”  that “addresses masculinity from a queer perspective and, by extension, comes to grip with matters such as shame and humiliation, melancholy and mourning, and the abuse of power as they are experience every day.” She continues that his embroidered images “rendered like characters in comic strips – result in powerful and humorous, if often forlorn, narratives” (6).  These narratives not only express the technical prowess of the artist but particularly the challenges of expression when appropriating other forms of depiction (e.g., comic strips) and translating them into the material thread and cloth and the (visual and physical) vocabulary of fiber art. The result is fantastic. And, as Bob Hicks, wrote in an article for the Oregonian, Morris’s work will astonish the viewer for its technical skill but especially for its “emotional insight” (here).  Check it out!

Things to do in Portland this weekend: (01/20/12 – 01/22/12) “ Object Stories and Hecklevision!”


“A collaboration with the Northwest Film Center, Miracle Theatre Group, and Write Around Portland, Object Stories addresses the subtle but vital power of an object to compel a narrative and provides an interactive platform meant to transform the public’s perception of “the archive” and their relationship to it. The show includes a soundproof booth, where you can bring in a personal item to speak about, having your voice recorded and photo taken, and then have your story added to the museum’s archives.–Portland Mercury (here)

Where:  PortlandArt Museum, 1219 SW Park

When: Ongoing, Tues-Wed, Sat-Sun 10 am-5 pm, Thurs-Fri 10 am-8 pm

Phone: 503-226-2811

Website:   portlandartmuseum.org


“HECKLEVISION—The Mercury and the Hollywood Theatre team up to present Hecklevision—a night that will forever change the way you watch movies! We’ll be screening 1984’s Swayze-tastic classic Red Dawn, but that’s not all: Thanks to technology™, anyone with a cell phone can have their text messages instantly pop up on the bottom of the movie screen! Get ready for hilarious/smart/rabidly patriotic text commentary from Mercury writers, Blogtown commenters, and… YOU. EH” – Portland Mercury (here)

Where: Hollywood Theatre,4122 NE Sandy Boulevard

When: Fri., Jan. 20, 7:30 p.m., $7

Website:   http://hollywoodtheatre.org

Elizabeth Turk Quote “I’m not entirely sure where it came from …”

“RDC: You have mentioned that you are interested in systems and

matrices, particularly in how one thing flows into the other. How does
this translate into your work?

ET: I’m not entire sure where it came from. It’s been evolving my
entire life. The evolution of this line of questioning is seen in my
drawings and collages. Perhaps the core question is why, as organic,
curved, soft creatures, we think and find a resonance in linear
structures. Why do we live in square rooms rather than round (well, in
many places anyway)? Why is the structure of a monarchy so effective?
What do linear systems of order offer our minds and our souls that
complex curves and paradoxes do not? Our comfort with systems (of
order, of communication) informs our palette of responses: emotional
and rational. This is why a study of systems, structures, and thus
matrices is infinitely intriguing to me.

It was so long ago when I began asking myself these questions. I
suppose the answers have simply moved through their own variations.
They generate a very layered perspective. For some reason, these
thoughts are easier for me to understand if I think of them in
physical shapes – for instance, language in terms of diagrammed forms.
And I find the line of questioning beautiful, because it pushes me to
look for the relationship between all things, the matrix of how it all
fits together. In the end, even the solidity of the rock is not what
it seems” (24)

Cochran, Rebecca Dimling. “The Line Defining Three-Dimensional Space:
a conversation with Elizabeth Turk.” Sculpture. January/February 2012,
Vol. 31 No.1. Pgs 18 – 25.