TOPIC: Brutal Realities. Art, Subjectivity and ‘The News’
SPEAKERS: Nanette Hoogslag about OOG and Florian Schneider about
DICTIONARY OF WAR
QUESTIONS: ask-it-yourself now and during the show at: http://www.coolmediahottalk.net
“In the digital age you cannot stop information” - how many times did
we hear this hollowed out cliché? Countless for sure. But exactly
what kind of information? How to judge it? How to develop a personal
relation to it?
‘The News’ is one of these information flows that in the era of
digital media seems to become ever more pervasive, inescapable
really. As it does so it seems to divide itself into a curious
dichotomy: it (‘the news’) either becomes trivialised, or it reflects
the perpetual miseries of the brutal realities that apparently
surround us; disasters, war, famine, oppression, ecological
devastation, family drama, and a general feeling of estrangement. In
any case difficult to develop a personal relationship to it, be it
trivia or conversely our daily portion of misery...
How does art and how do artists relate to this omnipresence of
suffering in real-time? Can art help us to develop the distance, the
silence, the space in-between that makes it possible to reflect ‘The
News’? Can it point a way out of estrangement of the global anxiety
machine? Can it rekindle our empathy for the pain of others?
And is social reality in any case coextensive with ‘the news’? Or
should we rather develop and alternative relationship to social
reality? And how then should this be done?
Can a project such as OOG in the web edition of the Dutch national
daily newspaper De Volkskrant (www.volkskrant.nl/oog), where a
different artist is invited every week to comment on the news in an
on-line art work, help us to develop another (a more healthy?)
subjective relationship to ‘the news’?
Can a project such as the Dictionary of War (http://
dictionaryofwar.org) help us to establish an alternative critical
relationship to social reality? How can it reach a broader audience
without falling into the same trap of mass-mediation?
Or is the very idea of subjectivity towards ‘the news’ nothing but a
regressive and reactionary gesture?
ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:
Nanette Hoogslag (NL) is a visual artist and illustrator. She studied
graphic design at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam and did an
MA in illustration at Royal College of Art in London in 1990. She
established herself as an illustrator and designer in Amsterdam,
working for design and editorial clients worldwide. She has been
teaching illustration and design at various art colleges in The
Netherlands, currently she teaches illustration and concept
development at the Illustration Department at the school of Visual
Arts, HKU in Utrecht.
In 2005 Nanette Hoogslag developed the idea for OOG ("eye" in Dutch),
inviting artists to react to the news, their role, function and
content, in an online environment, which became 'Oog' a weekly online
page in one of the largest Dutch national newspapers the
'Volkskrant'. In 2006 the concept of Oog was presented in a live show
'Ooglive' in the Westergasfabriek and shown as part of Faith in
Exposure in Montevideo 2007.
Florian Schneider (DE) is a filmmaker, writer, and developer in the
fields of new media, networking and open source technologies. In his
work he focuses on bordercrossings between mainstream and independent
media, art and activism, theory and technology.
As a filmmaker he directed several award-winning documentaries and
made theme-evenings for the german-french tv station "arte" on the
topics of migration and new global movements. He is one of the
initiators of the KEIN MENSCH IST ILLEGAL campaign at documentaX and
subsequent projects. He founded, designed and supported countless
online-projects, such as the European internet platform D-A-S-H and
the online-network KEIN.ORG. He is the director of the new media
festivals MAKEWORLD (2001), NEURO (2004) and one of the co-organizers
of the upcoming FADAIAT2 event in Tarifa/Tangiers, in June 2005. His
publications include contributions in Der Spiegel and other renowned
magazines and newspapers. From 2001, he has published Makeworlds
paper 1-4, a newspaper magazine for theory, art and activism. For
incommunicado 05, a special issue will be published as well.
DICTIONARY OF WAR, a collaborative platform for creating 100 concepts
on the issue of war, invented, arranged and presented by scientists,
artists, theorists and activists. The aim is to create key concepts
that either play a significant role in current discussions of war,
have so far been neglected, or have yet to be created.
Dictionary of War: http://dictionaryofwar.org
Summit of Non-Aligned Initiatives in Education and Culture: http://summit.kein.org