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June 2009

Hello

May was a month in which I celebrated another grand birthday at home with ice cream DVDs and Facebook since I’d succumbed to the (swine?) flu for 14 days, but in an almost surreal I became both a victim of identity theft whilst becoming two people at once, or rather two professors. Not quite the Nutty Professor as demonstrated by Eddie Murphy in the movies but I was appointed as Visiting Professor at University College Falmouth UK, and Visiting Professor at Le Fresnoy National Centre for Contemporary Arts in Tourcoing France.

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The former of these kicks off in early June when I’ll be presenting my work at UCF and subsequently returning over the years to follow to hopefully inspire, interrogate, and wonder at the delights of creativity. I’m honoured to be in such fine company too, along with award-winning artistic director of the Donmar Warehouse, Michael Grandage; founding partner of design studio, Barber Osgerby, Edward Barber; interactive media pioneer and MD of Illumina Digital, Andrew Chitty eponymous fashion designer and British Fashion Awards Designer of the Year, Luella Bartley, and Emily Bell, Director of Digital Content for Guardian News and Media.

Le Fresnoy is an extraordinary post-graduate art school and audio-visual research and production centre in France, where advanced students follow a two-year course run by guest artist-professors who themselves produce new work, so I’ll be acting as both advisor and producer. Previous occupants at this school have been Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, Jean-Luc Godard, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Kurt Hentschlager, Ryoji Ikeda, Andrew Kötting, and Atau Tanaka, so quite something to live up to and I’m not even certain whether I need to dress like a Professor yet though so any fashion tips welcome.

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With summer approaching in Europe it’s perfect timing for some bleak, dark wintery sounds to compliment this sunshine so here's a release, May The Plague Be With You {Remixes}, free to download, to darken your days. I contributed a piece to this album, based upon recordings taken from the anonymously 'BBW' tracks appearing on May The Plague Be With You. With new works from Audela, Maarten van der Vleuten, Black Box Warning, Nathan Siter, Sid Redlin, The Caretaker and vidnaObmana, it was originally planned as a physical release in 2007 but never issued due to administrative entanglements (i.e. Kafkaesque bureaucracies). Close the blinds and immerse yourself into the shadows.

June takes me off to Lisbon and The Hague to present my 52 Spaces project, based around the film L’eclisse (1962) by Michelangelo Antonioni. An extremely immersive and gentle performance it uses slow motion footage from the closing moments of the film to create an image of a city suspended in time, anonymous and surreal. A complex and mysterious chronicle it can also be experienced as a free installation work in The Netherlands for one month at the Filmhuis.

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Then it’s back to Italy for a mini retrospective weekend in Naples, where I’ll be giving a free talk and DJ set at Perditempo, performing live and showing collaborative film works at Museo Nitsch, then a duet with composer Roberto Paci Dalò at Vigna S. Martino for our very secret agent inspired The Napoli Files. Pasta, sunshine and sight-seeing will also I’m certain be part of the package.

Close to finishing our third Githead album, at the end of June we are off to Calgary in Canada to play at the Sled Island Festival curated by our very own Colin Newman. We’ll be playing on the same bill as two of my favourite bands, the unforgettable and magical Holy Fuck and Health and with a day to recover we play additional shows in Brampton and Toronto. Further dates will emerge later in the year.

So, another month, same suitcase.

Until next time

Robin

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::: listen :::

The Hafler Trio: The Name of Someone (Korm Plastics)
Throbbing Gristle: The Third Mind Movements (Industrial Records)
Stephen Vitiello/Molly Berg: The Gorilla Variations (12K)
Julia Kent: Delay (Shayo)

::: read :::
Naomi Green: The French New Wave (Wallflower)
Tar Magazine Issue Two
Chris Marker: Coreennes
KesselsKramer: The Worst Hotel in the World (Booth-Clibborn)

::: film:::
Coraline, Henry Selick, USA
Away with Words, Christopher Doyle, Japan
Synedoche, New York, Charlie Kaufman, USA
Cashback, Sean Ellis, UK

Exhibitions

52 Spaces
Zaal 5
Filmhuis The Hague
The Netherlands

16 June – 30 June 2009

Commissioned and produced by The British School at Rome for film director Michelangelo Antonioni's 90th birthday year, 52 Spaces uses sounds of the city of Rome and elements of The Eclipse (1962) to create a soundtrack of an image of a city suspended in time, anonymous and surreal. An audio visual installation.

www.filmhuisdenhaag.nl


‘Awake Are Only the Spirits’ - On Ghosts and Their Media

Hartware MedienKunstVerein
PHOENIX Halle Dortmund
16 May – 18 October 2009

The exhibition ‘Awake Are Only the Spirits’ – On Ghosts and Their  
Media is dedicated to a topic that appears, at first glance, timeless: it involves the presence of the supernatural – the appearance of ghosts and (trans-)communication with ‘the beyond’ facilitated by technical media. The exhibition shows 22 international artistic positions questioning the existence of ghosts, exploring the integration of new media and technologies in spiritualist contexts, investigating the making-visible or making-perceptible of the invisible, and tracing the political implications as well as the aesthetics of such contemporary trans-communication  
phenomena. Artists include Lucas & Jason Ajemian, Sam Ashley, Kathrin Günter, Carl Michael von Hausswolff, Tim Hecker, Susan Hiller, Chris Marker and Scanner.

www.hmkv.de

Night Haunts
By Sukhdev Sandhu
Design Mind Unit
Sound Design Scanner


Artangel Interaction invited writer and historian Sukhdev Sandhu to write a nocturnal journal unfolding over the course of 2006. His postings will appear sequentially at this microsite specially designed by Mind Unit. Sandhu's forays see him prospecting in the London night with the people who drive its pulse, from the avian police to security guards, zookeepers and exorcists. Acclaimed artist and musician Scanner has collaborated with Sukhdev and Ian Budden of Mind Unit to compose the sound for the site. If you would like to be kept informed as each episode is posted, join artangel's mailing list by clicking here .

www.nighthaunts.org.uk
www.artangel.org.uk



Bittersweet Songs for the Sleepless City
Artangel Interaction

NightJam is the latest project in Artangel Interaction’s Nights of London series of artist-led collaborations with people who have a special view on a hidden side of the nocturnal city. Scanner invited young people at New Horizon Youth Centre in King’s Cross to collaborate on a creative project that expresses how the city at night looks and sounds to their ears and eyes. Through music and voice workshops they explored the sense of freedom and fear, celebration and solitude of the concealing darkness. Meanwhile, they captured their nights on disposable cameras, taking images that are at times eerie, startling, contemplative and funny. NightJam presents two elusive visual and musical journeys through the city’s ‘quiet’ hours.

NightJam presents two music tracks, a film, photographs, that can be experienced and freely downloaded. Now featuring remixes of NightJam by Stephen Vitiello, Hakan Lidbo, Troy Banarzi, Si-cut.db and Pete Lockett.

www.nightjam.org.uk