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September 2009

Hello

A genuinely quieter August, spent finding space to breathe in the sea air of Pula in Croatia, enjoying swimming in crystal clear warm waters, avoiding sea hedgehogs under the surface, waiting to strike a spike into any unsuspecting sea visitors, and ended in waking up to a gigantic industrial JCB vehicle outside my secluded apartment, digging a deep valley into the earth to bury pipes in. Any chance to recharge fully has now been erased with a manic rush to the finish for a small ocean of projects, all colliding in deadlines, pressures and developments.

Scanner

I’ve been working on a series of film collaborations, all of which will be exposed in the months to come. The first of which, Oops Wrong Planet, directed by Anouk De Clercq, will premiere at MOCA Shanghai on 12 September in an exhibition titled Fantastic Illusions, curated by Christophe De Jaeger, showing a mix of European and Chinese Media-artists. It presents an attractive, rolling landscape from a different planet. An attempt is made to establish contact. Long-distance communication is possible, albeit with some interference on the line, so a complex score of static and noise navigates you through a planet far beyond. The film draws on communications with an autistic man who calls himself Landschip, talking about noise, music, space and communication. These will be published separately later on.

Evaders, directed by Ori Gersht, will show at CRG Gallery in NYC from 17 September - 31 October 2009. Ori is one of the most renowned Israeli artists living today whose internationally acclaimed works in photography and video are poetic, visually enthralling, and often fraught with complex, underlying contradictions. Evaders is situated on the Pyrenees border between France and Spain, where Walter Benjamin tried to escape the Third Reich and ended up committing suicide instead, when he discovered the border to have closed on the very day that he tried to cross it. The film depicts an anonymous figure disappearing through a doorway, half dissolving into a mountain landscape, laboring over and over through wind and cloud and snow, fading into the storm, trying to make some “progress” forward into an unknown future that will never take place for him. It’s a bleak but moving film that we’ve spent many hours collaborating on so hope that some of you may get to experience it soon.

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My continuing collaboration with Dutch artist Olga Mink Atlantida can be experienced in London at the onedotzero_adventures in motion festival (09-13 September) at the BFI this month too as part of their Terrain programme. Atlantida looks at a synthesis of the natural and the artificial, navigating a journey through the seven islands of Gran Canaria, presenting a metaphysical adventure, where natural forces take precedent over human. It was originally commissioned for The 2nd Biennial of the Canary Islands (2009) and should fit well into a compilation of distinct interpretations of all types of terrain and environments, real and imagined.

If you have the opportunity to visit the festival I thoroughly encourage it since it presents a showcase mix of visual works from an international array of creators who stretch ideas of motion entertainment through a compelling mix of ground-breaking cinematic work, stellar screening programmes, explosive live audio-visual and music performances, sensory installations, in-depth presentations and social events.

Continuing this cinematic theme my work has also just opened at the Lentos Museum in Linz Austria, as part of the See This Sound exhibition. It can be experienced inside the Optofonica Capsule, created by Italian media artist Tez in collaboration with Janis Ponisch. The Capsule is a futuristic design/architectural object, featuring a mechanized structure whose parts form an autonomous immersive audiovisual environment. Seductively the shell-like shape of the capsule wraps the body of the visitor to optimize the experience of surround and Tactile Sound. As such it becomes a very physical experience, where low frequencies are transduced directly into the bone-system of the human body, thereby converting the sound into hyper-perceivable vibration; this adds a completely new sensorial dimension to the fruition of the piece and expands the possibilities of creation by the artists. Waterfall, my collaboration with filmmaker Ryan Jeffery, will be shown alongside works by Telcosystems, Richard Chartier, Ryoichi Kurokawa, Skoltz Kolgen amongst many others. A forthcoming DVD will be available soon on 12k/Line

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We’ve just completed and mastered the third Githead album, Landing, which has already received some glowing reports from those who’ve heard it, and will be premiering songs from this and installing an art installation in Strasbourg as part of the Ososphere Festival this month. We are currently setting up touring dates for later this year to share our rock and roll spirits with the wider world so keen to stride out with a guitar again, all in time for the November release date. All our other releases are now finally available via iTunes too, so you can spend your pennies on Art Pop, Profile and Headgit.

Scannerdot has this month been streamlined thanks to the efforts and dedication from Eric Scott of Day for Night, updating countless under the bumper improvements, adding a Facebook update and most significantly ensuring that the site now runs on any fancy iPhone or Blackberry. Thanks to Eric!

So goodbye to the summer (though it’s questionable if it ever actually arrived in the UK) and see you next month.

Until then

Robin

Scanner

::: listen :::

Luc Ferrari: L’oeuvre Electronique (INA GRM)
Arturas Bumsteinas: Uniforms (Boet)
Flying Lotus: LA EP 3 x 3 (Warp)
Jim O’Rourke: The Visitor (Drag City)

::: read :::
Cabinet Magazine Issue 34: Testing
Richard Brody: Everything is Cinema (Holt)
Marquard Smith: Stelarc The Monograph (MIT)
Theresa Sauer: Notations (MBP)

::: film:::
Inglourious Basterds, Quentin Tarantino, USA
The Consequences of Love, Paolo Sorrentino, Italy
Broken Embraces, Pedro Almodovar, Spain
500 Days of Summer, Marc Webb, USA

Exhibitions

‘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. Additionally it features remixes of NightJam by Stephen Vitiello, Hakan Lidbo, Troy Banarzi, Si-cut.db and Pete Lockett.

www.nightjam.org.uk