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Remix Image Inspired by the Title of my Book, Remix Theory

I received a tweet with the image above.  I think it’s a good remix in its own right. It appropriates not only the title of my book but also the concept behind the sound of music quite well.

Thanks to Harold Schellinx; his tweet: https://twitter.com/hefferman/status/321968978903851008/photo/1

The Framework of Culture: Remix in Music, Art, and Literature, by Eduardo Navas

Image: The four diagrams of The Framework of Culture. Each is discussed below.

Note: This text was commissioned for the exhibition Reuse Aloud, taking place at the NewBridge Project Space, Newcastle, England; and broadcasting 24 hours a day on basic.fm throughout March, 2013. Many thanks to the curators Will Strong and Rosanna Skett for commissioning the text.  A recorded version is also part of the exhibition.

An earlier version of this text was presented as my keynote speech for Remixed Media Festival in NYC.  In that occassion I only focused on literature. The version for Reuse Aloud was revised to include art and music as well. My thanks to Tom Tenney, director of the NYC festival for giving me the opportunity to test my ideas in front of a very receptive audience.

This text can also be downloaded as a PDF, which is friendlier for print, or for reading on tablets: NavasFrameNC_Web

Introduction

We live in a time when the self-awareness of recycling of material and immaterial things is almost taken for granted. I state almost because, as the following analysis demonstrates, the potential of recycling as a creative act in what we refer to as remix is in constant friction with cultural production. Consequently, the purpose of this essay is to demonstrate the importance of remix as a practice worthy of proper recognition exactly because of its ability to challenge the mainstream’s ambivalent acceptance of aesthetic and critical production that relies on strategies of appropriation, recycling, and recontextualization of material.

Proper recognition is only worthy when it is an attestation of a particular achievement, which can only come about through struggle. Arguably a type of struggle that is certainly recognized and even celebrated quite often, (which admittedly makes for romantic narratives) is the basic human struggle: the will to live. We can think of struggle here as a term spanning across all types of activities, from war to natural disasters—many which are now commonly shared all over the world.

But to begin with a more basic premise, struggle in its most abstract form can simply consist of reflecting on the pain of self-awareness; of having the burden of knowing that we just exist and, for the most part, will do anything to make sure that we will exist for as long as possible. Many of us are willing to find ways to extend our lives before we take our last breath. Others, admittedly, will struggle to leave this world as soon as possible; thus, it may be suicide the subject of struggle in such cases. But this brief reflection on struggle as a humanistic preoccupation is mentioned because we diligently have extended it to everything we produce. It is an important ingredient in what we may call progress.  As romantic as it may sound, human beings have the tendency to struggle in order to be better; whatever that means. And as we have grown as a complex global society, we have been able to extend our struggle on to and through media.

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Book Release, Depletion Design: A Glossary of Network Ecologies

I’m very happy to have a contribution in the book Depletion Design: A Glossary of Network Ecologies, edited by Carolin Wiedemann and Zoenke Zehle; published by Institute of Network Cultures as part of their series Theory on Demand. The publication includes well-known theorists.  My contribution is a text titled “Remix[ing] Re/Appropriations” which was originally commissioned by the MEIAC for the exhibition Re/appropriations, curated by Gustavo Romano. I released it previously on Remix Theory.

Description of the publication (from xm:lab):

‘Depletion Design’ suggests that ideas of exhaustion cut across cultural, environmentalist, and political idioms and offers ways to explore the emergence of new material assemblages. Soenke Zehle and Carolin Wiedemann discuss Depletion Design with Marie-Luise Angerer, Jennifer Gabrys and David M. Berry, inviting tm13 participants into a collaborative reflection on the necessity to understand human beings as one species among others – constituted by interactions of media, organisms, weather patterns, ecosystems, thought patterns, cities, discourses, fashions, populations, brains, markets, dance nights and bacterial exchanges (Angerer); on the material leftovers of electronics as provocations  to think through and rework practices of material politics that may be less exploitative within our natural-cultural relationships (Gabrys); and on lines of flight from and through the computational – about expanding them into new ways of living beyond current limitations and towards new means of judgment and politics (Berry).

 

Depletion Design: A Glossary of Network Ecologies

Ed. Carolin Wiedemann & Soenke Zehle

 

Theory on Demand#8

Amsterdam: INC, 2012

 

We, or so we are told, are running out of time, of time to develop alternatives to a new politics of emergency, as constant crisis has exhausted the means of a politics of representation too slow for the state of exception, too ignorant of the distribution of political agency, too focused on the governability of financial architectures. But new forms of individual and collective agency already emerge, as we learn to live, love, work within the horizon of depletion, to ask what it means to sustain ourselves, each other, again. Of these and other knowledges so created, there can no longer be an encyclopedia; a glossary, perhaps.

 

Contributors: Marie-Luise Angerer (Cyborg), Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi (Exhaustion, Soul Work), David M. Berry (On Terminality), Zach Blas (Queer Darkness), Drew S. Burk (Grey Ecology), Gabriella Coleman (Anonymous), Heidi Rae Cooley (Ecologies of Practice), Sebastian Deterding (Playful Technologies, Persuasive Design), Jennifer Gabrys (Natural History, Salvage), Johannes Grenzfurthner & Frank A. Schneider (Hackerspace), Eric Kluitenberg (Sustainable Immobility), Boyan Manchev (Disorganisation, Persistence), Lev Manovich (Software), Sonia Matos (Wicked Problems), Timothy Morton (Ecology without Nature), Jason W. Moore (Crisis), Anna Munster (Digital Embodiment), Eduardo Navas (Remix[ing] Re/Appropriations), Brett Neilson (Fracking), Sebastian Olma (Biopolitics, Creative Industries, Vitalism), Luciana Parisi (Algorithmic Architecture), Jussi Parikka (Dust Matter), Judith Revel (Common), Ned Rossiter (Dirt Research), Sean Smith (Information Bomb), Hito Steyerl (Spam of the Earth)

Publication (English Version): Theory on Demand

 

This text is published under a Creative Commons licence (Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike).

Collaboration as Process in the Exhibiting and Public Space, By Eduardo Navas

Living Light, designed by Soo-in Yang and David Benjamin

Image source: livinglightseoul.net/

This text was commissioned for the publication Future Exhibitions, Swedish Traveling Exhibitions, published in 2010. It is released as the third and last in a series of texts that were written during and after my residency for The  Swedish Traveling Exhibitions.

For the other texts, see:

1) When the Action Leaves the Museum: New Approaches to the Exhibition as a Tool of Communication.

2) Code Switching: Artists and Curators in Networked Culture

Note: This text is a brief analysis of the way exhibitions and art works were being redefined in 2010 and before by  the  growing ubiquity of interactive technology in art production and its presentation in art centers as well as public spaces.  Even though culture has experienced quite a few changes in social media and other forms of communication since this essay was originally written, the text is released online as a complement to its other forms of publication because it holds a critical position that is not contingent upon specific trends, but on long standing questions of art production.

Exhibitions at the beginning of the twenty-first century are becoming spaces of flux.  The usual static exhibition and installation with labels and proper cues for visitors to keep a safe distance—which is likely the default image that comes to mind when one thinks of museums and other public institutions—is being replaced by displays and installations that encourage some form of visitor interaction.  Interactivity can take place directly with the object, an online resource, or downloadable virtual tours, often with the aim not only to have an aesthetic experience but also to inform visitors on some issue.  While this new approach is certainly exciting, it also places real challenges for institutions in the arts and other fields on how to organize exhibitions that resonate with the contemporary audience.  In this regard, exhibitions tend to borrow from new forms of interaction often linked to artistic expression to highlight and bring audience’s attention to relevant information.  In what follows some of the variables that make exhibitions spaces of flux that increasingly rely on creative and even artistic solutions for engaging the audience will be discussed primarily in relation to art but will extend to other fields such as architecture, design, and the public space.

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Abstract for My Keynote Speech at Remixed Media Festival

Image source: Re/mixed Media

Note: Below is the abstract for my Keynote Lecture at the 2012 Re/Mixed Media Festival, to take place at the Brooklyn Lyceum on November 10, 2012.

For the 2012 keynote talk, Eduardo Navas will discuss his research on how the recycling of material, as currently understood in terms of remix, is at play in literary practice in relation to a feedback loop which forms The Framework of Culture.*

Abstract:

The Framework of Culture makes possible the act of remixing. This Framework consists of two layers which function on a feedback loop. The first layer takes effect when something is introduced in culture; such element will likely be different from what is commonly understood, and therefore it takes time for its assimilation. The second layer takes effect when that which is introduced attains cultural value and is appropriated or sampled to be reintroduced in culture. The first layer privileges research and development. Creative literary practice as well as all of the arts function on the second layer, which is why, more often than not, their production consists of appropriation, or at least citation of material with pre-defined cultural value. The two layers have actually been in place since culture itself came about, but their relation has changed with the growing efficiency in production and communication due to the rise of computing. The presentation evaluates this change and its implication for creativity in contemporary cultural production.

—–

* The Framework of Culture is defined in Chapter One of my book, Remix Theory: The Aesthetics of Sampling.

Table of Contents and Introduction Available as PDF for my book, Remix Theory: The Aesthetics of Sampling

Springer has made available the Table of Contents and Introduction of my book, Remix Theory: The Aesthetics of Sampling. You can download it by visiting the book’s official link:
http://www.springer.com/architecture+%26+design/architecture/book/978-3-7091-1262-5

The book should be available in the coming weeks in Europe, and soon after in the United States. For more information, also see the main entry about the book.

Book Sprint on The New Aesthetic

This entry was originally posted on Vodule

Note: Previously this entry read “book print.”  This was a mistake on my part. It should be “book sprint.”

I recently read the “book sprint” New Aesthetic, New Anxieties by a group of media researchers, theorists and curators, who got together for three and a half days from June 17–21, 2012,  at V2, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

The concept of coming together for just a few days to brainstorm a book is certainly something worth considering as an act of creative critical practice.  The book from this standpoint functions surprisingly well, especially because its premise is delivered to match the speed of change that its subject (The New Aesthetic) experiences in the daily flow of information throughout the global network. I personally find amazing that a book of this sort can be put together with some cohesion.

The subject of the book is The New Aesthetic, a term /concept that has been making the rounds on the Internet for a bit over a year and a few months, but which really took off when Bruce Sterling wrote about it for Wired on April 2, 2012.  Since then many  have written about it; the latest manifestation is the book sprint.

With all respect to the authors, I will state that the text is not fully cohesive, as it becomes obvious that much of the content consists of copy/paste material that was clearly worked over to somewhat match a book format in just three and a half days.  Clearly some stuff had to be written on the spot, but many of the references in the footnotes could not be gathered so quickly–or at least everyone had to come prepared with some strong references to use well before the writing sessions would begin.  What the book sprint does accomplish is provide a good sense of the initial stages of The New Aesthetic in order to reposition the concept in terms of a more critical practice.  The New Aesthetic, based on what I have been reading about it for a few months now, is not a term initially invested in criticality, but rather it befriends trending strategies of the design world which more often than not is primarily invested in landing major corporate contracts.

I won’t dwell on my own views on The New Aesthetic in this case.  For now, I prefer to share some links that also complement The New Aesthetic, New Anxieties Book sprint.  They appear below.  I did not include the authors’ names, but you can certainly find them once you click on the links.

———–

The New Aesthetic Blog:
http://new-aesthetic.tumblr.com/

An Interview With James Bridle of the New Aesthetichttp://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/robert-urquhart/an-an-interview-with-jame_b_1498958.htm
The New Aesthetic: Waving at the Machines
http://booktwo.org/notebook/waving-at-machines/
An Essay on the New Aesthetichttp://www.wired.com/beyond_the_beyond/2012/04/an-essay-on-the-new-aesthetic/
In Response To Bruce Sterling’s “Essay On The New Aesthetic”
http://www.thecreatorsproject.com/blog/in-response-to-bruce-sterlings-essay-on-the-new-aesthetic
We are the droids we’re looking for: the New Aesthetic and its friendly critics
http://blog.jjcharlesworth.com/2012/05/07/we-are-the-droids-were-looking-for-the-new-aesthetic-and-its-friendly-critics/
What Is the “New Aesthetic”?
http://stunlaw.blogspot.com/2012/04/what-is-new-aesthetic.html
The New Aesthetic Revisited: the Debate Continues
http://www.wired.com/beyond_the_beyond/2012/05/the-new-aesthetic-revisited-the-debate-continues/
#sxaesthetic
http://booktwo.org/notebook/sxaesthetic/
The New Aesthetic: Seeing Like Digital Devices at SXSW 2012
http://joannemcneil.com/index.php?/talks-and-such/new-aesthetic-at-sxsw-2012/
SXSW, the new aesthetic and commercial visual culture
http://noisydecentgraphics.typepad.com/design/2012/03/sxsw-the-new-aesthetic-and-commercial-visual-culture.html
The New Aesthetic
http://www.aaronland.info/weblog/2012/03/13/godhelpus/#sxaesthetic
SXSW, the new aesthetic and writing
http://russelldavies.typepad.com/planning/2012/03/sxsw-the-new-aesthetic-and-writing.html
What is the New Aesthetic?
http://gizmodo.com/5901405/what-is-the-new-aesthetic
The New Aesthetic Needs To Get Weirder
http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/04/the-new-aesthetic-needs-to-get-weirder/255838/
Bruce Sterling interviewed about the New Aesthetic
http://boingboing.net/2012/06/21/bruce-sterling-interviewed-abo.html
Why the New Aesthetic isn’t about 8bit retro, the Robot Readable World, computer vision and pirates
http://revdancatt.com/2012/04/07/why-the-new-aesthetic-isnt-about-8bit-retro-the-robot-readable-world-computer-vision-and-pirates/
The Banality of The New Aesthetic
http://www.furtherfield.org/features/banality-new-aesthetic
Is Fashion Ready for a New Aesthetic?
http://www.businessoffashion.com/2012/05/is-fashion-ready-for-a-new-aesthetic.html
New Aesthetic Street Art
http://hyperallergic.com/53662/new-aesthetic-street-art-jilly-ballistic/
The New Aesthetics: Problems and Polemics (Part 1)
http://www.realityaugmentedblog.com/2012/05/the-new-aesthetics-problems-and-polemics-part-1/
The New Aesthetic Problems and Polemics (Part II)
http://www.realityaugmentedblog.com/2012/05/the-new-aesthetic-problems-and-polemics-part-ii/
The New Aesthetic: Further Thoughts
http://www.realityaugmentedblog.com/2012/06/the-new-aesthetic-further-thoughts/

Please Contribute to Survey for Remix Studies Reader

Image: Remix Studies

Dear community,

We are currently conducting a survey for a Remix Studies book project and we would really appreciate your help. The survey is quick and easy and should take no more than a few minutes of your time. Your assistance will be invaluable in the development of the book, which we hope will be of great use to students, teachers, researchers and practitioners of remix alike.

If possible, we would also be very grateful if you could help us to distribute the survey to anyone within your networks who has an interest in remix.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/C9MGRVV

Thank you very much for your time and effort – we value your input.

Kind regards,

Eduardo, Owen and xtine

Eduardo Navas
http://remixtheory.net
http://navasse.net

Owen Gallagher
http://www.remixstudies.org
http://www.totalrecut.com
http://www.criticalremix.com

xtine burrough
http://www.missconceptions.net

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