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98 posts tagged with avantgarde.
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TOILETPAPER: Aesthetically Nuts/Wicked Awesome

Toiletpaper Magazine was founded by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan and photographer Pierpaolo Ferrari. Their work - some contemporary nod to Surreal and Postmodern art - is oddly familiar, yet not quite like anything I’ve ever seen before. As visually stimulating as a publication can get these days, Toiletpaper hooks you, knocks your socks off, keeps you guessing. [more inside]
posted by ourt on Nov 9, 2014 - 5 comments

Taking the '70s more seriously

Style Gone Wild: Why We Can't Shake the 1970s

Collectors Weekly: What prompted such radical changes in popular fashion?

Lutyens: One reason was that people in the West were becoming increasingly affluent, and this gave young people the confidence to question their parents’ values. Because they had money, they could be more independent. Society was also becoming much more liberal as well because you had things like the legalization of homosexuality and the legalization of divorce. People were allowed to be themselves more without being judged by other people.

Then the three main minority movements — feminism, black civil rights, and gay liberation — all these minorities had been marginalized until the late ’60s. In the ’70s they began to assert themselves more and become more visible. So their style became more visible, and it influenced mainstream fashion.
[more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Oct 17, 2014 - 61 comments

Return of the Avant-Garde

This summer Kino Lorber's Redemption Films released the final of six French avant-garde films in their series The Cinema of Alain Robbe-Grillet (link is to a promotional short, possibly NSFW. Potential triggers include scenes of bondage, domination, and an unrepentant Gallic male gaze). [more inside]
posted by kanewai on Oct 7, 2014 - 6 comments

The awful cult of the talentless hipster has taken over

Will Self takes responsibility ... [more inside]
posted by philip-random on Sep 15, 2014 - 95 comments

Get 'Soused' with ScottO))) - firing back at Lou Reed & Metallica?

Pitchfork: "A few weeks ago, 4AD confirmed that musician Scott Walker and drone metal outfit Sunn O))) would release a collaborative album. Today, the two parties have announced that album. It's called Soused, and it's due out September 22 in Europe and 23 in North America." [more inside]
posted by porn in the woods on Jul 17, 2014 - 28 comments

Avant-Garde in a Different Key: Karl Kraus’s The Last Days of Mankind

Act 1, scene 1. "The stage directions read, “Vienna. The Ringstrasse promenade at Sirk Corner. Flags wave from the buildings. Soldiers marching by are cheered by the onlookers. General excitement. The crowd breaks up into small groups.”[2] The newsboys with their “Extra Extra,” announcing the outbreak of war, are interrupted by a drunk demonstrator who shouts “Down with Serbia! Hurrah for the Hapsburgs! Hurrah! For S-e-r-bia!” and is immediately kicked in the pants for his mistake (LTM, p. 69). A crook and a prostitute exchange insults, even as two army contractors, talking of possible bribes the rich will use to avoid the draft, cite Bismarck’s words, in Neue Freie Presse (Vienna’s major newspaper at the time of the assassination of the archduke in Serbia), to the effect that the Austrians deserve kissing. One officer tells another that war is “unanwendbar” (of no use) when he really means, as his friend points out, “unabwendbar” (unavoidable) (LTM, pp. 70–71). A patriotic citizen praises the coming conflict as a holy war of defense against “encirclement” by hostile forces, and the crowd responds by making up rhymes (in Viennese dialect) denigrating the enemy (LTM, p. 72)." [more inside]
posted by whyareyouatriangle on Jun 10, 2014 - 9 comments

"A film that instead of making sense is sense."

Jamestown Baloos (1957) [SLYT] by Robert Breer [PDF] (previously) "is a frenetic, three-part stop-motion animation that features an army of everyday forms and figures — geometric shapes, a piece of string, newspaper clips, a pin-up girl, even Napoleon Bonaparte — flashing across the screen. Placed in increasingly compromised situations and choreographed to a jingoistic tune, the figures essentially become puppets of their former selves. Such unrelenting visuals recall not only Fernand Léger’s early experimental film, Ballet Mécanique (1924), as Breer himself has mentioned, but also early twentieth-century Dadaist collage. Dada artists like Kurt Schwitters and Hannah Höch created witty, unapologetic works that reflected the chaos and violence of modern existence. Jamestown Baloos serves, as their works did, as a pointed indictment on the absurdity of war."
posted by Room 641-A on Mar 8, 2014 - 2 comments

Ubu Roulette

As noted previously, Ubuweb hosts a stellar collection of avant-garde films and videos. But how does one ever decide what to watch? Use Ubu Roulette! Use it to throw a party (as the creators suggest) or to discover something fabulous (e.g.) just by yourself.
posted by mahershalal on Jan 24, 2014 - 9 comments

Bernard Parmegiani (27 October 1927 - 21 November 2013)

One of the founders and pioneers of electroacoustic music is gone. Parmegiani was a prolific and distinctive electronic musician. His works are currently being played on sfsound.org radio. [more inside]
posted by idiopath on Nov 24, 2013 - 11 comments

In history as in nature, decay is the laboratory of life. – Karl Marx

Blood, sweat, and tears: Bodily inscriptions in contemporary experimental film
posted by namagomi on Nov 15, 2013 - 1 comment

These guys are fucking AMAZING.

Kiyohiko Senba is a composer who’s been likened to Zappa for his ambition, talent, madness, and virtuosity, but his music is considerably easier to get into. Get ready, because his large-scale orchestra project, Kiyohiko Senba and the Haniwa All-Stars, is about to blow your goddamn mind.

Let's start simple and ramp up. Hohai Bushi sounds a bit like an Ennio Morricone composition but with more electric guitar. Taiikusai is so heartfelt, yearning, and soaring that I cried when it got to the climax. They cover both Franz Schubert’s “Standchen" and Dusty Springfield’s “You Don’t To Say You Love Me” in ways that are all kinds of awesome. But the real treasure for me is this one, which begins with them playing the Village People’s “YMCA” but then transitions into Daimeiwaku, a freaking phenomenal good original piece that sounds – I don’t know how else to describe it – like James Brown and John Philip Sousa decided to play Katamari Damacy together and had a really good time. (With some klezmer and Leonard Bernstein thrown in there too, for good measure.) But wait! There’s [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich on Oct 25, 2013 - 24 comments

Flash Friday: Second Empire Artistic Demimonde Edition

In the new game Avant-Garde, you play an up-and-coming artist in 19th century Paris, a contemporary of Manet and Bouguereau. Carve and sell allegorical statue groups! Get snubbed by Napoleon III! Subsidize Gustave Courbet's drinking! Compose and promulgate your own aesthetic manifesto!
posted by Iridic on Mar 8, 2013 - 56 comments

L'Année dernière à Marienbad

The famous avant-garde movie Last Year at Marienbad is on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Rustic Etruscan on Feb 26, 2013 - 26 comments

Guerilla theatre. May contain actual gorilla.

Founded in 1999 and quickly winning over theatre critics and audiences alike, Abattoir Fermé is an avant-garde collective that was awarded the 2008 Flemish Culture Prize for its "penetrating and ominous theatre." [more inside]
posted by urbanwhaleshark on Jan 31, 2013 - 2 comments

A fail-safe orchestra at one's fingertips

"A composer's dream : a fail-safe orchestra at one's fingertips obeying ever so gently to his every command : a timeless sounding orchestra, both futuristic and slightly dada, conjuring ancient traditions in its surprisingly sensuous music. This is, in a nutshell what Pierre Bastien's "Mecanium" is all about" -Michel F. Côté. Watch him in action Live at Faster than Sound or enjoy a track from his album Mecanoid - Avid Diva. [more inside]
posted by mingo_clambake on Dec 29, 2012 - 7 comments

Spectrum: New American Music 1968-1974

Spectrum: New American Music was a series of five LPs released by Nonesuch between 1968 and 1974, featuring works by composers like Stefan Wolpe, George Rochberg, and Milton Babbitt, performed by Arthur Weisberg's Contemporary Chamber Ensemble. Nonesuch released a Spectrum compilation on CD in the 1990s; everything that's not on the CD is available at Internet Archive (Part 2), courtesy of the Avant Garde Project. [more inside]
posted by roll truck roll on Aug 20, 2012 - 10 comments

1 TERABYTE MP3 HARSH NOISE 233 x DVD

1 TERABYTE MP3 HARSH NOISE 233 x DVD [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Aug 2, 2012 - 60 comments

You know what our attitude was toward people who didn’t like avant-garde films? ‘Oh, you don’t like it? We’ll show it again.’

Amos Vogel, the founder of the Cinema 16 film society in New York City and later co-founder of the New York Film Festival, has died at the age of 91. [more inside]
posted by theartandsound on Apr 26, 2012 - 4 comments

Abraham Lincoln Gillespie

Abraham Lincoln Gillespie's The Syntactic Revolution
posted by BEE-EATING CAT-EATER on Apr 25, 2012 - 5 comments

Nobody has a free choice when it comes to love

Could it have been something else ?
It can be anything
Do I love everything ?
Unfortunately not, but all things can be loved by different people at different times: enemies, devils, gods and chocolate candies.

-Sigurdur Gudmundsson
posted by beshtya on Feb 10, 2012 - 8 comments

"Television has been attacking us all our lives, now we can attack it back."

Handmade Cinema. A guide to experimental film and filmmakers.
posted by Pope Xanax IV on Jan 25, 2012 - 3 comments

Disco Inferno: The Five EPs

"We were so dumbfounded at the noise that was coming out of our instruments it took us a while to get a handle on what we were hearing, let alone thinking in terms of how any records would be structured." Music journalist Ned Raggett assembles the oral history of British experimental rock group Disco Inferno's five EPs.
posted by Houyhnhnm on Jan 23, 2012 - 17 comments

Happy Solstice!

"everything is good that / has a good beginning / and doesn't have an end / the world will die but for us there is no / end!" Thus ends Victory over the Sun (part 1, part 2), the "first Futurist opera". [more inside]
posted by daniel_charms on Dec 21, 2011 - 8 comments

Samuel Beckett's Film

Samuel Beckett's Film. Here is an article by director on Alan Schneider on the movie, and an article by Sylvia Debevec Hanning.
posted by beshtya on Dec 5, 2011 - 7 comments

UbuWeb Top Tens

UbuWeb Top Tens, from Summer 2006 - December 2011.
posted by beshtya on Dec 3, 2011 - 6 comments

John Zorn's "Spillane"

Using his "file card" technique to create the title piece "Spillane" (whereby musical ideas written on note cards form the basis for discreet sound blocks arranged by way of a unifying theme), John Zorn forges an impressionistic narrative out of stretches of live-music jazz, blues, country, lounge, thrash, etc., and a variety of samples and spoken dialogue inspired by Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer detective novels (recited by John Lurie). - AllMusic [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Dec 2, 2011 - 7 comments

Assorted Street Posters

This collection of street posters, mad scribblings, political screeds, religious rants, and paranoid raves was collected on the streets of New York City from 1985 to the present. Some time ago, it occurred to me that the streets are as full of art as, say, thrift shops are full of great paintings. So, inspired by Jim Shaw's collection Thrift Shop Paintings, Adolf Wölfli's visionary scrawls, and outsider music, I began carrying a portable razor with me whilst out on casual strolls. What began as a hobby has remained an obsession and this obsession is brought to you in living color here on UbuWeb. Keep checking back as this page is constantly updated. I have hundreds of examples to share with you, as as time permits, they'll all eventually appear here. -- Kenneth Goldsmith, Assorted Street Posters
posted by beshtya on Dec 2, 2011 - 13 comments

Other Minds

Music From Other Minds is a radio program of art music by living composers from the folks behind the other minds festival.
posted by idiopath on Nov 30, 2011 - 3 comments

A Popular Guide to Unpopular Music

A Popular Guide to Unpopular Music by Kenneth Goldsmith, founder of Ubu. Here is an interview with Goldmith in The Believer.
posted by beshtya on Nov 1, 2011 - 19 comments

"Uncreative Genius"

"The prominent literary critic Marjorie Perloff has recently begun using the term 'unoriginal genius' to describe this tendency emerging in literature. Her idea is that, because of changes brought on by technology and the Internet, our notion of the genius—a romantic, isolated figure—is outdated. An updated notion of genius would have to center around one's mastery of information and its dissemination. Perloff has coined another term, 'moving information,' to signify both the act of pushing language around as well as the act of being emotionally moved by that process. She posits that today's writer resembles more a programmer than a tortured genius, brilliantly conceptualizing, constructing, executing, and maintaining a writing machine." --Kenneth Goldsmith on why "genius" is an archaic concept, and how literature in English has fallen half-a-century behind advances in visual arts and music
posted by bardic on Sep 22, 2011 - 44 comments

Riding the Korean Wave

한(汗) or Han [Click larger picture on the left to play the film], by 'The Chaser' and 'The Yellow Sea' film director, Na Hong-jin, is a Korean avant-garde short film in the vein of Maya Deren. If you liked that one and would like something a little more silly, check out: 완벽한 도미요리 (Cooking the perfect bream)
posted by Knigel on Aug 1, 2011 - 13 comments

The Avant-Garde Project, an online lossless music LP archive

The Avant Garde Project is a series of recordings of 20th-century classical, experimental, and electroacoustic music digitized from LPs whose music has in most cases never been released on CD, and so is effectively inaccessible to the vast majority of music listeners today. Until now, of course. [more inside]
posted by carsonb on Jun 28, 2011 - 17 comments

"The rhythm of a work is equal to the idea of the whole."

Berlin, circa 1921: The painter Hans Richter turns his talents to film and produces one of the earliest abstract films, Rhythmus 21. Clocking in at just over three minutes, it's a significant departure from the newsreels, romances, cliff-hangers, and penny-dreadfuls that made up the bulk of film production in the early ’20s—the first decade in which the film industry began to play a major economic and cultural role around the world. [more inside]
posted by scody on Jun 14, 2011 - 9 comments

Death Grips: Zombie holocaust in seconds

It started two months ago to the day, when a stuttering/strobing video of angry man obscenely rapping over a spasmodic drumbeat was posted on YouTube from an unknown group who called themselves Death Grips, with the promise of an album and a mixtape within the year. The next day, a new track went up, not furious like the day before, but the rapper sounded a bit hoarse now. More tracks were uploaded every few days, and on April 26th the mixtape was on YouTube, soundcloud, and available to download from their website and other places. Still, little is known about the group, beyond that it's probably a trio and Zach Hill is involved. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on May 8, 2011 - 16 comments

"Come with me into the tormented, haunted, half-lit night of the insane."

Daughter of Horror (original title: Dementia) was a 1955 avant garde film featuring a noir style, a surrealist sensibility, and virtually no dialogue. A later version of the film even included an over-the-top voice over by none other than Tonight Show sidekick Ed McMahon, but like Blade Runner the flick is better off without the narration. Daughter of Horror is probably most famous for being the film playing in the theater overrun by The Blob. And with a few more surrealistic elements and peculiar dialogue added, this could have been done by David Lynch in a later decade. The film, recently featured on Turner Classic Movies, is available for free on archive.org.
posted by Celsius1414 on May 1, 2011 - 7 comments

Music From Nowhere

Since the late '70s, Gordon Monahan has been making a career of extracting the unheard from pretty much anything he can get his hands on. Monahan's works for piano, loudspeakers, video, kinetic sculpture, and computer-controlled sound environments span various genres from avant-garde concert music to multi-media installation and sound art. Such pieces include long string installations activated by wind (Long Aeolian Piano, 1984-88), by water vortices (Aquaeolian Whirlpool, 1990) and by indoor air draughts (Spontaneously Harmonious in Certain Kinds of Weather, 1996). His work for electronic tone generators and human speaker swingers (Speaker Swinging, 1982), is a hybrid of science, music, and performance art, where minimalistic trance music based on the Doppler Effect contrasts with issues central to performance art such as physical struggle and 'implied threat'. John Cage once said, "At the piano, Gordon Monahan produces sounds we haven't heard before." [more inside]
posted by wcfields on Apr 29, 2011 - 4 comments

Roland Kayn 1933 - 2011

On January 5th, 2011 largely unknown modern composer, and pioneer of long format compositions on early computer systems Roland Kayn "... left this world today from his home". [more inside]
posted by wcfields on Jan 21, 2011 - 8 comments

Why I Hate the Avant-Garde

Why I Hate the Avant-Garde or, Why Laurie Anderson is less Avant-Garde than DJ Kool Herc. A rant with videos. Via The Front Section.
posted by mediareport on Jan 17, 2011 - 110 comments

"One thing just happens after another."

Tao Lin will have the scallops.
posted by TheWash on Aug 18, 2010 - 40 comments

"I soon learned that if I was asked to play something over again, it meant that they didn't understand it, not that they liked it."

"But this wasn't quite enough and so then I got the idea of having all thirteen of the lowest tones of the piano played together... In other words, I was inventing a new musical sound later to be called 'tone clusters'... Anyway, this was my professional debut as a composer." Henry Cowell's musical autobiography. Cowell was one of the most important figures in 20th-century American music, described by John Cage as "the open sesame for new music in America." In this hour-long program recorded four years before his death in 1965, compositions from every stage in Cowell's career are contextualized and discussed by the man himself.
posted by No-sword on Aug 8, 2010 - 10 comments

If Macedonio hadn't invented Borges, Borges would've invented him

In those years I imitated him, to the point of transcription, to the point of devoted and impassioned plagiarism. I felt: Macedonio is metaphysics, is literature. Whoever preceded him might shine in history, but they were all rough drafts of Macedonio, imperfect previous versions. To not imitate this canon would have represented incredible negligence.
From Jorge Luis Borges' eulogy for Macedonio Fernández. Borges' relationship with Macedonio was complicated, as recounted in The Man Who Invented Borges, a fine essay by Marcelo Ballvé. Macedonio's most famous work, the posthumous-by-design work (he believed literature should be aged like good whiskey) The Museum of Eterna's Novel has finally been translated and published in English translation, here is an excerpt from the novel (one of the ninety or so prologues). The introduction to the novel, written by its translator Margaret Schwartz, has been put online by the publisher (parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Schwartz also sat down for a short interview. You can download an mp3 of a great hour-long panel discussion on Macedonio and a master's thesis on Macedonio by Peter Loggie [pdf]
posted by Kattullus on Jul 21, 2010 - 7 comments

Last Call at the Velvet Lounge

Fred Anderson was a monster on the tenor sax. Fred Anderson was one of the founders of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, and his "home court," the Velvet Lounge, remains a place for Chicago creative musicians to find welcoming audience. Fred died June 24 in Chicago. A wake will take place from 5 to 6 PM this Tuesday (June 29) at Leak and Sons Funeral Chapel, 7838 S. Cottage Grove, followed immediately by Anderson’s Going Home service. [more inside]
posted by beelzbubba on Jun 26, 2010 - 14 comments

Old. Tired. Sick. Alone. Broke.

David Markson has died. David Foster Wallace called his Wittgenstein's Mistress "pretty much the high point of experimental fiction in this country"; but Markson also wrote, earlier in his career, an oddball Western, hardboiled detective fiction (Here is a tribute constructed entirely from text from Epitaph for a Dead Beat), and some uncommonly lusty stuff for a dedicated experimentalist. [more inside]
posted by kenko on Jun 6, 2010 - 29 comments

The dream of a reading machine.

"The written word hasn't kept up with the age. The movies have outmanoeuvered it. We have the talkies, but as yet no Readies." So wrote Rob Brown in 1930 in his book The Readies. Putting his money where his mouth was, he made a prototype readie, which has since been lost. Brown's story is recounted by Jennifer Schuessler in The New York Times. Brown expert Craig Saper has created a replica Readie online, which includes amongst others texts by Gertrude Stein, William Carlos Williams, F. T. Marinetti as well as translations from Horace by Ezra Pound. [Some of the texts shock modern sensibilities]
posted by Kattullus on Apr 28, 2010 - 17 comments

Impossible Music

A favorite of John Cage and Gyorgy Ligeti, the latter describing his music as "so utterly original, enjoyable, perfectly constructed but at the same time emotional...the best of any composer living today," Conlon Nancarrow's musical ideas were nevertheless too complex and technically demanding for human performers, and his political ideas too radical and leftist for McCarthy-era America. Expatriated to Mexico, the Texarkana-born avant-gardeist lived most of his life in isolation, in a cluttered, dusty studio surrounded by records, piles of books, empty Vodka bottles, newspapers, cigarette cartons, and the tools of his trade: 2 old player pianos and a custom-built piano roll press. [more inside]
posted by swift on Feb 15, 2010 - 16 comments

Futurism in Russia

Tango With Cows is an exhibition by the Getty Museum of the book art of the Russian avant-garde from 1910 to 1917, which included a performance of sound poetry, all captured on video, both of Futurist poems, other historical sound poems, and contemporary works. Among performers are Christian Bök and Steve McCaffery. The exhibition takes its name from the book of ferro-concrete poems, one of 21 books can be downloaded as PDFs, most are by Alexei Kruchenykh but there are also works by Roman Jakobson, Vladimir Mayakovsky, David Burliuk, Andrei Kravtsov, Vasily Kamensky and Velimir Khlebnikov. These were all Futurists. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus on Feb 2, 2010 - 12 comments

domestication of the avant garde

Processing the Signal == Part 1 - Bill Viola// Part 2 - Nam June Paik// Part 3 - The Medium// Part 4 - Technology// Part 5 - Audience// [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Feb 2, 2010 - 5 comments

"Ruthlessly simple and mind-boggling"

Never Again is a novel in which no word occurs more than once. Published in Ubuweb's contemporary collection. [more inside]
posted by kenko on Sep 12, 2009 - 101 comments

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Primiti Too Taa is an animated excerpt from Kurt Schwitters' Ursonate. You can see the whole text, and hear the whole thing as voiced by Schwitters or many others, including a text-to-speech program and the author of Eunoia. [more inside]
posted by kenko on Aug 19, 2009 - 11 comments

Kathleen Supove rocks

Kathleen Supove, pianist extraordinaire. [via] [more inside]
posted by fcummins on May 23, 2009 - 10 comments

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