Friday, 30 August 2013

The Procession of the Avant-Gardes, In Terms of Shit

Romanticism: I feel shit.
Pre-Raphaelites: Shit was better in the 15th century.
Impressionism: Loose shit.
Aestheticism: Pretty shit.
Art Nouveau: The prettiest shit.
Post-impressionism: Very loose shit.
Cubism: Shit from every angle.
Abstraction: Less shit.
Suprematism: Perfectly shit.
Constructivism: Building on shit.
Futurism: Thoroughly modern shit.
Expressionism: SHIT! SHIT! SHIIIIIIIT!
Rayonism: Lines of shit.
Vorticism: Whirls of shit.
Dada: Shit on the Mona Lisa.
Surrealism: Weird shit.
Art Deco: Pretty shit again.
Concrete art: Solid shit.
Abstract expressionism: Flinging shit around.
Kinetic art: Moving shit.
Outsider art: Crazy shit.
Op art: This shit hurts my eyes.
Minimalist art: Shit all shit.
Conceptual Art: Shit ideas.
Pop art: Mass produced shit.
Photorealism: Looks just like shit.
Post-modern art: You don't understand this shit.
Performance art: Doing shit.
Process art: Doing shit every day.
Installation art: Putting shit in its place.
Feminist art: Women's shit.
Land art: Outdoors shit.
Body art: Rolling around in shit.
Relational art: What do you think of this shit?
Appropriational art: I'm stealing your shit.
Sound art: Hear this shit?
Young British Artists: Shit sells.
Metamodernism: No one understands this shit.
Virtual art: Virtually shit.
Stuckism: Fuck this shit.
Remodernism: No, really, fuck this shit.
Superflat: Smooth shit.
Transgressive art: Cunt.

Thought this up in a few hours of idle boredom. Might make a good poster (may have to tweak the last one for commercial reasons? A pity though, as it is the punchline)

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Letters to the Editor: More Disrespect for Chelsea

  Sent to the I's 'Voices' section, in response to continued misgendering of Chelsea Manning.

I was pleased to note that you decided, in today's edition of the paper, to print a letter, similar to the one I myself sent in yesterday, condemning your own editorial choices with regards to reporting on Chelsea Manning's decision to live as a woman. I was significantly less pleased to see this letter printed across from an article that consistently referred to Pvt. Manning as 'He' and 'Bradley'. Clearly, myself and other correspondents have bought this matter to your attention, and you have acknowledged your faults, yet you continue to do nothing to correct them. Let me offer a possible course of action. Presumably your writers, editors, layout staff and so on use computer text editors to produce your paper? As any of the 16 year old children who attained a passing grade in GCSE IT last week might be able to tell you, the normal shortcut for 'find and replace' is ctrl+h in Windows or Linux and cmd+f in Mac OS.  Changing 'He' for 'She', 'His' for 'Her', 'Bradley' for 'Chelsea' etc. would take you less than a minute and cost nothing, whilst putting your paper on an ethical level above the one it currently occupies, next to such august publications as The Sun and the Daily Express.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Solent Sketches [VPRA]

I have decided to cross-post everything I post on the VPRA blog to this blog in order to make things easier to follow, and in order to make the VPRA more of, well, an archive. Here is the link to VPRA:

and here is the original article after the cut:

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Letters to the Editor: Respect for Chelsea

 Sent to the I's 'Voices' section, in response to an article misgendering Chelsea Manning.

I was disappointed, though, I must confess, not particularly surprised to read the i's take on Chelsea Manning's recent public declaration of her decision to live as a woman. This is not something that comes as a surprise to anyone following the case, particularly what has been reported outside the mainstream media. What is disappointing is your paper's decision to disrespect the wishes of Pvt. Manning by referring to her as 'He' and using the name 'Bradley'. Pvt. Manning is a young person who has been treated extremely harshly by her own government for doing something many people consider heroic, and has taken a courageous decision in coming out as transgendered. The least the i, an ostensibly liberal newspaper, could do is respect her wishes and refer to her by her preferred name and pronoun.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Utopia/Dystopia is available for purchase

 Buy it from here

Getting it ready was a complete pain. I started the process on Saturday, deciding to make a few alterations to the cover, correct a couple of typos and add an ISBN number and barcode. These simple tweaks rapidly lead to what divers call an incident pit, a spiralling and ever-increasing number of problems that have taken two days to rectify. First, InDesign decided that, despite my computer having 10gb less data on it than it did two weeks ago, it was now going to consider the amount of virtual memory available to it completely inadequate and promptly began to crash. Constantly. Somewhere amidst the 9 or so crashes, the document bleed settings disappeared, so that when I finally managed to make the changes I want it, export a new PDF (which failed several times, each failure costing half an hour during which little else of relevance could be done) and upload it to (a similarly lengthy process that also failed, more times than I want to consider) and make a print-ready file, the file (sans bleeds) resulted in a print-ready file which was the wrong size. This necessitated the whole process to be completed again. It has been terribly stressful.

Computers do make our lives easier; I wouldn't want to have to make my books with letraset and mimeograph machines and photo-typesetting and so on. But bloody hell.

I shall work on a section for the main website in which I list all of the books I have available for purchase (including their ISBN's and Idle Toil serial numbers) over the next few days. But for the moment, my author page on lulu is here.

Sunday, 25 August 2013

The Vectis Psychogeographical Research Archive

Over the course of my MA, one of my most successful pieces of work, and the piece of work I most enjoyed working on, was the Artist's Book Vectis, the creation of which is documented online here. Vectis is a work that I have very much come to view not so much as a finished body of work, but rather as the opening of a more prolonged investigation. Vectis was constrained by the fact that, as an MA project, there was a very definite deadline for the production of the book, and also the end form of the work had to be decided fairly early on. Although I think Vectis was a strong piece of work, there were a lot of areas that were left unexplored for these reasons.

Thus, with a view towards developing the groundwork I have already laid down, I am beginning a new project, the Vectis Psychogeographical Research Archive. This will involve the creation of a body of primary and secondary research into the history, geography, sociology and so forth of the Isle of Wight, with no particular end-goal in mind. It will also involve the creation of a diverse body of work reacting to and building off this research; again, there will be no particular end-goal in mind. Further books, exhibitions or other works will emerge in a more organic way. This methodology will allow me to be a lot more experimental with the work I produce, and I am expecting to return to neglected areas of my practice such as sound art, physical print-making and handmade books, as well as continuing to develop my skills in digital painting, book design and so on.
Click on the image below for the link to this new project.

Friday, 23 August 2013

A New General-Purpose Blog

Greetings all.

This is to be my new general purpose blog, for sharing finished artworks, sketches, works-in-progress, thoughts, observations and information related to my practice as an artist and, perhaps, to other things as well.

Updates will follow, for the moment, no particular pattern or schedule.