Wednesday, July 29

Bloggers no more

Here at Window, we have decided that we are not natural bloggers.

We will archive this blog in perpetuity as an homage to the great Window bloggers of the past, and an opportunity for the great Window bloggers of the future, but in acknowledgment of our non-greatness we will no longer attempt to blog.

Apologies to those of you who were breathlessly awaiting our next post.


Sunday, May 17

For free.

Complete publications, online, downloadable in pdf form. Includes the following:

Cookie Mueller - Walking Through Clear Water In a Pool Painted Black

Lloyd Kahn - Domebook 2

The Unforgettable Fire - Pictures Drawn by Atomic Bomb Survivors

Thursday, April 2

Henry Darger and the Vivian Girls

Henry Darger, author and illustrator of the epic 15,145-page The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What is known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinnian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion, lived a modest life working as a hospital janitor in Chicago. His magnum opus, The Story of the Vivian Girls..., was discovered by accident, post-humously. I am awed (and admittedly, a bit baffled) by the thought of a work like this being created without its maker ever seeking an audience.

Some excerpts from Darger's illustrated novel:

Sunday, March 29

A little more on publications.

Bidoun magazine (born 2004) is a refreshing springboard for critical and contemporary ideas about arts and culture from the Middle East. As editor Antonia Carver observes in this Guardian article, artists from the Middle East are perpetually struggling against being read exclusively in terms of their geographic location, religion, and heritage. An internationally distributed publication, with an impressive editing staff based in Cairo, Dubai and New York, Bidoun is one platform that addresses this narrow frame and transcends it. Beautiful work and slick, intelligent writing. I have yet to find a local vendor for Bidoun, but in the meantime there's always subscription...

Meanjin - literary magazine in the truest sense - is a quarterly put out by Melbourne University Publishing. I say truly literary because its content covers interviews, critiques, reviews, fiction, poetry, contemporary concerns and issues - all sorts, and always impeccably put together by current editor, Sophie Cunningham. I am especially fond of their issues themed 'On Translation' (#4, 2005), and 'On Drugs' (#2, 2002). Meanjin is locally housed by the General Library at University and Central City Library has a few copies too.

For those of you that didn't catch the inaugural issue of Matters, the publication Newcall Gallery launched last year, you haven't quite missed it all out - the publication's got CNZ funding, so we should be seeing more issues quite soon.

Tuesday, March 17

Soanyway ...

Lisa Stansbie (also currently showing at Window online) is the co-editor, with Derek Horton, of the newly launched online magazine Soanyway.

Soanyway is a extended collaborative meditation on stories and the nature of story-telling: "
We interpret the idea of a ‘story’ very openly, in relation to fact and fiction, narration or implication, and structure or a lack of it. And we regard most history, theory and critique as stories about stories."

A bit of a sucker for the strange eccentricities of history, I particularly enjoyed Keith W Roberts' 'Funeral Meme' in the Now and Then issue. Joe Mawson's 'Heck' in the same issue seems like a beautifully thoughtful work, and I also really liked Horton's 'Citizenship' in the Somewhere and Nowhere issue. Plenty to look at, and it seems that Stansbie and Horton are setting a cracking pace for publication with seven issues produced since the publication's launch in January this year.

“There's a thousand sides to everything - not just heroes and villains. So anyway, ... so anyway, ... so anyway… “So anyway” ought to be one word. Like a place or a river… Soanyway River.”
(Zabriskie Point, 1970, Michelangelo Antonioni)

Friday, September 26

Something for artists and philanthropists to aspire to

"Untitled (Paper Plates, Glue)" (2003)

"Colony" (2005)

"Untitled (Styrofoam Cups)" (2008)

New York artist, Tara Donovan, is amongst the 2008 recipients of the MacArthur "genius" grant. This has to be the most utopian award I've ever heard of: it's open to practitioners in any field, has no application forms, an entirely anonymous nomination process, a thoroughly confidential selection process, no obligations, and half a million dollars paid in regular installments over five years.

Friday, August 22

Martijn Hendriks

Stills from Martijn Hendriks' Give Us Today Our Daily Terror, 2008
Exact copy of Hitchcock’s 'The Birds', from which all birds have been digitally removed.

Also by the same artist, 12 Glowing Men (2008)

Tape loop

Zilvinas Kempinas, 'O Between Fans', 2006

(That's video tape flying in the centre there. More installation images of this and other tape works here.)

Friday, July 11

New Curators announced

Window is pleased to announce the new curation team.

Talented graphic designer and artist Nell May will be evolving the Window identity, and focusing on promotion material and a possible publication.

Continuing on from showing and curating and spaces like Happy and rm103, Mythily Meher will be organising exhibitions, kicking out more great writing like this, and be general dynamic duo with current curator Ash Kilmartin.

And finally Anna Parlane will be coming on board a little later in January, coming off her Postgraduate Study in Museums and Cultural Heritage to produce shows with slightly more recent objects de arte.

Congrats to these three and thanks to all who applied. We had some great applications and, as always, are really open to ideas, writing, and general contributions from other outside the curation team.

Saturday, June 21

Out with the old, in with the new

Readers of will have noticed a large hiatus in posting. We're undergoing a transition as we phase out an On Site and Online curator (myself) and bring on a new team. We'll be conducting interviews on Monday to narrow the list down. Thanks to all who applied.

For those interested, I'll be focusing more on a couple projects. The Ribbon is a band consisting of myself and Campbell Birch, with keyboards, guitar, vocals, laptop, and various instruments, hovering somewhere in the grey space between dance and pop. Werkhaus, my interactive work for clients like HP, Coke, Karen Walker, and Toyota always keeps me busy. And finally we've just launched a new portfolio site for my wife, Werkhaus partner in crime and illustrator Kimberlee Munn.

Wednesday, May 21

From cosmology to calligraphy at Crystalpunk

Stumbled upon Crystalpunk today, a loose organisation and series of workshops under the banner. In their words, the site " is a long-term research project that seeks to develop speculative knowledge that subverts ordinary ways to employ, experience and measure space, time and language.

The day to day reality of is filled with projects. For most of them we encourage participation by persons known and unknown. Some of our projects are like whales, most are like plankton: the small ones feed the large ones."

Among the standouts, a Virtual raindrop installation by Tao Sambolec, a poem on e.coli bacteria, and the masks of Marcel Janco. General areas of continued interest seem to include the patterns and profundity of Go, Chinese calligraphy, bioengineering, and soft hardware. Where else could you find titles such as, "Quilts, Dreams and a Haunting by Cellular Automata".

Monday, May 19

Shadowy wiki editors unmasked with logo_wiki

Wayne Clements writes to let us know his wiki project, evolved as part of Window's online programme last year, continues with logo_wiki.

"logo_wiki identifies military, corporate, and governmental editors of Wikipedia ('the Free Encyclopedia'). It does this by tracing back the editor's IP address. logo_wiki shows recently edited 'diffs' pages (with changes highlighted) and shows who the shadowy editor is. logo_wiki does this by replacing the Wikipedia logo with the editor's logo. Military, corporate and governmental users are responsible for many thousands of unacknowledged alterations to Wikipedia pages. logo_wiki reveals this process occurring in real time."

Tuesday, May 13

Curatorial positions open

Window is seeking new curators to run its University of Auckland exhibition space. Window has been operating for over six years as an Auckland-based, University supported art project exhibiting parallel programmes of contemporary art in the physical gallery space, and virtual art online. Window prizes an emergent focus and provides a well-regarded platform for the work of young artists and curators educated at the University of Auckland both during and following their study. As a correlative, Window aims to increase the visibility of and digital projects initiated by New Zealand practitioners through its Online programme and Archive. The right applicants will be able to take advantage of an open structure to gain valuable practical experience, develop their own career and build on the strength of the current programme.

Full details available in the PDF (Adobe Acrobat format, 42K)

Friday, May 9

Gazira Babelli coming to Window

Pioneering Second life performer, sculptor, and general cause of mayhem, Gazira Babelli will be staging a work at Window in the first week of June. One of the earliest artists working in this virtual space, Babelli has consistently pushed the limits of art in SL - from the grotesque distortions caused by hitting terminal velocity in COME.TO.HEAVEN. to the world-crashing, lag inducing cyber terrorism of Grey Goo.

Notable European contemporary arts/new media blog We Make Money Not Art recently featured a review of Babellis show at the Fabio Paris gallery in Brescia, Italy, as well as the iMAL in Brussels. The Window exhibition, entitled "Olym Pong" features a new work designed and coded specifically for the show, and will be interacted with by SL performance group, "Second Front", as well as available On Site, giving visitors to the opening a chance to engage with it.

Sending art to a better place

Via the Art Newspaper, "One of the central works in the exhibition “Design and the Elastic Mind” at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (until 12 May), Victimless Leather, a small jacket made up of embryonic stem cells taken from mice, has died. The artists, Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr, say the work which was fed nutrients by tube, expanded too quickly and clogged its own incubation system just five weeks after the show opened."

Catts and Zurr, based at an Arts and Science collaborative lab in Western Australia, designed the work as a prototype mixing living and manufactured elements, intending to provoke "a more responsible attitude towards our environment". It succeeded in doing just that, forcing curator Paola Antonelli to euthanise the jacket, halting growth permanently.

For more information, see the Victimless Leather entry at the Design and the Elastic Mind site.

Tuesday, April 29

Architecture from around the net

When Gehry's Guggenheim museum in Bilbao opened in 1997, it immediately became a tourist attraction and revitalised the surrounding area, putting the Basque region "on the map" and winning praise from veteran architect Phillip Johnson as the "greatest building of our time". But the audacious, radical contours of it's shape also highlighted the vital importance of digital mediation in the practice - they would be "nearly impossible" to build without CAD and CATIA (Computer Aided Three Dimensional Interactive Application) visualisations.

Lebanese architecture firm Atelier Hapsitus joins the dozens of high profile, high flying proposals currently underway in the UAE and Dubai, with it's fantastical Cloud building. And while the architects state (perhaps half seriously) that the project "is a dream, suspended between artificiality and reality", their cunning digital visualisations might just enable the Cloud to get off the ground.

Design boom has an extensive overview of dozens of other skyscrapers, 5 star hotels, and concept buildings currently under development. All prominently feature digital modeling and visualisation, some even basing their shapes entirely from algorhythmic forms. The Da Vinci rotating tower, with each story independently controlled, allows thousands of possible combinations, each able to be predicted by a computer simulation. The Dubai Hub One - a cultural and arts sphere - has been designed using "special programing scripts, creating a dense structure of spaces."

Buzzcut, a blog formerly focused on videogames, recently made the (not so) giant leap to focusing on virtual architecture, examining a range of digital and unrealised spaces, from SimCity to Second Life, Debord to Dubai. Virtual Suburbia continues in the same vein, focusing on the metaverse of SL and the dozens of innovative and unusual 'builds' from SL artists. Recent spaces include a replica of the Korova Milk Bar from A Clockwork Orange, historic snapshots of the early days of Second Life, and two major university student projects from Stockholm and Australia.

Not Possible IRL stays with the metaverse, staunchly concentrating on "well conceived and realised content creation in Second Life which would not be possible in real life". Not Possible recommended two spaces which still stand out to me as exceptional - Nathan Babcock's topographic terrain and AM Radio's wheat fields.

Finally Share Architecture and Best and Worst bring us firmly back to solid ground. Both sites are relatively new, the former highlighting new and innovating buildings globally as well as in New Zealand. Both sites also use the digital space as a sounding board - getting feedback via comments, forums, and polls, that will (ideally) come full circle, shaping the waterfronts, public spaces, and apartment buildings of the immediate future locally.

In Pictures: Babel Swarm installation

Babel Swarm, an interactive installation in Second Life has generated a lot of interest recently. A collaboration between Christopher Dodds, Adam Nash, and Justin Clemens, the work occupies a site in the metaverse, as well as being incorporated into a show at the Lismore Gallery in Australia. From the blog....

"Babelswarm is a real-time, interactive, audiovisual artwork built in Second Life. The installation is based on the story of The Tower of Babel – a mythical tale of humanity's desire to reach the heavens. Babelswarm is contained within an entire SIM with visitor chat captured and fed into a meta-babeller. This babeller spills words from the sky and into an amphitheater (performance space). The words shatter on their decent and, once settled, begin to swarm in random directions seeking out other letters that held the same numerical position in the word they were born with. If they find a partner they bond and help create the tower's structure. Eventually each letter will sleep, but can be re-awoken or destroyed by touch."

If you have Second Life installed, you can teleport directly to the installation via this SLURL (

Sonics in South America

Sam Hamilton writes to let us know he's posted 170+ photographs of his recent South American odyssey on Flickr. Sam joined a group of other researchers, artists, and musicians in the Amazon, completing a series of field recordings of the rain forest, as well as workshopping and gigging throughout his trip.

Thursday, April 10

Phishing for change: Hye Rim gets hacked

"I am sorry I didn't inform you about my traveling to Africa" the email begins. It goes on to inform me that the sender is "really stranded in Nigeria because I forgot my little bag in the Taxi where my money, passport, documents and other valuable things were". After setting up the desperate situation, including a bullying Hotel Management and your friend now starving because of lack of funds, the clincher comes. "Please can you help me with a sum of $2700 to sort out my problems here?"

While everyones aware of the standard Nigerian money fraud scheme, it's rare that an entire email account can be hacked into, allowing a variation of this tactic to come from a good friend or colleague. But that's precisely what happened to Hye Rim Lee, the New Zealand based artist who's recently had a flurry of group and solo shows in New York. Strangely enough, the scam email coincides with some of Hye-Rims recent activity, the Africa trip to "empower youth to fight AIDs" is not too far off some recent charitable shows.

Phishing, baiting a victim in the hope of "catching" financial info or passports, has become increasingly sophisticated in recent years. As the internet picked up mainstream use, amateur hackers could count on web neophytes to click on dubious links or open email attachments from strangers. With a heightened awareness of security, people are treating the greater web more like the street than their bedroom - no gifts from strangers. Very open social networks like MySpace are losing kids by the thousands to more exclusive, 'safer' platforms such as FaceBook. The result? Phishers have to look like your friends, or the people you do business with, to reel users in. Last week I received a Paypal email (shown above), which I quickly learned was a phishing attack. The email address was extremely similar to the official one. The logo, the layout, and the colouring were identical to the legit version.

ASB Bank and Kiwi Bank have both been the victim of fraudsters sending similar emails to their customers. In a famous attack several years ago, phishers set up a duplicate site for a major New Zealand bank, tricking customers into revealing their username and password. The phishers left the truly devastating part to the end: after they had obtained their catch, the user was simply given an error message and directed to the legit bank website, where the login 'worked' as usual. The result? No complaints, security crackdowns, or uproar. Just a steady string of lucrative bank account numbers.