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NQPaOFU 52 header tag

line separation

4 April 2002

la maison ivre

Le Moulin du Merle at times when we swagger the halls, throw open doors left and right to see what's behind, play loud music, run out into the garden to suddenly stoop and return in our footsteps, randomly. Out again, breathing deeply. Hey, the water! Hey, the trees! Hey! Wallpaper! Tiles! Climb the attic. Kids! Ha! Oy! Stones and sand and grasses. Whatever! Whatever! Whativre! Shower me! Je suis la maison!


Easy now. Would you believe the idea of prosumption? Sounds like bad advertizing to me too, selling you too many features on a simple piece of gear for the point-and-shoot job of documenting a life. Is the prosumer a reprise of the ancient Myth of the Noble Amateur? With enhanced gadget shlep? Humming or hubbing the digital lifestyle? What good came to us of amateur artistic or literary production? Think imitation and consensus. And tourism. The one industry that made us aware that romanticizing the 'everyday' is another mistake one shouldn't make for large parts of the world, where it means a lack of food, shelter, health and safety, political stability, or a judiciary system which does actually tell right from wrong, punishing the latter. You don't have to be a misanthropist to judge what horrendous wrong a desire for power and greed can bring about in weak political systems and underfed economic communities.

Then at an opposite level, the intimate level of getting to deeply know local situations, following closely the linked lives of a few people, in a small community, experiencing the very same struggles which are yours in so many respects, having the same risks, imagine what it would need to unleash (redirect, reorganize, reinvest) some of the universal principles which drive/guide humanity from the cradle to the grave, unsentimentally, just by paying attention to detail and more detail and all the detail you can focus on. Who ever coined that 'god is in the details' (Flaubert?) was very close. If we pay such close unsentimental but sympathetic attention we could imagine information to 'make the world go round'.

Detail is where difference lives. Detail is event, where difference performs. Not for the paranoid. How to get back to a more promising idea of prosumption from here, from such close focus? It seems that all the difference for prosumption depends of what exactly we expect a prosumer to produce/consume—not separating 'production' from 'consumption' to start with, considering it one new act of paying attention, sharing, learning, building a memory, or a million memories: creating mass media from a many-to-many love of detail and difference.

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3 April 2002

bloody shame

The other day in The Hague at its De Slegte second hand books store I discover a near complete pile of Penrose Annuals, from the late 1950s to the late 1970s, at 20 pop a piece. Flipping pages I come across a rubber stamped ex libris in the front, which reads: 'Esthetische Dienst PTT'. The former state corporation's Art and Design Department existed since 1913, when it first commissioned architect K. P. C. de Bazel to design a series of postage stamps. When I get home a letter from KPN is in the mail, from Marie Hélène Cornips, last director of the Esthetische Dienst, already transformed into the 'Art and Design' Department, stating that the board of KPN (Koninklijke Post Nederland; Royal Netherlands Mail) '(...) considers it unjustifiable to maintain the department in view of KPN's current poor financial situation.' Some of the A+D department people will transfer to the KPN's 'Corporate Communication Department' (no Dutch title available), from where they will first row witness KPN's decline into commercialization, throwing overboard any sense of emancipatory and educational wit in their art and design policy. Sic Transit Gloria Mundi.

I do not know what other parts of its historical art and design library have been disposed of at De Slegte, I don't even want to think of it, but find it a bloody shame and indeed a sad sign that a corporate player like KPN, coming from a tradition which has always strongly and convincingly included art and design in its identity as a communications corporation, and brought forth a lot of what can now be considered the very best in dutch design, having contributed to its current international fame, can not come up with any idea at all for a continuation of the employment of artists and designers to be competitive in today's markets, while maintaining an ethics. They do miss the point, definitely.

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2 April 2002


If only tomorrow's consumer will be half the prosumer s/he is held to be(come), we'll see half the end of design as we know it. A designer works for the information provider. I am absolutely convinced of any information society's conditio sine qua non to be symmetrical information traffic, its citizens toggling between 'producing' and 'consuming' modes of political and cultural expression. Consumption is the production of information for large industries already, any serious customization follows such reasoning. A prosumer produces, distributes and trades information goods, not like khadis, but unravelling the fabric of brand media anyway, eventually re-knitting alternative mass (as in many-to-many) media. Tomorrow's designer will work for at least a mathematical 50% of his or her time for that prosumer. Design Recast for me is to find out how, where and when this leaves professional intervention.

re: deleuzian

When can I finally safely link to Joke Robaard here (Joke, let me know?!), who has been my one 'Deleuze before mass deleuzianation' source of inexhaustibly living and working 'with' the philosopher, to whose work I have still not found any access but in the passing?—which is a way of accessing Deleuze as good as any other way, as Joke would readily acknowledge. Even when in 'Critique et clinique', 1993 (yes I would have bought that one for its title alone, of course, and to challenge my French, and for its cover design and for its first chapter entitled 'La Littérature et la Vie' et for cetera whatever reasons) he makes me follow, lifting up me myself and I from petty 'cogito-ergo-sumity':

Il y avait une autre conception antique du temps, comme mode de la pensée ou mouvement intensif de l'âme: une sorte de temps spirituel et monacal. Le cogito de Descartes en opère la sécularisation, la laïcisation: le je pense est un acte de détermination instantané, qui implique une existence indéterminée (je suis), et qui la détermine comme celle d'une substance pensante (je suis une chose qui pense). Mais comment la détermination pourrait-elle porter sur l'indéterminé si l'on ne dit pas de quelle manière il est "déterminable"? Or cette réclamation kantienne ne laisse pas d'autre issue que celle-ci: c'est seulement dans le temps, sous la forme du temps, que l'existence indéterminée se trouve déterminable. Si bien que le "je pense" affecte le temps, et ne détermine que l'existence d'un moi qui change dans le temps et présente à chaque instant un degré de conscience. Le temps comme forme de la détermination ne dépend donc pas du mouvement intensif de l'âme, mais au contraire la production intensive d'un degré de conscience dans l'instant dépend du temps. Kant opère une seconde émancipation du temps, et en accomplit la laïcité.
    Le Moi est dans le temps et ne cesse de changer: c'est un moi passif ou plutôt réceptif qui éprouve des changements dans le temps. Le Je est un acte (je pense) qui détermine activement mon existence (je suis), mais ne peut la déterminer que dans le temps, comme l'existence d'un moi passif, réceptif, et changeant qui se répresente seulement l'activité de sa propre pensée. Le Je et le Moi sont donc séparés par la ligne du temps qui les rapporte l'un à l'autre sous la condition d'une différence fondamentale. Mon existence ne peut jamais être déterminée comme celle d'un être actif et spontané, mais d'un moi passif qui se représente le Je, c'est-à-dire le spontanéité de la détermination, comme un Autre qui l'affecte ("paradoxe du sens intime")

Like the light that didn't go away, nor even aged, 'une sorte de temps spirituel et monacal' can still inform today's receptive Me. It takes true miracles to change a 'past' into a 'passed'. Let's call that a 'paradoxe du temps intime'.

line separation

1 April 2002

sift it

A first part of my flower garden, a terrace along the vegetable garden's east length is nearing the moment of planting. Today I sifted the soil. I have conquered every foot of it over well rooted grass and weeds, nettles and blackberry that have been there for decades. Now between the source and the wild sorrel, it is ready to plant. One of these days I'll mix in some Or Brun and sow before I leave for Design Recast preparations, next Saturday.

And trout: Franck and his brother-in-law passed by and left their Beuvron trout with us. When Pierre cleaned the guts out we found small river shrimp in its stomach, meaning the water is clean.

And kite: R+r and me flew them this afternoon. They have Easter holidays, two weeks, and will join me to NL next Saturday.

And photos:

the vegetable garden  east border flower terrace

the vegetable garden east border flower terrace, below street level
left the sieve, next to it the old apple tree, middle the sieved sand heap with right the bucket, far right the bright green garden sorrel

2000 kilo stone slab for table top

2000+ kilo stone slab for summer kitchen table top

egg in flowering chestnut branch

egg in budding chestnut branch

R+r egg hunt while  Gil holds the find

R+r egg hunt while Gil holds the find

a wall for the vegetable garden west side

a wall for the vegetable garden west side

alles ist erlaubt poster, police cars and flowering tree

'alles ist erlaubt' poster, police cars and flowering tree, Karlsruhe

bak trupppen Intermedium2

bak trupppen Intermedium2, Karlsruhe

line separation

30-31 March 2002


Tonight three years ago was our first night at the Moulin. We said we'd try it for at least three years. Never to give up before these had passed. Quod Erat. Other recent anniversaries: a marriage (14 March 1986), a weblog (22 March 1998).

line separation

29 March 2002

unchanged light

From the attic of Jurriaan van Kranendonk's house in The Hague you hear seagulls, pigeons (both gurgle and wing flap and tripling feet) and the nearby (like, in the view, sharply defined both at night and in the early morning, when it is in that near-the-sea kind of light that I always recognize so well, as the light—the very light, not new nor old, just still there—of the first 17 years of my life, one of the few things that can really make me feel nostalgic, that special light that always seems to come from the sea, even when the sea at this particular North Sea coastline is West and I'm still talking early morning—that light which lit all my first sensations, now also carries the) church's carillon, every quarter of the hour. So many hours didn't change that light.

'you can't be serious'

Last year's Jan van Eyck theory researcher Robert Garnet's title, of a text, introduction, talk? Today, I think he's right. I love serious people nevertheless. Whatever seriousness. Which doesn't mean: 'thinking'. Not: 'solemn'. Not sad or melancholic. Not taking itself too serious. No, today I won't be serious.

line separation

25 March 2002

rail road blog

Down the Rhine valley, Karlsruhe-Cologne, is a beautiful train trip. Window seat, east view, over the high waters and grapevine cultivated embedding hills, some of them schloss crowned. No one sitting next to me for three hours, just Fjäll Räven. Macadelica plugged into the on board power outlet. Telling from her face with manly features and great eyes a woman slightly older than me is sitting a few rows away in front of me, just as curiously glancing over here as I'm glancing at her. We are travelling. I remember Judith's first notes for Calamondin being written on the plane, high flying from the start, even if you're pushed to it... "ok. for all the people who have been asking...here it is." There's something special about the traveling weblog. You know, travel plus blog, folding-two-into-one-ish, how far can enchanting experiences go? But that's beside what today's about. Just its lucky condition. I would say the blog is its own lucky condition, ipso facto, but I'm still being serious here.


When like yesterday I speculate about the arts and positioning design, I am thinking about art and design and an everyday which beyond any doubt is today, about contemporary conditions, not about some historical construction—without even the slightest suggestion of nostalgia for an idealized past, or future for that matter. Melancholy yes, at times, is a strong emotion, but today is when I live, my melancholy is today. All speculation about a past and a tomorrow is today's speculation. Today is when we design and make art. Those who are not challenged by contemporaneity simply aren't sharing. We live in different worlds. If you cannot live today, you will not live tomorrow.

Pushing design into everyday performability means pushing it where the action is: today and every day, today and tomorrow, today like yesterday and before. If we agree that design follows mediation, and we observe the meanwhile total mediation of everyday life, we are safe to position the design disciplines in the heart of what private/public expression we call 'interaction' and 'communication'. It's another one of those bigger projects with lessons to be learned for ever. You know that I am not too fond of analysis which pushes a corporate take-over to the foreground, to identify bad industries that drive innovation (not a paradox) only into profit maximalization (see?) and the rest of us into misery (now you're talking!). So much for my disclaimer. Now for my misanthropy. Which concerns all of you evil doers equally—but some more equally than others. Politicians; those who beat wife and children; those who lie to their customers and personnel; those who design ugly malfunctioning hardware or ugly and malfunctioning software to go with it; those who are into the kind of profit maximalization which drives the rest of us into bankruptcy—need I go on? The usual suspects are the first to go.

splendid mediation

Old habits die hard everywhere around us. Old habits belong to the museum, but I don't know of any museum yet, for those petty defects, the inbred mistakes which drive people to take all the miserable steps, move backwards or sideways, or in circles, escaping today, not noting the signs of change, and if so, not really understanding them all too well, thinking they point to heaven or hell, way up or down: old school directives. Coming to think of it, 'tiny defects', really, all of them belong on tv. There's your museum of misery.

Those who saunter in the reflections that splash off splendid mediation's many surfaces cast abundant shadows in infinite directions. Are designers among them? I would hope so. Somebody send them here. Tell them from me they shall only be guided into today by splendid mediation.

And art? Why ask. The truth is harder than the pain inside. Art's something else. Art's as much everyday as it is at the same time out there somewhere else in time, where ever, paying attention to whatever. There you are. With the birds and the flowering trees, with the waters of the ocean and the winds and rains, forests and mountains, and lots of company to wine and dine—with past, present and eternity, no less. Celebration. That's where you'll find art inventing its own habits over and again, equally connecting the living and the dead, equally mapping the material and the spiritual, whatever, seriously.

splendid masturbation

Boy, was that Rhine 'n Rhyme of mine swollen today. Here's to lasting rausch.

line separation

23-24 March 2002

what's on a man's desktop

desktop dump

Macadelica finder's A-Z aliases

The framing business. If only my old Mavica would have a USB out, I would post you some Karlsruhe obs. I can't decide on a next digital still camera. They're cheaper in Germany than in NL or F. But I'm not in a hurry. Most importantly: do I buy for print or screen? And I want my pictures to last longer than my grandparents', but realize that some historical noise is exactly yesterday media's charm. What future generations will consider information or noise isn't up to us after all. OK. I would decide for higher end, because that's what our family did when they bought their consumer technology always, meanwhile minding my personal fave features, like all the macro I can get and all manual adjustments.

design position shift diagram

design's move from the golden shimmer of splendid isolation to the platinum shine of everyday answerability

I'm superimposing this diagram on another one which includes opposing values of linear monologue v.v. non-linear dialogue, and articulation/isolation v.v. contextualization/connectivity. Trying to incorporate as different expressions as the artist's 'book', the 'weblog', the 'manual' and the 'encyclopedia'.

What are professional interventions anyway in many-to-many media? Is 'work' production or consumption? Is 'identity' performance or experience? Our habitual information processing faculties have to deal with human communication, human-machine interaction, machine-machine communication or networked intelligence, consequently with human-network communication. Communication includes people talking to one another, machines talking to one another, and to people, from their ubiguises as desktop or consumer good or urban environment, people talking back, and people relating to an all embedding media landscape which brings communication climate changes and atmospheric conditions not for the weak of heart or stomach, or navigationally impaired. Will the designer be more than the weather man is what I ask you.

line separation

21 March 2002


When I drive, unable to write things down I sometimes drop audio notes into my Pearlcorder, hardly ever to listen these back, however always hesitating to record over existing tracks, sometimes rewinding short passages, incidentally leaving whatever I find interesting, as a break or flashback in the then pressing ongoing flow, often surprised to find 'old' thoughts to be very relevant to 'new' thoughts, repetition, a couple of weeks or months how old that is, spoken to me in that familiar unfamiliar voice that is my own, those familiar unfamiliar observations and ideas that are mine. The familiar unfamiliar reality of a recent past documented. Yesterday's insights.

I once tried this on video but that familiar unfamiliar person behind the familiar unfamiliar wheel distracts me too much. Also video affects driving ability more than audio.

True notes to self, before overwriting them—early 21, like from 600, since I've decided not to drive 20 night:

(sound of a car, interior resonance)

1) physical mobility: a tourism ('exotic') exclusivity
2) informationalization forces (forges) a completely different allocation of space
3) wind up radios, torches, becaks; human powered machines, history? bicycle messengers
4) animal/human collaboration, as a sport
5) the car is a lazy/leisurely machine
6) NOPE, No Oil Products Employed
7) apocalyptic horse rider
8) research animal power: performability of different animals as workers
9) human/animal collaboration, interaction
10) animal tools, design animal ergonomics
11) fossils, fossil fuel
12) low weight, low acceleration, high cruising speed
13) 1-4 passenger coaches
14) any color you like as long as it's black?
15) research circus animals
16) go with he flow mon capitain
17) wheel chair
18) momentum vs. speed
19) Sinclair
20) swivel chairs
21) gyroscopics
22) cyborg: human plus animal plus machine
23) smoky golden <name color>
24) zero fossil fuel
25) oppose natural selection
26) kid pix trees
27) le pub qui ne parle à personne
28) data clouds?
29) Viagra Falls
30) learn over time: seeing the patterns
31) vent, déraison de la nature (Picabia)
32) white shadows (last remaining snow in shadowy spots)
33) sellerie Auxerre
34) memory table
35) 'text to image' shift (alphabet/icon ratio—Lanham)?: image rhetorics
36) blablabla, pattati pattata, yada yada yada
37) for the wayfarer the longest shadows (Finlay)
38) build book shelf steps
39) editorial design, visual editing
40) tag and point
41) www.technopole-aube.fr?
42) unlimited pencil on paper
43) camouflage
44) passages without locations?
45) places drift, we stand
46) saturation
47) neon animation paper document to telecom mobility
48) bachelor machines revisited
49) the picturesque spirit
50) devant nous; toujours au milieu
51) dead sunflowers look like burnt matches in the fields!
52) agenda, not manifesto
53) mobilization in networks
54) road side attraction
55) search/zap/browse interaction
56) graze this life

(end of side A)

memory location

It's much harder to become the memory of a place than of a time period.

line separation

20 March 2002

mémoire du village

20 March early, or 19 late, whatever. Most touchingly, Thurigny lost its mémoire du village, as Mme. Lardeur put it. 86 year old Mr. Fontaine passed away the day before yesterday and will be buried this afternoon. He kept notes, every day some lines, as long as Mme. Lardeur remembers, and certainly before. She only moved here 11 years ago. Some of her family will be put up at the Moulin when they celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary, next June. The documented life. I hope one day to lay hands on Mr. Fontaine's notebooks, through his adopted son or daughters. Mme. Fontaine outlives him. According to again Mme. Lardeur, the village 'had carried her to the grave many times already'. She's the one who was ill for the past year or so, but he did not care to carry on, when they landed in the nursery, for her health to be monitored. The clear mind Mr. Fontaine was found nothing here to rub, and died. Leaving his model vegetable garden in disarray. Leaving his notes. Leaving the village without a memory. When we first met they were totally hospitable, excusing their patois. God bless them. God bless the memories of villages like Thurigny, St. Germain des Bois, 2002.

In a parallel reality, other lives are being lived to their extremes. Tonight around 11, I find R+r asleep on the floor of their room, where they had moved their blankets and pillows off the bed and built themselves some sort of a nest. Much like P+p, who sleep on a relocated poof half way on the way up the stairs, and a blanket on its way out right next to the front door, respectively.

Where to calm down to take a rest. Last Friday I spent the night in Paris in Hotel de Nevers, rue du Bac, not much of a recommendable place. After a night out, after the Palais de Tokyo rip-off, after the Institut Néerlandais, after dinner with Jurriaan van Kranendonk, my gallerist, after cheese and more wine later accompanied by his wife and beautiful and good humored daughters and son at their rented apartment. After a short walk down the street and up the stairs, I took the sleep I thought I deserved.

This afternoon my repaired Mobylette sped me along the D23 in a trail of blue, smoke. No king fisher streak, I tell you, but fast in its own noisy smelly way. While G. and r. spent some two hours this afternoon waiting at the medical doctor's for r.'s spots (it's a virus, he's in for dermatology), I picked up the ol' brommer. I'm sorry Maarten, I had to call for professional greasy hands to finish the job that we started, in the parenting context.

line separation

15 March 2002


'Everything sacred needs a fixed place' (Lévy-Strauss). Palais de Tokyo. Nicolas Bourriaud's esthétique relationelle puts up a poor concept. Ce qui arrive?

OTOH, en route my MP3 player with its large screen serves me well.

line separation

14 March 2002


Marjorie Perloff's 'Wittgenstein's Ladder; Poetic Language and the Strangeness of the Ordinary' just arrived. And the NS kortingskaart. So I can read it on the train. It will rub Poster's What's the Matter and Virilio's Ce qui arrive both in my mind and in the Fjäll Räven that will again serve me at ZKM Karlsruhe next week, when I represent 4 Jan van Eyck projects at Intermedium2

line separation

12 March 2002


Within popular culture, design at large, public art at large, new media at large, bring forth young genres in cultural production, answering to as much as constituting new sites and conduits and habits of communication, for a different (also differently inhabited/occupied and experienced) public sphere and space, with different mobility and consumption patterns. Idealizing our own constructs of the contemporary consumer/user/citizen, much of our attention for these modes of symbolic production is self-congratulatory, creating the perfect conditions for a sustained cultural commodity market, and our own catering to it.

line separation

11 March 2002


Between locations, between media. Back and forth, between temporary positions.

notes to self

on click happenings

- click/link -> click/shift -> click/split, click/drift, click/repeat, click/recast
- link -> scroll
- navigate: click, scroll, search
- read -> navigate -> interact -> write -> link

click paths through scroll fields?


After reading Poster's 'What's the Matter', chapter 5 to start with, 'authors analogue and digital', I realize again there's so much to experiment in trace building, trace working, trace maintaining. '(...) the practice of digital authorship had to await the material inscription of networked computing. Only when this rearrangement of ink into bits, this profound destabilization of the trace, occurred could the regime of the author function be transformed in countless practices of symbolic culture.' (p99-100)

re: Caterina's discussion of 'authorship' and literary production, as it releases in 'real' and 'pastime' productions? Or are these obsolete distinctions, precisely when measured by standards of trace making for the Ink Age, and expressed accordingly? Do we want to give up 'writing' and 'reading' for 'symbolic production/consumption'—a distinction between two modes of expression which can be argued is fading anyway?

From La Hune (where I noted a new Virilio title ('Ce qui arrive'?) and something called the 'Tokyobook 2', for the Palais de Tokyo new art venue, both titles which I'll pick up at the occasion of my much anticipated visit to the latter when I return and stay a night over later this week) I took a walk and metro ride across the Seine, to Trocadéro, and on down to Place de l'Alma via one of those typical pocket size parks with a kiosk and some children playground installations, where au pairs mix and compare notes. Paris was très Paris, as much with the spring sun and its effect on love birds, as in its strike at the FNACs and in police and security omnipresence.

line separation

9-10 March 2002

weeks (do) end

In preparation of weeks to come.

Thierry Moussot changed two heaps of sand and a heap of stones into a gentle slope bordering the front garden, heightening its Beuvron side by two feet, against future inundations. Also we removed all the old separations that limited the chicken run, for Thierry to prepare the foundation for a 50 feet extension of the wall along the vegetable garden's west side.

Mark Poster's 'What's the Matter with the Internet?' (read it on the train Monday).

note to self: post-studio JvE!

pure/impure whitewash

I spend time in God's own attic. Rocking by Bruce's pure/impure 45RPM punk/new wave compilation I paint its walls and ceiling. Later I clean out another attic of its age old dusty hay, throwing it down the shaft into Coco's stable. From there on I use it to decorate another shed for the ducks, to have them separated from the chickens when they breed. Hope to save some ducklings this year.

view from the dining room

view from the dining room, noon

Tomorrow, March 11, 2:30pm at La Hune, 170 Bd. St.-Germain. You will recognize me by my knee length dark blue woolen demi-saison, green sunglasses and a black medium size Fjäll Räven backpack. Don't hesitate to come. We'll have untill 4:55 when my Thalys leaves for Den Haag from Gare du Nord.

line separation

nqpaofu.com 2002 jouke kleerebezem Notes Quotes Provocations and Other Fair Use