Notes Quotes Provocations & Other Fair Use 93

nuthatch between hatches

nuthatch between hatches outside the Moulin studio
note the background deformation through the blown glass window pane

free as a bird

Birds don’t hesitate. They don’t know where they are going. They just arrive where they have to be for some reason and do whatever they are afforded wherever they arrive, wherever they are. Instinct does not hesitate a bit. It is too smart for that.

We know birds are smart but because they do not know they are not aware of us knowing this and loving them for that. We would not want to be like a bird or be a bird. We love to be a bird loving species too much. ‘Birds are good ideas’, says David Thomas, and he gave it some thought, too.

We love birds at work, ideas at work. It is what they are for. We try to make our own ideas work for us all the time. But we hesitate.

The nuthatch (Sitta europaea) and myself go back over 40 years. He was the first of a series of images which I acquired in the Rizla+ cigarette rolling paper editions. I got them at the barber shop. A nuthatch might have been on one of the album covers. Another first, in a series of 1980s silkscreen works a nuthatch and a tree-creeper were depicted next to each other on two panels, first exhibited in the Fodor Museum in Amsterdam. The images were taken from Brehm’s Tierleben (Kleiber, or Blauspecht and Baumläufer) and mirrored, to return to the original image as it was chiselled into the copper plates used for Brehm’s illustrations. Since 6 years the nuthatch is a returning guest to the Moulin du Merle — indeed named after another bird, a merle d’eau, or dipper, Cinclus cinclus.

Exotic, eccentric bird, if only I’d hatch to you like you hatch to me!

R21 after light snow in front of Moulin

car and cut trees (two stumps on the left)
(trunks in the background) after light snow and frost

the importance of being becoming disorganized

Turn your pockets inside out. The contents are displayed on the table. You take a good look at the fabric of the pocket. It intimately closes around your keys, change, tickets, occasional objects like a small camera, battery, handkerchief, car key, pen, phone (card), dice, food item, souvenirs. You see no trace of any of those contents on the fabric. Not because the fabric is a dark brown. Not because the trousers are still rather new (there's no holes in the pockets). The contents just don’t leave a trace. Which is most remarkable. You put them back and stick your hands in.

burning our trees in the quarry

last remains of trees downed
— fire in quarry opposite Moulin du Merle, 2005

the importance of being private

This fire is private. r and myself return to it after a couple of days. It is still smouldering. Seven trees that were downed around the house have gone to ashes here. Apart from their trunks which are awaiting the roving saw. I throw the ring of remaining branches and twigs on top and poke around in the cone. Immediately a small flame lights up. r smashes stones in search for fossils. We’re not dressed for the activity. But then you can always wipe your hands inside your private pockets.

4 March 2004 Giorgio Agamben interview: Life, A Work of Art Without an Author: The State of Exception, the Administration of Disorder and Private Life.

(...) we need to learn to forget the presence of the subject. We must protect the work against the author.

More private chat.

wooden head on sideboard lit by 1977 Tizio

found object wooden head on sideboard in Moulin salon, 2005

the importance of being public

Cherish your hesitation. ‘This is pop!’ Now playing XTC’s White Music, after GO2, their first after their second album, both 1978. I remember hearing them for the first time, in a Hemmes record shop booth in Groningen, when young friend W.B. brings them to my attention. Not long after they play in Vera. Snip snip snip snip snippin’. All the late 1970s bands play in Groningen, most of them in Vera. The Sex Pistols play in Huize Maas. It is the last concert in this hall with beer served in glasses. Malcolm McLaren hits local organizer Robbie Kaufmann on the eye. EMI! Robbie also organized the Sterren in het Bos summer afternoon concerts. Gang of Four, Comsat Angels. We arrive in the park early after a night out and some aimless driving around the province at dawn in our Peugeot 204s. Comsat is sound checking its drum kettles. Bang, bang. I see all the late 1970s bands play in Groningen. Echo and the Bunnymen. Siouxsie and the Banshees. Pere Ubu. David Thomas and the Pedestrians. David Thomas and the Wooden Birds. Eyeless in Gaza. Talking Heads. Theatre of Hate. Local Heroes. Cure. Talk Talk. Simple Minds. Orchestral Manœuvres in the Dark. The Sound. Mekons. The Fall. Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band I saw in the Groningen Stadsschouwburg, around 1974-5 and years later one more time, in Roden, when I stepped up to Don and asked him to exhib it in our De Zaak artists’ space. He sent me to talk to Garry Lucas, whose NY phone number I still have to find on a scrap of paper. Soon after the Captain exhibits with Michael Werner in Cologne. Split Enz plays in the Oosterpoort. The entire band jumps from a bag carried by Santa. It is pop.

Just took the photo of the head on the sideboard, lit by a 28 year old Tizio. After two unstable tries I get a tripod. In GraphicConverter I crop and change to grayscale mode. Tweak brightness and contrast. Would this look good in a fine grain mat black powder on paper. Or in fat oil paint on canvas. In color.

Talk Talk have already released The Colour of Spring when I see their concert in the Martinihal. Upon entering the lobby I hear the introduction to ‘Living in Another World’. At the first refrain I'm in front. I’m living in another world to you...

Burnt Book by Rauschenberg

Robert Rauschenberg
Burnt Book, 1973
burnt, re-bound, signed

Never heard of or came across this site before. Rotterdam based Petr Kazil’s latest update was August 2002. His site emerged today from an ‘alternative monument’ search. More than 250 items with lots of photographic illustrations and links are categorized under Chaos & disruption, Creative destruction, Political action and resistance, Danger & endurance, Infiltration, Installations in deserted buildings, Explosives, pyrotechnics & guns, High Tech, Expeditions, Urban Garbage, Installations, improvements & decorations, Enhanced sense of place & poetry, Other & unclassifiable projects.

Top of the entry document is Heath Bunting’s URL graffiti ‘X’ project, similar to the original exquisite enclave idea: stick a unique URL to a unique site and collect sightings, comments online. This site’s a treasure trove for hard derive and situated site specificity scrolls and strolls. Plenty URLs with the items and little error hits.

Related click path: Infiltration; Üsüfrüct; Infiltration Netherlands links; Infiltration France links; Peter Wollen ‘Situationists and Architecture’ (New Left Review); The Landscape Coin Project.

Take some time to explore. This is something.

Inge Broska door with commercial flyers sticking out
(2002) Inge Broska stayed behind in the doomed town of Otzenrath (Germany) and she kept a diary of the changes as more and more people left. The town will be torn down for a strip-mining operation.
— Ever more people leave the old village. Soon there will be nothing to buy anymore. The last butcher - and we had 4 - has closed at the end of this year.
— The once carefully maintained gardens now attract wild animals and plants. Birches grow in bathrooms, mice and rats play in kitchens and dwellings. And the abandoned cats multiply wildly. The fast-growing ivy provides "romance". More and more windows remain dark in the evening.

Ernst Haeckel

body caption

at arm’s length

Arm’s reach increases over the days. Meanwhile I submit IDEA blurb on the three credo’s held by NQP since 1998. With some changes I repeat (after me).

Informatic License

Graphic intervention (the emergence of writing) in contemporary cultural production (art, design, theory: publicity) has become a steady release of signs into the tumultuous and media saturated everyday (homeopathy). (Graphic) design is agency (your daily release), seeking to format original content (‘design equals information’). An informed user consults myriad sources while finding limited verification of the material in circulation. The life span of such material is dubious. Its status can be anything between ‘raw’ and ‘final’, between material and product (semiproduct). It can and in many (most) cases should be repeatedly reworked (resubmitted, retrieved, reviewed). ‘Informatic license’ is both the producer’s and consumer’s obligation to perform a daily operation of collecting, processing and distributing information (imagery and text, sound) (download, upload) (evaluation, generation), in a large variety of formats and output media (‘bits and atoms’). Informatic license, like ‘artistic license’, marks (advocates, enunciates) the freedom which can be forged from data, for what we optimistically refer to as an information society (100% data. 100% information. 100% content.).

Exquisite Enclave

In an information society (early information age) communication spaces (channel, time span) expand, shrink and expand again, and shrink again... split up and cluster in new formations (cloud, density, aggregate), to divide again, infinitely (in all directions). They breath in and out, at the pace of new technologies, their use and their hack, new goods and services, their success and failure, their affordances and limitations (omnia mea in media). Communication spaces grow beyond institutionalization, or formal ownership, they even lack permanent occupancy (log off). Like Matrioshka dolls spaces contain spaces, or nest links to other locations (portals link portals). Meanwhile exquisite enclaves can come alive with presence instantly (flash attention), at every call for mobilization (peer-to-peer). Communication spaces form around shared interests, between ever changing groups of participants. They (we) are the original users of any exquisite enclave (read/write) information space.

Conversational Drift

The professional (experienced) designer interacts at multiple levels with the informed and informing, reading and writing consumer: a fellow citizen (civic information). The idea of professionality is nuanced by the omnipresent availability of expert knowledge in any field, floating around the expanded dialogue (annotational drift) in the networks. To contain content has become a matter not simply of ideology or design (fix), of invention and articulation (sticks), but of a permanent sensibility to tune input, process and output (mix). A sensibility to the whereabouts and the quality of dialogue between interested parties will find closure nor conclusion in any professional agenda or curriculum. This is probably (what is called) ‘life long learning’, in an open source environment. The professional designer mingles with the flash crowd (join today is what they all say), to build a reputation and channel attention in conversational drift (‘not a sage on the stage but a guide by the side’) (agent provocateur) (slob, drag and drop snob) (add on top job).

Vito Acconci reading to the Stroom crowd, view through 1/5 windows

way out

Sunday 16 January I manage to wriggle my way out of NL via The Hague. Stroom opens its grand new space this afternoon. Architect Wim Cuyvers has built a truly international presentation and office space, sober and unpretentious, constructing the space precisely where you want it, spread over the ground floor and in basement cabinets. 5 huge one-time shop windows on the Hogewal offer immediate exchange between street and exhibition space, library. The lobby filters yellow, offices are protected from direct view by means of bubbly glass sheets. Book titles in the library can be read from the street.

Like its previous space, again this one doesn’t offer your typical museal lay-out or functionality. Since Stroom’s prime art and architectural programme investigates public space and the public domain, the new house seems to be designed to balance a flexible need for installation and display, projection, conference. Soon we will test my assumption, when JvE researchers design and build Fusedspace, the exhibition, next fall.

Director since 1989 Lily van Ginneken leaves for Arno van Roosmalen to follow her up. Lily and myself go back a long time — she was in the board of De Zaak foundation in the 1980s, in the advisory committee for Allocations in 1992, we did some publications together, I did Silicon Rally and contributed (title and essay) to InfoArcadia for Stroom. Last but not least she was a special guest recently at the Moulin. We hope that just maybe she will find a bit more time to come by in the future.

exquisite enclave exquise fit to IDEA

fit to print

I deliver a sequel to UbiBook, entitled Fit to Print. It was only after the Nypels lecture that I came across Google Print. At the Jan van Eyck Academie the opening week of a new year brings all researchers and advising researchers on stage to present their projects. Over 60 presentations, lectures, performances and screenings pass before you in 5 days. Day two I wake up with a shoulder inflammation which immobilizes me completely. This time it is the right shoulder. I take 1200mg Ibuprofen per day, see a chiropractor twice, the pain remains. Little sleep and a forced stay in Maastricht make me decide to go see Joke's acupuncturist Charles in Amsterdam this Saturday January 15, and a happy birthday to my sister. I’m typing this on the train. A B got to my voicemail from chez H. and R. Maybe we can kiss over a cup of coffee later today. If there's any energy left in me I will drive by Stroom tomorrow to wave goodbye to L., see the new space and most of the NL art friends for sure. If I can drive at all, that is. Fuck! I want to go home. Originally the idea was to head there after the Stroom event, which includes a Vito Acconci performance if I remember well. Wonder if Stroom will upgrade its website under a new director.

IDEA magazine’s Toshiaki Koga invites me for the other spaces of graphic design issue 309. Issue 309! We’re only 93. At Atheneum I see issue 307 and an earlier one. They are priced at 43 euros... Great print though. I should only hope for the quality of my images to translate to their ink on paper. Instead of the magazine I buy Marguerite Duras La Vie matérielle. At €6,06. Read almost all of it on the train back. I can hold the book up in my right hand and flip with the left. Charles seems to have done a very good job. He's a gentle man, this fall to move with his partner and two daughters to a large old farm house near Toulouse, to do chambres d’hôtes and his practices. On me this afternoon he uses ‘all of his weapons’ with so far remarkable effect. At home I find my shoulder all red and blue and purple with two large circles on the front and back. Magic marks.

fit to b***

Other news included Dave Pell’s The B2* (can’t get myself to spell out the real title to his personal publication) which could be an interesting jumpboard to PersoPub related bits. It introduced me to Jay Rosen’s PressThink which introduced me to guest contributer (‘The Importance of Being Pertinent Permanent’) the Guardian Simon Waldman’s, where I stopped hitting hyperlinks to return to PageSpinner. For lack of time, firstly.

ukranian national library logo

Vernadsky National Library of Ukraine

on annotation

Through library related searches I come across Gabriel, the Gateway to Europe’s National Libraries. The Vernadsky National Library of Ukraine is one of them. Ukraine is that European country where a democratic politician is found with the second highest ever found in a human being dose of 100,000 ppt. of raw TCDD dioxin in his blood, after having had dinner with the head of the national secret services. Just to remind you that 2005 is not going to be the same year in any national history. But what on annotation?

Used copies. A library of artist used copies. Used copies having collected additional content. An artist highlighted library. With all the print going online the proper way to kick off such a library would probably be on the web, collecting scans of Susan Sontag’s Against Interpretation would be a start. Titles I would contribute (heavy highlighting and annotation): Lanham’s Electronic Word, Flusser’s Die Schrift and Von der Freiheit des Migranten, Gablik’s Has Modernism Failed?, McEvilley’s Art and Discontent, Jeremy Campbell’s Gramatical Man; and (no annotation, respect — but written about and from) the Valéry, Cioran, Morselli, Levinas, Kierkegaard and Gombrowicz libraries, Agamben (some highlighting, dog-ears) more Flusser, Barthes, Bey, Sloterdijk, Bakhtin... I’d have to go over the shelves for this purpose.

Ah! Dave Hickey’s Air Guitar (dog-ears)... B B gave it to me as a present in 1998. Max Stirner’s Der Einzige u. sein Eigentum, a present from Antje von Graevenitz, 22 May 1985 (dog-ears).

The Jefferson Airplane and the San Francisco Sound, Ralph J. Gleason; Ballantine Books paperback first printing, June 1969.

sontag against interpretation 1998 bb apartment

Barbara Bloom’s copy
reading in her apartment, NY 20 January 1998

I only laid hands on Sontag’s AI in 1998 in New York. I come across above Mavica picture when going through ancient files from back-up CD's, scanning for another 1998 first acquaintance. It seems like at the bottom of the photo is the border of a dear light blue 100% lamb wool V-neck knit sweater showing. On the same CD I find interior overviews, views out of the window over the desk on which AI is photographed, some other personal images. I will certainly mail B., who just attached me her 2005 calendar, a tradition revived. There’s been way too little contact over the past years.

Thus, interpretation is not (as most people assume) an absolute value, a gesture of mind situated in some timeless realm of capabilities. Interpretation must itself be evaluated, within a historical view of human consciousness. In some cultural contexts, interpretation is a liberating act. It is a means of revising, of transvaluing, of escaping the dead past. In other cultural contexts, it is reactionary, impertinent, cowardly, stifling.

I sure wouldn’t mind visiting NY again. It would be a different city this time — not since 911, it is, but since it has been so long and people move into and out of places and habits and acquaintances all the time. En tout cas I do miss my two B’s, A B and B B. That’s three B’s and an A in two persons! On Photography in 1998 I had already read. When I open it again I read:

...society becomes ‘modern’ when one of its chief activities is producing and consuming images, when images that have extraordinary powers to determine our demands upon reality and are themselves coveted substitutes for firsthand experience become indispensable to the health of the economy, the stability of the polity, and the pursuit of private happiness.

after quoting Feuerbach’s The Essence of Christianity (1843):

...our era (...) prefers the image to the thing, the copy to the original, the representation to the reality, appearance to being.

OnSon tag by James Luckett, writing from Japan, on photography, and more : Sontag's book on photography: the single most important text, right next to those of barthes, that inform my imagination of what photography is. she set the rules, defined the boundaries. if i disagree, it's with her terms.

an odd thing about growing older is that those that came before pass on, as though it were now all up to me: by which i mean to say that what is left of them is all that we have, what is left of them is what we shall make of it. what she wrote is now in some way inequitably mine alone.

I don't grasp consumptive’s permanent linking routine so if you want to check this quote’s original context you will have to search a bit, later. c.o is worth a detour any time.

This reminds me of my idea for an Artist Annotated Library. Imagine tens of different copies of AI in a library. Different because they are different editions, show different wear, have different annotations by different artists. No truer celebration of the book than in the worn and torn and scribbled over volume. Books that have lived have stories to tell.

cold blossom on a winter day

cold blossom Elten (D) 26 December 2004


Finished the Open text to my satisfaction. Shot somewhat over the 4000 wrds. It will economize in the final version. You can tell that a text is good if your own arguments convince you, more or less by surprise. Like NQP often does.

NQP’s single issue navigation is simplified. It did not need all that linking interface in the top, nor the slogans. To go to a single issue is a deliberate choice which does not need be followed up by an immediate click out. If already you first come to a document at its top, that is. For the chronologically challenged you can still click one issue back and forth. The publication period is added. Even when I am still very pleased to leave the date out of single entries. They have no prime relevance to the content and I fail to see why the weblog world seems so attached to its date stamping. Finally of course there is the current portal and the archives.

The browser displayed title has my name, NQP’s acronym and the issue number. Where ever you enter this publication you know who its author is and which issue you are looking into. Maybe you do not know what exactly ‘NQPaOFU’ stands for, but that is written out at the top, as in most documents.


2004 9one Millin9 2005

to be continued nqp

Weißt du, schwanzt du?

Convictions at any price. Plenty concerns.

I’m in the process of finishing the Open text. Only open to that. Many a flashback between the lines. Posting here was impossible over the holidays. Well impossible, it could’ve been done. I schlepped the gear all the way to Hotel Wanders and back. Some beautiful images were gathered on our GoGi roundtrip F-B-NL-D-NL-B-F, especially frosty ones on December 26. Return here. 2005 was discovered wide awake in a booming barn in Monceaux-le-Comte, amidst local friends. Walks and talks continue till today. Well, not today. Today for me is Open. But the others take a breath outside. R+r ‘r’ back to school. I watch over my couch and type away frenetically for word count and postmonumental sense.

By the way, our 680 sqft. apartment in Amsterdam Center East (Plantage) will again be available for rent from 1 March. Spread the news It comes furnished, equipped and ADSL connected, available at €1.200/mo., with no extra charges. You could run a business from it.

Integration (propagated as the alternative to ‘multi-culturalism’) is produced for the same market as terrorism. Both losing ideologies fight extreme tolerance. 1998-2005 Jouke Kleerebezem Notes Quotes Provocations and Other Fair Use

issue 93, 3-31 January 2005

issue 92, 28 November - 22 December 2004
issue 94, 1-22 February 2005


contact jk at this domain