Friday, December 31

Kontakthof, Tanztheater Wuppertal - Pina Bausch

"Kontakthof, created back in 1978, is one of Pina Bausch's most minimalist productions. It is set in a drab municipal hall, and its choreography is limited to a palette of shuffling dance steps and small gestures. But, as always, the colour comes from people who perform the work – their bodies, faces, personalities and foibles."
Guardian, YouTube - Tanztheater Wuppertal

Hip-Hop History Volume 2: 1980

"Ronnie G – Raptivity
Spoonie G – Spoonin Rap
Spoonie G & The Treacherous 3 – Love Rap
Spoonie G & The Treacherous 3 – New Rap Language
Super 3 – Philosophy Rappin Spree
Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five – Freedom
Sugarhill Gang – 8th Wonder
Kurtis Blow – The Breaks
Funky Four + 1 – That’s The Joint
Margo’s Cool Out Crew – Death Rap"
Its The Rub

Thursday, December 30

Demolition of the Paris Metro

"The Paris Metro and the service it provides are deeply intertwined into the fabric of the city. As the 4.5 million passengers who ride it every day will probably attest it's the quickest way around whether it's for work, for play or both. The metro's distinctive art-nouveau style is unmistakable and the plant like green wrought iron entrances topped with the orange orbs and Metropolitan signage designed by Hector Guimard which sprout up all over the city lead one down to the gleaming white tiled platforms to be whisked away all over the city."
Sleepy City

Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time

Gas, 1940.
"Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time traces the development of realism in American art between 1900 and 1940, emphasizing the diverse ways that artists depicted the sweeping transformations in urban and rural life that occurred during this period. The exhibition highlights the work of Edward Hopper, whose use of the subject matter of modern life to portray universal human experiences made him America’s most iconic realist painter of the 20th century."
Whitney, NYT, FT

Edwin Denby

Wikipedia - "Edwin Orr Denby (February 4, 1903 – July 12, 1983) was one of the most important and influential American dance critics of the 20th century, as well as a poet and novelist."
Wikipedia, UPenn

Wednesday, December 29

Grand Central Terminal

Wikipedia - "Grand Central Terminal (GCT) — often incorrectly called Grand Central Station, or shortened to simply Grand Central — is a terminal station at 42nd Street and Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City."
Wikipedia, Grand Central Terminal, PBS - Grand Central Terminal

Rip Rig & Panic

Wikipedia - "Rip Rig & Panic were a post-punk band founded in 1981, who broke up in 1983. They were named after a 1965 jazz album by Roland Kirk. They were formed by Sean Oliver (bass), Mark Springer (piano, sax, vocals), Gareth Sager (guitar, sax, keyboards, vocals) and Bruce Smith (drums, percussion), the latter two formerly of The Pop Group with singer Neneh Cherry."
Wikiedia,, YouTube - Bob Hope Takes Risks, Those Eskimo Women Speak Frankly, Storm the reality Asylum

Tuesday, December 28

Rap Genius

"What is Rap Genius? Rap Genius is your guide to the meaning of rap lyrics (basically the internet version of the nerd-ass “rap dictionary” dorm-mate you had in college). You can listen to songs, read their lyrics, and click the lines that interest you for pop-up explanations – we have thousands of canonical rap songs explained (2Pac, Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z – even the beginning of the Torah..) Our aim is not to translate rap into 'whitespeak', but rather to critique rap as poetry."
Rap Genius - About, The Rap Map, Rap Genius - Blog,

50 Square Meters of Public Space

"The appropriation of public space with no apparent intent. Duration: 54 days (September 04 - October 27, 2010). Location: Palackeho square, Prague - the so-called 'Czech Hyde Park' - allegedly the most liberal spot in the country, approved by the authorities for holding any unannounced public gatherings. Have we grown accustomed to having our living space curbed by just anyone? Is public space a mere myth?"
Wooster Collective

James Cospito

"Common themes articulated across a wide variety of disciplines; the connected unconscious, duality and observations along ones path. Scroll through the categories at right, each contain different series of work."
James Cospito, Brooklyn Art Project, flickr, SML Pro Blog - Video

Monday, December 27

Patti Smith and Jonathan Lethem in Conversation

"Dont miss this conversation with two New York icons. Patti Smith burst on to the New York punk scene with her 1975 seminal album Horses. A bright flame in music for more than three-decades, she has influenced the likes of REM, The Smiths, and Garbage. She is an acclaimed visual artist and poet, and recipient of a Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French Ministry of Culture."

Aguirre, the Wrath of God

"Aguirre, the Wrath of God ... is a 1972 West German adventure film written and directed by Werner Herzog. Klaus Kinski stars in the title role. The soundtrack was composed and performed by German progressive/Krautrock band Popol Vuh. The story follows the travels of Spanish soldier Lope de Aguirre, who leads a group of conquistadores down the Amazon River in South America in search of the legendary city of gold, El Dorado. Using a minimalist story and dialogue, the film creates a vision of madness and folly, counterpointed by the lush but unforgiving Amazonian jungle."
Wikipedia, Roger Ebert, amazon, YouTube

Sunday, December 26

Redemption Song - Johnny Cash and Joe Strummer

"Old pirates, yes, they rob I,
Sold I to the merchant ships.
Minutes after they took I,
From the bottomless pit.
But my hand was made strong,
By the hand of the All Mighty.
We forward in this generation,


"Afrocubism is the project of which lovers of international music have only dreamt. One such dreamer, British producer Nick Gold, originally conceived of the project in 1996--pairing the best musicians from Mali with the best musicians from Cuba, two countries that have been speaking each other's musical languages for generations."
The Afrobeat Blog

Dreadful Memories: The Life of Sarah Ogan Gunning, 1910-1983

"Anyone interested in the history of the labor movement and the National Miners Union, women’s history, or the New York folk scene of the 1940s will find this program fascinating, and anyone wanting to hear some truly fine singing, the kind we hear less and less of these days, will be delighted with this video. - The Old Time Herald"

Saturday, December 25

Love of Life Orchestra

Wikipedia - "'Love of Life Orchestra was created by Peter Gordon (sax, keyboards, composition) and David Van Tieghem, a talented, smart-aleck avant-garde percussionist with ties to new music composer Steve Reich. Both have gone on to greater fame as elder statesmen of the downtown music scene in New York, but these early works stand as an important developmental chapter.' —Mark Fleischmann"
Wikiedia, YouTube - Roses, CBGB '82, Siberia, CBGB '82, Extended Niceties, Beginning Of The Heartbreak / Don't Don't, HOMELAND SECURITY #1, HOMELAND SECURITY #2, HOMELAND SECURITY #3, DON'T DON'T REDUX

Lord Creator

Wikipedia - "Lord Creator (born Kentrick Patrick, circa 1940, San Fernando, Trinidad and Tobago) is a calypso and ska artist. Alongside Cuban born Rolando Alphonso, Barbadian Jackie Opel and fellow Trinidadians Lynn Taitt and Lord Bryner, Lord Creator was an important and positive 'outside' influence during the early development of the Jamaican music scene."
Wikipedia,, YouTube - Don't Stay Out Late (1962), Remerber When, Sweet Jamaica, Such is Life, Big Bamboo, Such Is Life / Come Down 68

Friday, December 24

Rosa Barba - Vertiginous Mapping

"For Vertiginous Mapping, her first web-based project, Rosa Barba draws upon a collection of film, images, texts, and audio that she compiled and created while on a residency in Sweden in the Spring of 2008, weaving together facts and footage with fabricated elements to invite the viewer on a pleasantly perplexing journey through a fictionalized country named Forgotten."
Dia Art, Wikipedia, Rosa Barba, YouTube - Current Exhibition: Rosa Barba at Tate Modern

The Evolution of the Cut-Up Technique in My Own Mag

"In late 1963, Jeff Nuttall sent William Burroughs the first issue of My Own Mag. In an editorial note on the cover, Nuttall writes tongue firmly in cheek, My Own Mag 'will appear every now and then… will be devoted to creations of unparalleled nobility… morals of unquestionable soundness high literary standards of traditional finesse. No dirty pitchers.' 'The Super Absorbant periodical' appealed to Burroughs and he responded enthusiastically, thus initiating a fruitful and influential partnership between the two writers."

Ann Toebbe

The Ex-Wifes Pies and Things
"Ann Toebbe was brought up in the Midwest, but it was only once she moved to the East Coast that she became aware of the aesthetics of her childhood. This piece is made from cut paper that Toebbe paints by hand and then combines to create the composition and is a salute to a familiar Midwestern style."
Moco Loco, Ann Toebbe

Thursday, December 23

Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger: Vintage Performance Footage

"Woody Guthrie performing an adaptation of 'East Virginia Blues' ('South Carolina Blues') with Baldwin 'Butch' Hawes and 'John Henry' with Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee."
YouTube - Woody Guthrie, Vintage Performance Footage, The Film Archived

The Smithsonian’s New Culture War

"On November 29, a conservative website posted an 11-second clip of ants crawling over a crucifix from a 4-minute video made by David Wojnarowicz, an artist who died of AIDS in 1992. The video, Fire in My Belly, was part of a show at the National Portrait Gallery called 'Hide/Seek,' said to be the country’s first national exhibition devoted to gay and lesbian themes."
NYBooks, Protest Outside Met Recalls 1980’s Culture Wars

Sun Ra in Egypt and Italy

"Old footages of Sun Ra and his Arkestra by the pyramids and in Sardinia (Italy)"

Wednesday, December 22

Werner Herzog Reads Twas The Night Before Christmas

"German director of Caves Of Forgotten Dreams, Encounters At The End Of The World, and Grizzly Man reads and interprets the holiday classic Twas The Night Before Christmas."

Bojangles of Harlem from Swing Time (1936)

"The dancing in Swing Time is some of the best of all the Astaire/Rogers pairings, and Astaire's homage to Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson is divine. It is one of the few times Astaire used camera tricks (dancing with shadows of his own figure) on film."

Tuesday, December 21

Brian Eno - Imaginary Landscapes

"Imaginary Landscapes is a profile of a modern artist at thecutting edge of technological change and popular taste. It brings into an intensely personal focus Brain Eno's seemingly disparate work in sound, vision and light, and explores his music in visual terms, based on landscapes and images that have shaped his life as an artist."
YouTube, 2, 3, 4

Hip-Hop History Volume 1: 1979

"Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five – Superappin’
The Younger Generation – We Rap More Mellow. Kurtis Blow – Christmas Rap. Sequence – Funk You Up. Funky 4 + 1 – Rapping and Rocking the House. Lady D – Lady D. Ron Hunt – Spiderap. Fatback Band – King Tim III (Personality Jock). Sugarhill Gang – Rapper’s Delight. Lady B – To the Beat Yall. Paulette & Tanya Winley – Rhymin and Rappin. Jazzy 4 MCs – MC Rock."
The Rub

Philip IV, Restored

"After technical studies and a yearlong restoration, curators and conservators at the Metropolitan Museum of Art now believe that a full-length portrait of Philip IV that has been in the Met's collection since 1914 is by Velázquez and not his workshop. The attribution reverses a finding made in 1973 when museum officials downgraded this portrait, along with 299 other old master paintings, saying they were either by the artist's workshop or a follower."
NYT, (1)

Sunday, December 19

30 - Merry Christmas!!

"Released just a few days before Christmas 1957, his song 'Jingle Bell Rock' was a big hit. Uniquely, it also re-emerged four out of the next five years, and sold so well that it repeated each time as a top hit, and became a Christmas classic still played to this day."
1. Jingle Bell Rock - Bobby Helms
2. Brenda Lee - Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree
3. Elvis Presley - If I get home on Christmas Day
4. Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin' - Albert King
5. I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas
6. James Brown - Soulful Christmas
7. Little Saint Nick - The Beach Boys
8. The Beatles - Christmas Record 1968
9. Otis Redding - Merry Christmas Baby
10. Johnny Cash, Orbison, Jerry Lee and Perkins - This Train is Bound for Glory
11. Cheech And Chong ~ Santa Claus And His Old Lady
12. John and Yoko - Happy Christmas (War Is Over)
13. Porky Pig- Blue Christmas,
14. Hall and Oates Jingle Bell Rock
15. Jeff Foxworthy Redneck 12 Days Of Christmas
16. Ray Charles - Merry Christmas Baby
17. James Brown - Santa Claus, Go Straight To The Ghetto
18. Sex Pistols - Jingle Bells
19. Billy Idol - Jingle Bell Rock
20. Kurtis Blow - Christmas Rapping
21. The Waitresses - Christmas Wrapping
22. Brian Setzer - Run Rudolph Run
23. George Thorogood and the Destroyers - Rock n roll christmas
24. Blue Christmas Bon Jovi Live
25. Bob Dylan - Must Be Santa
26. RUN-DMC - Christmas In Hollis
27. LL Cool J - Jingling Baby
28. Snoop Doggy Dogg - Santa Claus Goes Straight To The Ghetto
29. Eminem - Jingle Bells
30. Was (Not Was) - Christmas Time in Motor City

Anna Oppermann

Porträt Herr S., 1969-1989, Installations
"Throughout her career Anna Oppermann, who died in 1993 at the age of 53, faced considerable criticism. Standing in front of the thousands of paper scraps, notes and photographs that make up her self-styled ‘Ensembles’, it’s not hard to see why. At first they appear to be intimate archives exposed to public scrutiny, and it soon becomes apparent that a detailed examination would require a magnifying glass and endless amounts of time."
frieze, PS 1, Google

The Holocaust We Don’t See: Lanzmann’s Shoah Revisited

"Claude Lanzmann’s Shoah, opening this month in New York twenty-five years after its original release, is one of the great works of art of the twentieth century. As it begins, Simon Srebnik, a Polish Jew who was one of two survivors of Chełmno, returns to the death facility at Lanzmann’s request, and sings a song of his boyhood—about a white house, a house that is no longer—in the language of a country that was his homeland as it was of millions of Jews for centuries, a Poland made wretched by war."

November 2009: Wikipedia, NYT, Institute for Historical Review, Guardian, SHOAH'S ABSENCE, YouTube, (1), (2) - Raul Hilberg

Saturday, December 18

Captain Beefheart, Art-Rock Visionary, Dead At 69

"Sad news out of California today for the avant-garde and experimental rock world: Rocks Off has learned from multiple online sources that Don Van Vliet of influential rockers Captain Beefheart passed away today at the age of 69 after a battle with multiple sclerosis. Van Vliet's management confirmed his death to Rolling Stone."
Houston Press, Rolling Stone, WFMU - Captain Beefheart's 10 Commandments of Guitar Playing, The Radar Station's Beefheart weblog, Rolling Stone: Ten Essential Captain Beefheart Songs, YouTube - I'm Gonna Boogiarize You Baby, Dirty Blue Gene, Click Clack, Sure 'Nuff 'N Yes I Do

October 2009: Wikipedia, W - Trout Mask Replica, Beefheart, the crackling cyberverse of CAPTAIN BEEFHEART & the MAGIC BAND, allmusic, allmusic 1. YouTube - Beefheart on Letterman, Live In Belgium 1969, Ice Cream for Crow (HIgh Resolution), Upon the my oh my, Big Eyed Beans from Venus

Poetry in 1960 — A Symposium

"Al Filreis, Bob Perelman, Ron Silliman, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Chris Funkhouser, Erica Kaufman, Judith Goldman, Kristen Gallagher, Danny Snelson, Michael S. Hennessey, Charles Bernstein and Mel Nichols."

"A Walk Across the Rooftops" with Trisha Brown

"Trisha Brown, the most widely acclaimed choreographer to emerge from the post-modern era, first came to public notice when she began showing her work with the Judson Dance Theater in the 1960s. This experimental group united dancers with musicians, visual artists, writers, and filmmakers in the creation of performance works that sought to erase the distinction between art and daily life."

Friday, December 17

"Overlay" - Lucy Lippard

"Overlay is Lucy Lippard's classic book on contemporary art and its connection to prehistoric sites and symbols. Viewed by critics, artists, art historians, and students as the essential text on how prehistoric images have been 'overlayed' onto contemporary art by today's artists, Overlay is for anyone interested in the possibility of reintegrating art into the fabric of society as a whole, as in prehistoric times."
amazon, Fly by news, women and water (Video)

Charles Ives: Holidays Symphony

"Coming of age at the dawn of the twentieth century, Charles Ives saw the halcyon days of his youth fading fast. Not willing to let them go, he invented a striking new musical language to enshrine the feelings and ideals of a simpler time. But many, shocked by passages like the 'fireworks' in ‘Fourth of July,’ found his new-fangled methods at odds with the memories he was trying to preserve. Did Ives go too far? Or did he succeed in turning his memories into music?"
Keeping Score, pbs, Holidays Symphony, amazon

Patrick Martinez's "Come In We're Closed"

"From Patrick: Another day without a dollar. Many small independent mom and pop businesses have been closing up left and right all across the United States. All that is left behind is a cold empty vacant space. Martinez utilizes the space to engage the viewer or passer by on the street with a colorful visual dialog and touching on what people are going through finically during the current recession."
Wooster Collective, Patrick Martinez - News

Thursday, December 16

Steve Reich - South Bank Show

"Excellent UK documentary charting the career of contempory composer Steve Reich."
YouTube - South Bank Show - part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6

Student Strike of 1970

UW students marching west down NE 45th towards I-5, May 5, 1970
Wikipedia - "In the aftermath of the American Invasion of Cambodia on April 30, 1970, four students were killed at Kent State University on May 4, 1970 in Ohio, as well as two students at Jackson State College in Mississippi on May 14/15. More than 450 university, college and high school campuses across the country were shut down by student strikes and both violent and non-violent protests that involved more than 4 million students."

Mississippi Sheiks

Wikipedia - "The Mississippi Sheiks were a popular and influential guitar and fiddle group of the 1930s. They were notable mostly for playing country blues but were adept at many styles of United States popular music of the time, and their records were bought by both black and white audiences."
Wikipedia,, YouTube - He Calls That Religion, I am the Devil, Fingering With Your Fingers, Honey babe let the deal go down, Grinding Old Fool

Wednesday, December 15

Life Imitates Art - Alex Katz

Blue Umbrella #2, 1972
"Seconds after she entered, she was followed by her husband, painter Alex Katz. I know Ada from having seen, consumed dozens of paintings, prints and drawings that Alex Katz has painted of his wife over a remarkable 50+ year career. I’ve seen her at cocktail parties, I’ve seen her at the beach, I seen her with a scarf around her head, I’ve seen her under the delicate arcing curves of an umbrella."
Truffle Hunting, Smithsonian: Behind the Canvas with Artist Alex Katz (Video)
February 2008: Wikipedia, Alex Katz, artnet

Christo’s ‘Over the River’: An Act of Homage

Christo: Over The River, Project For The Arkansas River, State of Colorado
"Since 1992, the artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude—known for such works as Wrapped Reichstag (1995) and The Gates in Central Park (2005)—have been pursuing Over the River, their plan to suspend great swathes of luminescent fabric over a 42-mile section of the Arkansas River in Salida, Colorado for a period of two weeks."

Shadows (1959) - John Cassavetes

Wikipedia - "Shadows (1959) is an improvisation inspired film about interracial relations during the Beat Generation years in New York City, and was written and directed by John Cassavetes. The film stars Ben Carruthers, Lelia Goldoni, Hugh Hurd, and Anthony Ray. Many film scholars consider Shadows one of the highlights of independent film in the U.S. In 1960 the film won the Critics Award at the Venice Film Festival."
Wikipedia, YouTube - Shadows (1959) part1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6, part 7, part 8, part 9
September 2009: Wikipedia, The John Cassavetes Pages, PBS

Tuesday, December 14

New York Daily Photo

"New York City - a place of diversity. Visit a daily photo blog of the timely, the timeless, the classic, the unexpected and the hidden gems by a long time resident who shares his love of New York."
New York Daily Photo

After Extra Time - Michael Nyman

Wikipedpa - "After Extra Time is a 1996 album by Michael Nyman with the Michael Nyman Band containing three tributes to Nyman's fandom of Association football: After Extra Time, the soundtrack to The Final Score, and Memorial. The latter is described as a remix, but is simply the 1992 recording from The Essential Michael Nyman Band. It was included in order to put it together with his two other football-inspired works (he has since written another: see Acts of Beauty Exit no Exit)."
Wikipedia, Michael Nyman - The Final Score (A Concerto for Football) Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

The Marriage of Heaven and Hell - William Blake

Wikipedia - "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell is a book by the English poet and printmaker William Blake. It is a series of texts written in imitation of biblical books of prophecy but expressing Blake's own intensely personal Romantic and revolutionary beliefs. Like his other books, it was published as printed sheets from etched plates containing prose, poetry, and illustrations. The plates were then coloured by Blake and his wife Catherine."
Wikipedia, Google, Gailgast Field, amazon

Monday, December 13

In The Anthology of Rap

"From the school yards of the South Bronx to the tops of the Billboard charts, rap has emerged as one of the most influential cultural forces of our time. In The Anthology of Rap, editors Adam Bradley and Andrew DuBois demonstrate that rap is also a wide-reaching and vital poetic tradition born of beats and rhymes."
Adam Bradley, In The Anthology of Rap, Slate: Fact-Check the Rhyme, Slate: It Was Written, Slate: Stakes Is High, NPR, The New Yorker: Word, Jay-Z, Understand Rap, WSJ: Hip-Hop Goes to Harvard, NPR: Music, YouTube - Comedy Central: Chris Rock on Rap music.
amazon: In The Anthology of Rap, amazon: Decoded, amazon: Jay-Z, amazon: Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip Hop, amazon: Shakespeare's Metrical Art.

John Ashbery - Hotel Lautreamont (Elfland Version)

Dalen, Telemarken, Norway, c. 1890: photochrome print, Detroit Publishing Co., 1905 (Library of Congress)
"Blandishments, chitchat, jokes, parodies, personae and all kinds of slang circulate freely through Ashbery's (April Galleons) latest collection. As always, his work will frustrate readers who must know just what it's about. Curious and spectacular details no sooner come up than they vanish; distractions and even boredom have their places; and Ashbery's central preoccupations--passing time, the ambiguities of identity--are as ordinary as they are enduring."
amazon, TOM CLARK: Beyond the Pale

Sunday, December 12

Terry Riley & Gyan Riley

"Thursday, June 24th, 2010, the internationally renowned Kronos Quartet will honor composer Terry Riley at Music in the Mountains SummerFest. Riley is one of the most significant composers of the 20th century, steeped in jazz as well as traditional Indian music. As a pianist and singer, Riley is still actively performing all over the world."
YouTube - Live in Grass Valley, CA


Wikipedia - "The Crusades were a series of religiously sanctioned military campaigns waged by much of Roman Catholic Europe, particularly the Franks of France and the Holy Roman Empire. The specific crusades to restore Christian control of the Holy Land were fought over a period of nearly 200 years, between 1095 and 1291. Other campaigns in Spain and Eastern Europe continued into the 15th century."