CN_146

JUNE 30, 2020




It’s been a middling-light now for five months straight. The atmosphere simply won’t crest over into some determinant appearance of dawn or dusk. The maddening conditions are not just limited to weather-based instrument dependence either, all of our messages sent to N424224, remain unanswered; despite seeing their constant activity on all the monitors. To break up the monotony we had been climbing down the steep cliff to the narrow strip of beach to swim. The waves usually being quite large, always stirred up the sediment so we could never quite see the bottom — which we had assumed was simply sand and large flat boulders. After our last swim though, the water became quite glassy — and from up high we were able to see that the boulders were not boulders but some sort of giant, flat, very slow maneuvering fishes. Now we daren’t even do that activity anymore. When not receiving our routine maintenance in the mess hall, rebuffing the wretched, suspicious glances of the crew — we now spend most of our time in the glass turret. Here at least in a state akin to solitude, we can voluptuously comb the data sets of ancient language fiction; occasionally looking up at the distant orange-gray horizon.





SITES IN USE




Blunt, sludgy claustrophobia typifies the mood of UK-based designer Max Turrent’s site. All his images seem degraded by some broken, found-in-the-alley Xerox machine. As well, his typography seems distorted by something like the unreliable receptors of an old cracked scanner. Perhaps his studio is actually situated in the bowels of an abandoned office building, where his only working light comes from the ash-flecked illumination of a recycle bin fire. 🐀🛢🌀

(Also of note is Max Turrent’s other 🔥 site: rsvr.world.)





The Borderlands Archive




Reservoir




Baths






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Alien
soft surface
$15

Ceramic Object
Sasha Fishman
Email for Pricing  



Androginia HXJ
Hemen
€30

SOLITAIRE
Addieway Books
$20



SONOMAMA SONOMAMA
frog life MART
$150

leek (bone)
chicane.space
€1000






GOINGS-ON(line)


An offering of pieces and projects from around the web.

Jon Rafman, Legendary Reality
The Mindcraft Project
Thierry Mugler, Fall/Winter Collection, 1995
Ted the Caver
Curatorial Algorithms and Malleable Aesthetics

 




ORACLE


Of both the Tarot and the I Ching, we asked the following: For the coming week, what is the best advice for the engaged and sincere person?



This week we drew the Seven of Wands (“Valour”). This card points to possible challenges to one’s foundations or hard-won achievements. It is indicated that there are many potential aggressors, coming from varied angles; however, since what is being attacked is long held and familiar, one is on advantageous ground to defend their position.  
        Our first hexagram, which we partner with our tarot to describe (or further detail) the current situation, is #35 “Progress.” Here the image is of the dawning sun, rising in height, constantly widening its illumination. In human terms it speaks of a humble and honorable leader rising in influence with humble and honorable supporters, as the best way forward. “The superior person brightens their bright virtue.”
        Our second hexagram, the one that suggests how best to meet the challenges (or the changes) is #64 “Before Completion.” The discussion here is about a time where success is possible but not yet secure. It is warned that “in times before completion, deliberation and caution are the prerequisites of success.” And more, “if we wish to achieve an effect, we must first investigate the nature of the forces in question and ascertain their proper place.”
        Our extraction: There is an uncannily relevant line pronounced in Hexagram #64: “It is nothing less than that of leading the world out of confusion back to order.” It sure feels that way. And like the advisement in Hexagram #35, the best way to lead is by light. Virtue and light!



CN_145

JUNE 23, 2020




We smoothed our hair with the aid of the street lamp and the mirror of our mother’s bicycle, and laid it on the grass. We walked the path, up the dry rotted stairs. We felt the porch give under each step, thinking of the toads that lived there. Entering the large two story farmhouse, we closed the door behind us. Looking left at the brass and walnut captain’s clock we read: 10:45 PM. On a jaunty angle, leaning on the banister, we cupped our mouth with one hand, and called up the stairs. In a voice kind and relaxed: “Dad?” The instant we finished the word, we knew it was something like the wrong incantation. The house went black. A void. We transcended panic; for a moment, paralyzed. We reached our arm back without turning, feeling slowly for the door. Touching only a featureless wallpapered surface; we turned frantically and wildly felt for what had been there only a few moments ago. We slid along searching this way for at least 100 feet straight — with no interruption of wall and floor; knowing the house to be only 40 feet wide at a generous measure. Not in any way able to process the situation, we slid down the wall and sat, gathering our knees to our chest. Our panic recomposed to motionless listening, like prey. After poised like this for what could have been an hour in the featureless dark, we started to hear a faint tapping. Our mounting panic subsided when we recognized the footsteps of our dog Sam. It was her, “Oh Sam, oh Sam! Good girl! I love you. Where are we Sam? Never leave me. I love you.” We cried hot tears into her warm fur neck. She laid her head onto our cross-legged lap, and breathed calmly. We pet her absently and familiarly whilst trying to discern something in the immeasurable darkness; muttering to ourself and her, “Where are we Sam? How are we going to leave here?” In our preoccupied relief we hadn’t realized that our situation had deteriorated. An awful comprehension started to emerge; our warm companion felt strange, thinner — cooler to the touch. Groping to determine the nature of this mutation; we discerned what seemed to be a hairy, perfectly disembodied male arm in the sleeve of a fur coat. With revulsion and terror we threw the horrible truncation into the emptiness. We waited for the thud of it’s landing; it never sounded.





SITES IN USE




The work of designer Callum Abbott has a spirit, exuberant, yet slightly agitated — with something like a prismatic aversion to piousness. It’s not quite a sense of humor (which would be boring and pat) maybe just a general levity towards seriousness. He seems to be constantly upending graphic idioms — whipping them, polishing them, warping them. Suffice it to say, we like it very much. 🖖





Andrey Ilyaskin




Naemi Gustavsson




Nina M Gibbes






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PRIMO RICHARDS LIEBE ZUR FARBE
Edition Haus am Gern
CHF 25

Villiers-Charlemagne
Atlas des Régions
€200



Edges
Lily Clark
£40

Gymnopédie
Furniture
$30



REAL REVIEW 9
TAMBOURINE
€10






GOINGS-ON(line)


An offering of pieces and projects from around the web.

Annete Weintraub, Realms
Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project
Degas at the Opera
Hackers and Painters
Amy Lockhart, Walk for Walk
 




ORACLE


Of both the Tarot and the I Ching, we asked the following: For the coming week, what is the best advice for the engaged and sincere person?



This week we drew the “Eight of Pentacles” (in other systems known as the “Eight of Disks” or the “Eight of Coins”). This card centers around the subject of working, working as a center of life. Ultimately it intimates that whatever “work” is to your life, this is a time to get it right. If it is important to you that you lead in your occupation, take the reigns. If work is killing you, try for serious adjustments. If you are not disciplined with your labor, find loving self control. Work is essential in large form to most all lives — the door this week is open to take it seriously.
        Since beginning these divinations we have only rolled hexagrams containing a change; that is, resulting in two hexagrams. This week is the first time where there is no change. This means that how we enter the week is how we will exit the week. Our single hexagram is #18 “Decay, Work on What has Been Spoiled.” “We must first know the causes of corruption before we can do away with them… so that a relapse may be avoided.” There is an additional pair of lines that underscores this notion: “Before the starting point, three days” and “after the starting point, three days.” Perhaps carve out serious time this week to take personal stock of any stagnation that is interfering with your progress generally speaking. After you have thoroughly identified the obfuscating putrescence, take another three days to cleanse your pathway(s) of it.
        Our extraction: It is not optimal to find the energy to work, it is better that your love of the work gives you the energy to complete it. Another way: take your boat completely out of the water, scrape off the barnacles, repaint it and return to the sea. Find joyful refresh with your new quickness.



CN_144

JUNE 16, 2020




Recently we came upon a very thin but interesting bit of internet lore — some scanned, hazy xeroxes of classified documents (of corporate and surprisingly not governmental origin). Source user HOPHORN_BLUEBOX93 summarized the scant, unblackened sections of copy as such: In the early 90s possibly as a preparation for nuclear fallout, financial collapse, worldwide pestilence, or some form of precocious digital migration the ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp developed a massive project called “Fallback Forest”. Apparently ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp was one of the oldest and largest foresting operations in the world — at one time occupying significant holdings on 6 continents — and providing nearly 75% of global construction timber. From the very beginning ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp kept copious records and notes of every possible botanical significance: leaf patterns, weather cycles, seed structures, mold and mycelial maps — to maximize their productivity. With the transition from the arpanet to the late 80s secular ISPSs ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp went wild for digital datafication. The combination of this new archival ease, guilt of past rapacity, and some unknown massive mystical rainforest exploit of the then CEO (name obscured: “⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷“) the entire limited liability company collapsed into a “Fallback Forest” obsession. The final papers, detailing the quixotic venture are filled with all sorts of particular weirdness; one typifying example was a proposition to stamp ones and zeros onto the xylem and phloem cells of Swamp Spanish oak trees — as a possible self perpetuating eastern seaboard communication/memory system. Ultimately, and the following is mostly HOPHORN_BLUEBOX93’s phrasing, the papers devolve into a sort of “pleasing yet unintelligible digital/pastoral musing — sounding not unlike a fusing of the voices of Alan Kay and Kenneth Grant.” The weirdest (but perhaps most standardly creepypasta-ish) part of the exposition was the description of ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp’s massive distributed hard-drive program. Supposedly between 1993-1995 400,000 black boxed hard drives were buried in every significantly forested area of the planet, each as large as a dumpster — perpetually powered by heat pulled by wires reaching down just below the earth’s Asthenosphere. Every one of these “Fallback Forest” drives contains 1,000,000 X more “potential information” about the earth’s fungal, floral and climate systems than the actual systems themselves. The ultimate point of the endeavor is unknown. But if ever you are in some deep, back-country grove and you notice that a grouping of trees is forming an oddly particular circularity, you might just be standing on what could be one of the future nodes in the post terrestrial acreage of ⌷⌷⌷⌷⌷ Lumber Corp’s “Fallback Forest”. (Sincere thanks to HOPHORN_BLUEBOX93 and ASCII_QUESTIONS1xRTT for all their joyous compiling.)





SITES IN USE




We don’t actually come in contact with the world. We touch the world with fleshy gloves and see it through watery orbs. And the images and themes we isolate — the organizations we make — all happen far away from the surface of our face. Most often what the world sees back is prepared. Thus we think a mask is the most natural and perhaps deep expression of this circumstance. And those made by Bloeme van Bon and Geran Knol for their “Park Pardon” project are glorious examples. 🎭





Kellen Renstrom




Sandor Lubbe




Clara Kelvin Grey






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GOINGS-ON(line)


An offering of web-based art pieces and projects.

Art Crap, Click Thoughts
Jimpunk, ICE . International Computers *Error* . 100.000.000.000.000
Iñaki Bonillas, Words and Photos
Art Basel, Opens (Online) June 19


 



ORACLE


Of both the Tarot and the I Ching, we asked the following: For the coming week, what is the best advice for the engaged and sincere person?



This week we drew the “The Three of Swords” (aka, “The Lord of Sorrow” in Crowlian parlance — known simply as “Sorrow” in the more standard versions). This card points to Misery (writ large) — abject pain and suffering; this is not mere melancholia, but ruinous discord/disunion.
        Our first hexagram, which we partner with our tarot to describe (or further detail) the current situation, is #48 “The Well.” Here are coupled two metaphors, that of a tree and roots seeking water alongside the image of a bucket reaching for the spring at the depths of a well. It is intimated that these are apt symbols for a fundamental course of action: to get universal nourishment one must go deep. This of course might seem an oversimplification if it weren’t for the accompanying and wholly accurate admonishment: if one doesn’t pursue the profounder depths one will “remain fixed in convention.”
        Our second hexagram, the one that suggests how best to meet the challenges (or the changes) is #43 “Break-through (Resoluteness)“. We apologize for the length of the following quotation; it just feels too relevant to abridge: “Even if only one inferior person is occupying a ruling position in a city, they are able to oppress superior people. Even a single passion still lurking in the heart has power to obscure reason. Passion and reason cannot exist side by side—therefore fight without quarter is necessary if the good is to prevail.” “In a resolute struggle of the good against evil, there are, however, definite rules that must not be disregarded, if it is to succeed. First, resolution must be based on a union of strength and friendliness. Second, a compromise with evil is not possible; evil must under all circumstances be openly discredited. Nor must our own passions and shortcomings be glossed over. Third, the struggle must not be carried on directly by force. If evil is branded, it thinks of weapons, and if we do it the favor of fighting against it blow for blow, we lose in the end because thus we ourselves get entangled in hatred and passion. Therefore it is important to begin at home, to be on guard in our own persons against the faults we have branded. In this way, finding no opponent, the sharp edges of the weapons of evil become dulled. For the same reasons we should not combat our own faults directly. As long as we wrestle with them, they continue victorious. Finally, the best way to fight evil is to make energetic progress in the good.”
        Our extraction: We are in the thick of a genuine misery. The degree of one’s shallowness is the measure of one’s convention — convention does not remove misery, it is defined by it. “The best way to fight evil (and its subsequent misery) is to make energetic progress in the good.” If we fight against evil “blow for blow, we lose… because… we ourselves get entangled in hatred and passion.” As it is said elsewhere in the I Ching, it is best to persist without haste and without rest.






VIRUS DISTRACTOR #12


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superinternet☺, MUZ: musica
Man Ray, L'étoile de mer
Ray Johnson Estate: Mail Art and Ephemera
Dimitris Gkikas, The Spying Internet
Fold ‘N’ Fly
Decameron Web
Auto Museum 64
Roland Barthes, Mythologies
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CN_143

JUN 09, 2020




As of late we have not wanted to publish a newsletter and have halted social media activity. The feeling comes from a respect for the efforts of those working to stop police violence and the routine hindrance of black Americans. 

In sincere accord (and without sanctimony) we are donating to the following institutions:


Please participate if possible. (More is more.)

NB: Cargo has a free-use program for non-profit organizations; relevant information can be found here.

Image: Paul Robeson


CN_142

MAY 26, 2020




The hunter cuts the lion off on the path of its sunny prowl. The proud, warm-furred lion is forced back into the shaded gloom of the forest. We think of this metaphor often — being confident and excited by the particulars of this or that pursuit, happily playing to our strengths, only to have some unexpected outside modifier (whether sham or true) present its critical reversal, befouling and disallowing our momentum. We always regroup and adapt though. But intermittently, a far more transcendental destabilizer emerges from our past — a point of contrast for which the gloom of the lion’s forest seems thoroughly pleasant.
            Quite a few years ago, somewhat accidentally, we ingested a prodigious amount of cannabis in its edible form; our encounters with this configuration have always been difficult, but here, it unhinged. The apex was such that we were unable to experience anything familiar; the distant path (sunny or otherwise) was replaced with something like a pure, relation-less consciousness. All objects, whether material or of thought, were reduced to a single strange, primordial substance. A stuff mirrored and blob-like when idle or unattributed — but at the slightest provocation would take on the characteristic offather” or “chair” or “sky” or “chewing” through supreme reflection and shapeshifting. Since it was everything nothing ultimately had any essence; all was simply this mimetic prima materia — the universe, a chameleon of our intentions. It seemed that it was only the total fatigue of our protracted lunacy that compelled the substance to weaken its camouflage and reveal itself.
            Generally we are enthusiastic and confident in our analytical pursuits, but there is a shadow now that wasn’t there before, it warns of bottomless terror. 🧠🤞

Image: Erwin Wurm





SITES IN USE




A modest but really satisfying scroll of work from Australian graphic designer Alexandra Margetic. Throughout there seems to be a subtle but distinct influence of the visual arts, particularly minimalist abstraction and its sometime affiliate, concrete poetry. We have no idea if this is conscious, unconscious or even a wanted association. Nevertheless, text columns are indented and spaced making offbeat visual rhythms and letterforms are pushed to their recognizable limit. Lovely. 🖖





Catching Copies




Eva Shuman




Val Rovatti






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GOINGS-ON(line)


An offering of web-based art pieces and projects.

Annete Weintraub, Pedestrian
Claude Closky, Beautiful
Olia Lialina, Online Newspapers: French Edition


 



ORACLE


Of both the Tarot and the I Ching, we asked the following: For the coming week, what is the best advice for the engaged and sincere person?



This week we drew the “Queen of Cups”. The image is of a woman staring into a chalice. The interior surface of such a vessel is reflective (and limited). The card points to the two main senses of “reflection”: that of the unemotional doubling an image (like a mirror) or of the quality of pensively looking inward (being thoughtful).
        Our first hexagram, which we partner with our tarot to describe (or further detail) the current situation, is #33 “Retreat”. “Retreat is not to be confused with flight.” If forces are unequivocally overpowering it is best to reserve your energy, rather than live in a fatiguing fantasy. Wait to make your move until the wave has subsided; perseverance here means to conserve.
        Our second hexagram, the one that suggests how best to meet the challenges (or the changes) is #31, “Influence.” This hexagram describes the elements and conditions needed to have a positive impact on a situation — to stimulate and attract. It states that humbleness and keeping an open mind is key to “mutual attraction”. Being fixated on oneself without listening will not encourage the necessary “attraction between affinities” which “is a general law of nature.”
        Our extraction: Being reflective is both good and bad. Bad reflectiveness is when one mindlessly gives people what they want. Good reflectiveness is when one has the bearing of thoughtfulness and reserve. This combined with the first hexagram seems to indicate an uphill murkiness — wanted gains will be slight. Adding the second hexagram seems to advocate for an openness in this period. Where you would normally act, listen; encourage curiosity and receptivity in yourself.






VIRUS DISTRACTOR #11


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Aldhelm's Riddles
Chaos Magic in a Nutshell
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Robert Desnos, 22 Shorter Pieces
Norman McLaren & Claude Jutra, A Chairy Tale
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