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THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME

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Special thanks to Oliewenhuis Art Museum and the University of the Free State.

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THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME


This art play deck forms part of an exhibition presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy degree in the Faculty of the Humanities, Departments of Fine Art and of Art History and Image Studies, with the full title:

THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME: interactive playing with pigment and material enlightenment Janine Allen (The Brusher).

THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME

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THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME MANIFESTO

T

he media theorist Boris Groys (2008: 2) argues that all humans have the responsibility to design the self. Self-design is the aesthetic and political presentation of a person’s Come Watson, come!.... the game is afoot. ethical commitments. From a ‘glocal’ and ludic perspective, I, the Brusher, Arthur Conan Doyle The adventures of the Abbey Grange (1905:3-4) am presenting an unfettered art play deck with meta-dimensions called The visionary Brusher game. The works in the exhibition prospect hermetic free play set free in visionary playful constellations, cascading to various degrees visionary of play in the creative imagination. Visionary play manifests a rapturous travelling phenomenon. Visionary play and inter-mediate arrays of artmaking and artwriting are unleashed from the serious play (Lat. serio ludere) issuing from the Brusher’s imagining.

Accessing visionary art is a cumbersome process, which takes the form of an initiation. The artworks’ unfolding visionary implications shape the rites of passage. Some works allow for a gradual penetration, as the more easily readable surface may conceal an arcane depth or complex patterns. Visionary obscurantism in artmaking and artwriting creates a playful openendedness, which is not intended to hide meaning. The concealment of meaning, as in the case of premeditated political obfuscation, or the media’s presentation of already obscure catastrophes, or the proposition of an elitist intellectual worldview is often the aim and/or result of a political obfuscation. By contrast, presentation in line with the views of Friedrich Nietzsche (1878: ii (i): 27) provides a more vital, unflinching and darkening views on instrumental rationality and its narrowingly pragmatist, constructive perspective.

The seminal play historian Johan Huizinga (1938: 10) wrote that play unfolds in a magic circle. In spite of play’s apparent link to creative aesthetic imagining, its dynamics in contemporary art and specifically visionary art remain obscure. The Brusher’s meta-play premise is that participation in imaginative play patterns cascades meanings in an array of imagery and image-making processes. Coagulations of ‘raw’ and ‘cooked’ media energise the discovery of visionary play constellations that, in turn, disclose a gamut of play metaphors, which are prospected as play patterns in the exhibited works. The Brusher’s ludic art play deck is created from a ‘glocal’ stance, which embraces interdisciplinary play philosophy, history, media theory, post-colonial theory, alchemy and tacit knowledge at hand. The main play patterns suggested in the works are valence, serendipity, vertigo, tinkering and brushing.

On the contrary, what some call art-philosophical obscurantism, is an imaginary play with pictures, words and meanings, which provides, in line with Walter Benjamin (1927-1940: 10), thinking images, suggesting conceptual complexity. Complexity, in and at play, allows for indeterminate visual discoveries of ever-changing re-figuration. Mark C. Taylor (1999: 127) echoes this view, stressing that nothing can ever be completely figured. The turbulent or vertiginous play discovered in complexity opposes essentialist and populist thinking, such as that promoted by current-day political demagogues.

Play, like alchemy, has become a rhetorical buzzword. The play concept is often misused in mediatized consumer capitalism to explore job-orientated ‘creative’ work in playful, but limiting ways. Likewise, modern-day popular alchemy references are complicit with commercial progress. However, the nexus of play and alchemy introduces a disruptive ambivalence infiltrating smooth consumer ideals. The valencial powers of play and alchemy, as used by a brusher-artist persona may oppose ....the play of forces.... the smooth writing of politics, history Hans-Georg Gadamer (2011: 104) and mediatisation. The intermedia game includes recombinatory conceptual work linking with, or rooted in painting as My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, well as intermedia. The ‘to and fro’ but a multitude of drops? characteristic of play allows a free David Mitchell, Cloud Atlas (2005) flowing multi-directional intermedial transposition of play patterns. Play’s free-flowing impulse motivated the Brusher to create cross-referential installations, digital photomontage, conceptual photography, drawing and animated drawing, painting and performance pieces. Moreover, hypermedia’s rhizomatic allows for pictorial constructions. Pictures are generators of new processes, which disrupt viewers’ needs to position art into media-specific families. Playing, in painting and art philosophy, as well as the Brusher’s life stories, art residencies and travel experiences inspired the exhibited work’s multi-dimensional ludic aspirations. The exhibition’s central aim is to lure imaginative viewer-participants into the magic circle or The visionary Brusher game. A concept unleashed in a ludic work is a ‘ball tossed’ at another potential ‘player’. An attentive viewer may recognize that an imaginative game is afoot and be invited to enter into the work’s visionary Brusher game. The I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips, participating viewer may pursue what straining upon the start. The game’s afoot. the work foreshadows. However, as William Shakespeare (1953: 561), philosopher Paul Ricoeur (1981: 186, Henry V, Act III, Scene 1. 189) observes, when a game is being played, the participants also get played, because works are pseudo subjects with unforeseen meanings. Philosopher Mikel Dufrenne’s (Berg 1982: 156, 160-185) conjecture that an art object has a determination aligns with this view of reciprocal play. Thus, playful works as quasi-subjects may engage the players’ positions and movements. The works suggest unforeseen meanings, complicating both the Brusher’s intentions and viewer-participants’ unique engagements.

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THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME

With the lusory attitude (Suits 2005: 52-55), the Brusher discovers fullbodied and committed actions, including how art plays in formal, yet dangerous ways (ludus), and how artists’ free movements (padia) bear on embodied human play. In the performance pieces Blue and Bruscum I & II, the Brusher searched for attitudinal gestures and ritual movements through the creative application of body movements, attire, and trimmings. In Blue, the Brusher tested ergonomic bodily movements to determine to what extent ….the play of limbs…. artists’ body movements are influenced Hans-Georg Gadamer (2011: 104) by the instrumental orders of digital interfaces, for example computers, styluses, and digitisers. A noteworthy view is that of German media theorist Friedrich Kittler (2010) who argues that technological innovations are only receptive to their hardware. Consequentially, humans are operators whose bodies, organs, senses, and body movements are fatally adapted to technological advances. Vilém Flusser’s technology-critical stance warns that people’s adaption to ‘computerised’ apparatus and its programmes can change people’s intrinsic being (Van der Meulen 2010: 197). Blue led to a series of drawings, including Scarab I & II, which visualise artists’ unique countermovements, intended to thwart the automated requirements of digital environments. Instrumental rationality in modern-day mediatised and politicised structures is the ‘playing’ terrain of destructive technocratic systems. Play and games are subservient to destructive ideologies motivated by consumerism and/ or achievement-driven systems, for example the political, arts, computer games, and professional sports industries. Michel Foucault (1977: 194-228) critiques instrumental rationalities with the term dispositif, i.e. institutions, or knowledge systems which install power within themselves and within the societies they serve. Accordingly, mediatisation carries explosive and poisonous ingredients. The ideologies, and ‘truths’, generated by technically mediated apparatus and global industries artificially shape a so-called post-human world, where in Habermas’ (1987) terms, humans, and their communicative life-worlds, diminish. The quests for embodied practice have also been compromised. The term ‘embodiment’ is exceptionally vulnerable to misuse in advertising media. The Brusher’s playful approach in technē may reveal how artists disrupt or play against dispositifs adopting the ethical stance that humans should strive to become full-bodied human beings. The Brusher’s unique media synthesis or particular digital recombinations comprises a tinkering with materials. According A [painting] game has always been at issue, a collective enterprise with and against to J.W.T. Mitchell (2010: 399-401), others. But change has modified even this and in the vein of pioneering media enduring metaphor. theorist Marshall McLuhan, practice, Karl Morrison (1988: 348), I am you. experience, traditions, and technical inventions provide artists with tacit


knowledge to develop “sensory ratios” or specific media mixtures. These mixtures are coagulations of the ‘raw’ and the ‘cooked’ – the concrete and/ or immaterial potions – the antidotes, tinctures, concoctions, etc. that may also cure, resonating with Jacques Derrida’s (1981: 70) notion of disseminating poisons. Potions, however, are not like destructive viruses that work themselves out as rapidly as they multiply. They have long-acting effects, may be sluggish to prepare and dispense, and thus have their roots in alchemy, specifically spagyric. The Brusher’s playing with pigments and inks in the installations Blue, Imaginarium and Turnstone foreshadows the Brusher’s digital recombinations, for example the digital photomontages Evacuee and AzaniAinazA. The Brusher’s digital photomontage is a potion-based tinkering with mediatised material in recombinatory ways. Mediatised material is a global encyclopaedia with ludic potential, particularly important to artists working in impoverished and isolating circumstances. The muddy moods of oil paints are the painters muddy humours, and its brilliant Painting now further unfolds in a transformations are the multifarious intermedia art arena. Thus, painter’s unexpected discoveries the Brusher’s play act of ‘brushing’ thus James Elkins (2001: 5) also appears outside the conventional demarcations of what Painting is. The Polish social philosopher Zygmunt Bauman (Bauman 2000: 4) compellingly postulates current globalism as the developmental horizon of ‘software’ or liquid modernity, highlighting the transitory state of ‘light capitalism’. Although Bauman pinpoints to a singular South African context as an example where liquid modernism is evident, most Eurocentric Society…is now exposed to the rapacity technocratic philosophers, however, do of forces it does not control and no longer not engage with South Africa’s own liquid hopes or intends to recapture or subdue. modernist dispositions in substantial ways. Zygmunt Bauman (2007: 25) Some works in The visionary Brusher game, for example, AzaniAinazA and the website Exile Island evoke a brushing apart of complex South African contexts with the purpose of releasing multi-perspectival views on citizens’ ‘liquid living’ conditions. The Brusher defines South African liquidity as monstrous liquidity – with entrenched first-world consumerism, increasing the richpoor divide. South Africa has morphed into a hyper-violent society with tragic forms of social ostracism, ethnic nationalism, racism, aggression, and xenophobia. Most politicians lobby for personal gain instead of the public good. In order to suspend monstrous liquidity, brushing play patterns in this exhibition are the core concept. The Brusher speculates that Benjamin (1940: vii), in the essay, Theses on the philosophy of history, saw the metaphorical potential in the verb ‘to brush’ and settled his task as philosopherHe [the historical materialist] regards it as his task to brush history against the grain. historicist, connecting the act of “brushing” with the playwright Bertolt Brecht, who Walter Benjamin’s essay, Theses on the philosophy of history (1940: vii). used “against the grain” to explain the alienation effect (Ger. Geschichte gegen den Strich zu bürsten). Brushing is a moving concept, adhering to the toand-fro characteristic of playing, but nurtures the transformative potential to disrupt the flow of consumerism. Thus the Brusher brushes aside dispositifs, the mediatised playing fields in ‘against the grain’ movements, by shaping a dynamic magic circle consisting of artmaking and artwriting in which dispositifs may be, as game artist and play theorist Mary Flanagan (2009: 33, 60) states, un-played. ‘Un-playing’ suggests the invention of forbidden scenarios to trap, ‘kill’, or ‘bury’ subjects and objects, so as to subvert prescribed play-texts. When artists are unplaying, they play against traditional social expectations. Brushing gestures and movements elevate the notion of human players relaying capacity beyond play’s basic ‘to and fro’ movements. On the brink of the life game, the Brusher does not easily transcend tough post-colonial challenges. She engages with shipwreck-metaphor challenges which Kenyan writer, Ngũgĩ Wa Thiong’o (1994: 20) calls “the fatalistic logic of the presumed unassailability” of dominant systems. Some works in The visionary Brusher game challenge monstrous liquidity through shipwreck metaphors, for example the web artwork Exile Island, the animated drawing

Deliverance, the interactive ocular and filmic installation, The Brusher vs. ‘real’ 3D and The Brusher’s play deck. Sometimes, brushing movements may give ...the play of the waves... the appearance of leeway or ‘going with the Hans-Georg Gadamer (2011: 104) flow’. An example of this is The Brusher’s transworld play deck: pictures play that is embedded in the visual discovery and picture-sharing website Pinterest. com. In this sense, brushing acts initiate personal movement amid mobility to temporarily utilise liquidity’s beneficial factors in shaping an unforeseen course. In the process of creating these works, the Brusher visually elaborates on shipwreck metaphors, inspired by the Brusher’s childhood experiences, for instance growing up on the Eastern Cape coast, a trip to Robben Island in 1983 and a philatelic collection passed on by the Brusher’s father. Some works, for example Exile Island, recall Blaize Pascal’s (Blumenberg 1997: 19) metaphor of the human condition in the phrase “you are embarked”, announcing that humans always already sail the high seas. In contrast to the seventeenth century poet John Donne writing “No man is an island”, the first-wave postcolonial theorist Frantz Fanon (1952: 3) and the South African novelist Dan Sleigh (2002: 692) suggest that humans are islands. The Brusher proposes that South Africa be considered as a cluster of floating En terwyl hulle edele heer speel, het hulle mense laat kwyn en verdor, laat sterf in hulle micro-worlds in which the altered state hande. Terwyl hulle persoonlike witgekalkde of disembarking means being willingly heerlikhede aanlê, laat hulle hutte en or unwillingly cast away on a complexly tuintjies op eilande vergaan. En mense. Want malformed archipelago. The clusters of the eilande is mense. 1 South African archipelago are continuously Sleigh, Eilande (2002: 692) animated by colonial and postcolonial 2. And while they play the royal lords, did history where exile prevails, as seen in, for they make people diminish and wither, example the residential and institutional allowed them to die in their hands. While differences of cultural groups living legally they built personal white calcite? royalties, or illegally, forcefully removed or through they allowed huts and little gardens on islands to perish. And people. Because self-imposed exile, where the ‘haves’ secure islands are people themselves and their intellectual and physical property from the ‘have-nots’. In (Translation, the Brusher). a broader sense, South Africa struggles to be reconciled with many other African countries. The cultural isolation imposed through the apartheid system detached South Africa from the continent (see the philatelic photomontage Slaughter of Bangui) in the minds of many Africans, contributing in turn to xenophobia. Islands are stereotypically viewed as utopias (in terms of the South African sensibility, the desire for a harmonious untouched Azania), or the saving grace of the shipwrecked. But in the negative sense, islands are domesticated places where games of control, exclusion, or isolation are rife. Roger Caillois’ (1961: 11-36) serendipitous multifarious play-pattern combinations, which include chance and vertigo (alea-illynx), manifest when the Brusher engages in games of discovery. The aleatoric-vertiginous possibilities of myth and paradox may be Was he who bore on his shoulders the unfolded from new ludic art forms. Martin drama of the highest order (as fallen angel Jay (2003: 108) suggests diving into and Son of God), to undergo judgement shipwrecks, which the Brusher interprets not of something sublime, but for shit? as vertiginous serio ludere (Lat. serious Were the very highest of drama and the very lowest so vertiginously close? Can proximity play). Works such as, for example, Old cause vertigo? It can. Dog, Deliverance and Exile Island, attest to Milan Kundera (1999: 242), a vertiginous willingness to jump into ‘the The unbearable lightness of being. shipwrecks of states’ with the serendipitous hope of discovering disparate concepts through random likenesses. Continuous playful artmaking restored ludic and imaginary art potential to the visionary tradition when visionary play’s ‘to and fro’ motion escalated towards a tipping point. In the search for meaning in dispositifs’ shadow, elements be understood to persist in the Enlightenment’s wake. In unlocking playful serendipity, Umberto Eco’s (1999: 69) exploration of how falsities lead to meaningful discoveries and surprising side-effects, served as an inspiration. A serendipitous discovery of an officially weeded library book by Huizinga, In de schaduwen van morgen (1936) is integrated in Imaginarium. The book contains a short chapter on puerilism, which confirms Huizinga’s

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resistance of human immaturity. This leads to the formation of play as a magic circle, developed from a dark, ominous perspective forecasting the outbreak of the Second World War. Furthermore, the Brusher’s art research risks being defined as a ‘touch and go’ stage demanding asceticism, penance and endurance. In this context, the Brusher mined exotic properties of dark matter, black holes, and tenebrescence. Concomitantly, the hermeneutical phenomenologist and mystic David Levine (1988: 174, 311) argues that turbulent anarchy alone cannot deliver constructive social action having humans in dire need of a vision. Primarily, ‘brushing’, is a navigating action of change, a transformative play pattern in the Inner Tradition. Kittler (2010: 19) contends that artificial light outshines the natural light of the sun as the intelligent light. Computers’ predecessors, for example, the lanterna magica with its light-and-shadow trickery, highlight the Enlightenment’s ironic mainstay in deceptive perspectival shadow imagery. Similarly, the stenograph, typewriter, and computer are embedded in, for example emasculated and/ or military ideologies. Pitmanite shorthand stenography, in which the Brusher’s mother was fluent, is rejuvenated in the works The Brusher’s manifesto, and the installation The turning. Unlike the techno-materialist Kittler, Levine (1988: 279, 302) critically links Apollonian daylight vision with the rational control of nature, hence apocalyptic parousia (presence) in the pallor and glimmering lights of the end-time. However, in his pyrotechnic vision, an ephemeral light counters the rational gaze. In the phosphorescent painting, The Island, the Brusher previously explored how pyrotechnic metaphysics of the to-and-fro play of ….the play of light…. light signal epiphanic moments of insight. Hans-Georg Gadamer (2011: 104) These are already foretold by the a priori values in transient painters’ pigments, for example lapis lazuli's sodalite component cascading tenebrescent properties in certain light conditions. Tenebrescent properties foreshadow a serendipitous here-and-now, which attempts to render the unfathomable in the visionary artist, the work, and viewer-participant relationships. Through the apocalyptic imagination and materiality, visionary artists discern the immaterial qualities of a presumed unknowable origin, thus overcoming the material/ immaterial binary. The opening or expansion of vision potentially unlocks the extreme unknown in imaginative subject-object relations.

Bauman, Z. 2000. Liquid modernity. Cambridge: Polity Press. Bauman, Z. 2007. Liquid times: living in an age of uncertainty. Cambridge: Polity Press. Benjamin, W. 1940. Theses on the philosophy of history i-xviii. Transl. by Dennis Redmond (2005). URL: http://members.efn.org/~dredmond/ThesesonHistory.html Retrieved 23/ 05/ 2011. Benjamin, W. (1927-1940). The arcades project. Revised ed. Transl. by Howard Eiland & Kevin McLaughlin (2002). Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. Berg, R.A. 1982. Towards a phenomenological aesthetics: a critical exposition of Mikel Dufrenne’s aesthetic philosophy with special reference to the theory of literature. PhD thesis, Perdue University, 1978. Ann Arbor, MI: University Microfilms international. Brecht, B. 1990. Brecht on theatre: the development of an aesthetic. Transl. with notes by John Willet. London: Methuen Drama. Blumenberg, H. 1997. Shipwreck with spectator: paradigm of a metaphor for existence. Transl. by Steven Rendall. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Caillois, R. 1961. Man, play and games. Transl. by Meyer Barash. New York: Free Press of Glencoe. Carlson, T.A. 2008. The indiscrete image: infinitude & creation of the human. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Derrida, J. 1981. Dissemination. Transl. with an introduction and additional notes by Barbara Johnson. London: Athlone Press. Elkins, J. 2000. What painting is: how to think about oil painting, using the language of alchemy. New York: Routledge. Fanon, F. 2008 (1952). Black skin, white masks. Transl. by Richard Philcox. New York: Grove Press. Flanagan, M. 2009. Critical play: radical game design. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Foucault, M. 1977. Power/ Knowledge. Selected interviews and other writings (1972-1977). Gordon, C. Translated by Colin Gordon, Leo Marshall et al. 1980. New York: Pantheon Books. Gadamer, H. 1960 (2011). Truth and method. London: Continuum International Publishing Group. Groys, B. 2008. The obligation to self-design. e-flux. URL: http://www.e-flux.com/journal/ the-obligation-to-self-design/ Retrieved17/04/2016.

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The Brusher positions the ‘sacred’ human as central to current questions raised about humanity. Thomas A. Carlson (2009: 9) writes that negative philosophy discloses the human ability to inquire about how our humanities are always in question, thus always anticipating reformulation. In these reformulations, the lack of any distinct definition of humankind is discernable. In The Visionary Brusher game the Brusher has, for example bricolaged artwriting and artmaking, having beachcombed numinous flotsam and interwoven concepts, materials and discourses alluded to by the Brusher’s coat, on which is embroidered a central Latin dictum, Telam texere et retexere, meaning ‘to do and undo’. Moreover, the Brusher is steered by the subversive orientations of the contemporary holy fool. Contemporary Don’t upset His Saintship, ladies
 holy fools nullify simulacra through parody Stick to making love and babies

 kenosis and heart-rending sacrifice. In a Crap, crap, this godliness crap!
 double metaphorical sense, the margins Crap, crap, this holiness crap!

[Chorus]
 of the Brusher’s magic circle determine an ‘intertidal zone’, subject to the ‘ebbs and Virgin Mary, Mother of God
 flows’, which occur between the poles of Become a feminist, we pray thee
 mediatisation and visionary play. In the Extract from the song Punk Prayer - Mother medial intertidal zone, the Brusher bends of God, Chase Putin Away! performed by the mediatisation’s directive currents through Russian punk rock and protest group Pussy the tilting of the head office building of Riot in Moscow’s Russian Orthodox Church, the diamond mining industry, De Beers Cathedral of Christ the Saviour (2012) LTD, in Kimberley, as represented in the photomontage wielding the lantern. When material is brusquely energised, the shifty outcomes of mediatised dispositif and/or monstrous liquidity are stripped of toxic effects. Self-design, as argued by Groys (2008: 4), occurs when the soul is represented through the body’s attire to viewers who may actively respond through their souled attire. Thus, the Brusher’s ethical The hour is late... commitments are not merely foretold in Mark C. Taylor (2012: 191) the nom de brossage, but are manifested in imaginative designs in The visionary Brusher game. Brushing with light, body, and pigment constitutes endless movement conducted through the vestiges of sacred play. Through brushing, dispositifs’ characteristics may be suspended or slowed, albeit only temporarily. In endgames, however, interdeterminate play never ends, while brushing as a play pattern, reveals itself as pattern not only through the brusher, but through imaginative artists engaging in brushing play acts. Habermas, J. 1987. The theory of communicative action, 2: Lifeworld and system: a critique of functionalist reason. Transl. by Thomas McCarthy. Boston, MA: Beacon Press. Huizinga, J. 1936. In de schaduwen van morgen. Haarlem: Tjeenk Willink & Zoon. Huizinga, J. (Rex, J. ed.). 1949 (1938). Homo ludens: a study of the play-element in culture. Transl. & ed. by J. Rex. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. Jay, M. 2003. Refractions of violence. New York: Routledge. Kermode, M. 2012. Kermode uncut: Kermode uncut 3D: alive or dead. Youtube. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rod-3IeVYfw> Retrieved 20/08/2014. Kittler, F. 2010 (1999). Optical media: Berlin lectures 1999. Transl. by Anthony Enns. Cambridge: Polity Press. Kittler, F. 1999. Gramophone, typewriter, film. Transl. with an introduction by Geoffrey Winthrop-Young & Michael Wutz. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Levine, D. 1988. The opening of vision: nihilism and the postmodern situation. New York: Routledge. Mitchell, W.J.T. & M.B.N. Hanson (eds.). 2010. Critical terms for media studies. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Morrison, K. F. 1988. I am you: The hermeneutics of empathy in Western Literature, Theology and Art. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Ngũgĩ Wa Thiong’o. 1986. Decolonising the mind: the politics of language in African literature. London: James Currey. Nietzsche, F. 1996 (1878). Human, All Too Human Vol. II, Part 1, 27. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Ricoeur, P. 1981. Hermeneutics and the human sciences. Transl. & ed. by J.B. Thompson. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Suits, B. 1978 (2005). The grasshopper: games, life and utopia. With introduction by Thomas Hurka. Ontario: Broadview Press. Taylor, M.C. 2012. Refiguring the spiritual: Beuys, Barney, Turrel, Goldsworthy. New York: Columbia University Press. Taylor, M.C. 1999. The picture in question: Mark Tansey and the ends of representation. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Van der Meulen, S. 2010. Between Benjamin and McLuhan: Vilém Flusser’s media theory. New German Critique 110, Volume 37 (2), pp1-29. URL: http://ngc.dukejournals. org/content/37/2_110/180.abstract Retrieved 22/07/2011.


LIST OF LUDIC WORKS 1

Exile Island (2011-2015). Digital interactive landing page. Intermedia and animated Web artwork. Dimensions variable. Open domain. Credit: Gilbert Gibson. <http://janineallen.co.za/bannelingseiland>.

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Exile Island (2011). Digital recombination with carved boats, South African outline map, chalk and black paper printed on acid-free cotton based paper, 58 x 82 cm. Artist’s collection.

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See Emily play (2013). Analogue interactive re-appropriated book catalogue, The suffering of war. A photographic portrayal of the suffering in the Anglo-Boer War by Changuion, L., Jacobs, F. & P. Alberts (2003), with digital photomontages, inscriptions by the Brusher & viewer-participants, pencil, 31,5 x 23,5 x 4 cm. The Anglo Boer-War Museum Art collection.

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Old Dog (2015). Colour pencils on Fabriano paper, 112 x 164 cm. Artist’s collection.

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Sweeper (2015). Series of 6 photographs on Fuji film paper, 39,6 x 41,6 cm. Performance with broom on dirt road, Richmond. Pinhole photographs with SLR camera. Artist’s collection.

28 Bruscum II (2015). Series of 6 photographs on Fujifilm paper, 39,6 x 41,6 cm. Performance in deserted beachhouse, Kinibay, Port Elizabeth, chair and plant juice. Photo credit: Jaco Spies: Private collection. 29

AzaniAinazA (2016). Digital recombination on acid-free cotton paper. 64,5 x 47,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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The Brusher’s ‘transworld’ play deck: pictures play (2015-2016). Documentation still from the Web depicting the Brusher’s philatelic art and pinhole photographs with Pinterest images in a Web art constellation. Dimensions variable. Open domain. <https://za.pinterest.com/ allenspies/>

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Spirit-cave (2013). Digital photomontage on Fabriano, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Artist’s collection.

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Blikkiesdorp, Western Cape (2013). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Artist’s collection.

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Evacuee (2013). Digital photomontage on Fabriano, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Richmond: Modern Art Projects & Artist’s collection.

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Deliverance (2011). Animated drawing with pastel on black paper, studio table, pigments, and stones. Dimensions variable. Duration: 1minute, 52 seconds. Artist’s collection.

Slaughter of Bangui (2016). Digital painting and recombination in ‘stampsheet’ format on acid-free cotton paper, 79,5 x 108,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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The incarnation of the putti (2008). Ochre, hematite, anthracite, enamel, and oil on wood panel, 220 x 250 cm. Bloemfontein: Department of Art History and Image Studies, University of the Free State. Photo credit: Stephen F. Collet/ Digipix.

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wielding the lantern...the price of loss... (2016). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 69 x 110 cm. Artist’s collection. Credit: The Eureka Project.

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wielding the lantern I (2015), Performance still, 27,5 x 44 cm. Artist’s collection. Credit: André Rose & The Eureka Project.

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wielding the lantern II (2015), Performance still, 29 x 45 cm. Artist’s collection. Credit: André Rose & The Eureka Project.

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Bird (2015). Colour pencils on Fabriano paper, 70,5 x 95,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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The far sides (2014). Pencil on Fabriano, interactive magnetic component and printed photographs, Mounted behind and displayed on Perspex, 58,5 x 82,5 cm & 59,5 x 84,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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The prison house of languages and forms (2015) Conceptual photographs on acid-free cotton paper, 60 x 35 cm x 2. Artist’s collection.

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The Island (2009). Analogue interactive installation with Lucifern Cold Green, enamels and black pigment on canvas and board. Floor space, 366 x 244 cm; painting, 162 x 115 cm.

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Deliverance I (2011). Drawing for projection, pastel on black paper, 99 x 120 cm. Artist’s collection.

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Deliverance II, still (2011). Drawing for projection, 99 x 120 cm. Dimensions variable. Private collection.

10 Blue (2014-2015). Photographic still, 130 x 88 cm. From video performance, Blue. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen. 11 Blue (2014-2015). Photographic still, 130 x 90 cm. From video performance, Blue. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen. 12

Blue (2014-2015). Performance piece video, Blue. Duration: 2 minutes. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen.

13 Scarab (2014). Colour pencils on paper, 57 x 42,5 cm. Artist’s collection. 14

Scarab II (2014). Colour pencils on paper, 57 x 42,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

15 Play spectres II (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation, guest room at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, magnetic wand, the Brusher’s slacks. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 16

Play spectres III (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation, guestroom, Modern Art Projects, Richmond, American Dollars printed on toilet paper from Spar Food Store, Richmond. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection.

17 Play spectres IV (2015). Photograph on acid-free cotton paper. [Series of 5 prints]. Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s scarf. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 18 Play spectres V (2015). Photograph on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Documentation of interactive wardrobe installation, guestroom, Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s scarf. 19 Play spectres I (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s t-shirt. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 20

House I (2013). Pinhole photograph taken with SLR camera, on Fujifilm paper, 39 x 53,5 cm. Artist’s collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies.

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House II (2015). Pinhole photograph taken with SLR camera, Lamda print, 115 x 156 cm. Private collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies.

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Turnstone (2015). Colour pencils, ink, and collage on limestone paper, 120 x 165 cm. Artist’s collection.

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The Brusher’s manifesto: on artists-hackers and plagiarists (2016). Ink on Arches, two sheets, 57 x 38 cm each. Artist’s collection.

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The Brusher’s spagyric: a ludic list (2016). Ink on Arches, two sheets, 57 x 38, 5 cm each. Artist’s collection.

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The Turning (2016). Installation with Pitmanite shorthand dictionary and course books, ink pots, ink pens, video demonstrating stenographic speed by Mark Grandjean (1928), family photographs and a writing table with chair. Dimensions variable. Artist’s collection.

40 Telam texere et retexere (2014). Vintage velvet coat with machine and handcrafted embroidery, a play coin and wax. Dimensions variable. Artist’s collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies. 41

Solar plexis (2013-2015). Animation with intermedia, video and photomontage components. Duration: 4 minutes. Artist’s collection.

42

Black Tipharet (2012). Ink jet print on cotton paper, 76,5 x 116 cm. Film still, and photomontage for projection, from the animation Solar plexis (2013-2015). Artist’s collection.

43 Solar plexis (2014). Photographic still from animation Solar plexis, 76,5 x 116 cm. (2013-2015). Artist’s collection. 44 Imaginarium (2010-2016). Interactive multimedia shelf installation consisting of object constellations with ‘officially weeded’ UFS library books, interactive lantern, beach-combed flotsam, scale, coins, tins, bell jars, etc. Dimensions variable. Artist’s collection. 45

The Brusher versus ‘real’ 3D (2013-2016). 3D ocular glasses, compressed cardboard, paints and ash, 195 x 128,5 x 56 cm. Artist’s collection

46

Bruscum I (2014). Series of 2 photographs on Fujifilm paper, 50 x 40 cm x 2. Performance in deserted beach house, Kinibay, Port Elizabeth. Photo credit: Jaco Spies. Artist’s collection.

47* Fallen angel (2013). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 20 x 35,5 cm. Artist’s collection. 48* Anene Booysen (2013). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 20 x 35,5 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Artist’s collection. 49* Black Tipharet (2014). Gouache painting on Fabriano , 70,5 x 100 cm. Painting for projection, from the animation Solar plexis (2013-2015). Artist’s collection. *Nrs. 47-49 are exhibited, but are not represented in the catalogue.

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EXILE ISLAND 1. Exile island (2011-2015). Digital interactive landing page and extracts from the web artwork. Intermedia and animated Web artwork. Open domain. Credit: Gilbert Gibson. <http://janineallen.co.za/bannelingseiland>. [cursor icon]

Exile Island is an art website offering a collection of South African stories, poems and intermedia art tied to shipwrecks, seafarers and sea creatures, with the intent to test and play with feedback flows in South African liquid conditions. The landing page of the Web artwork Exile Island (2011-) consists of a variety of animated interactive mix between Morse codes and HTML superimposed on a stop-motion animation of a turbulent sea. This animation and the artwork’s linkages of extended time-space narratives infer, as quoted in the striking film Cloud Atlas (2012), that the ocean as a multitude of drops, all matter, which, even on a Nano-level are connected, in motion and capable of creating positive or negative change. An interactive site map or index page depicts a rocky South African outline map, disjointed from the African continent, and created from crumbled chalk suggesting an island surrounded by seas. The central attribute is the map outline’s pareidolia phenomenon. When a viewerparticipant clicks on the map, it simultaneously expands, turns upside down, and enlarges to resonate a profiled human skull with an eye socket replacing the kingdom of Lesotho. The map rotates into a south-to-north position unconventional in world maps. The strategy has several aims: to disjoint the viewer from the traditionally schematized north-up south-down map, to propose that South Africa’s apartheid legacy evolved into a current schizophrenic island perspective in relation to the rest of Africa (and towards the South African peoples); and to introduce a tragic, destructive state. The map created offers a chalky vision, an innuendo to textual and image supplementations to ‘come’ when viewers further click on a range of Flash-animated kinetic chalk-carved boats, some shipwrecked or in the process of shipwrecking, while one carved boat sails aimlessly, tracing a life-death game. The narrative forms part of the Brusher’s web artwork Exile Island (2011-), and was written by the Brusher and the poet Gilbert Gibson.

Opposite page, bottom: 2. Exile island (2011). Digital recombination with carved boats, South African outline map, chalk and black paper printed on acid-free cotton based paper, 58 x 82 cm. Artist’s collection.

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SEE EMILY PLAY See Emily play is a re-appropriation of an Anglo-Boer (South African) War photographic book catalogue entitled, Suffering of war: a photographic portrayal of the suffering in the Anglo-Boer War (2003) by Louis Changuion, Frik Jacobs, and Paul Alberts. The full, newly printed title, See Emily play: catastrophic games, black light, and shattering pain alludes to capitalist power mongering, Anglo-Boer War photography’s conflicting material transpositions and the shattering pain of trans-generational trauma. The catalogue’s printed war photographs are juxtaposed or replaced with digital painting and photomontage depicting predominantly South African apartheid and post-apartheid conflicts. The original catalogue title is under erasure and re-inscribed with the artwork’s new-fangled, embossed and printed title. In a similar vein the original catalogue texts, captions and some photographs are hand-edited or deleted by the Brusher and viewer-participants. Intersectional socio-political and gender addressing images, catchphrases, comments or poems playing off historic events with current events are added. Syd Barret’s early song See Emily play analogising a relationship between the lusory attitude and techno-critical awareness, inspired the Brusher. Thus, in the hermeneutical circle the artist’s projected splitting into a spectral role irrupts into play abundance against existing and past dispositifs. Thus in See Emily play, Hobhouse is an avataric guide for the ludent artist-player in opposing war games and on-going violence against women. Hobhouse’s portrait is never included. Her presence becomes manifest in relationships between the re-appropriated cover, images and layered texts, and Hobhouse's 1913 commemoration speech used as the catalogue finale. Hobhouse’s specter warns viewer-participants of the effects of selective ‘morality’ by returning viewers to the principles she proposes in her full speech criticising racism, capitalist power mongering, and ethnic Afrikaner nationalism. Emily Hobhouse’s See Emily play transports viewers to a confrontation with Hobhouse’s moral values and reverses her intent, which has historically been played down through media. Her icon and speech have been misused in many medial occasions to promote contrary ideals. The speech has since creation been subjected to several complex layered and/ or opposing ideologies and was used for propaganda purposes. The catalogue Suffering of war includes as epilogue an edited version of Hobhouse’s pertinent 1913 commemoration speech for the unveiling of the Anglo-Boer War Women’s Memorial in Bloemfontein, South Africa. This version still subjugates Hobhouse’s female role as political pioneer and creative visionary. Viewer-participants of See Emily play are players who reanimate the artist and Hobhouse’s spectral role. It depends on viewers whether Hobhouse’s speech moves, in a conceptual sense, from the epilogue to the forefront. In See Emily play, viewerparticipants have added comments on the edited speech, further expressing a present-absent interplay. Thus through See Emily play, the Brusher argues that a continuous silent vigilance hovers over Hobhouse’s speech defining it as a ‘stunted speech’.

3. See Emily play (2013). Analogue interactive re-appropriated book catalogue, The suffering of war. A photographic portrayal of the suffering in the Anglo-Boer War by Changuion, L., Jacobs, F. & P. Alberts (2003), with digital photomontages, inscriptions by the Brusher & viewer-participants, pencil, 31,5 x 23,5 x 4 cm. The Anglo Boer-War Museum Art collection.

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4. Spirit-cave (2013). Digital photomontage on Fabriano, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Artist’s collection.

5. Blikkiesdorp, Western Cape (2013). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Artist’s collection.

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EVACUEE In the photomontage, Evacuee (2014), a canvas with perforated holes is scanned, and digitally embedded within a media photograph. The photograph depicts UNHCR tents at a South African refugee camp following episodes of xenophobic violence and rioting on the Olifantsfontein road, Midrand, Johannesburg, South Africa in 2008. Viewed as a photomontage in the book catalogue See Emily play, the comparative contexts of Anglo-Boer War concentration camps and the 2008 South African refugee camps, the photomontage appeals against the disheartening recurrence of human rights infringements. However, the exhibited medium-scale printed and framed photomontage becomes immediate and distinct. The media compositing suggests a view of the refugee camp through a transparent and perforated canvas, tapping into South African feelings of paranoia, suspicion and fear with regards to ‘others’. Thus, the work explores the 2008-2015 xenophobic attacks through the psychological dynamic operating between the economically disempowered locals, considered ‘others’ and their expulsion of ambivalent ‘others’, the immigrant shopkeepers. The shopkeepers are ‘others’, considered as flawed consumers, alien, and perhaps illegal immigrants that are accused of being ‘parasitical’, economically too ‘ambitious’ and ‘affluent’, thus too ‘perfect’ as consumers, and not flawed.

6. Evacuee (2013). Digital photomontage on Fabriano, 88 x 106 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Richmond: Modern Art Projects & Artist’s collection.

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DELIVERANCE 7. Deliverance (2011). Animated drawing with pastel on black paper, studio table, pigments, and stones. Dimensions variable. Duration: 1minute, 52 seconds. Artist’s collection. Deliverance ties the 1552 shipwreck of the first known merchant vessel in South African waters, the Portuguese Soã João. The Soã João shipwreck is intertwined with the 2008-2011 South African service delivery protests through animated fire, porcelain, stone, and layering sounds and tunes. The animation draws from an engravings series depicting the Soã João shipwreck in the famous collection, História trágico-marítima (1735-36) by Bernardo Gomes de Brito and John Boorman’s film Deliverance (1972). Like most colonial cargo ships, the Soã João carried weapons and fine Chinese porcelain. Using an Allen family heirloom, an oval-shaped porcelain meat plate as the ‘enlightening’ signifier of a meat dish and the precious quality of porcelain ware, the plate strangely becomes a metaphor for expectations of deliverance or wealth. The plate reminds the Brusher of her father, a wool merchant whose wool distribution depended on the international shipping industry. Porcelain meat plates signify both food consumption

and wealth, but the drawn plate’s metaphoric potential signifies much more. The animation draws on the network needs of materialistic people, to ‘fill their plates’ with the fluid, transitory and narcissistic ideals of ‘light’ capital. Such wealth is acquired by criminalising the living and working conditions of ordinary people and in its most monstrous forms, endangering lives. In Deliverance the animated moments of shipwreck, the plate, the blazing fire and a rotating stone are played off against a stormy sea’s turbulent waves. The wreckage reaches the sandy sea bottom from which some chthonic snaky creatures rise and dance-like approach the sinking wreck. These frames suggest the wreck’s re-inhabitation of an unpredictable diabolus ex machina whose salvaging and redemptive actions are equally unpredictable. As in the animation’s namesake, the film Deliverance’s finale, the water soon closes up and liquidity may or may not leave a trace of the wreck or the aftermath.

Above: Drawings and photographic stills for projection. Opposite page, top: 8. Deliverance I (2011). Drawing for projection, pastel on black paper, 99 x 120 cm. Artist’s collection. Opposite page, bottom: 9. Deliverance II, still (2011). Drawing for projection, 99 x 120 cm. Dimensions variable. Private collection.

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BLUE 12. Blue (2014-2015). Performance piece video, Blue. Duration: 2 minutes. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen. Blue is a multisensory performance piece with visual, tactile, and auditory components. The performance piece focuses on how a playful painter improvises with local and global valences via strange body movement, hybrid attire, and trimmings. The Brusher references ChineseAfrican commercial policies as neo-imperial or neo-colonial causing strange inter-cultural cooking pots, unforeseen in colonialism. The performance further fantasises painting practise in a contemporary postcolonial South Africa and the influence Chinese consumer culture has on painting and patternmaking. The first-wave post-colonial writer Peter Said (1994: 1-9) used the Muslim ‘Orient’ as sample to demonstrate how the western intellectuals (the Occident) apply their perceptions to ideologically staged Eastern countries by overruling them, producing fictional accounts of them and to ultimately forward the west’s ideological interests. ‘Orientalism’ today is detected in the consumer’s gazing at cheap Chinese consumer junk such as toys, televised manga, kitsch, and clothing. The array of raw materials (iron oxide pigments) and cooked materials interspersing the porcelain shards on the oxide wall touches on the Chinese extraction of African minerals in the mining industry. Besides painting processes, the creation of the miniature apothecary references early 1900’s African travelling quacks’ cobalt coloured poison bottles popularly referred to as ‘opium’ bottles. During the pad’s creation the bottles serendipitously acquired glowing transformative properties – the bottles recall early radios’ vacuum glow tubes suggesting electronic media’s temporality. As in See Emily play (2013), the performance piece mines spectral roles and meanings through an array of texts and textual objects. Of note is the architect-draughtsman William Timlin’s fantasising and watercolour called Bluebeard’s daughter (1922). Timlin elaborates on the disturbing French folktale, La Barbe bleue (1659) by picturing an equally murderous female offspring of the serial killer Bluebeard. Blue’s blue-haired performer takes on a spectral role of Bluebeard’s daughter to personify South African white legacy. The Brusher and the performer allegorically bear the Afrikaner label – being white, Afrikaans, female artists with involuntarily historical and familial ties to a murderous colonial history. The blue oxide and mosaicked wall references this history. Porcelain shards dug from early twentieth century Anglo-Boer (South African) War and Victorian era rubbish dumps were inserted into carved indentations in the wall’s wet plaster. Involuntary ties culminate a bodily awareness inherited from Heidegger’s (Levine 1988: 44) historic Befindlichkeit (G. being here). Lastly, heteroglossia resonates in the performance video’s sound. The fragmented ‘sonic painting’ further suggests the white female body’s relationship with Chinese-African consumerism. Blue is a visual discovery of an artist’s unique, enchanting and contrasting bodily movements, disrupting functional body-machine dynamics, because the performer elaborates intuitively by adding and adjusting movements. Some digital artists’ ludic movements upend automated inter

faces’ bodily requirements. The performer is fellow artist and friend, the late Dot Vermeulen, who lies backwards on a blue painted studio table. She holds a pallet pad (consisting of wood, collage and blue painted bottles referencing a digitiser (a graphics tablet used for digital drawing, painting, and animation)) and a painter’s pallet and a stylus-like stick. A plastic astronomical antenna toy is attached to a stick intuiting a magical stylus-wand. She performs movements akin to traditional painting and digital painting and drawing. While reclining on the table, the performer’s legs move upward, hang, or disappear, integrating with the blue painted oxide wall facing viewers. The aim was to test a technologically nimble-fingered artist’s hand and arm movements when an artist interacts with ‘tools’ reverberating the intermixed characteristics of painting, drawing and digital drawing. Broadly, Blue ventures into the operative complexities between painting and drawing acts, the artist body, South African consumer culture, and computer software interfaces. The Brusher instructed Vermeulen to make spontaneous movements while thinking about digital drawing with the purpose of observing the flow in hand movement. She instinctively slowed down all motion, the deceleration of which is so unlike the speedy movements made while working on a digitiser or keyboard. The artist’s experienced and experimental hand does not abide by supposed pre-determined technological script. The Brusher discovered that movement in digital artmaking resembles an in-between. Thus, digital markmaking demonstrates partial characteristics of typing, writing and traditional painting and drawing. The Brusher’s negation of mass-manufactured oil paint and painting techniques is seen in the dripping and disappearing effects of the blue oxide wall. The range of iron oxide and lime coloured pigmented rocks are indented with porcelain shards in wet plaster. Blue cobalt oxide was painted on a wet plaster wall. The pigmented rocks and porcelain shards are indented in a circular form, evoking a ‘porthole’ to a parallel painting world. The wall itself is a living painting. Water drips from the roof through tiny-drilled holes along the wall’s blue oxide surface and mixes with the pigmented rock, creating an ever-changing staining effect. Blue’s structure rests on bricolage as viewed in the constructed elements, for example, the Brusher’s nails, the pallet pad, and the ambiguous textual references. In Blue the performer’s vertiginous swinging legs and arms are a ‘play of limbs’. The Brusher plays against the flattened effect viewed-read in writing, image-making and speech activities generated by consumer-driven advertising media, touching on so-called embodiment metaphors. The Brusher’s inference is that free vertiginous play has a unique relaying capacity to stifle ripping materialism. Blue recombines through the swinging strangeness and opens up cascading referential worlds, remedying the corruption of tautological and technocratic vision.

Opposite page: 10. Blue (2014-2015). Photographic still, 130 x 88 cm. From video performance, Blue. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen. Next page: 11. Blue (2014-2015). Photographic still, 130 x 90 cm. From video performance, Blue. Artist’s collection. Credit: Dot Vermeulen.

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SCARAB I & II Interactions between world, machines, and artists’ bodies are further symbolised in the visual cues of the transformed artificial nails worn by the performer in Blue. The plastic nails embellished with paint, stickers and feelers have been glued onto the drawing, Scarab (2014). Depicting strange symbols, the nails articulate transformations between body trimmings and computer application icons that may extend body-media awareness. For example, a compass sticker is transformed into an Adobe Illustrator magic tool, a rugby ball into a shield, a trophy into a Holy Grail, and a cricket glove into a ‘cybernetic’ glove. Fake eyelashes were stuck on nail ends and painted to become hairy antennae or feelers, South African beetle craft and the talismanic lapis lazuli scarab pendants discovered in the Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamun’s treasure tomb. Scarab i and ii depict coded ‘technical’ mind-maps drawn in blue colour pencils from which cyborg ‘dung beetles’ arise rolling cyber ‘dung balls’. Both drawings are drawn on the backsides of semi-transparent rail-transport engineering plans and include fictional Max/ MSP/ Jitter tracks and circuit boards. The drawings recall the mind-maps of early twentieth century Futurist artists who aimed to give dimension to flat schemas, thus the ‘dung balls’ are drawn infinity curve-like. Playful imagining acts are suggested in the embellished nails, thus differing from imagineering acts viewed in the technical engineer-style drawing of the cyber bug and ball. Dung beetles’ acclaimed soil-nurturing roles and the talismanic properties as viewed in Egyptian scarab symbolism foretell artists’ unique movements, infinitely changing the flattening effects in so called human-computer interaction.

13. Scarab I (2014). Colour pencils on paper, 57 x 42,5 cm. Artist’s collection. 14. Scarab II (2014). Colour pencils on paper, 57 x 42,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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PLAY SPECTRES A wardrobe installation in a guestroom at Modern Art Projects (MAP), Richmond consisting of 5 drawers, found objects, a magnetic wand, and some clothing Our lives are not our own, writes David Mitchell in his compelling novel, Cloud Atlas (2004), meaning we are inevitably connected to others in kindness and cruelty. Such connectivity spans over a time much greater than our short lifetimes. Further, bonding and disbanding processes unfold between peoples and matter. In the installation, personal items are correlated with salvaged items. Guests and artists visiting the Modern Art and Contemporary Projects (MAP) in Richmond, Northern Cape may discover the ludic installation in a guest room wardrobe, touching and interacting with objects, and joining in a play of forms, hopefully evoking affective and imaginative responses in visitors. Viewers are enticed to use the magnetic wand in one of the drawers as a joystick testing magnetism in an array of hidden magnetic sensitive objects. The life game is played in a universe intended for enchanting play and creativity. On the flipside, play is ambiguous, as uncertain catastrophic forces beyond our control play humans. Our lives are bound to the negative of industry, seen in the range of consumer leftovers used in the constellation; the bottle necks salvaged from the town’s historic rubbish dump, the printed 100 Dollar notes, on toilet paper rolls and sold to impoverished locals in a Richmond supermarket, and the artist’s bargain bought clothing as ground. The shivering spectral conflicts in play and consumerism manifest when the ghostly installation is encountered in a presumably empty guestroom wardrobe. The installation recalls Derrida’s book Spectres of Marx, where Derrida references Marx and Engels’ statement that “a spectre is haunting Europe”, alluding to the communist spectre haunting the western capitalist society where freedom is erroneously celebrated when atrocious human rights violations are rife.

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15. Play spectres II (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation, guest room at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, magnetic wand, the Brusher’s slacks. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 19. Play spectres I (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s t-shirt. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 17. Play spectres IV (2015). Photograph on acidfree cotton paper. [Series of 5 prints]. Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation at Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s scarf. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection. 18. Play spectres V (2015). Photograph on acidfree cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. [Series of 5 prints]. Documentation of interactive wardrobe installation, guestroom, Modern Art Projects, Richmond, scavenged objects from Richmond historic garbage dump, the Brusher’s scarf. 16. Play spectres III (2015). Photograph of interactive wardrobe installation, guestroom, Modern Art Projects, Richmond, American Dollars printed on toilet paper from Spar Food Store, Richmond. Printed on acid-free cotton paper, 63 x 63 cm. Artist’s collection.

Modern art projects(Map) -South Africa


‘THE TURNSTONE’ SERIES (HOUSE I, HOUSE II, THE TURNSTONE, AND THE TURNING) Works on display from the ‘The turnstone’ series are pinhole photographs documenting a performance, a drawing of a wading bird called a ‘turnstone’, and a stenographic installation. In the liquid and software capitalist world, there are no terrae firma (solid grounds), only strange tides. The Brusher is searching for the will-o’-the-wisp in the intertidal zone, where glinting stones are upturned to discover what’s underneath and flotsam is bricolaged into unforeseen things. In ‘The turnstone’ series, the Brusher is likened to a beachcomber (D. strandjutter), a seal, and a wading bird that recombines low-tech, analog or redundant technologies and personal life stories in playful performative activities. In House I & House II, the Brusher’s performance contrasts with the South African beachfront property, which may be interpreted as a historic spillover of hard capitalism and colonialism. House I and House II were photographed at Laurie’s Bay, Eastern Cape. The focal point of this derelict fishermen’s village is a small cove with a fully furnished, but deserted hand-built, castle-shaped house built on the main beachfront site, seen in the pinhole photographs. For decades a myth circulated that the child of the beach house’s owner had drowned in the adjacent pool and that he had attempted to save the child by cutting open the breathless child’s chest. The Brusher played as youngster in the proclaimed ‘ghost’ house and was a guide accompanying anybody interested on nocturnal visits there. In the Christmas season, the Brusher and her sisters still make regular excursions to the site. While researching, the Brusher serendipitously discovered an online-book, The Turnstone (2002), written by the world-renowned Irish health specialist, Dr Geoffrey Dean. The Brusher read in this book that Dean owned the Laurie’s Bay beach house. He further wrote of his misfortune of his child’s drowning and his now bizarre medical attempt to save her life. Trips to the ‘ghost house’ became an escape and refuge for the Allen sisters. While playing there, the Allen sisters dealt with their own misfortunes, overshadowed by the dramatic loss of their mother who was a contemporary of Dean. In Turnstone, the Brusher

adopted Dr Dean’s turnstone metaphor foretold by transforming a migratory wading bird called a ruddy turnstone into a cyber-bird by using ink and colour pencils on limestone paper. With its strong beak, the scavenger-bird turns stones, while searching for food. For the Brusher the ruddy turnstone represents artists’ dynamic visionary roles as potential discoverers searching for the ‘the will-o’-the-wisp’. In House II (2015), the Brusher assumes a shale rock’s shape by lying extremely still in wavy water. The camera position is somewhere deeper at sea, thus viewers view the rocky Brusher as an interlocutor between them and Dean’s beachfront property. The turnstone series is inspired by tales, the site’s environmental elements and life stories. In House I and House II for example, the Brusher references the Irish folk tale of shape-shifting seal-women (selkies) who are captured by fisherman who stole their sealskins and took them for wives. Through admirable dexterity or serendipitous discovery, the seal-wives steal back their hidden sealskins, and then abandoned their husbands and children to return to the sea. Laurie’s Bay is an intertidal zone and a Brusher’s performance location where postcolonial ‘bevindlichkeit’ is prospected. The installation, The turning (page 21) is a creative extension of the works discussed here, and is influenced by the Brusher’s mother and her fluency in shorthand. She is represented through the stenographic skill she displayed in her life, but the installation re-enchants shorthand within a pondering visionary realm slowing down bodily and mental actions, which opposes shorthand and stenotype’s original purpose which is to speed up a documentation process. The force fields shaping ‘The turnstone’ series reveal through environmental, personal and technological conditions, survivors’ tales of coping, conceptions of terra firma, or what remains of embattled survivors. The unswerving connection to a challenging environment and the re-enchantment of that environment suggest a diving into the wreck.

21. House II (2013). Pinhole photograph taken SLR on Fujifilm paper, 39 x 53,5 cm. Artist’s collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies. 20. House I (2015). Pinhole photograph taken with SLR camera, Lamda print, 115 x 156 cm. Private collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies. 22. Turnstone (2015). Colour pencils, ink, and collage on limestone paper, 120 x 165 cm. Artist’s collection.

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23. The Brusher’s manifesto: on artists-hackers and plagiarists (2016). Ink on Arches, two sheets, 57 x 38 cm each. Artist’s collection.

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Top of page: 24. The Brusher’s spagyric: a ludic list (2016). Ink on Arches, two sheets, 57 x 38, 5 cm each. Artist’s collection. Middle of page: 25. The Turning (2016). Installation with Pitmanite shorthand dictionary and course books, ink pots, ink pens, video demonstrating stenographic speed by Mark Grandjean (1928), family photographs and a writing table with chair. Dimensions variable. Artist’s collection.

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OLD DOG The schematic drawing conceptualises global political theatre by depicting the Security Council room of the UN building, New York. Superimposed and integrated is the enlarged portrait of a dog past its prime. Photographic and textual references were gathered at the highly secured UN building. The drawing contains futuristic qualities – the walls are replaced with a pseudo-architectural, schematic drawing and the roof lights appear like UFOs. The dog and the interior are constructed of coded marks inspired by electrical engineering blueprints, the design spaces (patches) of the application Max/MSP/Jitter, and holographs. The ‘old dog without a bite’ satirises the Security Council. Overshadowed by the veto rights of superpowers, the Council struggles to maintain the ideal of international peace and security. The drawing emphasizes the UN’s overwhelmingly bureaucratic and mediatised character, an undreamed-of situation, which are not idealised in the UN peacekeeping ideal of ‘working for security, justice and disarmament’. 22

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26. Old Dog (2015). Colour pencils on Fabriano paper, 112 x 164 cm. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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27. Sweeper (2015). Series of 6 photographs on Fuji film paper, 39,6 x 41,6 cm. Performance with broom on dirt road, Richmond. Pinhole photographs with SLR camera. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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28. Bruscum II (2015). Series of 6 photographs on Fujifilm paper, 39,6 x 41,6 cm. Performance in deserted beachhouse, Kinibay, Port Elizabeth, chair and plant juice. Photo credit: Jaco Spies: Private collection.

BRUSCUM I & II In the Brusher’s performance series, Bruscum (2014-2015) documented in pinhole photography, the Brusher paints with plant juice on an inner wall of an abandoned beach house by rolling and scrubbing bush onto a ruinous wall. The Brusher wears a hair weave and sunscreen, and balances on a plastic oil container, and a chair resembling Van Gogh’s famous chair. Hair weaves are the hair extensions, consisting of natural straight hair, marketed among South African women. Since the early Renaissance, the scrutinised human hair industry exploits poor women to beautify the consumer. However, hair weaves symbolise Frantz Fanon’s (2008: 2-3, 177-178) critique of black people assimilating white, bourgeois culture, as for example hair-grooming styles. The practice affirms the pervasive desire for colonial perceptions of beauty, making black women become pseudo-white women, while indigenous cultural practices are mortified. However, Fanon’s critique of colonial gazes of black people maintains a critique on white people too. In the performance, Fanon’s white mask is placed back onto a white face, suggesting than an essentialist critique may render all white people as facsimiles of the colonial gaze. In Bruscum II, the Brusher re-enchants these proposed ‘facsimiles’ into the vestiges of sacred play. The sunscreen suggests a white ursubstance, a foetal tissue transforming to any type of body cell. The performance tests how vertiginous play and ritual, brushing as spinning and balancing movements and transformed politicised attire, can converge into sacred play.

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AZANIAINAZA In this particular work, design-based recombination rather than photographic recombination is emphasized. Presenting a word play similar to a wordsearch game with the toponym Azania, the work replicates the background of the carmine coloured print characteristic of early-tomid-twentieth century ‘politicised’ postage stamps. The recombined visual elements are sourced from the image driven Web application Pinterest where images endlessly recycle in prescribed interactive feedback loops, while the work’s wordplay is visually enhanced by an open source Sans serif font called ‘Propaganda’. The wordplay reveals other words, for example ‘zzzz’, the onomatopoeia for snoring, and the word ‘Nazi’. The work is primarily designed for reproducibility and foregrounds the facsimile, while the wordplay evokes utopian desires, where, however, Fascism and apathy lurk within. Forming part of The Brusher’s transworld play deck: pictures play, which is an interactive meta picture play deck on Pinterest.com, AzaniAinazA has been uploaded to circulate in Pinterest’s feedback loops. [See URL: https://za.pinterest.com/allenspies/]

29. AzaniAinazA (2016). Digital recombination on acid-free cotton paper. 64,5 x 47,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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30. The Brusher’s ‘transworld’ play deck: pictures play (2015-2016). Documentation still from the Web depicting the Brusher’s philatelic art and pinhole photographs with Pinterest images in a Web art constellation. Dimensions variable. Open domain. <https://za.pinterest.com/allenspies/>


31. Slaughter of Bangui (2016). Digital painting and recombination in ‘stampsheet’ format on acid-free cotton paper, 79,5 x 108,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

INCARNATION OF THE PUTTI In the paintings, The incarnation of the putti (2008) the Brusher engaged in dialectical painting processes regarding to an emasculated young South African democracy. These are the immortalized European painting history, the oxygenized and eroded Southern African San rock painting and the glittering hematite applied on Tswana peoples. Thus, the painting touches on dialectic concepts such as relevance/irrelevance, ruination/transcendence, automation/authenticity, and disenchantment/re-enchantment. Through natural and synthetic pigments, Incarnation of the putti provokes perceptions of ‘schizophrenic’ painting histories where western art history is opposed to South African art history. The practise of painting was further challenged by the clearance of perceived redundant or incongruous knowledge histories in favour of perceived appropriate knowledge. This is envisioned in fallen putti, bereft floating, traditional depth, flesh tones in light and shadow, the work represents an emasculated, but infantine society. The incarnation of the putti consists of pigment prepared from hematite, yellow and orange ochre, and anthracite on white enamel primed board. The putti’s overlapping, fallen and bleached postures are accentuated through the pigment’s stain and drip effect giving the impression that ancient painterly knowledge is exchanged for synthetic and standardised processes. 32. The incarnation of the putti (2008). Ochre, hematite, anthracite, enamel, and oil on wood panel, 220 x 250 cm. Bloemfontein: Department of Art History and Image Studies, University of the Free State. Photo credit: Stephen F. Collet/ Digipix.

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EUREKA CENTRE FOLD AND TEXT WITH TEXT

...wielding the lantern ...the price of loss In this performance piece, the cloaked Brusher appears ‘haggy’, and swings a heavy bearing mine lantern in front of the De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd’s head office, 36 Stockdale Street in Kimberley city, previously owned by the mining magnate Cecil John Rhodes. The piece foreshadows the Brusher’s further creative interventions in the Northern Cape’s diamond mining industry. The performance forms part of an overarching interdisciplinary project called ‘Eureka’, where the Brusher participates with the South African community health specialist, Dr. André Rose. The project’s research aim is to explore migration patterns and related physical (more specifically the acquirement of silicosis and tuberculosis) and psychological health issues of legal and illegal mineworkers (zamas) who mined and are mining in Northern Cape diamond mines. In the broadest sense, the project prospects how mining shaped the South African psyche. wielding the lantern is a presage: the Brusher reveals the dwindling relationship between impoverished communities and the gigantic Northern Cape diamond mining industries through movement. The warning is embodied in an uncanny swinging and swaggering posture, that of a foolish woman. The performance evoked uncertainty and suspicion in the public, but also played the Brusher who had morphed into the unintended stereotype of a beldam. Suspicion between the performer and the public is multi-directional. But as the performance reception shifted from the passer-by (pedestrians, drivers and De Beers employees) to the art appreciator looking at the performance photographs, the posture is noticed as comic and risible.

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EUREKA CENTRE FOLD AND TEXT WITH TEXT

33. ...wielding the lantern ...the price of loss (2016). Digital photomontage on acid-free cotton paper, 69 x 110 cm. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection. Credit: The Eureka Project.

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34. wielding the lantern I (2015), Performance still, 27,5 x 44 cm. Artist’s collection. Credit: André Rose & The Eureka Project. 35. wielding the lantern III (2015), Performance still, 28,5 x 45 cm. Artist’s collection. Credits: André Rose & The Eureka Project.

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36. Bird (2015). Colour pencils on Fabriano paper, 70,5 x 95,5 cm. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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THE FAR SIDES A central aspect of paleo-environmentalism is how living creatures are the processing media of environments. A paleo-environmentalist may detect stable silica which keeps the ancient environmental structures existing in animals’ teeth, grass or soil specimens. Silica contains clues of the earth’s environment, from approximately a million years ago. ‘Paleo’ means ancient or far away time. The question proposed is: How do the destructive components of today’s technologically-orientated world relate to the reconstruction of past environments and its influence on future earth? Paleo-environmentalism gives a unique opportunity to contemplate on ‘time past’, and ‘time future’ or what the Brusher phrases as ‘the far sides’. Time, like the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche perceived, is not just a circle or a feedback loop where past and future meet. Nietzsche saw the moment as a split-path (Ger. scheidewege) where time is the prospecting source of meaning. Time is not just a form and the moment is not just a point in time, but time is a fruitful moment. To elaborate from Nietzsche’s thought, time is the prospective content, just as the form of an artwork is the content processed by viewers. The interactive work, The far sides suggests alternative ‘time maps’ prospecting abundant playful moments. Viewers can move magnetic circles into unforeseen constellations, reminiscing on petri dishes, electro magnetic microscopes, the glass caps of empty watches, the play of wind-blown grass or the apparent dancing movements of UFOs. In these fertile moments when interacting with the interactive drawing or ‘time map’, the ‘far sides’ meet intimately. The purpose is not to contemplate on time as a distant thing, or a mechanical measurement, but as a property in humans. The soil, teeth and the grass as transporters of the telltale silica, may give humans a deeper understanding of time. When we look at space and we see Mars’ dust storms, we look into the past, but we often perceive such happenings as future space. On the contrary, the more the Brusher reflects on paleo-environmentalism and images, the less the Brusher is aware of the past. The Brusher is concerned with earth’s future and the role humans may or may not have. Paleo-environmentalists may have a similar ‘timewarping’ experience when they look at the magnified properties of silica through a microscope. Each person may re-energise their individual comprehension of time and become co-artists or paleo-environmentalists. Playfulness touching on the imaginary and the scientific may protect humans of infertile time that diminishes into nothing. 37. The far sides (2014). Pencil on Fabriano, interactive magnetic component and printed photographs. Mounted behind and displayed on Perspex, 58,5 x 82,5 cm & 59,5 x 84,5 cm. Artist’s collection.

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THE PRISON HOUSE OF LANGUAGES AND FORMS The Brusher had chain-stitched influential artists’ and philosophers’ names starting with B (Benjamin, Bakhtin, Brecht, etc.) as their writing or artmaking and attitude towards icons and idols at times may correspond with Bruno Latour’s classification of ‘B’-people: artists and viewers who are iconophiliacs and iconophobics. They aim not to single out fixed images like pictures, statues and photographs, etc. as icons, nor to foredoom all images, but resist the freezeframing of images and, in doing so, recognise the mediating power of moving images. Latour views the double bind of both loving and being dependent on active images, but having a continuous desire to destroy them, as an ambiguity as seen in his appropriation of the neologism ‘iconoclash’. The names form a personalised play deck of proposed ‘B’-people and are hung in two contexts, a mossy tree, and the University of the Free State’s barbed wire fence securing ‘free thinking’ in the academic ‘playground’ in a time where South African universities’ language, race and socio-economic policies are challenged. The wording is depicted in a free-hand font observed in Boer prisoner of war handicrafts during their stationing on St Helena Island during the Anglo-Boer (South African) War. The play-deck is somewhat compromised and betrays a certain dependence on the ‘loom’ of male European intellectual writing. Authors like Benjamin and Brecht contribute to the Brusher’s ambivalent ludic and female identity, but enforce the Brusher’s subaltern position. For subaltern thinkers, these authors, no matter the depth of their contributions, are perceived as either inapposite, having a blindness towards racial and gender discrimination and promoting a superiority which is detrimental to the subaltern’s economically compromised contributions. Some artists believe philosophy colonises art theory and practise while the complex processes of tacit learning are ignored. On the one hand, the work celebrates these thinkers (the mossy tree analogy), but on the other, it problematizes their position in the subaltern contexts (the barbed wire analogy). 38. The prison house of languages and forms (2015) Conceptual photographs on acid-free cotton paper, 60 x 35 cm x 2. Artist’s collection.

39. The Island (2009). Analogue interactive installation with Lucifern Cold Green, enamels and black pigment on canvas and board. Floor space, 366 x 244 cm; painting, 162 x 115 cm. The Island is unfortunately not available for this exhibition, but has been included in the catalogue, because the installation aligns with other works presented in the exhibition, for example Incarnation of the putti, Blue, Blikkiesdorp, Spirit-cave and Evacuee.

THE ISLAND The Island explores colour shifting and picture-changing possibilities through the analogue interactivity and luminescent synthetic glow paint. The island explores the UFS as a historic Afrikaner university functioning as an island of racism. The interactive installation is inspired by the UFS/ Reitz hostel race discrimination incident that depicted white male students discriminating against older black cleaners in a hostel-integration ‘ritual’. The incident has had profound implications for most South African universities, as many are now labelled as islands of racism. The work resists the game of exclusion and the accompanying catastrophic and shattering pain in a colonial/ postcolonial paradigm. The Brusher has experimented with phosphor paint, developed by the UFS head of Physics, Prof. Hendrik Swart. The paint is environmentally

friendly since its “cold” green composition does not use energy to reflect a large amount of light. The Brusher applied the phosphor paint on the top and inside the painting and on the floor space. The viewer can physically interact by standing on two engraved circles on the floor space. This action deactivates studio lights and reveals a spatial image painted in fluorescent, light activating phosphor. Interactive engagement with the painting enables a transmutation process between viewer and painting causing an alchemy inspired awakening that in turn evokes a spiritual and affective response between viewer and painting. During this process, the floor space and circles fall away into a painted milky way playing on the disappearance of islands.

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Above & Cover pages: 40. Telam texere et retexere (2014). Vintage velvet coat with machine and handcrafted embroidery, a play coin and wax. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection. Photo credit: Jaco Spies.

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Above: 42. Black Tipharet (2012). Ink jet print on cotton paper, 76,5 x 116 cm. Film still, and photomontage for projection, from the animation Solar plexis (2013-2015). Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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SOLAR PLEXIS 41. Solar plexis (2013-2015). Animation with intermedia, video and photomontage components. Duration: minutes. Artist’s collection. In the animation, the Brusher plays off a macrocosmic phenomenon, the solar eclipse with an imaginary microcosmic incident, a South African protest against Shell Oil Company’s hydraulic fracturing (fracking) bid and the toxic consequences anticipated. The animation references Vincent Van Gogh’s, The sower (1888), where the famous painter prospected the sun as a growth symbol. The animation includes a performance where the Brusher enacts sow-actions in a landscape resembling Van Gogh’s. The animation comments on the Shell Oil Company’s use of the sun logo, their funding of a major Van Gogh travelling exhibition in the 1990’s, and their invasive blitzkrieg method of gas fracturing. Their capitalist worldview opposes Van Gogh’s pastoral sensibility. The animated macrocosmic solar eclipse switches to the microcosmic protest scenes with the assistance of a Pascal quote and sonic painting. The sonic painting consists of collaged ‘fracking’ sounds, crow cries, and analogue and digitally generated violin sounds jammed by the artist Dot Vermeulen and The Brusher. The animation ends with The sower’s appropriated sun setting completely, an iconoclastic temporal gesture, thus suspending Van Gogh’s timeless suspended sunset. These scenes have been created by a tinkering with digitally stored photographs of the Brusher’s Solar eclipse (2013) gouache painting series, and Internet stock imagery of The sower. Both these works aim to touch the affective viewer through multi-sensory bodily experience. 43. Solar plexis (2014). Photographic stills from animation Solar plexis, 76,5 x 116 cm. (2013-2015). Artist’s collection.

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44. Imaginarium (2010-2016). Interactive multimedia shelf installation consisting of object constellations with officially weeded UFS library books, interactive lantern, beach-combed flotsam, scale, coins, tins, bell jars etc. Dimensions variable. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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THE BRUSHER VERSUS ‘REAL’ 3D 45. The Brusher versus ‘real’ 3D (2013-2016). 3D ocular glasses, compressed cardboard, paints and ash, 195 x 128,5 x 56 cm. Artist’s collection. The extreme relationship between free play (padia) and rule-based play (ludus) is induced in the Brusher’s filmic installation The brusher versus ‘real’ 3D (2013-2015). The installation consists of mass-manufactured plastic 3D ocular glasses covered with multidirectional, painted, and stencilled artwriting consisting of re-appropriated quotes and idiosyncratic narratives. The Brusher prospected travelling concepts through self-made rules, for example, only using words allowing multidirectional quotes and sentences and installing the glasses in groups according to subthemes. On the other hand, free play manifests in the popped-up buzzwords initiating multidirectional writing, the expressive paint splatter, and the random range of stencilled font types. The brusher versus ‘real’ 3D explores bodily experience through the relationship between bodies and film technologies. This exploration is a form of ‘unplaying’ the movie house and ‘reskinning’ the 3D concept. The work interrogates the illusion of the real, generated by stereoscopic 3D film technology. The installation does not make a case against 3D film technology, but rather argues against viewers, who un-critically perceive technological effects. Movie houses housing 3D films are public spaces of ‘domesticity’ where viewing mechanisms are projected on the passive viewers. The Brusher’s view is that 3D film technology does not easily release an authentic embodied experience or heighten artistic and conceptual participation (depth perception!). Some production companies railroad 3D films for consumers (Kermode 2012: online), luring them to movie houses during recessions. Stereoscopic imagery (and

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surround sound) enhances human’s multi-sensory perception aiming to give weight to the viewermovie object relationship. Moving objects float or shoot towards viewers, for example being hit by satellite debris in Alfonso Cauron’s film, Gravity (2013). Yet, the result is a false sense of being more immersive than 2D films, writes noted film critic Mark Kermode. Counteracting bodily passivity, The brusher versus ‘real’ 3D rummages the body-mind complex by proposing the wearing and touching of painterly revamped stereoscopic eyewear while reflecting on the intentions of multi-directional artwriting. The multidirectional artwriting is inspired by non-linear hypermedia texts and touches on the hypertext-fiction genre. When the spectacles’ black and white paint negates the spectacles’ stereoscopic capabilities, the installation metaphorises the potential play between eyewear metaphors to charge the play between efficiency and deficiency, concealing and revealing, blindness and insight. This installation’s ocular play rests on the tropes of blackened sunglasses worn by protectors of state secrets, the blackened glasses concealing anatomical and ocular deficiency in the blind and the specific eye wear label, ‘Wayfarer’ and its slick branding ideology. Wayfarer branding contrasts with Nietzsche’s memorable quote suggesting that life is dangerous wayfaring and foretelling ‘against the grain’ movements. These tropes are upended when the blackened glasses direct the gaze inward for viewers to ‘see the unseen’ while undertaking pondering travels through cryptic multi-directional riddles.


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46. Bruscum I (2014). Series of 2 photographs on Fujifilm paper, 50 x 40 cm x 2. Performance in deserted beach house, Kinibay, Port Elizabeth. Photo credit: Jaco Spies. Artistâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s collection.

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ABBREVIATED BIOGRAPHIA Janine Allen (The Brusher) is a painter, intermedia artist and image philosopher who lectures in the Department of Fine Arts at the University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa. In 2002, she became a laureate of the Unesco-Ashberg Residencies for Artists Program, attending the Sacatar Foundation in Bahia, Brazil. In 2010 she received an audience award at the South African 2010 Spier Contemporary Biennale, Cape Town. In 2012 she was invited to present her on-going intermedia art and Ph.D. project, The Visionary Brusher Game, to the Amaze/ Interact international play and games conference in Johannesburg. In 2013 she was the guest curator of the exhibition entitled, Re-envisioning the Anglo Boer War, which probed the war’s influence on the shaping of apartheid and post-apartheid South Africa. Recent international exhibitions include 2014-2016 South Africa 10 X 15 @SA [Pratt Institute of Brooklyn, New York, USA (2016), Ca’ dei Carraresi, Treviso Italy (2014), Museo Bilotti, Rome, Italy (2015) & Venice Biennale, Venice (2015)], Dialogues (2012) Senate Hall (Orangerie), Paris France. In 2016, she has participated in the group exhibition, Performing wo(man) at Oliewenhuis Art Museum and NWU Gallery, NWU, Potchefstroom. Her work is represented in the Luciano Benetton Collection, Oliewenhuis Art Museum, Telkom, ABSA, UFS, The Anglo Boer-War Museum Collection, SMAC Galleries and Modern Art Projects.

CREDITS PhD. Fine Arts (Supervisors)

Editing

Prof. Dirk van den Berg, Department of Art History and Image Studies Prof. Willem Boshoff, Department Fine Arts, UFS

Manuela Lovisa

[Sincere thanks to the supervisors for the precious hours spent in playful activity.]

Rick Nuttal

Opening speaker Prof. Naòmi Morgan

The family Jaco Spies

Indigo Spies

Ethan-River Spies

Mary Pitso

[Special thanks to the Brusher’s soul mate, Jaco Spies] Jan Allen • Johanna Allen • Maryna Spies • Christa Allen Hermien Liebenberg • Amanda Werner • Fransie Jacobs • Freda Harmse Marcelle Simpson • Johann Werner • Jan-Louis Werner Tiaan Liebenberg

The Departments of Fine Arts, UFS Ben Botma (HOD) • Adelheid von Maltitz • Jaco Spies • Dot Vermeulen Johandi du Plessis • Tanya Sarlius-Meyer • Petrus Morata Collin Malapile • The students and alumni [Sincere thanks to Ben Botma.]

Oliewenhuis Art Museum Ester Le Roux (curator) • Karen Marais Piet Sekhuni • Staff members

Linda Wheeler

Sabata Mphafi

Playful participation Gilbert Gibson • André Rose & The Eureka Project • Pauline Gutter Jaco Spies • Dot Vermeulen • Johandi du Plessis Alva Schoch, professor emeritus (geology) Johan Visagie, professor emeritus (philosophy) • The viewer-participants Kafka’s dog (Exile Island website programming) Tsolofelo Noge and the Noge family

Framing of artworks Esré Claasen/ Esré Rame

Department of Art History and Image Studies, UFS Prof. Suzanne Human

Catalogue Designer Johannes Deetlefs/ Silverrocket Creative

Friends André Rose • Julie Scheepers and the playgroup • Liesl Pretorius Therina Brink • Miranda Pieters • Glyndwr Slater • Koos Albertyn Karlien Albertyn • Ntombi Ntakakaze • Bernard Ferreira Anneliese Voight-Peters • Waldo Human

Special thanks to the Vermeulen family for the ethical consent to exhibit the performance piece, Blue

[Sincere thanks to Julie Scheepers]

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Profile for joh deetlefs

THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME by Janine Allen  

This art play deck forms part of an exhibition presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy degree in t...

THE VISIONARY BRUSHER GAME by Janine Allen  

This art play deck forms part of an exhibition presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy degree in t...

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