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should therefore never baulk at intoxication. Loss of memory & inconsequential heedlessness in action are for him the best means of remaining enthusiastic & focused upon the task.

Freezings & Thawings 4

But you look at us with the amusing & ferocious blows we distribute, have we the air of a yet another poor fellow who balances himself on one foot & then the other & makes several discrete trips to the edge of indifferent things waiting for the sunrise, have we the air of a fellow head hanging & defeated in advance by the unbelievable endurance of blue mountains & by the endurance still more unbelievable of the destrucPLASTIC 6 tion of a whole mountain? Oh, glance over here & there is an insect nourished by men at their own expense. they owe it nothing but they fear it. this insect, that loves not wine but prefers blood, would be see at once the shimmering of our silver costumes & capable by the exercise of occult powers, if its legitimate cravings were not satisfied, of swelling to the size of an elephant & crushing men like grain. it is how we empty out the world & how we brandish worth observing how they respect it, how they surround it with canine veneration, how they esteem it above all other animals in creation • lautréamont with agility on all sides at all times mirrors of our prodigious sleight of hand. & it is therefore a world in negative which folds back on itself, a world comically frozen which turns around us & passes kindly hold my D.J. Huppatz John Kinsella in a ring of fire beneath the applause of our regular little hand hold audience. my hand News From Anywhere: Notes on WritCow Wallpaper with smallish haloes... hold my Business art is the step that comes after Art. I started as ing hand hold Translated from the French by Clare Wallace a commercial artist and I want to finish as a business my hand artist—Andy Warhol Bruno Solarik hold my & then went down to the street, that generic street named hand hold after anyone, to search for Vietnamese mint. Against a A Windgust or a Hat Sentient, different, over again, my hand flattened backdrop—replay, pause. Cue to an alleyway— staring at floors—polished wooden boards hold my cobbled bluestone, scattered glass & a noisy metal door. Terrified seamstresses warily hand hold & ceilings; eye-shake nibbling Now present tense: lives structured by syntax (if not peep out the window my hand They look like the three musketeers complete sentences), we are eating Happy Lam brand hold me like zeiss und cyberpunkt; that expressionist Shaven smooth, absent hats and shoes fishcakes, tofu & vegetables in a minty soup. There are D.J. Huppatz artist who says, out of the fat, bean shoots. Each word is a spoon, and our bodies also. out of greyish muck—hack, hack! Coitus leaned out the window and yelled at Death: Folded inside every one of our cells is a 180 centimetre study #4 Rudolf! Rudolf! Where’ve you been? Where do you long molecular sentence comprising 3.1 billion letters. Dogwood stark as winter think I should look for you? It’s been two weeks and The body provides no punctuation. Freeze at another generation for production. each one a father & a mother. not a word from you! becomes as warm as summer— moment: My spoon was a catapult flicking a mushroom heat radiation. he ate radiation. extract a buzz from Death started nervously, but at once pulled himit’s no more complex than that. sliver into the sink, yours part of the mechanism for bees. let me touch it please. a moving thing that is self together. He turned his head toward the Rudolfinum, creating a feedback loop. american. agent red agent yellow agent green agent from whose window Coitus was waving at him, and The yellow background—rare, orange. one or zero. one & two & three. fingerpainting doffed his hat. Rather than make a spectacle of himbut there, as if... behind the clouds. A poet, exiled from the court of Suryavaraman to the facepainting semiperfectworld. by the dawn’s early self before the people filling the street, he pretended Cold, insulated, the lift edge of the Malay penisular, never to see the reliefs of the that Milada was just an acquaintance. He would have light. envelope or encounter? Wat. Across the street, people are laughing hysterically, liked to continue on his way toward Mánes Bridge, going up and down in the new Emmanuelle Pireyre but suddenly caught sight of Sentimentality languidly you don’t know why you’re smiling. Writing is something New Yorker building, Vogue models approaching across it. Death quickly pulled his hat you have taken from them. They know but don’t mind. Freezings & Thawings & other processes wondering why Times Square has devolved. down over his brow, made a detour toward the emThey let you take it. Yours was the pineal ear, hearing to applied to circumstances bankment, and furtively entered the Rudolfinum excess. A furious distillation that ... They’re chipping away There’s no verse left in this: through the rear entrance, possessing a key of course. over there without you as you drift across the strait, mind It is always advisable, during nights of insomnia, to the hook, the look, the butcher’s: unfreeze something or someone. The sound of dropincised, crosshatched with memory lines extending over He consults the map in a frenzy: Yes, muttering to all those elegies and Shelley too. lets falling on the kitchen floor calms the spirit as the the Timor Sea. These words you carry with you will himself under his beard, Letohrad . . . Jirásek’s Trail stirring murmur of conversations, freed of ice, are never be yours. . . . that one interests me . . . OK, the miller says, this Scope, affiliate, fall into accepting recaptured in the darkness after hours of waiting path I’ll buy myself. that divinity brings quality, smoking cigarettes before the open deep freeze. How to use prosthetic organs: tongue lolls in moisture, She observes it all through a hole in a knot of & verbose flights of oratory. Freezing & unfreezing are similarly distressing; the scoops in pools & waits for sensation from outside. wood and can’t keep from laughing. The miller could former however may be repeated indefinitely whereas Fingermuscles work plastic keys, arms & shoulders care less: after five half-liters of rum one doesn’t hear Ethan A. Paquin the latter may only take place once, an unfortunate his own words. tense. Words gather around an idea, break it into disequilibrium which transforms a very amusing game But the laughter rocks the cottage more and more Claustrophobian managable chunks for storage & distribution. The sticky into an alarming conundrum. forcefully. Look: one after another the thatches slide substance on dark sheets is all that remains of our along the roof’s slanted surface. Bretislav comes transubstansiation. The C16th physician Paracelsus: Given six persimmons, one must shelve alone with Freezings & Thawings 2 slowly cantering up on horseback. Now by the cot“What is not a poison? All things are poisons and nothing five asleep, content in redness, weighing sickness in tage’s wall, the breath of his mare glistens on the & yet having climbed up to a vantage point one is without toxicity. Only the dose permits anything not to dark. doorhandle. scrutinises, hand shading the eyes, the laborious be poisonous.” You’ve brought some tools—a chisel, She pulls a measuring stick from her pocket and, mise en scène of circumstances, glimpsing that the brushes & spraycan—now build yourself a wall to write There are lesson plans for air and not air; namely, that link by link, slowly swallows it down. eternal circulation of electricity in a freezer of even the on. rather than succour with dampness, dimness alights highest quality will probably not be sufficient to render Thistles in its fleece, a ram slowly devours candles our frozen product as immutable as an entity floating me and captures, snares the many causes of infirmity. arranged in the grass at the last tram stop. She obLouis Armand through the cosmos on a trajectory of beauty & simPerhaps I shall burn - avatar of kindle - when day’s serves the motley kneesocks. It’s difficult to guess plicity with the bearing of an angel or a mathematical their number as they flash between the trees. The To Pierre Simon, Marquis de Laplace figure. In consequence, crushed by the triumph of girls hurry from their evening lessons in the distant whittled to bedded soundlessness, when red’s an an intelligence which, at a given instant, would know all the inevitable & by the enduring question of condentown like shears cutting a long fat-lined groove along assertion of grateful non-rest. the forces by which nature is animated, & the respective sation, I threw myself again on the nearest sofa, my the axis of a turkey belly. With a rumble coming from situations of all the elements of which it is composed decomposing beetroot on my knees. So it is that one who knows where the belly closes up again so that can no longer see what must be done to save such the shears have to instantly repeat their jaunt until the 1. a door opening & closing & a light going on & a dear object in such a bad condition. Sinking into the hand that has invested them with life is completely Nicole Tomlinson off—their function is not the panacea it spacious & clear scenery, in a distended instant, I exhausted — like in the gruesome fairy tale of the crept into the fields of mossy blue & grey fur where I seems to be—strange interblacksmith who locks Death in the wardrobe and Untitled [Gielard] roamed until the last fresh red drops permeating the ludes, other doors not made to be opened, an then swallows the key. The kneesocks come to a moss had dried, the last sign of the living centre of isolated, un-shaded electric bulb Gielard from Cardiff thinks God stop over a spring. A canary-yellow pair of finely this small & highly burlesque garden star. & so whose filament is about to expire at is left handed textured stockings in black-polished shoes with worndiscouragement impresses itself & one no longer any (given) moment—or a doorstop seems probable, yes for Gielard, out soles glitters under its surface. In the fleshy siknows what to make of the situation. singing piously his 38th psalm fixed to a door, to let it lence a rosy black engulfs the thighs; a rosy black “thy right hand shall save me,” open no more than 45 degrees (what does that that brings to mind the facial hue of textile workers Freezings & Thawings 3 knows that his God knocks him mean?) sleeping in a paludal fever during lunch in the comleftways munal canteen; a fever that pushes its way through From a certain point of view freezing is a wager every time. the forest among the chiggers and chimneys, until a 2. a calendar reminds him that it’s late already, or already lost to present forces & the odour of spoon breaks with a clatter on a plate. he’s alone, standing before a gauntlet immensities. But this never prevents us from a freAnd Gielard is singing, The kneesocks deliberately crush beetles and of unrelenting symbols, one after annetic rhythm of freezing because freezing soon inI’m a goat on a tether, millipedes underfoot. They themselves suggest a habits every gesture of its actor, a refusal to embody other—there’s no more room—falling upwards to travelling the blank Millipede fisher for their crunching grate of gravel, circumference resignation. One soon acquires the habit for example thought & keeping the outside twigs, and leaves. They’re coming to a brickyard, of my stake when one takes a staggering walk outside freezing close at hand (the scene itself is which from a distance clearly looks to be on the completely askew everything found on the way back. constantly repeated, each time arousing an verge of collapsing into the grass without a stone left And Gielard is singing, The unkempt & sleep-swollen appearance of the obexpectation of more than it contains); that there standing. Black smoke billows from the brickyard my soul ject one captures in the middle of the night or early are figures or were leaves nothing to be like from a car. We perceive its surprising density as is like a little fish morning is similar to the frozen one & however so shown, in the too-deliberate afterword: a material entity rather than as a phantom. Only now it moves behind glass, different that one cannot stop oneself from bursting out shitting do some of the kneesocks detach themselves from laughing right in the middle of the footpath, between in the water the procession’s core and run off toward the village to what follows is as unrelated as what went the shops’ empty illuminated windows. But one often it breathes. get help, while the others (admittedly, there are only before—a window facing out over a forgets that a frozen thing is a supplementary modaltwo), insolently remain in front of the gates, scratchnarrow passageway, with stairs & broken ity of an unfrozen thing. Oh, my poor friends, how And Gielard is singing, ing one another’s deep-green woolen surface with fire-alarm—the rooks raise an ominous sign: “no disappointingly contrary is freezing to its opposite, as the orbit is internal and the tips of their shoes. The smoke rolls over the extraneous details” (it’s not the uncertain game if every advance of hope is the promise of a cruel golden like the sun. village, looking in confusion at the lowering sky, despair. & all that one risks obtaining in the end is a it at first appeared), even if the objective is whose shower would enable it to descend again on stinking world of tissue bruised by the vigour of the concealed, secretly watched-over And Gielard is singing, the landscape and suffocate it in the coal embrace of cold. As if things were not going badly enough alhold my hand, hold by some accessory before the fact: right down to its vitality, wreaking a devastation more impressive. ready. Contrary to what one might believe, the freezer my hand the last laugh


After all, the smoke concurs with the solitary pair, who for a second have given the observer the illusion of toxic green having become soft azure. Their unintentionally mischievous Lethargy makes more sense to it than the triangled measurability of Hope, which, at the end, will also die. “And nevertheless, it is this mischievous Lethargy in its emerald shirt that represents the sole hope of life, the moist stone on the bottom of the clay mug of chance, shaken by Gamewinter,” says Poetry, and it tightens its belt. On the bed located by the express train’s door, a tightly packed crowd of passengers tugs at a coverlet. Higher than honey, lovelier than the honey jar, she stands on a rockledge, one foot gently leaning against a mousetrap. Under the precipice the ship’s engineer from Ivanice sharpens his scythe. It won’t be long before the instrument is ready for use. From the ship majestically sailing past the cliff the captain has his binoculars trained on a jay slowly stealing up to an unsuspecting weasel. On the engineer’s first slash into the grass the scythe strikes a rock. The sound drives the captain completely mad. The weasel registers the danger in time and runs off. The furious jay attacks the engineer. The ship runs into the cliffs. The scythe tussles with the rock. This was all on account of the beautiful Lorelei.

Sandra Miller

The Houses of Poets are Made We met for coffee and cockatoos and poets’ houses are made of cards or graded papers with red ink or muted green rugs with no words at all. We met in each other’s kitchens and cooked up what we thought was a surprise but which turned out later to be tomorrow. We met again for tea and cussed out time for being so bold and spanking. The beauty of it was the beauty of you, spelled out indifferently, indefinitely a Y(Why) and O(Oh), a U(You). (Poets’ houses are made of bedroom sounds, no matter which room they come from.)

child of ZKM’s director Peter Weibel, and combined a realspace installation of works in the gallery’s premises with an online site. While the on-site exhibition more or less attempted to gear the environment to the medium, it nevertheless resulted in translating Net art into a series of site-specific installation pieces—an approach which is appealing only up to a point, especially when environmental ambience and spectacle gain the upper hand over the work itself. Among the various viewer prostheses available to museum-goers was a “Net.Art Browser” (a giant, sliding flat-panel screen that moved across a twenty metre wall), and a range of “antique” computers on which patrons were able to search the Web. By contrast, the exhibition’s online sight (at www.zkm.de) highlighted the Web’s efficient curatorial powers, raising again the question of how museum space can be viewed as relevant to Internet-based art (although it also suggests points of interactivity between the two environments). Douglas Davis’s The World’s First Collaborative Sentence (included as part of the ZKM’s online exhibition) posed this question in an even more direct fashion. Davis’ project has the (ironic) distinction of being the first Web-based artwork to be acquired by a major museum (the Whitney, in 1995). Ironic because, launched on the internet in 1994, The World’s First Collaborative Sentence is a constantly growing multimedia document. After its launch, Davis transferred aesthetic responsibility for the project’s content to the readers, who subsequently became collaborators in a textual genetic process by adding new texts, images or sounds of their own. According to the exhibition’s curators, the question of the author is annulled. Where everything that is written is stored “and can be re-used by other writers, what emerge are unauthorised, i.e. authorless texts that are written, as it were, while being read.” Not only does Davis’s work pose questions about authority, but also of copyright and ownership. But how does a museum, like the Whitney, “maintain” acquisitions such as The World’s First Collaborative Sentence?

pressed inwards onto the patented skyline)—in this place or elsewhere, against the wall / doubled over beneath the onrush of doubt—evidence arranged in direct contradiction of the senses like a haemorrhage or an apostrophe, the red door of the neoclassical observatory its whited domes subsiding vaguely beneath the dogstar constellation & digital photographs strewn about, revelatory as background material from “past life” like a theoretical corrective

Pam Brown

Come and Buy Shop Cold Store and Articles de Lux Happy Eater Restaurant Oochit Store Chez Rico le Chef Suitings and Shirtings Up To Date Jewellery Le Restaurant Coup de Food

To the Soviet Embalmers This one cartouche surrenders the famous curse. Nil advice

on sharing the tasks preparing the ground and pruning. Pick-your-own name as a performance I am out of touch with mortal illness. The memory skids to her box of tricks right there in the Attic vase. Numerous other sole agents set up their stalls: impassioned choughs and counterfeit magpies drink from the well before the assembly detour ends. You magnify the quandary and its whispering roots; for the martyr nailed to local colours unable to utilize the construct is just outside the rocket stadium in the strong toils of reverse thrust.

John Tranter

Brendan Lorber

An Australian Sends a Postcard Home

Back Slab

In London the dull bullies bellow their rhymes And the Craig Raine down doth raine. O, that I were back on the beach At Bondi once again.

Part Staple The print side or handle agreement you that negative damage lost or handled in the company of company fault the going the limits the replacement of place your exclusive remedy handle such such acceptance without any whatsoever or other kind cover over days

Nicole Mossoux

Metamorphoses meanwhile you wander, you are diverted towards areas which are sometimes very remote from the themes initially envisaged. you discover unexpected images, some of which are “unacceptable” and yet recur in an obsessive manner. you are alert, in all cases, feeling challenged to an exceptional degree

Part Kelly New & new large Same or free lope! Part Internal Ices See you on the internal the better nation of your prints your prints & your family Available from stem to skew To dis your prints the right prints your own put put in your letters your hot date your share your family share & friends choose negative only or

to accumulate details, material of a diverse nature, which, randomly gathered, prove to be important, necessary all these elements, when confronted with one another, invite choices—they modify each other and interact, until they form a common base of which you will have had an intuitive knowledge at the outset you seem to gather together whatever suspends you, whatever moves you, the movements which contain—not a precise purposefulness, but potential meanings and sensations—movements which retain part of their mystery and are like bridges built over unknown waters

Part Handy Size or slides or moves that lack white jumbo twins of each bum a handy bum hand your stem show every turn the special ructions large men with hot cover below

you try to remain concrete, within the act & its repercussions, without analysing too much, lest the images produced should be made empty, devoid of their nerve centres, their necessary complexity

Aleš Šteger

As a Child

at a particular point in the evolution of the work you begin to withdraw, to insist that the image must stand on its own, detached from the initial intention & be able to “speak,” but not in order to illustrate a point

Lazarus Jones

Rod Mengham

Louis Armand & John Kinsella

Ognyen Smiljanic

Transitional Notes on Cyber @rt

A Symposium

Conversation (w)hole

In ‘Your Place or Mine? Locating Digital Art’ (Parallax: Interface, 1999), Darren Tofts suggest that the relationship between digital art and the museum is a problematic one, insisting that “the very nature of digital art as an interactive, rather than contemplative form, doesn’t sit well in the gallery” (30). For Tofts this problem is firstly political, orientated by the increasing corporatisation of the art world, on the one hand, and “cyberculture’s disavowal of privacy, institutional hegemony and diminution of public space” on the other. But Tofts also identifies environmental problems which may intervene to effect the way in which digital art is experienced, not only in the museum space, but in any “public” space, and this in turn raises questions about the validity of any straightforward distinctions between public and private space as such. According to Tofts, the difficulties associated with the “public, competitive context” of a museum are exacerbated in relation to interactive, digital art in ways that do not easily stand comparison with other contemporary artforms (most of which are in fact premised on their relationship to the museum). […] One fairly recent effort to counter the perception that digital—or more specifically Net-based—art, does not belong in a museum environment, has been Net_Condition, an exhibition staged at the Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM), in Karlsruhe, Germany (September 1999-February 2000)—featuring Internet-based artwork by over one hundred artists, ranging from the anonymous anti-corporatist collective ®™ark, to Japan’s pioneering network artist Masaki Fujihati. This exhibition, billed as the first major museum show of Internet Art, was the brain-

ending again, as in “the hand slips away” & the street as though some enigma concealed you or made you more evident, transgressive, standing before or on the threshold of a criminal impulse—perhaps it was raining & the night cast two or five steps ahead, snake eyes leering through a barred gate & fire escape(d) coiling upwards into the gloom, like sinuous gammadions or else it was morning already & white under the eyelids demoralising spectra-selves as objet petit (in the reflex-arc-subjectile) or sidewalk parting to reveal a sub-terranean passageway, beggaring description—a form of apologia lost in exhumation, the corpus delecti they laughed at behind their tacit refusals—a nervous twitch at the corner of the sizar’s mouth, rounding off an obscene proposition (grey & anatomical lips

Where are you, burdened with at least one answer of your whereabouts? It‘s already time for extrusion, this is a legitimate question. In the same vein your coat hanging over the door’s edge is a body devoid of senses. Only the taylor’s eye prevents you from rising onto the table to stab a fork into the tender flesh of our conversation. & occasional miscalculations: arriving early to familiar doorways, wiping our shoes till our feet bleed. Throwing a final within-glance before facing, finding you contained in your image after all.

-gression You are lying on the white sheet compacted by quicktar-filled universe. No celestial bodies for inspiration or distraction, no referential dialogue of perspectives. Regardless whose sight is better nursed, one only really stares inward. Whoever sets their tools on the nightstand, props their elbows on the table, turns on the reading lamp. I leave one hand on your rump, in case of an azimuth shift. Tectonic activity of walls scare me beyond random thoughts. I resort to viewpoints of high fever, delirium of osmosis, sinking and rising. I follow sea lions to the slaughterhouse, greet whales on the beaches. I construct anonymity of their facial detail. Their trajectories accurately describe my signature, their jerks outline my calligraphy. Every night I stretch next to your image, staring at wherever it is I’m not giving in.

As a child I read About the two ways stars die. In the first the star begins To cool down. Across millions of years It slowly loses its heat and light. All possible life dies out Until it finally changes into Infinite cold, the horizon of a dead giant. In the second the star begins To contract. Across millions of years Each atom, each drop of light, Each desire, thought, hope was drawn towards A non-existent centre. The process of dying was complete when The star together with its whole atmosphere Was compressed to a tennis ball. All became one centre, Infinite mass and gravity. As a child I read About the two ways stars die. When the child disappeared Each birth became just an imitation of One of these two kinds of death. The origin of civilisation. The birth of poetry. Twice was I born and twice my father despaired of me. You stare too much at books, He said, it’s bad for your health. You’d do much better to learn How to hold the racket properly And hit the ball further than the net.

semtext / plastic 6 ©meltedplastix ink, 2000 lazarus@ff.cuni.cz

Semtext (Plastic) 6  

Plastic (Semtext) was an occassional broadsheet produced in Prague during 2000 by Louis Armand. These PDFs have used font-substitutions duri...

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