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DESIGN DETAILS: MONO.KULTUR #42 SOPHIE CALLE

Among the range of all the different design philosophies and styles that have found their way into mono.kultur over the years, it’s the quiet, unobtrusive approach that we sometimes enjoy the most. Idem for our still current issue with and about Sophie Calle, designed by the wonderful Wuppertal-based designer Stephanie Passul.

Almost museal at first sight, the issue plays with the artist’s penchant for structure, divided between the public in a highly aesthetic display of selected works that borrows from Sophie Calle’s unusal style of arranging artworks on the wall, and the personal with a very frank conversation set in a different shade of grey. But of course, as with all things well thought through, the magic lies in the details, in the little interactions and references that occur between words and images, as well as the frictions they generate.

Take, for instance, the cover which boasts in large letters our title quote ‘It was not about discovering anything.’, when, of course, the fold-out cover just begs to be unfolded to reveal the full image underneath. Just a case in point for an issue that might appear serious and quiet at first in its shades of white and grey, when in fact, there is a whole world of play to be discovered. Not much unlike the work of Sophie Calle, in other words.

FRAGMENTS 01

UNHEARD OF

In resistance to the current U.S. of A. figurehead’s ban on Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Libya and Yemen, UK producer Four Tet has added music from those very same nations to his Spotify playlist. Musician include Rahim Al-Haj (Iraq), Omar Souleyman (Syria), Martik (Iran), Naji Barakat (Yemen)–musicians who are now barred from entering and performing in the US. The story behind the playlist is poignant: Four Tet, real name Kieran Hebden, was inspired by his experiences working with Souleyman a few years ago in Brooklyn–a partnership now prohibited.

KUSO

Already reputed “the grossest movie” to grease the silver screen, Steven Ellison aka Flying Lotus’s first film Kuso is extreme. Perhaps only the basest images can accompany such a starry soundtrack–the film features music by Flying Lotus as well as Aphex Twin and Akira Yamaoka. While descriptions of the synopsis does repel, body horror and grotesquerie does have a storied history in art film, including filmmakers such as Luis Buñuel, Matthew Barney, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Sion Sono, and David Lynch. Whether Ellison’s film can withstand the test of time and the taste of the public is still up for debate.

WANT

“I want a president,” by activist and artist Zoe Leonard, recited by Myyki Blanco. As relevant now as in 1992.

NSFWHOM

Our pick for today is Looo.ch, an enfant terrible of art sites. When just 3-years old, the website was launched into infamy for their 2013 satirical primers Homosexuality for Kids: A Textbook With Pictures and Lesbianism for Kids: A Textbook With Pictures, which prompted Russia’s Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Welfare to completely block both the site and their blog platform Squarespace from all Russian ISPs as gay propaganda. Since then, the founders, Ukranian artists Natasha Masharova and Anatoli Ulyanov have relocated to New York and continue to provide and produce radical literature, photographs, and short-form film and VICE-like documentaries on topics polarizing, esoteric, and humble. In case you were wondering, their 2013 titles are available to download from their website.

To quote the artists:
“We don’t care for “social decorum”, “matters of national security”, “copyright”, “ideology”, and other grounds for repression of culture evolution.”

DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF…

One of the most exciting components of the current Dreamlands show at the Whitney Museum is Terence Broad’s autoencoding of the film Blade Runner. An extension of Broad’s autoencoding works in which a computer watching reconstructs through what roughly amounts to artificial memory, his Blade Runner version is a particularly potent expression of the movie’s underlying themes of AI. In some ways, the visualized autoencoding portents the projection of the incipient machine soul, like the foggy memory of an infant human.

2017

MONO.KALENDER 2017

It is our last deed for the year, and in good tradition we have produced another mono.kalender for 2017, in all its festive silver splendour. As usual, the calendars come for free with any order placed via mono.konsum, while stocks last. Happy New Year!

FRIEDRICH

Recently, Paris based choreographer and musician Morgan Belenguer has been working on his new music project Morgan Friedrich. Influenced by a Romantic disillusionment and the writings of Bruno Latour and Philippe Descola on anthropocene, Loseground is the first track of the upcoming album Natureisdead.

‘Friedrich is a character more or less imagined. He is a romantic who, when confronted with the death of the concept of ‘nature’, loses the ground beneath his feet. From this moment, he falls into a profound vertigo, a nostalgia for nature that is impossible to recover. The music expresses the illusion of the movement Friedrich experiences and brings us to the point where, maybe for the first time, Friedrich touches EARTH…’