Ruth White

The Clock (1969) from Electronic Voyages: Early Moog recordings 1964-1969 (LP)
May 1st, 2023

Via Wikipedia, "Ruth S. White (September 1, 1925 – August 26, 2013) was an American composer known for her electronic music compositions. While most of her career was dedicated to educational recordings, she is best known for being an electronic music pioneer, owing to her early explorations of sound using the Moog synthesizer. The back cover of her 1971 release Short Circuits stated that 'Ruth White is considered among today’s most gifted arbiters of what is termed the new music’.
Her early recordings 7 Trumps From the Tarot Cards and Pinions (1968), Flowers of Evil (1969), and Short Circuits (1970) all featured surprising uses of the Moog synthesizer as well as other electronic musical equipment. [...]

This love of music eventually led White back to education. Most of the rest of White's musical career was spent developing music teaching materials for children and getting technology into the classroom. In 1973 she was producing multi media projects aimed at getting children to read. White realized early on that TV had changed how children learned. The audio without video was dead. In 1973 she was quoted as saying, 'In the future, audio without visual, except for dance records, will be worthless'. It was in 1973 she invented the character Mr. Windbag, a character she continued to use through her educational recording career with her series The Adventure of Mr. Windbag. Her accomplishments in education resulted in her earning a Parents' Choice Award (1983) and an American Library Association notable recording citation. Her interests led her to begin a children’s books publishing company in Los Angeles. But her music was never far behind."

Thanks to Sarah Szczesny!

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E8 to H4 Folding Amplituhedron Surface Visualization by http://theoryofeverything.org


Convergence of Science and Spirituality?
April 15th, 2023

Via Pacific Standard: "New research, which turns out to not really be all that new, suggests that space and time do not exist. The research also suggests that a jewel (an amplituhedron) is the center of our universe and that from said jewel every feature of our known reality can be quantified."

Via Rupert Spira: "In the latest Rupert Spira Podcast episode Simon Mundie moderates a fascinating discussion on science and spirituality with Rupert and cognitive scientist Donald Hoffman. [...]

0:00 The Case Against Reality
3:00 The Hard Problem Of Consciousness
9:52 Why Are Most Scientists Materialists?
12:54 Who Is Qualified To Make Observations About The Nature Of Reality?
15:29 The Hard Problem Of Matter
20:33 No-One Has Ever Found Matter
25:10 Space-Time Is Doomed
32:48 Quantum Theory Is Not Fundamental Either
34:03 Why Is The Fact That Space-Time Is Doomed Not On The News?
40:57 The Real Meaning Of The Word Illusion
47:40 Exploring Other Dimensions
57:14 What Are Conscious Agents?
1:04:06 One Consciousness
1:07:32 Infinite Infinities
1:12:19 Why Does The One Localise?
1:15:46 Could There Be A ‘why’ On The Relative Level?
1:23:48 Interface Theory
1:36:05 A Theory Of Everything
1:41:06 A Convergence Of Science And Spirituality
1:49:46 The Implications Of The Perennial Philosophy
1:55:51 Let Go Of Thought
2:01:08 Seeing Through The Illusion Of The Separate Self
2:10:08 Thoughts, Fears And Beliefs
2:14:46 Walking The Talk"

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"Ja ja ja ja ja, nee nee nee nee nee" by Joseph Beuys. Printed cover with integrated booklet, 1970.

The Authentic Self is the Self-Enhancing Self

"The true self, though, is positive."
April 12th, 2023

Via SAGE Publishing: "Authenticity refers to behaving in a manner that aligns with one’s true self. The true self, though, is positive. From a self-enhancement standpoint, people exaggerate their strengths and overlook their shortcomings, forming positively-distorted views of themselves. We propose a self-enhancement framework of authenticity, advocating a reciprocal relation between the two constructs. Trait self-enhancement was associated with higher trait authenticity (Study 1), and day-to-day fluctuations in self-enhancement predicted corresponding variations in state authenticity (Study 2). Furthermore, manipulating self-enhancement elevated state authenticity (Studies 3–4), which was associated with meaning in life (Study 4), and manipulating authenticity augmented self-enhancement, which was associated with meaning in life and thriving (Study 5). The authentic self is largely the self-enhancing self. [...]

Although our research represents the first direct test of the relation between self-enhancement and authenticity, the results are consistent with several literature streams. For instance, authenticity is linked more with moral than immoral behavior (Newman et al., 2014) and socially desirable than undesirable behavior (Jongman-Sereno & Leary, 2016). In addition, people believe their authentic selves to be positive and morally good and to be more positive than the authentic selves of others (Zhang & Alicke, 2021). Despite popular belief and previous conceptualizations, self-enhancement is an essential ingredient for eliciting perceptions that one is living life authentically. [...]

Contrary to historical conceptualizations and lay intuition, veridical self-insight may not light the path toward living life authentically. Instead, authenticity and self-enhancement go hand-in-hand. Authentic people think highly of themselves, and people who think highly of themselves feel authentic."

Listen to 1968: Ja ja ja ja ja, nee nee nee nee nee, Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldorf (14.12.) by Joseph Beuys!

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I see dead people.

Now you can relive memories in VR
February 25th, 2023

From Creative Bloq: "With the release of PSVR 2, virtual reality is back in the headlines and app developers are using the new hardware, including Meta Quest 2, to find creative ways to usher in new experiences. But in this rekindled experimentation some ideas are just, well, a little creepy.

The app in question is Wist: Immersive Memories, in development for iOS and Meta Quest 2, and soon on Meta Quest Pro. This app brings old video to life inside a virtual reality headset. There's a buzz around the app, largely because virtual reality is all the rage again in 2023 due to the launch of PSVR 2 – read my PSVR 2 review to find out why everyone loves this headset. Also, rumours continue around a new Apple VR headset, which could really be something special.

Developed by Wist Labs, Wist: Immersive Memories is pitched as a way to relive old 'memories' inside VR and AR. This is the kind of thing we've seen in movies for decades, including the scene in Minority Report were Tom Cruise remembers is deceased wife and child, and now you can actually experience it for yourself. But is it unsettling?"

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Students in my Visual Music class acquire knowledge of design principles and techniques by producing visualisations of sound/music – e.g. as installations, videos clips, VJ sets, installations, and computer games.

Visual Music Studies 2023

Annual show of student's Visual Music projects
February 15th, 2023

Every year composer and assistant professor Marcus Schmickler and I host the Visual Music Studies at Dusseldorf's Filmwerkstatt. This year's class - María Camila Agudelo Mejía, Roberto Alessio, Nora Bögel, Benjamín Herrera Lizana, Margareta von Klenze, und Ricardo Soares Fernandes - will show their studies on February 15th, 2023.

Creating a work for this show is part of the assignment in my Visual Music class at the Institute for Music and Media at Dusseldorf Robert Schumann conservatory. Many of the students decide to show a transmedia installation, but some of them are also interested in video clips, experimental films, and animations as well as audiovisual performances.

The students are supported by an amazing team of assistant professors: Prof. Ulla Barthold, Falk Grieffenhagen, Jan Höhe, and Christian Schäfer.


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Jayne Cortez photographed by Pete Williams.

Jayne Cortez

Under the Edge of February
February 1st, 2023

Via Poetry Foundation:

Under the edge of february
in hawk of a throat
hidden by ravines of sweet oil
by temples of switchblades
beautiful in its sound of fertility
beautiful in its turban of funeral crepe
beautiful in its camouflage of grief
in its solitude of bruises
in its arson of alert

Who will enter its beautiful calligraphy of blood

Its beautiful mask of fish net
mask of hubcaps mask of ice picks mask
of watermelon rinds mask of umbilical cords
changing into a mask of rubber bands
Who will enter this beautiful beautiful mask of
punctured bladders moving with a mask of chapsticks

Compound of Hearts   Compound of Hearts

Where is the lucky number for this shy love
this top-heavy beauty bathed with charcoal water
self-conscious against a mosaic of broken bottles
broken locks   broken pipes   broken
bloods of broken spirits broken through like
broken promises

Landlords  Junkies  Thieves
enthroning themselves in you
they burn up couches they burn down houses
and infuse themselves against memory
every thought
a pavement of old belts
every performance
a ceremonial pickup
how many more orphans  how many more neglected shrines
how many stolen feet  stolen fingers
stolen watchbands of death
in you how many times


hidden by ravines of sweet oil
by temples of switchblades
beautiful in your sound of fertility
beautiful in your turban of funeral crepe
beautiful in your camouflage of grief
in your solitude of bruises
in your arson of alert

Via the Jayne Cortez obituary: Poet whose incantatory performances could be militant, lyrical and surreal:

The arts are just a part of the weapons of life
Art can make us see and feel reality
and help change that reality
Art is revelation. Art is hard work
Art is a part of protest.

Thanks to Sarah Szczesny!

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"In her arms" by Charlotte Lieb was her final assigment in the Motion Design graduate program at Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg.

"An Original Title (WT)" by Leon Monschauer was his final assigment in the Motion Design graduate program at Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg.


At The 2022 Motion Awards by Motionographer
January 27th, 2023

Two students from my Motion Design class at Germany's renown film school Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg won at Motionographer's prestigious The 2022 Motion Awards:

My greatest congratulations to Charlotte Lieb for In Her Arms and Leon Monschauer for An Original Title (WT). I could not be more proud.

Via The Motion Award: "We exist to help elevate Motion Design in all its forms. United by a shared passion for creative expression, the Motion Awards celebrate achievements that help propel the industry forward.
The Motion Awards by Motionographer is the only awards show that celebrates the entire landscape of Motion Design; it’s widely considered the highest recognition in the industry.
Just being nominated for an award can give a studio or artist worldwide exposure. We enlist over 200 judges from countries spanning six continents, representing the upper echelon of talent in design, animation, and visual storytelling. The depth of our roster, which includes former nominees and winners, ensures credibility and trust in the eyes of the industry."

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EIFF Programmer Niall Greig Fulton takes EIFF TV through this year's fascinating Shirley Clarke retrospective.

Shirley Clarke

Shirley Clarke (1919-1997) was an American filmmaker
January 9th, 2023

Via Wikipedia: "Her interest in dance began at an early age, but met with the disapproval of her father, a violent bully. Clarke attended Stephens College, Johns Hopkins University, Bennington College, and University of North Carolina. As a result of dance lessons at each of these schools, she trained under the Martha Graham technique, the Humphrey-Weidman technique, and the Hanya Holm method of modern dance. She married Bert Clarke to escape her father's control, so she could study dance under the masters in New York City. Their daughter Wendy was born in 1944.[3] Her marriage to Bert ended in divorce in 1963.[4] She began her career as a dancer in the New York avant garde modern dance movement. She was an avid participant in dance lessons and performances at the Young Women's Hebrew Association."

Via Pop Matters: "Every short film, documentary and home movie here tells you something about this indefatigable dynamo and largely overlooked artist. The folks at Milestone have been industriously restoring and packaging the output of Shirley Clarke. Their operating theory, aside from loving her work, is that its unavailability has been responsible for eclipsing one of America’s most important filmmakers and for many years its most visible woman director. After releasing The Connection followed by Portrait of Jason and Ornette: Made in America, they’ve packaged a head-spinning three-disc set of shorts called The Magic Box, available on DVD or Blu-ray."

Start here: Shirley Clarke & Wendy Clarke - Butterfly (1967)

Thanks to Sarah Szczesny!

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Levon Biss: "I had the pleasure of shooting this image at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History recently, one of my favourite museums by far. My thanks goes to Robert Douglas for his assistance in creating this picture.⁠"


My pyramid
January 6th, 2023

Optimism – Honesty – Intuition
Emotionality – Serenity – Music – Love – Freedom – Faith.

Take another step toward what matters.

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Public Projects by Michael Pederson.

End of 2022

To the power of ten
December 31st, 2022

Auld Lang Syne As I write this, New Year's is only a few hours away. Two days ago legend Vivienne Westwood passed on. Unfortunately, it remains a challenge to find older female role models for my process to become a female 'senior', as in beautiful, crazy, sexy Wise Old Woman. Westwood embodied everthing I hope for in aging, and beyond. What an incredible beautiful soul. Two other heroines of mine are Laurie Anderson and bell hooks – the list keeps growing faster every year. Let's do this, girls.

Films My favorite viewings this year were, 2021 drama film Drive my car directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, George Miller's fantasy romantic drama film Three Thousand Years of Longing, Werner Herzog's 1998 documentary Wings Of Hope, and Regina Schilling's documentary Igor Levit - No Fear. Thank you, fabulous editor and friend, Carina Mergens for bringing the big screen back into my life!

Nest Finally moved to a new apartment. Have been sharing my home for the last 16 years. It was an adventure as long as it lasted, and now I am so happy, joyous, and free with a nest all to myself where I can experience my love for wallpaper to full extend.

Rapport Not entirely sure but I think I got my first answering machine in 1986. From then on I used my phones less to talk, instead I got accustomed to recorded messages. In 1995 I started to write emails, and called even less. I have now reversed this development, and much to my own surprise I make at least one telephone call a day to check in with friends. My live has improved considerably by connecting to fellow travellers.

Studio In July I officially opened our new Studio Klang und Realität, built to serve the students in our master's degree program of the same name. With its specialized, high-quality recording studio technology, the studio offers an acoustically optimized and at the same time inspiring workspace. So grateful for the support from my colleagues Julian Rohrhuber, Marcus Schmickler, and Phillip Schulze in designing this studio with me.

Summer We had what is called a Jahrhundersommer. So I got to spent many days at a secret little beach on the short, super clean and pretty cold river Agger close to where I live. Sweet, sweet summer days. Sun, water, trees, fishes, dogs, horses, trees, flowers, and finally time to read.

Time Travel My parents took a day off to show me my father's childhood places in the former German Democratic Republic. My father told many stories from more than half a century ago. Too many to remember but I now have a much better idea and feeling for where he came from.

Travel I was super sad when my youngest friend left for a year to live with her parents at the infamous Villa Massimo in Rome. Got to visit her twice this year. We had long walks and deep conversations in the morning and afternoon to and from her kindergarten. Precious.

TV Invited my godson to see ZDF Magazin Royale, a successful German late night program by satirist, journalist, and TV host Jan Böhmermann, live. The show's TV band Rundfunk-Tanzorchester Ehrenfeld is lead by one of my former students, the ultra talented and charming Lorenz Rhode. I was impressed by his courtesy and modesty, and of course by the powerful sound of his band.

Quote Experienced a couple of unpleasant moments at work in 2022. After an especially crass meeting I had an one-on-one online session with a student who wore a cap with TRUST written on it – in uppercase letters. I will not forget the surprise and comfort it gave me.

So, here we are... And what is next?

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