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26 MAY 2015

Welcome to our corporate-controlled future Internet with Facebook Instant Articles et al.

"There's a generational shift in technology happening right now: From the open Web to native apps, from desktops to mobile phones, from platforms built on standards to platforms owned by corporations. Let's call it the second Internet. Here's what it looks like: "Facebook Instant Article". That's right — it's Facebook. More than 1.44 billion people use Facebook every month, and almost a billion of them use it every day. The majority do so via the Facebook app on their phones.

Think about that: A decade ago, the majority of people using the Internet were doing so on desktop computers or laptops, accessing HTML and JavaScript websites. Today, a vast number — maybe not a majority, but a lot — experience the Internet primarily through Facebook's mobile app.

That's why publishers like the New York Times, Buzzfeed, and National Geographic were so eager to test out Facebook's new Instant Articles platform.

This platform puts publishers' stories directly into the Facebook app (on iOS only, for now), where they load more quickly than they would if Facebook just linked to the publishers' websites — which take an average of eight seconds to load, Facebook says. Instant Articles also offer a variety of snazzy tools for publishers to present their images and interactive elements."

(Dylan Tweney, 15 May 15 2015, VentureBeat)

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2015boundaries in cyberspace • Buzzfeed • closed systemcontent integrationcontent publishers • corporate exclusivity • corporate-controlled environment • corporatisationexclusivityFacebook app • Facebook Instant Articles • framed by the windowfunctionalist paradigm • future Internet • homogenizationhypermediated spaceimmediacy of experience • Instant Articles platform • instrumental rationalitylisablelogic of hypermediacymobile appsNational Geographic • native apps • New York Timesopen webperformativityproduct usabilitypublishing platform • Slack (app) • sterile placestechnology transparencyunified mediumuniformityusability engineering • VentureBeat • walled garden • window on to the world

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
24 MAY 2015

Wunderland an exhibition by Frank Kunert at La Chambre

Photography exhibition 'Wunderland' by Frank Kunert, 10 April to 7 June 2015, La Chambre, 4 place d’Austerlitz, 67000 Strasbourg.

"More than simply a photographic satire, the 'miniature worlds' of Frank Kunert are compositions of ideas, models of sets which he spends weeks and months meticulously putting together from plastic, modeling clay and paint until the results are perfect, almost lifelike. These 'miniature worlds' are funny, bizarre, grotesque, contemplative, dreamy, but also provocative and critical. It's up to the viewer to decide if he finds them entertaining or macabre, or how far he's willing or able to follow the stories Kunert tells."

(The Eye of Photography, L’Oeil de la Photographie)

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absurdist humourabsurditybanalityblack humour • contemplative • critical art • Frank Kunert • funny scenes • humourlifelikemacabreminiature • miniature worlds • photographic satire • photography exhibition • provocative scenes • small sculpturesstupidity

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
23 MAY 2015

Improvisational style of Birdman's percussion-centred soundtrack

"The soundtrack to the 2014 Alejandro González Iñárritu-directed black comedy Birdman features an innovative, percussion-based score from Grammy Award-winning jazz drummer Antonio Sanchez. Also included on the soundtrack are various classical pieces used in the film including compositions by Gustav Mahler, Maurice Ravel, and Sergei Rachmaninov. While Sanchez is primarily known as a jazz musician, he took a more free-form, avant-garde approach for Birdman. Rather than composing pieces for the film, at Iñárritu's request, Sanchez improvised to a rough cut of the film and then re-recorded his improvisations yet again once the film was completed. Hoping to match the gritty, live aesthetic of the film, Sanchez altered his traditional percussion set-up, employing instead the use of different drum heads modified at times with tape to deaden the sound and even attached items to his cymbals to achieve a less pristine, more broken quality. Iñárritu even went so far as to have percussionist (and Sanchez' friend) Nate Smith appear in the film playing along to Sanchez' soundtrack, which was recorded to sound like it was being played in the actual scene. The result is a highly creative, sonically varied soundtrack that matches the quirky, conceptual nature and dramatic tension of Iñárritu's film."

(Matt Collar, allmusic.com)

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2014 • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu • Amy Ryan • Andrea Riseborough • Antonio Sanchez • Batman (1989) • Birdman (2014) • black comedy • BLT Communications • broken quality • cymbals • dramatic tension • Edward Norton • Emma Stone • faded glory • formalist design aesthetics • free-form approach • Gustav Mahler • improvisational musical style • jazz drummer • live aesthetic • Maurice Ravel • Michael Keaton • motion typeNaomi Watts • opening credits • opening titlespercussionPierrot le Fou (1965) • Raymond Carver • score • Sergei Rachmaninov • single shot style • soundtracktitle sequence designtypography • Zach Galifianakis

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
17 MAY 2015

Al Nakba: Documentary on the Palestinian Catastrophe

"Al Nakba, documentary (200 min) -produced by Al Jazeera- was first broadcasted in Arabic on the 60th anniversary of the Palestinian catastrophe. It was translated into English in 2009 and then into four different languages: French, German, Spanish and Italian. Al Nakba won the prize for the best long documentary about Palestine in Al Jazeera Fifth International Film Festival (Doha/Qatar) and the audience award in Amal Ninth Euro-Arab Film Festival (Santiago/Spain). It participated in other film festivals in Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Jordan, Egypt and Palestine."

"Al Nakba" (2008). directed by: Rawan Damen

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1799 • 19482008 • 60th anniversary • Al Jazeera • Al Nakba (2008) • Arab-Israeli war • archive material • British expansion • British Mandate in Palestine • catastrophecolonisation • dispossession • European imperialism • four-part series • historyhistory of conflictideological intoleranceindigenous peoplesIsraelIsraeli-Palestinian conflictMiddle EastNapoleon BonaparteOttoman EmpirePalestine • Palestinian catastrophe • Palestinian exodus • Palestinian territories • Palestinian tragedy • Rawan Damen • refugeeState of Israeltelevision documentaryterritorialisation • The Nakba • Zionist

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
14 MAY 2015

CHINA 8: Contemporary Art from China on the Rhine and Ruhr

CHINA 8 – Contemporary Art from China on the Rhine and Ruhr May 15 – September 13, 2015.

"Eight cities along the Rhine and Ruhr, nine museums, around 120 artists – the CHINA 8 exhibition is the most comprehensive survey of contemporary Chinese art held in Germany to date. Alongside established artists, the positions of younger and newly emerging artists are also represented. Nine museums in Düsseldorf, Duisburg, Essen, Gelsenkirchen, Hagen, Marl, Mülheim an der Ruhr and Recklinghausen have come together for this joint project and will be showing works from the fields of painting, photography, calligraphy, ink drawing, sculpture, installation art and video from 15th May to 13th September 2015. The 'eight' in the show’s title is not only the number of the participating cities, but also a significant Chinese lucky number."

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2015 • Adou • Alfred Ko • art exhibition • Aspartime • Cai Dongdong • Chen Shaoxiong • Chen Wei • Chen Xiaoyi • Chinese art • Chinese artists • contemporary artcontemporary art exhibitions • contemporary Chinese art • Du Yan Fang • Duisburg • Dusseldorf • Eason Tsang Ka Wai • Essen • Gelsenkirchen • German exhibition • Hagen • Jiang Pengyi • Li Weiyi • Li Zhengde • Liang Weizhou • Lin Ke • Lin Ke(1984) • Ma Daha Group • Ma Qiusha • Marl • Mo Yi • Mulheim an der Ruhr • Peoples Republic of Chinapolitical artprotest works • Recklinghausen • retrospective exhibition • Shan Feiming • Shao Wenhuan • South Ho Siu Nam • Wang Ningde • Wang Qingsong • Wang Youshen • Xiao Xiao • Zhuang Hui • Zong Ning

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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