RISD Museum Assembly: Non-Fine Arts

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photo by Real News, Marfa TX

i’ll be delivering a lecture at the RISD Museum in Providence RI, on August 8th, as part of their “Locally Made” exhibition.

this will be part of a week of activities i was asked to curate, that also includes performances / events by Joe Buzzell on the 6th, Carlos Gonzales (Russian Tsarlag) on the 7th, Mickey Zacchilli on the 9th, Katrina Silander Clark on the 10th, and Scott Reber (Work/Death) on the 11th. all performances will start at 12 noon, and will last less than an hour. the performances are free with museum admission, which is to say they are $12 (free to most area college students). the exception is sunday (Work/Death), when the museum is free to everyone.

dealing with a pro-art organization is funny, and i have mixed feelings about this– i like the people who are curating the performance part of the exhibit, they’re nice and they’re excited about their work, and i’m really happy to be included. but noon on a weekday plus $12 admission… woof!

here’s my official spiel regarding my week of events:

Non-Fine Arts presents a collection of artists who do not prioritize display in museum or gallery settings, but prefer to make art directly in and for their communities. while their mechanisms and formats may be non-standard in formal arts institutions, these artists utilize extremely standard methods of information interaction- email, newspapers, comic books, dance parties, pop songs, horror movies, noise. In most cases these decisions are both ideological and practical.

and here’s re: my lecture:

8/8: Jacob Berendes, Mothers News: “Stochastic Processes in Contemporary Publishing and the Other Kind”

Mothers News is known for its award-winning writing and artwork, but these things are not rare — awards for interestingness are given out many times a day around the globe. One thing that separates Mothers News from the pack is that it also features the antipode of intelligent writing and interesting artwork — it’s the only publication in history that regularly publishes blocks of truly random alphanumeric strings derived from atmospheric noise. In this brief talk we will examine what “true” randomness is, the implications thereof, the benefit to the consumer, and the inherent sacredness of neglected spaces. Also noise, failure, malevolence, and the myth of chaotic neutrality. This is an all-ages event, although the talk will most likely be sprinkled with f-bombs. There will be very little math involved.

OK, definitely do not feel bad if you can’t come to this! but if you want to, and you can get to downtown providence on august 8th, at noon, tell me and i’ll guest list / deputize / tambourine you. if i could only get to one performance, i’d go to scott’s show on sunday– he’s a great composer / performer, and this is a rare chance to see him in public, and not in the middle of the night. not to undermine everyone else, everyone’s great. but scott’s day is also free. also the museum is fun to look around in, their collection is really great, recommended. oh, and again, free admission for students or staff of Brown University, Bryant College, Community College of Rhode Island, Providence College, Rhode Island College, Roger Williams University, or RISD.


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ant colony comics

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michael deforge’s newish book “ant colony” available for preorder! this entire work is online here. tom bubul notes the change from “ant comic”.

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hi everyone, Mothers News has changed its distribution schema- from now on, boxes of each new issue of the paper will be sold to distributors, who are allowed to give them away for free, sell them at $.50 each, or sell them at $1 each, and keep the money.

it is our belief that by providing our individual distributors with an incentive to distribute (beyond scene points and good vibes), the paper will spread farther and wider, and weird stuff will happen.

all businesses or groups that advertise with us (at the commercial rate) are entitled to a free box of 100 per month, which they can sell (at $.50 or $1 each) to completely or partially recoup their investment. distributors who choose not to advertise can buy a box of 30 papers for $10, or a box of 100 for $20.

it’s up to the individual distributor to decide if they’re going to give the paper away, sell it for $.50, or sell if for $1. for the time being, we will disallow prices higher than $1.

all new issues will ship out on the monday closest to the 1st of the month. for the june issue that means it will ship out on the 3rd. all boxes of papers will ship out by USPS Priority Mail.

to order a box of the next issue or read more about this decision, please see http://www.mothersnews.net/distribution.php.

to place an ad in the june issue, please see http://www.mothersnews.net/advertise.php.

mothers news will remain free (meaning- illegal to sell) in providence.

further questions please write mn@mothersnews.net

thank you

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Mothers News distribution poll

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animated news

UPDATE: we decided to do this. please see: http://rf5.org/blog/?p=331. we’ve made the poll results public, for no reason. please bear in mind that the poll was up for a brief time only, and the sample field was very small (only 83 voters).

hey everyone, we’re going to be changing the way Mothers News is distributed (outside of Rhode Island), so if you’re an MN reader and/or fan outside of Rhode Island ORRRRRR you are / are interested in being an official distributor in your town or city or whatever, pleeeeeease take a sec to fill out one (or both, if applicable) of these polls. it’s anonymous and it would really help us make a decision. and if there’s a better way to do distribution, or some factor i’m overlooking, leave a comment on this post, or email me- mn@mothersnews.net.

oh! and realness is appreciated! thankssss

for readers (choose one):

  • i'd pay a dollar per issue because Mothers News is worth it (61%, 33 Votes)
  • i'd pay a dollar per issue because fifty cents and a dollar are basically the same thing to me (19%, 10 Votes)
  • i'd only get it if it was free. (13%, 7 Votes)
  • i would pay fifty cents per issue for Mothers News, but NOT a dollar. (7%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 54

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for distributors or future distributors (potentially anyone) (choose as many as apply):

  • i'd buy a bunch (30 or 100) just to give them away to friends / strangers (59%, 17 Votes)
  • i'd take out a 2" ad ($40) and get a box of 100, that's great (34%, 10 Votes)
  • i'd be interested in buying a box of 100 for $20, to resell them (31%, 9 Votes)
  • fifty cents is ok / cute (17%, 5 Votes)
  • i'd probably buy a box (of 30 or 100) to resell every month (17%, 5 Votes)
  • i'd take some on consignment, otherwise nope (10%, 3 Votes)
  • i have a band, i'd buy a box and sell them at shows (10%, 3 Votes)
  • $20 is too much, but i'm interested in buying a box of 30 for $10, to resell them (7%, 2 Votes)
  • i'd only be interested if i could sell them for a dollar- fifty cents isn't worth it (7%, 2 Votes)

Total Voters: 29

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Kate Schapira gonna make it rain

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Mothers News staff poet Kate Schapira is a force of nature, and her new project is “a poetic effort to gather funds for public libraries in regions hit hard by this summer’s drought”. Each day she’ll be posting a new rain dance poem and accepting donations, until she reaches or surpasses her goal. really great! check it out at http://kateschapira.blogspot.com/

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last night’s benefit show

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whoa!!!!! last night’s show was incredible!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! pictured above, Noise Nomads playing to the street (photo by @agaremy)

thanks everyone who came out, and thanks everyone who played!!!

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Mothers News benefit show TOMORROW (thursday the 13th)

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YOW!!! sorry for the short notice here but Mothers News is having a benefit show TOMORROW (that’s thursday the 13th) at AS220 in Providence RI, and it’s an epic show!!

* Keith Fullerton Whitman
* Noise Nomads
* Angst Hase Pfeffer Nase
* Russian Tsarlag
with DJ Work/Death between sets

at as220 on empire st in Providence RI
$6 9pm all ages. drinks will be served.

this is definitely a noise show, so more than regularly, things are unbound, open to interpretation. that said, i would add that this show is going to be one of the best! all these people are the best!!!!!!! the best musicians in the game!!!!!

KFW: academic noise maven- meticulously tending to a garden of synthesizer patches, coaxing out berries and bugs for planetary movement. major league credentials, signified by scholarly beard. ex-HRVATSKI. pictured above with friend.

NN: no agenda, no ambition, no location. the best. as i have mentioned before, the single from the last sonic youth record was ABOUT him. namechecked IN THE CHORUS. because he’s good and he’s ageless in the game forever.

AHPN: solo performance from Chris Cooper, the guitarist for Fat Worm Of Error. whirring and chirping, a master at work. pointing a remote control at a guitar and saying “be a bird”. mayyyyyyybe ex-CAROLINER?

RT: the prince of the sewer, the lord of the basement. i’m reminded of a phrase from the Cramps: “[he] won’t pummel, and you won’t pogo- [he’ll] ooze, you’ll throb”. working on a sort of frankie valli / david lynch / exhumed axis.

DJWD: special treat from the Janitor of Providence- a live mix DJ set- multiple sound sources, indeterminacy and room to move, speakers at a distance, people talking behind a wall… radio’s on, feeling alright…

i feel kind of foolish saying these dudes are the best, because being the best at noise music is a little like being the best at being a gust of wind, or being the best at being a faun or a tree. but that’s kind of the way it goes! these people are all very good at following their own particular path. if you’re not into noise, it’s easy to brush it off as inane postmodern posturing, emperor’s new clothes, willful ignorance, as continuing the thread of underground music as courtship displays of aggression and dominance, or as simply a weird fad. but this show is slow, careful, purposeful, with spirit and joy. new england noise godfather ron lessard once that noise music is “the True Sound Of Love”, that’s the thread we’re following here.

please come out!!!!

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Mothers News art show in Philadelphia Sept 7th – 29th

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philadelphia and environs, come party with us in a gallery setting! the opening is this friday the 7th, 7-10pm. we will have items on display, some interpretations, a working printing press, and lance said there would be refreshments (at the opening).

also we’ll have the fresh new issue (pretty sure).

that’s at space 1026, which is 1026 arch st 2nd floor, philadelphia PA.

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Mothers News on Printeresting

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ayyyyyyyyyyy printeresting did a nice writeup on Mothers News!

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well we met the original goal for our fundraiser / subscription drive, and can now accomplish our primary objective of hiring another Mothers News employee for the year. now we are at the part of the fundraiser where we see how much OVER our goal we can go!

why should we try to go over / why should you care? well, of course it still makes sense to contribute, for the regular reason that you want a subscription to the next year’s worth of the paper, or you want to get a gift subscription for a friend, or you want the official (and limited edition) mothers news coffee mug, or to get whatever the extra mega bonus items are, and/or to just be forward-minded plus nice, and to support the thing you like to see in the world. that’s the regular reason why. but the extra reason why is that from this point on, every additional $131 we get allows us to distribute a year’s worth of Mothers News to a NEW TOWN or CITY in the continental united states.

isn’t this an exciting prospect? people in this new town will start finding stacks of it at their record store, coffee place, book nook, show zone, friend’s bathroom, or wherever, EVERY MONTH. they’ll be like “what’s this?”. some of them will be like “huh”, some like “oh”. what will happen then? what are the ramifications? i don’t know!!!! i want to find out!!!!!!! maybe they will be inspired to start their own newspapers, or take their art project as serious as their life (q: has this been happening already? a: yes). best case scenario, short term: kids are going to pick it up and start thinking “i guess this is how the world works”.

$131 is the cost of 6 subscriptions, or 4 mugs. or one $131 donation. not a lot to mess up an entire city or town for a full year!!! what should we shoot for, 10 new cities? 20? LET’S GO!!!!!!!!

if you want to be the point person in your town, and get a box of Mothers News shipped to your house or place of business every month, and bring them to a few cool spots around town, please GET IN TOUCH with us! in addition to regular social rewards (aka “cool points”), there are special offers and opportunities for Mothers News newsies– you could even end up making money on it! email MN@mothersnews.net. if you want to sponsor a specific town with a single donation, we will try to accomplish that, but unfortunately since we are dealing with volunteer distributors, we cannot guarantee it. but we’ll really try!!!!!!

also… i’m only saying this because people have asked, but please stipulate if want to make a donation that goes towards “whatever”, and not specifically postage/outreach. if you’re like “i want to engender these funds strictly for pizzas” or “personal betterment / inreach” or something. not trying to be weird about this… ok, LET’S GO!!!!!!!!

and especially THANKS EVERYONE!!!!!!! this rules so far / already / still!

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