Tag Archives | performance

PARTICIPANT INTERVIEW: Chris Gethard

What are you working on now and how does the piece in Conflux relate?

My main current pursuit is helming a public-access television show that’s streamed worldwide and known for being out-of-the-box and inclusive of anyone. The Magic Bus of Stories event that I’ll be speaking about at Conflux has led directly to the public-access project I’m consumed with now. The Magic Bus of Stories provided an insane level of access for participants into my own life ranging from childhood to modern day, and the level of connection this created between myself and the participants as well as between the participants themselves, completely redefined my focus to always incorporate the idea of shared, two-way experiences into everything I do. The television show stages a different event each week, and our best shows aim to involve people live in the studio, with events happening on air that are triggered by callers on phones, and that incorporate the reaction of people watching in real time on the internet as well.

What interests you in working in public space? what are some of the challenges you face making public work?

As a comedian, I work to make people happier via laughter. I have made every effort to combine my own narcissistic desire to put my name and face on my projects with a very honest desire to make my work about connecting like-minded people, who often identify as outcasts, with one another. In the same way that music builds scenes, and musical genres attract like-minded people, different wings of the comedy universe can do things as well. My efforts to stage things in non-traditional venues like moving buses, my own home, and a public-access television studio allow me to build environments that the public has full access to and where there are far fewer divisions between performer and audience than any traditional comedy venue. My work as a comedian has often been compared to performance art as it involves less and less of a fourth wall and aims to include as many people as possible. 

There are far fewer challenges for me to work in these realms, as being a comedian and finding opportunities to stage things more publicly than usual doesn’t lead to as many legal and social barriers as people who work in other mediums might face. I hope more and more that I can find opportunities to bring portions of my world to unexpected places in similar ways.

Any great adventures you’ve been on recently?

Tomorrow I head to Brazil on a vacation I planned on a whim. Ask me when I get back.

Check out more here: www.thechrisgethardshow.com, @ChrisGethard

Conflux 2012 Official Press Release

Conflux Festival 2012 . Oct. 20-21 . NYU’s Barney Building

The annual NYC festival for the investigation of urban life through emerging artistic, technological and social practices is back! During the Conflux Festival 2012,  over 30 artists, activists, interaction designers, and pranksters will present documentation, give talks, and provide workshops for festival goers on October 20-21, 2012 in the East Village. This year, participating cultural producers are exploring the ways we experience transportation and creating interventions to improve, shake up, or evaluate the things that we have implicitly accepted into our daily commutes.

Curated this year by Angela Washko, the festival will take the form of an exhibition with artist talks and workshops at NYU along with concurrent phenomena elsewhere. Work in the exhibition will range in temperament and intention – from practical and functional to poetic and absurd. Think: documentation of handmade boats navigating the waters surrounding New York City, interactive mythological topographies, ephemera from a “magical” bus tour of suburban New Jersey (which included a visit to the basement couch where the facilitator lost his virginity), subway improvement gestures, and much more.

On Saturday October 20th 12-8pm and Sunday October 21st 12-6pm: Indoor events, headquartered at NYU’s Barney Building (34 Stuyvesant St.), include an exhibition showcasing documentation from a variety of both past and new Conflux participants/projects, as well as talks and workshops. Highlights include discussions led by Daniel Bejar, Emily Bunker, Jason Eppink, Mary Flanagan, Moses Gates, Chris Gethard, Matt Green, Steve Lambert, Robert Lawrence, Marie Lorenz,  Jeff Maki, Mare Liberum, Naomi Miller, Rob Ray, Mark Shepard, Jeff Stark, Nathaniel Sullivan, Caroline Woolard, and The World of Warcraft Psychogeographical Association.

We are also excited to announce that the following artists will be working on projects in public space presented concurrently with Conflux! Yoni Brook, Mare Liberum, Matt Green, LD Lawrence and Ro Lawrence, Mark Shepard, Nathaniel Sullivan, and Alex Young.

All events included in the Conflux Festival 2012 are free and open to the public!
RSVP to Conflux via Facebook!

CONFLUX FESTIVAL 2012
Saturday October 20 12-8pm
Sunday October 21 12-6pm

Barney Building Gallery
NYU Steinhardt School
34 Stuyvesant Street . NYC

Closest Subway Stations:
Astor Place 6
8th Street-NYU N, R
3rd Ave L



Conflux is brought to you by:

Directors
Christina Ray and David Mandl

Curatorial Director
David Darts

Head Curator
Angela Washko

Communications Coordinator
Aliya Bonar

Web: confluxfestival.org
Facebook: Conflux Festival Page
Twitter: @confluxfestival
For Twitter talk: #confluxfestival

Conflux is produced by Glowlab Productions LLC and is hosted in 2012 with the generous support of New York University, Art Connects New York and Gowanus Studio Space.

Interested in volunteering with us? Contact conflux.curatorial@gmail.com

OFF-SITE PROJECT: Nathaniel Sullivan

We are excited to announce that Nathaniel Sullivan will be conducting a seminar in the back of a limousine on October 20th! This public space project is happening at the same time as the Conflux Festival.  Nathaniel has also been invited to talk about the project at the Barney Building the following afternoon. Stay tuned for more details. See below for the official seminar poster.

All That You Desire: Get It All In An Era Of Low Density Hope “ is a seminar that will be conducted from the back of a limousine for approximately one hour on October 20th, 2012. Participants will be selected from the pool of visitors to the Conflux Festival.  The limo will travel through lower Manhattan, the center of global capitalism. We will stop along the route- to tell stories, to play games and to immerse ourselves in the locations of unabashed desire. One of the things this environment teaches us (if we listen to it) is that the abstractions of the financial industry can also have a social function. Unmoored from our old moral codes by these abstractions, we are free to want, to get, and in turn, to want more.

From the artist:

ALL THAT YOU DESIRE: GET IT ALL IN AN ERA OF LOW DENSITY HOPE

What would happen if you got everything you wanted? What would you look like? What would you feel like?

Most people alive on the planet have done something only to say right after, “wow, that was stupid”.  One way or another, we act in service of our desires, which often produce contradictory results.  We are not always in control of what we want.  So if we are not in control of our desires, then what can we control?  If you guessed ‘how you feel about what you want’, then you guessed right.

All That You Desire: Get It All In An Era Of Low Density Hope “ is a seminar that will be conducted from the back of a limousine for approximately one hour on October 20th, 2012. Participants will be selected at the Conflux Festival.  The limo will travel through lower Manhattan, the center of global capitalism. We will stop along the route, to tell stories, to play games and to immerse ourselves in the locations of unabashed desire. One of the things this environment teaches us (if we listen to it) is that the abstractions of the financial industry can also have a social function. Unmoored from our old moral codes by these abstractions, we are free to want, to get, and in turn, to want more.

I know what you might be thinking at this point.  “How do you resolve a limited amount of resources with an unlimited amount of desire”?  Well, my first answer is anything worth having is in limited supply.  But a more in depth answer is this: go into debt.  It may sound crazy, but I believe that debt is an act of citizenship. It is time to reframe debt, to not see it as a burden, as we have in the past, but as the most important social bond that we can have with others.

But ultimately, this seminar is about you and what you want. You have been conditioned not to want too much.  The well-worn narrative dictates that ruin awaits those who have everything they want.  It is this belief that we must sever from your desires.

Think about this for a moment, NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) works on the conditioning of the mind, much like an athlete conditions her body.  But an athlete can only jump so high or run so fast as her potential allows. On the other hand, the mind can create a whole universe, instantly. So what would happen if you used that power to imagine a world where you didn’t feel guilty for getting what you want?

So why am I doing this?  I am doing it because I want your attention. Why am I doing this for free? Because I want your attention more than I want your money. And what I really want is for you to take this ride with me.  I want you to get what you want, when you want it.

Space is limited, I would love to take you all, but I can only take a few.  The first thing that you must do is attend the Conflux festival.  The second thing is to be ready for change. I will be in a suit, accompanied by a photographer. I will be asking festival attendees important questions that will determine their suitability for the seminar.  It will be an opportunity that will last an hour. And after that my friends, the opportunity will be gone.

-Nathaniel Sullivan 2012

HIGHLIGHT FROM CONFLUX 2008: TANGO INTERVENTION

Robert Lawrence and his project Tango Intervention is both a highlight from a past Conflux Festival and also a participating project in this year’s festival exhibition.  During the 2008 edition of Conflux, Lawrence assembled over 40 dancers to Tango across the Brooklyn Bridge, stopping for a one hour milonga at the Brooklyn Tower and another one hour milonga at the Manhattan Tower. He describes the project as a dedication to the invisible laborers that built the bridge during the “Gilded Age.”  More information on this project can be found here.