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“When Zagreb was the epicenter of explorations into the aesthetic potential of the new “thinking machines.”
This book documents a short but intense artistic experiment that took place in Yugoslavia in the 1960s and 1970s but has been influential far beyond that time and place: the “little-known story” of the advent of computers in art. It was through the activities of the New Tendencies movement, begun in Zagreb in 1961, and its supporting institution the Galerija suvremene umjetnosti that the “thinking machine” was adopted as an artistic tool and medium. Pursuing the idea of “art as visual research,” the New Tendencies movement proceeded along a path that led from Concrete and Constructivist art, Op art, and Kinetic art to computer-generated graphics, film, and sculpture.
With their exhibitions and conferences and the 1968 launch of the multilingual, groundbreaking magazine Bit International, the New Tendencies transformed Zagreb—already one of the most vibrant artistic centers in Yugoslavia—into an international meeting place where artists, engineers, and scientists from both sides of the Iron Curtain gathered around the then-new technology. For a brief moment in time, Zagreb was the epicenter of explorations of the aesthetic, scientific, and political potential of the computer.
This volume documents that exhilarating period. It includes new essays by Jerko Denegri, Darko Fritz, Margit Rosen, and Peter Weibel; many texts that were first published in New Tendencies exhibition catalogs and Bit International magazine; and historic documents. More than 650 black-and-white and color illustrations testify to the astonishing diversity of the exhibited artworks and introduce the movement’s protagonists. Many of the historic photographs, translations, and documents are published here for the first time. Taken together, the images and texts offer the long overdue history of the New Tendencies experiment and its impact on the art of the twentieth century.”
Edited by Margit Rosen in collaboration with Peter Weibel, Darko Fritz, and Marija Gattin
Publisher ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, and MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2011
ISBN 9780262515818, 0262515814
PDF (102 MB)
George Antheil (1900-1959) was a radical American composer active in the early part of 20th century. He was recognised by the Parisian avant-garde literary community as a musical spokesman for their ideas. In the late 1920s Antheil participated in the operatic renaissance in Germany, and, after his return to America in 1933, he attempted to synthesize an American musical idiom in his neoromantic film, symphonic, chamber, and operatic scores.
In his autobiography, Antheil gives a fascinating account of the creative activity in Berlin, Paris, Vienna, New York and Hollywood, discussing his encounters with Igor Stravinsky, Hedy Lamarr, James Joyce, Man Ray, Ezra Pound, Sylvia Beach, W.B. Yeats, Erik Satie, Pablo Picasso, Cecil B. DeMille, Fritz Lang, Salvador Dalí and others.
First published by Doubleday, Doran & Co., Garden City, NY, 1945
Published in the UK by Hurst & Blackett, London, 1947
Reprinted by National Book Association / Hutchinson & Co., London, 1949
via Tom Whitwell
PDF (12 MB)
“Anonymity is highly contested, marking the limits of civil liberties and legality. Digital technologies of communication, identification, and surveillance put anonymity to the test. They challenge how anonymity can be achieved, and dismantled. Everyday digital practices and claims for transparency shape the ways in which anonymity is desired, done, and undone.
The Book of Anonymity includes contributions by artists, anthropologists, sociologists, media scholars, and art historians. It features ethnographic research, conceptual work, and artistic practices conducted in France, Germany, India, Iran, Switzerland, the UK, and the US. From police to hacking cultures, from Bitcoin to sperm donation, from Yik-Yak to Amazon and IKEA, from DNA to Big Data — thirty essays address how the reconfiguration of anonymity transforms our concepts of privacy, property, self, kin, addiction, currency, and labor.” (from back cover)
Contributors: Anon, Götz Bachmann, Dwaipayan Banerjee, Solon Barocas, Aram Bartholl, Amelie Baumann, Vadim Bernard, Paula Bialski, Andreas Broeckmann, Heath Bunting, Martin De Bie, Bureau d’études, Jacob Copeman, Abigail Curlew, Stéphane Degoutin, Simon Farid, Parastou Forouhar, Randi Heinrichs, Anna Henke, Michi Knecht, knowbotiq, Gertraud Koch, Julien McHardy, Helen Nissenbaum, Gerald Raunig, RYBN.ORG, Daniela Silvestrin, Thorsten Thiel, Transformella, Daniël de Zeeuw, Nils Zurawski.
Publisher Punctum Books, March 2021
Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0 International license
PDF (11 MB)
Hugh Davies: Sounds Heard: A Potpourri of Environmental Projects and Documentation, Projects with Children, Simple Musical Instruments, Sound Installations, Verbal Scores, and Historical Perspectives (2002)
“Sounds Heard is not only a collection of writings intended for people who are interested or involved in contemporary music, especially those performers – including children – who lack a formal musical training. It also charts a wide cross-section of the activities of an intriguing musical personality. At different times in Hugh Davies’ nearly 40 year career he has been variously described as “the world’s leading electromusicologist”, “the most informed person around on the general subject of new instruments”, “unique English composer”, “one of the most interesting instrument inventors of recent decades”, “the remarkable live-electronics ‘freak”‘, an “electronic wizard”, “a humanist” and “I have never seen any music teacher who is as fond of children as he is”. Do these really refer to only one person? Who is the real Hugh Davies? Why has his modesty prevented him from being better known?
This book focuses on many of Davies’ insights about working as an artist, a musician, a composer, a performer, an instrument inventor, an educator and a researcher. He takes nothing for granted, and there are always wider implications than his own immediate involvement. Even his more avantgarde scenarios are tempered with his “very British sense of humour”. Many of the different areas of experimental music since the 1960s are touched on, including electronic music, live electronics, invented instruments, sound sculpture, sound installations and free improvisation, in all of which he was one of the British pioneers.
The CD illustrates a cross-section of the themes covered in the book. As with most of Hugh Davies’ solo performances and recordings, no conventional instruments were used on the entire album, with the exception of one short piece in which existing music has been manipulated with tape techniques.” (from back cover)
Publisher Soundworld Publishers, Chelmsford, 2002
ISBN 1902440056, 9781902440057
An early anthology focusing on the aesthetics and compositional techniques in computer music.
With essays by Curtis Roads, Charles Dodge, Tod Machover, Jean-Claude Risset, Iannis Xenakis, and an interview with Herbert Brün by Peter Hamlin with Curtis Roads.
Publisher William Kaufmann, Los Altos, CA, 1985
Computer Music and Digital Audio series
ISBN 0865760853, 9780865760851
Review: Jon Appleton (The Musical Quarterly, 1986).
PDF (57 MB)
See also Roads’s Composing Electronic Music: A New Aesthetic (2015).