Second Front performed Babula Rasa as part of “The Artist is Elsewhere” — a one-night performance event hosted by ZERO1 and curated by Sean Fletcher and Isabel Reichert. These are some stills from the event.
My idea was to use Google Docs, specifically its spreadsheet as a virtual Tabula Rasa — a blank slate for performance. I had imagined word-play, formulas, formatting changes and text-upon-text revisions and edits. I’ve often found Mail Art to be a source of inspiration, where artists re-purposed communication networks for art discourse. I was hoping for a similar effect with Google Docs, a space normally reserved for business documents or household expense sheets.
However, my Second Front compatriots always surprise me and they quickly begain inserting images into Google Docs. Who knew? Apparently everyone else but me.
Projected live for 2 hours during “The Artist is Elsewhere” event, this quickly became a group collage. In the first 30 minutes what appeared was the “I Say” Shark, various blue women appeared, Patrick Lichty’s birthday cake, and lots and lots of cats.
Images from various Second Front performances popped up: Last Supper and Wrath of Kong. And lots of memes from popular culture, reminding me of How Conceptual Art Influenced the World Wide Web.
We could overhear the other performances live on a UStream channel. At one point, one of the performances seemed to be carrying on for a long time and someone (maybe me) uploaded Chuck Barris from the Gong Show.
Does this embrace, reject or dry-hump the New Aesthetic? That’s for you to decide.
And like all Second Front performances, we had to bomb the virtual venue when we were done…only this time with cats.