Monday, 19 December 2011

Dreamtime with Simbi Dare and Nicola Morton - AKSI REVOLUSI

Nicola Morton as The Rabbit
Simbi Dare as The Dragonfly

Escort you to Dreamtime in between the Banyan Trees, October 26 2011 at Alun Alun Kidul, Yogyakarta - the resting place of the gods and then sing...

Problem: Revolution action is needed to change the fabric dimension of society to a place where we all hold empathy and have what we need - a dreamtime dimension. S&M's penultimate performance in Indonesia. Nicola and Simbi's medicine cards that represent our link to above and other dimensions are the Rabbit (fear) and the Dragonfly (illusion). This performance was to transform the fears and illusions we had presented in our previous performances and use the energy to expose the world to dreamtime. We used a famous public gateway in Yogyakarta, the banyan tree gates at the Sultan's Palace. According to tradition if you walk from the top of the park thru the middle of the gate you will have unlimited success. Every night locals and tourists try to get thru the cosmic gateway, often other musicians and people trick and distract you from getting through the gate. Dressed as the rabbit and dragonfly we tried to make our way through the 2 trees. On our 3rd attempt, we finally got to the middle and unpacked the gender (Javanese xylophone) and microphone and sang the lyrics of Atari Teenage Riot's "Revolution Action" which we had modified and translated to Bahasa Indonesian (a language not native to the area, but a simple, universalizing language of the area). At the end we wanted to destroy the rabbit and dragonfly as they draw fears toward us and get trapped in illusion. So the rabbit was eaten by a Javanese wooden tiger puppet and the dragonfly costume was going to be burned but at the last minute Simbi decided to give the costume to a little girl who had watched the whole performance in the audience. Having shed our fears and illusions, we get through the gate.  That night  Simbi met a new friend who has tattooed on his chest, "Be Careful What You Wish For." We drew new cards for our entrance to dreamtime, Nicola is the antelope or knowledgeable action and Simbi is the butterfly, or projects and transformation. For Christmas Simbi performed a potlatch, or Native American ceremony in which you give away and burn all your belongings.  An enormous sparkly dragonfly divebombed into the fire.
Saat hidup, Saat mati Saat hidup, Saat mati Saat hidup, Saat mati Saat hidup, Saat mati Saat hidup, AKSI REVOLUSI Kalian akan mati, untuk apa Kalian akan mati, untuk apa (AKSI) Kalian akan mati, untuk apa Kalian akan mati, untuk apa AKSI REVOLUSI Membakar kengarian pemerintah yang berkuasa Dengan pistol mengarah ke kepala Saya menyadari apa yang tidak saya dapatkan Banyak orang punya kekuatan tapi tidak satupun dari kita semua Setiap jam media katakan apa yang salah Berdiri di dalam tenggorakan singha dan saya mau tau hidup kalian menyebalikan di bendingkan dengan hidup saya dan teman2 saya Perusak ke tengah2 ikut hati mu AKSI REVOLUSI Kita akan mati, untuk apa? Kita akan mati, untuk apa? (AKSI) Ini bukan merusak diri sendiri Ini bukan merusak diri sendiri AKSI REVOLUSI

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

How I Survived a Kuntilanak Attack (Transforming Women on Women Rage)

Women are often oppressed in society by men and their fellow women and can’t express their feelings and anger. This oppression can give women a supernatural power which might lash out at just anyone without them even being consciously aware. Since revenge seems impossible in the physical world this causes powerful living spirits to emerge such as kuntilanak and sundel bolong (Indonesian female ghosts). However when this repressed violence becomes supernatural, kuntilanak tend to take it out on just about anybody, that’s why everyone is afraid of kuntilanak. This performance is about recognizing that from having this living spirit given to us thru oppression we can use it consciously rather than unconsciously to change society.

Simbi and Nicola have faced living spirits before and recognize the challenge of going further than being captivated by them. Derrida in Specters of Marx (1994) describes our struggle as follows: 
“One must have the ghost’s hide and to do that, one must have it. To have it, one must see it, situate it, identify it. One must possess it without letting oneself be possessed by it, without being possessed of it (…) Is not to possess a specter to be possessed by it, possessed period? To capture it, is that not to be captivated by it?” 
So first we taunt the audience and embody the specter by singing "Spellbound" by Siouxie and the Banshees and then "Girls" by the Beastie Boys (“I want.. girls to clean the bathroom”) on the gender, a traditional Javanese xylophone (the only one a woman can traditionally play). We also give out locally made clove cigarettes and newspapers. Simbi and I are women taking on women ghosts and so we sing "Boom I Got Your Boyfriend" to set the scene for this women on women anger. Then comes time for transformation as we offer up our bodies for violence from the crowd and recreate our sense of victimization (a là Marina Abramovic “Rhythm 0” (1974)). We absorb the oppression and then transform it into screams, anger and sadness, whilst at the same time documenting our screams and keeping the energy in the physical world. The idea is that women’s supernatural power is potentially a force for societal transformation if used consciously. We decide to support women making music together, We recommend riotgirl music (like Sleater Kinney) for everyone by giving out free mix CDS. We then sing "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone" first remixed jungle style then again on the gender. We harnessed the supernatural power of repressed women to consciously change society.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Copyright, Art and Utopia Perf Lecture

Presented October 18 at Indonesian Contemporary Art Network
If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.
—Phi Kappa Phi Journal[2]
Performative Action: Each person is given 2 toy eyes :)  so now they have 3 eyes, like an alien

Sharing Economy - towards the end of 11th Century, post feudal economy was starting to happen, similar to the peer to peer, bartering systems we are pioneering now. But basically people would pay for things according to how they could ie. bread could be bought with fish or with clothing etc. There was no fixed price or value for products or services, each items value would change per each transaction, case by case.
Scarcity Economy –  The Sovereign and other rich people wanted to continue receiving money just because they were already rich. Taxes were not enough, they devised a sovereign currency, so now people needed to pay for products with money, which they could only get from the Sovereign. The sovereign would control how much money it would give out and loans started happening. Sovereign currency invented by Dutch.
Post Scarcity Economy – where everyone can get what they want, utopic and dystopic views see. Sci-fi discussion below.
Intellectual Property – should authorship = a material monetary value?
Authorship opposed to just the actors – actors will be paid a fixed wage, no copyright. They do not suffer from copyright abuse.
Publishing Companies – ie. Warner, MGM, buy the right to reproduce the intellectual property, once the author has sold the reproduction rights the publishing company can regulate supply and demand and exhibits cartel-like behaviour. Again it is a system where the company makes money by simply having money. The author is given a royalty (2-3%) from each reproduction.
Copyright/Patents – the right to reproduce intellectual property. interestingly copyright does not cover clothing or industrial design, but I am mostly going to be talking about copyright of entertainment media. Copyright invented by the British.
Before Copyright and publishing companies – the author would find means to reproduce and distribute the book/movie/film/painting and then receive all the money from each copy.  Books were still being sold by popularity, if a book was good, the author would sell out of the first run of 20 or so and then start making more. Starting and working mostly in small local communities. Reproduction was somewhat expensive but the advent of bible reproduction and trade opened up exporting of books – books now could be distributed with Bible, some authors got in there and started trading books before copyright.
Stealing - However when books were very popular there was nothing to stop people reproducing the book because they had bought a copy before. They would then make the money off this reproduction. When you copy an item of intel. Property from a publishing company you are taking from the companies projected earnings but not stealing any money from author.
Copyright and Economy
Nicola will take you back in time to the development of copyright and authorship, discussing the principles of the scarcity economy and the monopoly copyrighting provides. Basically copyrighting was invented to scrape more money off the emerging intellectual production and labour class. It promotes individual knowledge over community knowledge. It allows publishing companies to monopolize, in reality the author hardly gets any money for royalties but is paid by commission or in advance by the publishing company. It is a way for the big money to keep on making money just because they have it. Its premise (which is untrue) is that it motivates artists to be more productive so they can earn more money.

Then a quick trip to the future through some sci-fi books to the idea of how a utopic post-scarcity economy could exist, where physical and intellectual commodities are in abundance and free. Ian M Banks "The Culture" where there is a civilisation who found freedom from need and freedom from greed by utilising artificial intelligence for production and traverse space trying to share their developments.
and the intermediary step is present in Neal Stephenson's "The Diamond Age" where fabricator technology allows the growth of any thing that one has design plans for however the poor receive a lesser amount of energy and resources per day to use and thus have to wait longer for items to be fabricated. Also their items tend to be smaller, as they have no access to large-scale fabricators. however the centrally distributed power to the fabricators is cut off when a protean seed is developed which allows the fabricators direct access to raw materials. Then after the discovery of this renewable resource from the earth, we are propelled into post scarcity.

And then back to the present to the developing peer to peer economy, gifting economy where digital content can be copied and distributed at little cost. What is Sharing or Stealing in a P2P economy? - share: only take if the person wants it to be shared, people can share movies etc. No money for big media companies anymore? good, rise of DIY films and innovative business strategies. Problems running a sharing economy in parallel with a scarcity economy = lawsuits

A small note on Asia and piracy. In some instances Asia is ahead of the Western world in the sharing of ideas and intellectual property ie. Kunci's cheap books from India and the new bribe reporting website, where viewers can see how much was paid to who for what job (its bringing the prices of bribes down). China steals industrial secrets for the forwarding of their own nation so still enforcing the market force of competition and not openness.

Copyright and contemporary Art.
Appropriation of the image in Art - the importance of appropriation in the post modern - copyright law inhibits and causes problems for artists - rather than inspires creativity which it is supposed to do. The critical faculty of Art where it is antagonistic and critical of media, needs to appropriate symbols of collective identity. The importance of changing the meaning of the significant.
Appropriation is and exploration of signification, originality, appropriation, authorship and deconstruction. The term ‘simulacrum’, drawn from the writings of the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, is often used to signify this idea of representation as reality. For Postmodernists nothing we can say or do is truly ‘original’, for our thoughts are constructed from our experience of a lifetime of representation, so it is naive to imagine a work’s author inventing its forms or controlling its meaning. Instead of pretending to an authorities originality, postmodernism concentrates on the way images and symbols (‘signifiers’) shift or lose their meaning when put in different contexts (‘appropriated’), revealing (‘deconstructing’) the processes by which meaning is constructed.

and the DIY art economy - producing works for own satisfaction and recognition of peers, not for $$ destroys premise of copyright. Ie. ETSY

Copyright and (d)evolution
The collective intelligence - mass collaboration could be the next step in evolotuion -  it requires openness, peer 2 peer, sharing, globalisation (overcoming group think and individual cognitive bias) in order to allow a collective to cooperate on one process-while achieving enhanced intellectual performance. Teilhard points to the societal problems and tactics of capitalism such as isolation and marginalization as huge inhibitors of evolotuion. since evolution requires a unification of consciousness. He states that "no evolutionary future awaits anyone except in association with everyone else."
Tentatively Collective Intelligence could help us build civilisation similar to Ian Banks "The Culture" where we are free from greed and material need.
Role play Scenario:
One with traditional system:
One with new system:
Music, art, books, stealing.. eg. DGTMB, Melanie Bonajo and Eddie
Problems with creation because of copyright

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Halmstad Sea Festival, with Henrik Hedinge

"Wave Croquis" - wave life drawing, sticking my contrapossto
7 November 2011. Group Performance directed by Henrik Hedinge
Performance by Nicola Morton at Black Beach in Bali, Indonesia (out the back of John Michael’s studio, near Gianyar)
Music by Nicola Morton, Movement 1 from “Life is a Rubiks Cube”

Bangun Pagi at Festival Senyum Merapi, Diwak Village

I performed the "Bangun Pagi.. Mengosok Gigi" children's song at Smile Senyum Merapi Festival in Diwak Village. PM Toh collaborated with me on the day, helping amp up the kids..

Other Press Links and Photos


Monday, 8 August 2011

Legally Lolita - A Performance about our Fathers

Problem: We are all affected by patriarchal power, the manipulations of our fathers- the lawmaker (my dad) and the self-made man (simbi's dad), mirror the way society tries to manipulate us through intimidation, isolation and flattery.

Part 1- Addresses how our father figures are liars and stealers who project their crimes onto us. We are dressed as schoolgirls and are caught stealing and sing a capella Jane's Addiction's 'Been Caught Stealing' accompanied by toy electric guitar. We are accompanied by projections of Rush Limbaugh, Bill Gates, Tiger Woods, President Suharto.
Part 2 - Is about how discipline intimidates you and tricks you into wanting it and being sorry and instead you have to learn to speak up against it. Nicola sings Throbbing Gristle's 'Discipline' and builds a jail out of duct tape, while Simbi jams noise style over the top. Then Simbi dressed as a policeman gives orders to Nicola like a dog, like "Sit!," "Roll Over," "Get Back in Jail" and Nicola obeys. Then when in jail, Nicola apologises over and over again "Sorry, sorry" and then Simbi reveals she is just a schoolgirl and teaches Nicola to say "I'm not sorry" and "Why the fuck, should I be sorry."
Part 3 - By using the power of sharing a joint and becoming gothic lolita's we temporarily escape the discipline and jail of our fathers and play hand clap games and jump rope, but we get caught and tied up in the image of lolita's as Reese Witherspoon in Clueless and Legally Blonde and Athena, daughter of Zeus.
Part 4- We find better female role models as we transform to our Orisha's, Yemaya (Mother deity and ocean goddess) and Oya (Warrior spirit of the wind, lightning, fertility, fire and magic) and sing "Don't You Love Her Madly" by The Doors- as we successfully walk out the door of the Jail.
Part 5- As the Orisha's and characters from Vera Chytilová's 'Sedmikrásky' (Daisies) We learn how to answer manipulative phrases, ie. "I always wanted to be an intellectual and a lawyer, but you can do that. Well you didn't loser, I have a chance to be a great artist" and "I'll blame your mother and scream at her and hit her. She should leave you if you do that. I am not making you hit her" then Simbi sings Carole King's, 'Tapestry' and Nicola as Oya creates a tornado amongst the gravestones of books.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Mau ke Bulan - A Journey to the Dark Side of the Moon

A performance that investigates the dark (Lilith) side of the Moon and Mothers. Held at T-Art Space, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia.

Comment By Simbi:
We all know mothers have their dark sides just like anyone and some of
us believe the idealization of mothers is oppressive to culture and
society, as well as mothers, creating layers of shame, guilt, denial,
manipulation, and deception.  We decided to dive into the dark sides
of our mothers while at the same time finding our own dark side, using
Dark Moon Lilith as a representation.  Astrologically I am a Scorpio
dark moon and Nicola is Virgo.  Whitney Houston/Blondie and Woody
Allen. Anyway. We confronted our deepest fears when blindfolded, mine
is to be tortured, Nicola to fall down and symbolically be defaced.
Both Nicola and I felt the need to represent something for our mothers
to help them.  Nicola needed to be the stoic Asian elephant and I
needed to be a princess, a saint and a Christmas present.  After
confronting our fears, I am tortured after being tied to my princess
throne and being forced to listen to the "Duck Sauce - Barbra
Streisand" song, and she falls down the stairs and has a face drawn on
her ass to symbolize defacement, we are able to detourne our roles by
sexualizing them.  Nicola rides the pink elephant and I stab an apple,
wear bows on my shoes and say "Oh God."  After releasing the false
roles we open ourselves up to African spirits, Oya goddess of
thunderstorms and dance for me and Yemaya who is an endlessly coming
woman and ocean of endless bliss for Nicola.  The projected Virgin
Mary transforms into Madonna, and we quote from Mary Magdalene's
gospel -- disdained by the official version of the Bible -- "I knew
you, but you did not know me, because you mistook my garment for my
true self."
Finally I teach moon salutations to the audience to honor mothers and
their teachings, both dark and light sides of the moon.

Comment By Nicola:
My time in Indonesia, has been marked by a lot of digging up of emotions about my family - submissive wives, Asian wives, Asian family responsibility etc. I did not expect it.

After spending time on the shamanic death of capitalism, Simbi and I realised that a whole lot of negative neurosis were still present in our psyches due to our dysfunctional families (who were also in ways products of the manipulations of capitalism). So, we started with our mothers. We were intrigued about the 'good' archetype of the mother, when there is an obvious bad 'Lilith' side. However this Lilith side offers us strengths as well. Due to us witnessing our mother's very shameful positions, we both have very little shame. Our mothers were both victims and drew us in with sympathy so first we sing "Let it Be." My mother, a victim of her own family's superstitions, subconsciously placed a lot of guilt on me especially after leaving all her family she left my abusive father, as I had to become the father of the family from a young age - she made me into a stoic elephant, to symbolise this I make an elephant out of masking tape on the window and try to fit my figure in it. Simbi was a saint, a family gift, a princess and a pesky cat for her mother, she sings 'When the Saints Come Marching In," I sing James Blunt's "You're Beautiful" as I make her up as the Princess and then Simbi turns into a cat and sings "Wish You Were Here" as I get angry with a pink stuffed cat.

We turn these expectations around by facing our biggest fears when blindfolded - confronting our fears of the dark moon. 'Simbi's fear is to be tortured, so I torture her as the Princess and sing the awfully annoying "Duck Sauce (Barbra Streisand)" song. Then, I face my blindfolded fear of falling down stairs, I myself don't want to be subjugated in the basement. So anyway, I blindfold myself and climb down the stairs to the ground level of the Gallery, while Simbi plays Carole King's "I Feel the Earth Move" - here begins our point of transformation. I fall down the last few stairs, Simbi then 'tortures' me by painting a face on my ass. We are having fun now. I then ride a toy pink elephant and get paint all over it from my ass. We transform then into orisha's (from Yoruba/Africa) with rituals for Oya, Undergoddess of the Niger River and Yemaya, the mother goddess. After we are transformed we do moon salutations with a plucky participant from the crowd.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The Punisher v. The Fairy Queen (Sibling Rivalry)

This performance transforms the energy from dysfunctional family roles and the influence of 'psychedelic' hippy siblings into a multiplicity of healing roles from our new community - contemporary post-modern popular culture.

Problem: Dysfunctional families generate different archetypes amongst the children such as the 'family hero,' 'scapegoat,' 'mascot' and the 'lost child.' Combined with these roles our siblings have been products of the 70's pyschedelic hippy generation where their individual pursuit of happiness has become a tool for the 'psychedelic' manipulations of capitalism. We tackle personal symbols of our dysfunctional roles (which are mostly also rooted in 'psychedelic uprising') and represent new multiplicity where we can functionally play all the roles and do not succumb to individualisation of identity and become new social healers.

We present our new healing roles: karaoke, hip-hop, Gayatri Spivak, Deleuze & Guattari, electroclash, mutant superheroes, graffiti and feminist noise by using the techniques of data moshing and shredding with projections over the symbols of our siblings: Nirvana, Bon Jovi, Noam Chomsky, Deepak Chopra, Tennessee William's 'A Streetcar Named Desire,' 'Dirty Dancing,' fairy queens, 'A Rebel Without a Cause,' and Brian Jonestown Massacre.

In Part 1 - All Apologies Nirvana v Eminem v Bon Jovi; Deepak Chopra v 'The Subaltern' Spivak v Noam Chomsky v Deleuze & Guattari v Tennessee Williams
In Part 2 - Simbi sings her own electroclash song over footage from 'Dirty Dancing' and Nicola becomes a comic book super hero aka. Rougue or Storm from X-men and sings New World Order by Ministry over Simbi being the fairy queen playing the piano and then becomes a graffitti-ing Punisher over footage from 'Rebel Without A Cause.
In Part 3 - Simbi and Nicola make a noise jam over the top of Brian Jonestown Massacre, during the show the footage was projected on us, so we actually weren't making music to the footage but I think it goes pretty well.

Simbi Comments
story of my life (electroclash v. dirty dancing, sibling rivalry part 2)

Sealskin coat of arms
One turntable and five alarms
Dollhouse furniture I can't break
Canopy bed and lacy drapes

Swamp of ghosts and basement holes
where fire and torture pull us into the mire
My mother's an enormous octopus who oozes tears
My father changes the channel -- one more rape, one more fear

Do you feel insecure? Take it out on me, I'm so very pure
I"ll love you endlessly. In the end I'll even set you free.

My wrists are blood and my lips sewn shut
The leaves change color one more year.
My dreams and visions take me out of here.

Cocoon of music
I wove you with agile fingers and fragile feelings.
Every color of the rainbow soft around me
like dewdrops on fresh flowers.
But I must destroy you
to find my powers.

Do you feel insecure? Take it out on me, I'm so very pure.
I'll love you endlessly. In the end, I'll even set me free.

The forest is deep
The forest is bold.
This is where illusions lose hold.

Geisha shadow
Magic daughter
Writing my destiny with melting face
Broken heels
Throwing ashes
Dead wood
Empty orchestra
Immaculate heart

Dressed in kimono
Lying on the bed
Oragami bats are overhead.

At least you knew me from before
All the cracks in this broken down whore
When I don't know what life is for
We can go to the limit one time more

On a ship
On a trip
this imp is wearing my rainbow dress
I'm wearing his combat boots. Awkward but strange
how well they suit.
He wants to break me down, take me power.
But as usual my words win him over.

I tell him the story of the quilombo in Brazil
where children of escaped slaves are living still
How I scrambled below the waterfall
and breathed deep pure air.
Saw pink river dolphins.
I found my home there.

Goodbye to all my magic styles
gained entrance to every club in new york and berlin through those psychic wiles
Naked I sat clothed in my skin
No tricks, no shadows, no projected ideals
Simply me and all that surrounded me

Together we could be
broken harmony

on part 1:
gayatri spivak's reading of to the lighthouse. the reason mr. ramsey the philosopher couldn't get past "r" in the alphabet is because its the beginning of his own name. representing that western philosophy couldn't progress because it could analyze other things, but didn't understand itself. and he didn't understand himself, incidentally because he couldn't understand his wife, mrs. ramsay.

S&M for Lost Children: The Family Trilogy

Soon all of S&M's (Simbi Dare and Nicola Morton)'s performances will be available on DVD for peer 2 peer exchange.

We always spend a lot of time talking, here is a prologue to our trilogy of family performances - 'Mau ke Bulan - Journey to the Darkside of the Moon,' 'The Punisher v The Fairy Queen,' and 'Legally Lolita.'

Comment by Simbi:
We take guided pathways through the symbolic underworld of our
emotions in a shamanic healing of our family issues. Family
relationships are psychologically wedded to the structures of society,
so exploring the neuroses of the family is a way to explore the
neurosis of fascism, capitalism, law, and so on.  This is potentially
cathartic not merely for performers but for the audience. Before the
shows we talked and talked about our issues in childhood and found
ways to visually, musically represent the most vivid memories and
emotions.  Luckily we were in Java and Bali where we could get daily
massages, bringing up so much painful material led us to states of
paralysis, impatience, aggression and projection and we had a lot of
intense energy to release, so thank you to all the wonderful massage
therapists in Java and Bali who made this possible, we couldn't have
done these shows without you for sure.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

12 Ways to Masturbate with a Melodica

at Mangkubumen Art Party di Pendopo Mangkubumen, Universitas Widya Mataram, Yogyakarta

Problem: Judgement of sexual identity and selfishness of masturbation

This was a plan to enter the collective fantasy in 5 minutes by "veiling" masturbation concepts one note on the melodica at a time. By using the "veil" of conceptualisation and musical keys we expose 12 different auto-erotic acts as gateways to the collective, playful and international sexual fantasies of the collective unconscious. The problem of taking a selfish narcissistic act and immersing it in a crowd re: Slavoj Zizek in "Violence" (2008), is counteracted by sharing and healing ie. by giving away each hand decorated melodica and healing with our noise music. Our 12 Melodica masturbation themes are: c-fantasy, c#-paint, d-thumbs, d#-flowers, e-chains, f-asphyxiation, f#-stars, g-humping, g#-scissoring, a-water, a#-pressure, b-knife.  By not communicating anything of a sexual nature to the audience, we are trying to prove sexual fantasy is not just a western prerogative/consumer product but something more rooted in the earth and in the spaces between our consciousnesses and of course the human‘s playful nature. Children start to play along in the performance which supports the subconscious playfulness and collective nature of our auto-erotic fantasies

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Performative Lecture, Capitalism and Schizophrenia, Kunci Cultural Studies Center, Yogyakarta, June 27

 At Kunci Cultural Studies, Yogyakarta, 2011.
A performative lecture about 'Anti-Oedipus' by Deleuze and Guattari including an activity decoding and recoding a bicycle in the late capitalism machine.
1) desire flows through a body of organs, which are machines. society can be defined by a flow of desire through machines. the flow is interrupted between machines either conjunctively ie associatively penis-sperm, disjuntively ie schizzing and taking the flying bricks of signifying chains that build the great wall of china, working them loose and carrying them in every direction (this is what capitalism does to a certain degree & see my performative actions) or conjunctive with residual ie a subject like capital is produced alongside synthesis (this is capitalism creating capital). Lacan "repare - procure seperare-seperate reperare - engender." there is also a body without organs (without desire) ie. residual
2) the deterritotorialisation-reterritorialisation poles of capitalism - Capitalism tends toward a threshold of decoding that will destroy the socius in order to make it a body without organs and unleash the flows of desire on this body as a deterritorialized field ie. capitalism in former communist countries, Capitalism institutes or restores all sorts of residual and artificial, imaginary or symbolic territorialities, thereby attempting, as best it can, to recode, to rechannel persons who have been defined in terms of abstract quantitities. however it simultaneously tends towards limits as everything also returns or recurs: States, nations, families to reterritorialise.
3) The schizophrenic tendency is the revolutionary tendency of capitalism

Monday, 20 June 2011

Activities and Text for Shamanic Death of Capitalism - Seven Acts

Introduction – Shamanic Death of Capitalism – A death rite for society to get rid of capitalism so society can transform into a magical healer.

SD: The bat in the medicine cards represents shamanic death. The trial
before a person can become a shaman.  All your emotional psychological
and physical wounds or weaknesses are pressed upon before you sleep in
the grave you dug for yourself for a night. In the morning you become
a shaman.
It occurred to me that capitalism uses people's emotional
psychological and physical wounds in advertising, in order to
manipulate people for a profit.  Instead of pressing upon them,
capitalism manipulates them, so that they don't become conscious in
the audience.  I thought it would be interesting to intensify the
advertising such that instead of an unconscious message that
manipulates, it becomes a conscious message that causes pain yet
brings clarity and freedom. Right before the show we found a dead bat.

Act One – House of the Rising Sun
NM: This song is about saying goodbye to the family, we are getting ready for a spiritual journey. Our mother and father do not matter anymore, the house of the rising sun is between worlds – life and new life – from New Orleans – the death voodoo capital of USA. Then from LA, home for runaways and satellite of capitalism comes Joan Jett Karaoke "I Love Rock & Roll."

Act Two – My Favourite Things
NM: This song we sing a capella. It opens our throat chakra. The song “My Favourite Things” starts .. you are invited To scream about your favourite things. While Nicola and Simbi lead you by screaming desires from primal, (ie. sex) territorial, facist, despotic and capitalist desires (ie. fur coats). Audience will be led to scream out their favourite things.

Act Three – Runway:
SD:When I was trying to raise money to get to Indonesia, I offered to do
several things for donation, including walk on people with high heels
and symbolically destroy capitalism.  That option was surprisingly
popular.  This became the seed of the idea to create a mock fashion
show where we walk on the audience -- and each other -- with
stilettos, reveling in the sadomasochistic underpinnings of fashion
NM: Fashion has potential for revolution, it creates so many personalities and is weirdly accepting of every genre, but is always Over The Top. It is one of capitalism’s desire industries. But maybe it can evolve away from capitalism. Have you suffered extreme pain for fashion, think about your desires.  Watch Simbi and Nicola walk the runway and each other in their stillettos while the one lying down sings the song. Then you can participate and allow sexy chicksi to walk on you with sexy shoes, while they sing, watch them stumble, feel the pain and know that you are doing it for love for ending capitalism. Capitalism and fashion die for a new fashion. Songs remixed and sung by Nicola and Simbi – “Tainted Love”, “Sweet Dreams.”

Act Four – Branding – Sticky Tape
NM: Our desires are linked to our visual representation. From early times we branded our skin, primal branding tattoos of animals to despotic tattoos, then came the notion of representing yourself in the world as “good” or “bad” but now we are in an era of capitalism branding – a total explosion of many different brands that don’t mean a thing. no longer on skin but in your mind, in the media, representing total artificial – no more good and bad, so again we take it further. We will cover ourselves with transparent sticky tape, coloured sticky tape, take photos of each other, create fake brands on white stickers, rebrand the walls and each other, while Nicola and Simbi re-enact and remix a Sony TV Commercial, by singing Knife “Heartbeats” and throwing multi colored balls in the air. The crowd will make themselves like mummies, so the capitalist media cannot enter our brains, eyes, nose, chakras.

Act Five – Swings
NM: Get ready to fight with your psychic powers. To duel, to fight each other blind. If you want to get on swing, you can put kenong over your head and we give you a stick – then you can stand on the swings we built here, and try to hit other people’s kenong heads with stick to make sound. People standing can use helmet and blindfold and chains, everyone else need to run away. Simbi will play Debussy “Exotiques” and “Canopes” to represent this trance like sound – which originates here in jawa – the gamelan – to give everyone psychic power.

Act Six – Stacks On Slayer
NM: “Stacks On” is an Australian term, it is related to sport and punk music. It is when one person falls on the floor and then everyone jumps on top of them, creating a suffocating rubbish pile. Capitalism creates so much Rubbish. Listen to these two songs, which do you like better? They are songs by Slayer. The first is called Angel of Death, the second one is called Raining Blood. Which do you like better? The audience creates rubbish piles to vote for each song to symbolise the excessive rubbish that captialism creates.

Act Seven – Death Metal Yoga
SD: As to the yoga to death metal, I often thought music used for yoga is
a bit cliche.  Seemed like a lot of times life is more like death
metal than a contemporary remix of Indian chant, I thought its
interesting to explore the feelings associated with noise and metal.
I've often found listening to noise and metal to be a blissful
experience, so why not make yoga more blissful in a new, modern way.
Metal has also symbolized the revolt from tradition and the
exploration of dark emotions and shadow material in a variety of
cultures all over the world. In the yoga community coming to peace
with the shadow and dark emotions is rarely explored,  and I think
that is a significant weakness in the movement.  Traditional
structures are inevitably crumbling and its good to find peace within
their destruction.  I read passages from the Tibetan Book of the Dead
in which prayers are said to guide you safely through the underworld
so that you can be reborn as bodhisattva.  This is to symbolize
guidance through the death of capitalism and of the 4th Sun into the
5th Sun (Mayan) safely and in fact blissfully.

Encore – Nina Simone “I’ve Got Life” – Simbi sing and piano,

Sunday, 12 June 2011

The Shamanic Death of Capitalism: Jogja National Museum, Friday June 24

The Shamanic Death of Capitalism ft Death Metal Yoga w/ Cangkang Serigala (Ican) – 2.5 jam & closing oleh Terbajurkaku

Minggu lalu, Society muncul ke hadapan Nicola dan Simbi dan mengajak mereka untuk menjadi Shaman. Society perlu untuk menyingkir dari identitas Kapitalistnya agar dapat mulai  melakukan penyembuhan. Kematian shamanic merupakan kematian simbolik dari permulaan (Society); dari gaya hidup kuno dan identitas personal (Kapitalisme). Kematian Shaman meliputi ujian brutal kekuatan fisik, kemampuan fisik, dan tekanan kuat pada setiap 'tombol' emosi. Nicola dan Simbi mengidentifikasikan  manipulasi-manipulasi psychedelic Kapitalisme terhadap masyarakat sebagai kontrol dan menimbulkan kegilaan ringan (paranoia). Menolak Paranoia! Kami telah menemukan ritual-ritual untuk menghina dan menyiksa, agar Kapitalime benar-benar gila (Schizophrenic).

Ritual kami membongkar semua bentuk-bentuk konsep "diri" kapitalis, kami menghina dan meludahi kapitalisme. Dirimu adalah masyarakat dan kamu bisa bergabung. Kami berjalan di sekelilingmu dengan sepatu hak tinggi. Kami melakukan Yoga dengan Death Metal. Kami meneriakan ritual kematian panjang untuk Kapitalisme. Kami sesak dan menguburmu sehingga hanya suara sampah yang terdengar olehmu. Kami memainkan tantangan fisik dan gamelan bersamamu, membunyikan Kenong dan Ketuk di sekeliling kepalamu dan berayun di langit-langit. Singkirkan dirimu dari identitas kapitalis kunomu! Datang ke JNM, tanggal 25 Juni ini!

Nicola Morton adalah seniman dibawah program Asialink yang sedang melakukan residensi di Performance Klub dan disponsori oleh Australia-Indonesia Institute and Arts Queensland. Ia belajar musik di Australia dan pernah tampil dengan noise band baik di Australia maupun Eropa, pentas di panggung yang sama dengan Venetian Snares, Faust, Awesome Color dan The Hospitals. Film fisik eksperimentalnya "Remote Viewing Experiment" (2010) masuk ke dalam daftar terpilih international awards dan telah diputar di banyak negara.  Ia saat ini fokus dalam performance art, residensi, dan menulis tentang perubahan sosial.

Simbi Dare belajar literatur komparatif dari Jean Baudrillard di Universitas Columbia, USA dan sekarang mengajar Yoga di Bali sembari belajar Gamelan, menulis horoskop dan membuat musik Dubstep. Simbi bermain keybosrd untuk NY 8o's Punk Band, Bruno Wizard & The Homosexuals. Simbi dan Nicola telah bekerjasama dalam sejumlah ragam jenis musik seperti Didre Dootlittle (2007), menulis sejumlah artikel untuk Herr Entertainment (2007), Mind Objects: A Phenomenological Inquiry (2009) dan juga ritual shaman untuk Asheville Art Museum (2010).

The Shamanic Death of Capitalism ft Death Metal Yoga w/ Cangkang Serigala (Ican) – 2.5 hours

Last week, Society appeared to Nicola and Simbi and asked to become a Shaman. Society needs to rid itself of its old Capitalist identity in order for it to start healing. Shamanic death is the symbolic death of the initiate (Society), to the old ways of life and personal identity (Capitalism). Shamanic death entails brutal tests of physical strength, psychic ability and having every emotional “button” pushed hard. Nicola and Simbi have identified Capitalism’s psychedelic manipulations of society that control and limit madness (Paranoia). No more Paranoia. We have devised rituals to taunt and torture, to make Capitalism truly Mad (Schizophrenic).

Our rituals break down all former notions of the capitalist “self,” We taunt and spit on capitalism. You are society and you can join in. We walk all over you with our high heel stilettos. We do yoga to death metal. We scream long death rites for Capitalism. We suffocate and bury you until all you can hear is trash. We play psychic dares and gamelan with you as we put Kenong and Ketuk over our heads and swing from the ceiling. Rid yourself of your old capitalist identity! Come to JNM, 25 June.

Nicola Morton is an artist in residence at Performance Klub for the Asialink Program and is sponsored by Australia-Indonesia Institute and Arts Queensland. She studied music in Australia and performed in noise bands across Australia and Europe, sharing stages with Venetian Snares, Faust, Awesome Color and The Hospitals. Her psychic experiment film "Remote Viewing Experiment" (2010) has been shortlisted for international awards and screened internationally. She currently focuses her enthusiasm on performance art, residencies and writing for social change. Simbi Dare studied comparative literature with Jean Baudrillard at Columbia University, USA and now teaches yoga in Bali while learning Gamelan, writing horoscopes and making Dubstep music. Simbi plays keyboard for NY 80's Punk band, Bruno Wizard & The Homosexuals. Simbi and Nicola have worked together across several disciplines- musically as Deidre Doolittle (2007), writing for the magazines Herr Entertainment (2007), Mind Objects: A Phenomenological Inquiry (2009) plus as ritual shamans for Asheville Art Museum (2010).

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Love Hypnosis Exchange at Taman Budaya, Yogyakarta - Saturday June 4, 19.30

Pusing Kesurupan agar semua orang suka hati

Tolong dengarkan dan ikuti:
1. "Satu, dua, tiga, empat, lima, enam, tujuh, delapan" - Ikuti gerakan saya dengan berputar ke kiri atau ke kanan sebanyak delapan kali selama hitungan disebutkan.
2. "BEEEEEEEP" - Tempelkn stiker ke badan orang lain selama bunyi didengungkan.
3. Lakukan terus sampai tubuh dipenuhi stiker.

as part of M. Lugas Syllabus - opening "Independence -Dead" show, MC by Rachel Saraswati

Performance Photo from Love Hypnosis Exchange (2010) Brisbane

Friday, 13 May 2011

Shortlisted for 17th International Contemporary Art Festival SESC_Videobrasil

More News:
I have been shortlisted along with an Aussie who makes skateboarding videos..

There is more academic writing from the Catalogue but looks like I will have to re-type it.. Here is a bit of text about how the videos for Southern Panoramas were grouped..  I am glad I am with Natasha Mendoca and Moran Shavit!!

The Catalogue rewrote my bio and video description.. (here is the small web excerpt, more to come later)
Artistic reading of a military experiment conducted to test psychic relations, in which participants must describe the places from where certain objects have been removed, this video probes into the existence of intercommunicating psychic frequencies.

For the amazing psychic collaboration: Remote Viewing Experiment xx
.. Watch the videos in blogger here

How I end capitalism in each of my works

In response to Douglas Leonard, (who doubts my force to end capitalism)

The end of capitalism is heralded by new developments in exchange and altruism. What Am
I doing for the revolution? I use touch to develop psychometry (as a new weapon of the love force revolution), exchange intellectual property as experience rather than object (to promote the immaterial) and make fun of capitalist ventures (like everyone else in contemporary art, ref: Carmen Ansaldo in Artlines April 2011)

1) The piece in question: "Love Hypnosis Exchange" (2011) Performance

keywords- gift economy, social interactions (For a nicer review of this performance)

I try to create an economy based on exchange of stickers, that I have provided, a trance like activity (regular measured spinning) is used to make the punter more disoriented with current modes of exchange and freer to exchange this new currency of stickers. This new temporal economy I have created is not just based on a
  • material exchange but also an exchange of:
  • creative expression as the punters deliberate which colour and where on the body they will place a sticker in each 8 second round
  • and also a social interaction, as the punter decides who they will place the sticker on
Touch, experience and parody to declare the end of capitalism. Giving a sticker to someone is a gift, an altruistic emotion conveyed by touch. Gift economies challenge current capitalist non-altruistic virtue. Whilst an experiential creation of art on other's bodies in exchange for the creation of art on your own body peddles ephemeral experience rather than object. Moreover the dizzying effects of the Wall St stock exchange are parodied and taken to a new mystical level by adding Sufi spinning to the equation.

2) Previous works: "$1 A Blow" Performance

Keywords: supply pricing experiment

We all have breath. Due to the tenet of supply pricing, I priced breath for as low as $1. But Nobody opted for just a breath on skin. In fact everyone opted for an option with added intellectual property. I told blow jokes, played songs with breath music apps on my iPhone, blew bubbles. People want experience more than the object. I add my voice to the contemporary art revolt, "we no longer care about beauty, we care about ironic political comment."

3) Previous works: "100 Fortune Cookies" (2010) Performance

Keywords: futures exchange, asia tiger economies

Dressed in my power suit and with the help of my tiger (economy), I offered Asian style futures. Willing participants had to hide a coin in the "sands of destiny" which were in fact the raw dry ingredients to make fortune cookies, after placing the coin, they could finger around in the sands and choose their fortune.

Again I am using touch, this time it's very sensual as people are touching these raw materials, which are often speculated in the "futures exchange." Punters are encouraged to use their psychometric powers to pick the fortune that is right for them. They receive the experience of search and find, and find a story for their future and dont actually get a cookie. Plus it's all dripping in irony with the costumes and word puns et al and the tiny joke that all the futures written were the same.

4) Previous works: "2010: The End of Capitalism" (2010) 25min video

Keywords: monumentality, post-modernity

An all out attack on monumentality of capitalism, portraits of artists working to "burst the bubble" of capitalism in Berlin. Only one artist chose psychometry to relate to the bubble in these expressionist experiences as these artists add their portrait to a declaration to end capitalism. Dramatic irony is kindly provided by a morphed soundtrack of Richard Wagner.

5) Remote Viewing Experiment (2009) 50min video

Keywords: psychometry, oneness

An experiment in psychometry. As artists are portrayed video journal style blindly trying to describe the room an object came from. All artists experienced a sense of "oneness" that flies in the face of the individual pursuit of capitalism.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Artist Interview: Nicola Morton on award of Asialink Grant

Edited by Kim Hirst for NAVA Opportunities E-Bulletin April 2011

Who got the opportunity? Asialink Arts Residency

Printer-friendly versionSend to friendPDF versionAfter seeing the Asialink Arts Residency advertised on the NAVA Notice Board, artist Nicola Morton applied and was awarded $12,000 to cover the cost of travelling to and living in Indonesia for three months.
The Asialink Arts Residency aims to promote the professional development of Australian arts practitioners as well as cultural exchange initiatives between Australia and Asia. The residency is funded by the Australia Indonesia Institute and Arts Queensland and is part of a program managed by the Asialink Centre at the University of Melbourne.
As an artist of half Chinese heritage, Nicola has worked internationally in the musical and contemporary art worlds. The Asialink residency will enable her to add Javanese ketainan (traditional animistic rituals) to her performance repertoire of time travel, hypnosis and artificial intelligence creation.
NAVA asked Nicola to tell us what she hopes to get out of the experience.

NAVA: Why did you decide to apply for the Asialink Arts Residency?
Nicola Morton: The Asialink Residency is a unique opportunity to absorb Asian culture with your contemporary art goggles on. The open approach to residency structure, combined with committed host organisations provides for an enthusiastic free-for-all, which for me, dovetails very nicely into documenting my performance energies and practice in this new Asian environment.
NAVA: What interested you about the project?
NM: I am half experienced in Asia - I am half Chinese and have toured China and Japan but never had time for an immersive exchange. As a contemporary Australian artist, the desire to place myself within Asia has started emerging through themes in my work. I am interested in the ritual involved in traditional performing arts and this three month residency will give me the time to investigate and recontextualise the supernatural nature of Javanese performance, as well as the effects of urbanisation on village practices. 
NAVA: How does the residency compliment your artistic practice?
NM: This residency allows for site-specific work and cultural research. As you can see from my website, my performances concentrate on self-improvement, self-awareness and transformation. These ideas are also central to the narratives and performance of Javanese plays/dance. The meeting of my performance practice and Javanese tradition will culminate in new products/performances that will hopefully educate and enlighten the Australian contemporary art scene as well as locals and artists in Indonesia. Enlightenment = Everyone Happy = My Artistic Practice.
NAVA: What do you hope to get out of the experience?
NM: I hope to get three months of good times, unique learning experiences and performance footage in strange and not so strange locations.
NAVA: What do you have coming up next? 
NM: After Asialink I am looking for opportunities to exhibit and expand on my Javanese performing arts learning and will continue with the concept of cultural displacement. Any potential sponsors are welcome to contact me: