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Blog archive for March 2009

New web site, domain and blog

March 15, 2009

This is the first test post at my new web site. The layout hasn’t changed much, but the underlaying arcitecture is new, using RubyOnRails.

It feels good to move away from the old Zope system that I used for the blog, and also to integrate the blog and the rest of the pages.

Some work remain to be done though:

  • Old blog posts need to be moved over. I hope to find an automated way of doing so, as I have more than 700 blog posts accumulated.
  • IN PROGRESS: Info on projects need to be moved over.
  • DONE: I’d like to add a model for uploading images.
  • DONE: I’d also like to add a general model for uploading files.
  • DONE: Some stuff remains to be done before the domain is up and running properly
  • I’d like to add a search field to the blog.
  • There is no link to my delicious bookmarks currently.

For the time being I have not implemented comments or trackbacks for the blog. I had to shut them down anyway several years ago to prevent spam, and haven’t missed them much. I have also decided to drop categories and tags for the time being. So I guess this is becoming more of an online diary that a blog proper.

But at least RSS is working properly again.

If you need to access the old blog, it will be available for a while here, but eventually it will fade out.

New BEK web site

March 28, 2009

Two days ago we moved to the new BEK web site, developed using RubyOnRails.

This has been an extremely time consuming effort for me for the last five months, and I’m really looking forward to be done with it. I’ve done all of the Rails programming, while Espen Sommer Eide has done the design.

There are still some wrinkles to iron out, in particular we have problems with some URLs for BEK users getting hijacked by the Rails application, including the most of the URLs used by me previously. I hope we get this settled over the next one to two weeks.

Artists with PhDs – New book by James Elkins

March 29, 2009

This book just cought my attention:


James Elkins
Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism
Department of Visual and Critical Studies
School of the Art Institute of Chicago
112 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago IL 60603
+1 312 345 3788
+1 312 345 3789

The studio-art PhD, or practice-based doctorate, is a hot topic in art instruction in the US. Other countries have had these degrees for several decades; in the UK there are up to 2,000 students currently enrolled in such programs, and there will soon be 10 universities in Australia that offer the degree. At the moment there are about 10 programs in the US and Canada, and another dozen more under development. It appears that the PhD in studio art will become the next MFA—that is, the expected terminal degree for artists who want to get jobs teaching. In twenty or thirty years’ time, it is likely that every major art school and department will offer the PhD. The degree is controversial wherever it exists, and there is a fair amount of resistance to it: there have been some stormy sessions on the subject at conferences. Most of the formative issues, from grading to accreditation, remain unresolved.

This book is the first of its kind in the US. It is meant as a resource to help artists, teachers, administrators, and students assess and compare the new programs. Part I is a selection of essays by the best-informed people on both sides of the Atlantic, including most of the principal players and institutions. Part II is a selection of excerpts of the PhD dissertations written by people who have graduated from such programs, so people can see the kind of art and scholarship the programs produce.

Here are the contents of Part I:

  1. Judith Mottram, ‘Researching Research in Art and Design’
  2. Timothy Emlyn Jones, ‘Research Degrees in Art and Design’
  3. Henk Slager, ‘Art and Method’
  4. Mick Wilson, ‘Four Theses Attempting to Revise the Terms of a Debate’
  5. Victor Burgin, ‘Thoughts on ’Research’ Degrees in Visual Arts Departments’
  6. Timothy Emlyn Jones, ‘The Studio Art Doctorate in America’
  7. George Smith, ‘The Non-Studio PhD for Visual Artists’
  8. Hilde Van Gelder and Jan Baetens, ‘The Future of the Doctorate in the Arts’
  9. James Elkins, ‘On Beyond Research and New Knowledge’
  10. Charles Harrison, ‘When Management Speaks…’
  11. James Elkins, ‘’The Three Configurations of Studio-Art PhDs’

Most of the literature justifying and defining these programs was written in the UK, although the programs can now be found around the world. This book has a double purpose: the selection of authors and artists is intended to span a wide range, showing how the PhD is implemented in different places; my own contributions are meant as polemics, because I am unconvinced by the rhetoric of ‘research’ and ‘new knowledge’ that continue to frame discussions on the subject. It seems to me there is an opportunity to reconfigure discussion in the US, and to remake these programs in a new mold.

New Academia Publishing is a peer-reviewed, print-on-demand initiative; the books may not show up in bookstores, but they are always quickly available through Amazon and other outlets.

tl.objects updated for Windows

March 29, 2009

I’ve not been good at maintaining the tl.objects for the last few years. The functionalities that I use myself have mostly been reimplemented in Jamoma. If you’ve used the butterworth filters, you might want to check out jcom.filter~. This is a filter swiss army knife with all of the Butterworth filters implemented and much more. If you own the same object shows up there as tap.filter~.

Still I know that tl.objects are still used by others.

A few weeks ago I received a mail from Francois Eudes Chanfrault. He has been kind to recompile the tl.objects externals for Windows. They’re now smaller and better optimized, and are also checked for Max 5 API compatibility. I really appreciate his efforts.

The new version for Windows can be found here.

‘Soundings – Nordic Sound Art’ at The Museum for Contemporary Art

March 31, 2009

Two years ago a joint Nordic master study program in sound art was set up in collaboration between art academies in Denmark, Sweden and Norway. Unfortunately the art academy in Bergen has not been part of this program. The students are about to graduate, and will be exhibiting at The Museum for Contemporary Art in Roskilde.


Exhibition: The Museum for Contemporary Art in Roskilde presents,‘Soundings – Nordic Sound Art’ an exhibition of works by a new generation of Nordic sound artists who in the spring of 2009 graduate as the first group from the joint masters study programme called Nordic Sound Art.

Opening: Friday April 24, 2009, 17-20
Exhibition period: April 25-June 7, 2009
Location: Museum for Contemporary Art, Stændertorvet 3A, 4000 Roskilde, phone: 46 31 65 70
Open: Tuesday-Friday 11-17, Saturday-Sunday 12-16,


Step into the soundart-scene and experience sound-installations, acoustics and electronic sound, new media and the visual arts. This is just a part of what will meet the audience at the Museum for Contemporary Art when a new generation of sound-artists unfolds their works and gives an exciting look into what is happening on the contemporary soundart-scene.

The exhibition ‘Soundings’ shows the final projects of nine young artists from the new joint master study-programme Nordic Sound Art and hereby a multitude of approaches to the work with sound as an aesthetic material. Soundart is a field of contemporary art that unfolds in the intersection between traditional genres. Various media and technologies are used and new types of aesthetic expression emerge. The growing interest in sound and soundart as an aesthetic field is the starting point for the creation of the soundart study programme Nordic Sound Art. The study programme is unique in its cross-institutional character. It is a collaboration between art academies in Denmark, Norway and Sweden that share knowledge and exchanges resources.

The Museum for Contemporary Art has, since its opening in 1991, had a focus on soundart, which comprises a great part of the museum’s collection. It is with great pleasure that the museum shows the first final exhibition of the Nordic Sound Art programme.

Participating artists
Espen Lomsdalen (NO), Linn Halvorsrød (NO), Marie Muller (FR), Tisha Mukarji (IN/FR), Mette Sand Hersoug (DK), Morten Skrøder Lund (DK), Dodda Maggý (IS), Nanna Hellberg (SE) og Nestori Syrjälä (FI).

Facts about the Nordic Sound Art Programme
Nordic Sound Art joint study programme is a collaboration between the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art, Malmö Art Academy, Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Faculty of Visual Arts and Trondheim Academy of Fine Art. The students attend the activities of the programme hosted in turn by these Art Academies. The joint study programme is a two-year master programme established in 2007. The next group of students will start in 2010. The initiative to the soundart programme is established within the KUNO network (Kunstuddannelserne I Norden) and is an extension of the network’s current activities. Read more:

The museum for Contemporary Art and the Art educations
Since its opening in 1991 the Museum for Contemporary arts has presented the young and experimental art-scene by inviting Danish and international Art Academies and other educational institutions to exhibit at the museum. From the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art there have been exhibitions by Billedhuggerskolen in 1993 and the media arts department in 1997. Billedhuggerskolen Frederikshom Kanal made an exhibition in 2006. In 1998 there was an exhibition by Fatamorgana, The Danish School of Art Photography and in 2001 The Royal College of Art in London. K3 from the department of Art, Culture and Communication at Malmö Högskola challenged the notion of the work of art with their exhibition in 2004.

Exhibition catalogue and seminar
An exhibition catalogue is published. Included in the catalogue is original articles written by David Toop, Aeron Bergman, Brandon LaBelle, Andreas Engström and Åsa Stjerna. A one day seminar is held at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts on April 25, 2009.

The exhibition is supported by
Nordisk Kulturfond
Oticon Fonden
Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi
Nykredit – Main sponsor for communication activities at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts’ School of Visual Arts.

For more information contact:
Curator Mads Kullberg, / 46 316 576
Coordinator, Nordic Sound Art: Rune Søchting, / 29 801 511

Diemo Schwarz and Victoria Johnson at Landmark

March 31, 2009

Earlier this month BEK invited Diemo Schwarz to hold a one week workshop on FTM. The workshop ended with a concert at Landmark with Diemo Schwarz, Victoria Johnson and James Webb.

Gisle Martens Meyers has uploaded an excerpt from the concert to Vimeo.