Tag Archives: residence

urban exporation app…

Wanted to blog about Eduardo Cachucho. He is one of the residents here at UNIDEE, he is from South Africa and is an architect/graphic designer/artist.

Anyway, Eduardo is a bit of a techy genius and after a week or two he had already come up with a nifty little app that allows you to negotiate a town or city through a series of instructions whose interpretation is left up to you. He has refined that idea and come up with an app specifically for Biella (he is working on other cities). It is called Derivé – an urban exploration app. See some of the instruction cards here:

Dérive is a mobile application that aids a user in exploring their surroundings through the use of randomly drawn ‘task-cards’. These cards are refreshed every 3min creating a sense of urgency in the exploration for new objects, things, colours, people etc to follow, find, experience.
Influenced by the Drift Deck created by the Near Future Laboratory in 2008, Dérive allows a user to install the application to their phone and take the ‘cards’ with them wherever they are“. Eduardo Cachucho (Click here for relevant post on his site)

(photo Eduardo Cachucho)

CLICK HERE TO Try the Dérive App (iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch Compatible, viewable on PC/MAC)

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the same but different…

It’s kind of like groundhog day to work each year for UNIDEE, especially if you also have experienced it yourself before as an artist in residence. A lot of the same group activities, a tour of michelangelo’s works, a visit to a lanificio (woolmill)…the fact that everyone starts off loving the food here, but eventually they will probably end up complaining a lot about it!…the way friendship and camaraderie is created at warp speed (everything is faster and every experience is heightened when you live, breathe, eat, work and socialise with the same people in the same place for 4 months…)It is incredible how the same situations with different participants can create sometimes weirdly similar scenarios while at the same time be completely different…like i said, the same but different…

a tour of his own works by Michelangelo Pistoletto…he must have said the same things a thousand times or more by now and yet he is still enthusiastic, still trying to change the world and still trying to enthuse and activate others to change it too…i can’t help but admire that.

the man himself between 2 early self portraits

part of division and multiplication of the mirror series

segno arte

self portrait with stars

rotazione dei corpi (rotation of heavenly bodies)

change is inevitable…

Going to blog about this a bit on my UNIDEE blog but wanted talk about it here too…

I have learned not to compare one UNDEE residence with another, there is no point, they are always going to be different. HOWEVER lets talk about night time and the changing uses of spaces…

In my year as a resident in 2004, there was as yet no WIFI, and definitely no internet in our bedrooms, just in the UNIDEE space itself, so this space really became our home. We stayed there late into the night every night…, to talk to friends on-line, to surf the net, to work…because of this almost 24/7 kind of occupation, we became a kind of a tribe. I even remember one resident who used to hang up his washing to dry between the columns…others furtively looked at porn on the communal PCs (it was not so common to have your own laptop then…)…people played music…people complained about people paying music too loud (apparently i played too much Wilco…!) and it was in these collective moments that friendships were cemented, collaborations began…romances…and also big fights and arguments about stupid things (like whether or not to have the lights switched on or not!!)…but always a very strong collective experience. Later on in the years, WIFI arrived in all the rooms, and with that came the possibility to disappear off to your room to work after dinner, and with that ended the all night occupation of the UNIDEE space…”Change is inevitable” and there is nothing wrong with that…but i lament the passing of the night time occupation and i wonder despite the fact that i fully embrace technology, especially in my work,  what will be the next thing to change with all these technological advances that we now come to expect…

dilemmas and conundrums…

So originally, considering that i am currently keeping an alternative “institutional” blog, i wanted to be able to say what i like in this one, but of course i can’t totally. When i was in India for example, i told no one over there that i was keeping a blog, which enabled me to be more candid and to write “freely”. Not so easy here, blogging about people here who are often quite well known means a post will often pop up in an engine search… So am being a bit of a coward really, alluding to things, not naming names…firstly i don’t want to hurt anyone and secondly, hell, i want to keep being employed…So no Perez Hilton of the art world for me! (and trust me, i do have some good art gossip!!!!) Am toying with the idea of a third completely anonymous blog where i can let rip and watch carnage ensue…or maybe i have already done that????

…and bearing all this in mind…i find myself in Como, taking our residents to meet another group of residents who are participating in a 3 week residency there. This foundation is on shores of the lake with spectacular views. Privates plane take off and land periodically on the water.

I keep making jokes about George Clooney who lives (or lived) in these parts, saving drowning ladies from the lake…Not very arty i know, but that’s me…not very arty considering how i make my living.

Anyway there we sat in this room in a big circle, awkwardly swapping residency info…a LOT of artists in one room…and it struck me how goddamn bourgeois it all was, all of us, in this privileged situation in this super fancy place…with private planes taking off in the background. Not the first time it has struck me, to be an artist is not the most useful of occupations. That’s not to say i don’t love what i do, and i do think that art has a huge part to play in society…but just for today let me say…basta con l”arte!!!!

driving home through the rice fields back towards the mountains and Biella…

the first day…

Day one, everyone arriving, normally to brilliant sunshine, but this time to prolonged incessant rain, which has its own poetry in this 19th Century landscape, but is maybe not the best way to experience Biella for the first time…

The river Cervo thunders past our office as we too are in a converted woolmill once powered by those waters…when it gets really torrential, you can hear and feel the vibrations of giant boulders being moved about in the current.

that’s us there in white, UNIDEE has the whole second floor…

We decided to leave tables in a big pile and the residents can place them where they like, in past years they have been in rows, lets see what this lot do with them…