Welcome to the crash period
interviews with armelle leturcq / frank perrin (crash) and pia myrvold

Martin Conrads

[text als audiofile]

let’s go to the crash period

Zweimal im Jahr wird im Pariser Parc des Expositions an der Porte de Versailles die Modemesse "Who’s Next?" zelebriert. Ein Showcase für alle Junggebliebenen und die, die es zwischen Avantgarde, G Shock, Chuppa Chyps und Yves Saint-Laurent noch werden wollen. Am letzten Wochenende ging die Frühjahrs-"Who’s Next?" zuende. In den Interviewboxen das Magazin "crash" und in einem zweiten Teil die Modedesignerin Pia Myrvold.

"...let’s go to the crash period..."

...let’s go to the crash period: Die Kunstkritikerin Armelle Leturcq gibt seit Januar gemeinsam mit Frank Perrin die neue französische Zeitschrift crash heraus. crash setzt auf die Lücke zwischen technikart und Nirvanet und will mit viel Stil und Texten über Photek, Websites, Helikopter, T-Shirts und Hongkong-Filme die Verknüpfung von digitaler und analoger Kultur vorantreiben. Zuvor, und immernoch, gaben und geben Leturcq und Perrin die Kunstzeitschrift "blocnotes" heraus - in französischer und englischer Sprache. Lassen wir hiermit einmal das Interview beginnen...

al: Before publishing crash we have made another magazine, it’s called "blocnotes", it’s a magazine about contemporary art, also crossing culture, music, technomusic. At the beginning it was really close, it was only contemporary art. Then we began to talk about music, about new technologies. So we decided to make a really open magazine, so we had the idea to do crash, which is really more global. It’s about new technologies, music, art, architecture and all the digital culture. .../... We don’t want to make a webiste like a web version of crash. we really want to make something different. We‘re gonna make like a TV-program. Christian Perrot has invited us to make a TV program on his site Nirvanet. We will have one hour every two months and we can diffuse what we want - films, interviews, things like that.


mc: do you think that there is a situation in europe at the moment where people get connected to find a definite european way of dealing with technocultural affairs, dealing with webculture, cultivating their "own" mailinglists?

al: i have not really this feeling. it’s strange, because art is really international. there is really many many connections between england, france and germany. but in technoculture i have not the feeling that it’s the same. even in music i have the feeling that it’s ... like for example crash is really more french than blocnotes. blocnotes was in english and in french. it was really and international magazine, we had many american writers, european, german, but crash, it’s really french. contemporary art is really international but music and webculture it’s different, i think.

mc: what’s your job exactly at crash?

al: i’m publisher. it’s a really small staff, so we do a little of everything. frank is the chief editor and i’m the publisher. but i care also about the editing things and things like that.

mc: this is your own publishing house, you’re not connected?

al: yes, we are completely independent. and it’s very difficult in france to have an independent magazine. people say we are crazy to do that. because it’s very expensive to do a magazine, it’s very difficult to find advertising, and france is a country which is very conservative in fact. it’s quite difficult to find help from the older generation, from people who are fifty. they don’t trust so easily young people who are trying to do things, new things. that’s also the reason why in france we are quite in late in new technologies and things like that. france is very conservative.


mc: i have two questions: in your foreword you describe that you don’t want to cling to technical terms but more to things of culture and conscience. my first question would be: how would you describe consciousness in that context. the second would be: you use the words „the old world" and „the new world". do you think there is like a gap between that, a communication gap, an economical gap? what is it?

fp: for the first question: the model of positivist hightec-attitude is totally wrong. it’s totally in contradiction with the first idea, the first spirit of new technology. for example in `84 the idea of apple was to make an instant, very easy computer for everywhere, for everybody and everywhere. macintosh was very lowtec and things like computers were not a question of technics but a question of spirit. so, we are lowtec and in a spiritual relation with the computer, because there is no future inside the machine, there is future between people. that’s our position. for example, a magazine like WIRED is very positivist - brave new world. it’s very american, going on, making business. we don’t believe in this kind of positivist business. we believe in business, but in a very different business, in a very different relationship between people. we want to be also iconoclast in front of the machine. that’s the spirit of crash.

mc: what about the second part of the question, the new and the old world. you talked about people from the „old world" like they are aliens? on the other hand there seems to be a new generation connected with totally new topics?

fp: there is not an old and a new world. there is an old industrial culture which was based on the market, on the object. and there is a different way of approaching things, not on the object, but on the connection, on the relation, and nevermind the factory and the production. we have to pass not only from the 19th to the 21st century, but we have to get out of the industrial civilization. that’s the point. but the new culture which is going out the industrial civilization, it’s a way of see and think, but also the old, in a different way. so at the same time we are going out the industrial civilization, and at the same time les ciniques and some greek physician and also the hawaiian music are really cyber. so we want to change the way of leaving things, because it’s a so shit world, it’s totally finished and people don’t know what to do on sunday and looking the tv broadcast and will die in two or three years...that’s the truth.
we are starting to understand what is inside our brain. that’s the human bomb, that’s the real revolution, an incredible period, also we believe in the crash project because with this magazine we want to make a magazine exactly like a brain is constructed. we have picture, cinema, empty squares, different connections. in a way crash is a brain model. it’s the first magazine that is constructed like a brain. yeah. we have to make more issues to understand that. but we are the brain-revolutionary magazine (LAUGHS).

mc: so my last question would be: you use the word brain, you use the word consciousness. you said we understand only 10% of the world, we have to have this new economy. if i get this together what comes out is another version of scientology. an ironic question; is crash the better version of scientology?

fp: not at all, not at all...

"...let’s go to the crash period..."


„Who’s Next" Teil 2. Mobiltelefone stören bei dieser Messe nicht nur Interviewgeräte, sondern auch die Models beim Sampeln. Die norwegische und in Paris lebende Künstlerin Pia Myrvold schickte in ihrer Auch-Eigenschaft als Modedesignerin auf der „Who’s Next" ihre neueste Kollektion auf den Catwalk. Mit dabei: das singende klingende Kleid. Wer sowas braucht, und warum, erzählt Pia Myrvold wie von der Stange in 4:10.


pm: my name is pia myrvold and i‘m an artist coming from norway. i have worked in paris the last four years and my background is in interdisciplinary arts. i have, since the beginning of my career, always thought to combine medias from painting to sculpture, music, free improvisation and into video performance. and i also used fashion very early in order to create a kind of quick access into the media, into the mainstream, with these kind of ideas that we are working with in other interdisciplinary projects.
as i say i work with music a lot, and since i work with clothes as a way to express new ideas, i have thought of a way to put music into clothes. i work with a norwegian composer called rolf walin, who gave me certain technologies that he was using in his suit to play sort of like body parts on stage as a performance. i took this technology and put it today in a jacket. i have made six buttons that activate six different samples in a sampler machine, and i had antennas that go from the jacket and activates the samples. i work with a japanese singer called enema, who then with a microphone introduced herself and started playing the different samples. she started with the basssample and got that going, and then she starts singing to it, she activates the drums, the synthesizer. she also got a public to press certain buttons, like the solos, strange sounds, whatever. so, it’s an idea for me that is very challenging, because it’s difficult to do this and we had a lot of technical problems the first days, because each sound is on a different frequency and we are surrounded by mobile telephones and different headphones, security headphones. there is all this kinds of frequencies interfering with my jacket. anyway, we managed to get it together today and that was like the feed for me today.
i’m also working with a producer in america, a kind of a mass produced version of this, programming the same samples into a jacket, in a couple of months i will do that. poeple can buy the jacket for a relatively low price and play those samples themselves. this i find extremely interesting, because in modern music, in modern composition i’m not making a CD that i will sell in a record shop, i’m creating a jacket with six sounds that you can play yourself – and that’s my composition.
you know, as we access everything our clothes also will become accessible in a much larger degree: that we can do more with the clothes than before. before we could keep warm with them and put them in certain ways, now we can actually play them, they have memory, you can turn up and down the temperature, you might have telephones in there, you might have speakers, your sony walkman in there, your internet-connection in the collar, whatever. a lot of this technology actually exists. we’re just trying to organize this technology, find out how to use it. we’re evolving towards what they call an active information production, i don’t know how you would say that. the user is not just passively consuming but actually he is creating. it’s very challenging to have a jacket with six buttons on. how in the world are you gonna use that...?

mail to: martin conrads

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