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  1.  (8576.41)
    not irrelevant!

    listen, i feel weird about mash ups. BUT i do understand that they are a new work. i think they should have the creators name (ie Girl Talk stuff should say Girl Talk on it). i also think he is a dj. djs do a lot of stuff, im not talking shit on them. but a DJ is NOT writing new music (unless they are, and thats awhole other subject). this distinction is probably not a concern to the aforementioned dj/mash up dudes, but for me it matters. just say what you are doing.

    its just words anyway. its like BASTARD NOISE- its not a band until there are more than just one person, pushing buttons and twisting knobs, playing live instruments. does Eric Wood care that i delineate between a 'noise project' and 'band'? im guessing no. its all just my picky weirdness anyway.

    i also find nothing of any interest in mash ups, so theres that too.
  2.  (8576.42)
    You say "creator" but then say that it's not new music (or art more generally). Mash-ups/remixes would constitute a new piece in pretty much any sphere other than sonic art, whereby most people rankle at the thought of newness coming out of what is the same in essentials. In fact, I think only in pop music (ie. not jazz or classical to put some [VERY broad] constraints on the subject at hand) is there this element that unless it's performed by the new artist (like a cover version), or substantially transformed (such as a dissimilar remix [through tempo, instrumentation, structure or whatever]) then it doesn't really constitute a "new" work.

    No idea why this is, really, seems kinda like the ol' Rolling Stone-type bias against anything not "three/four chords and the truth." To me, mash-ups, hacks etc. recontextualise the art, makes it mean something anew, and therefore becomes a distinctly new piece of art. In a sense, every time a DJ produces a setlist, or produces a whole run in a new environment, then it technically constitutes a new (site-specific or context-specific or technology-specific) performative act, or work of art - a totally new experience brought about by the juxtaposition of elements. Do you seriously think your favourite album wouldn't be different if it had a different running order? Or if Beethoven's 9th begun with the Fourth movement followed by the first etc that it wouldn't in some way be fundamentally different.

    Essentially, the songs are self-contained work of art in themselves, but since the order is temporally sequential, then the order of events matter. Like you say, DJ's have a skill - and it is working (as all artists do) with some sort of pre-existing materials, and putting them in an ordering that is aesthetically pleasing/tasty. In this case, they are otherwise relatively self-contained entities. But then again, so do collage artists. DJ's are sonic collage artists.

    Any other thoughts? Don't wanna sound too black and white, or like I'm stepping on anyone's toes. This sort of argument excites the hell out of me.
    •  
      CommentAuthoremonster
    • CommentTimeJul 28th 2010
     (8576.43)
    What about painting and visual art?
    Lichtenstein a hack? Shepard Fairey a hack? What about Dan O'Neill's Sky Pirates comics? Is Erro a hack because we don't like him? Warhol? Shit, what about Thomas Kincaide who basically does the same little cottage over and over, is he a hack?
    This is a disgusting thought but is Thomas Kincaide more original and cutting edge than Andy Warhol?

    It's completely subjective for me. If I don't like the recontextualization, the artist is a hack. Erro is a hack. Lichtenstein is an artist. Kincaide a hack (not really in the same way we are talking about here) and Warhol an artist.

    Ezra Pound said there are Innovators, Masters, and Imitators. If you are not a Master, are you, by default, an Imitator? I don't know, but it also excites the hell out of me to think about it.
  3.  (8576.44)
    Lichtenstein a hack? Shepard Fairey a hack? What about Dan O'Neill's Sky Pirates comics?

    Dan O'Neill was a nutter. Shepard Fairey's a cultural magpie. Lichtenstein has often been accused of being a hack, with plenty of evidence brought to bear.

    These are often very clever people. Their re-parsing of extant works can be very exciting, just as the Grey Album was very exciting. It is obvious, though, that some people don't respond in a lasting way, if at all, to these operators because they don't evidence the spark of what most people think as "creativity" -- making something from as unique a whole cloth as possible, speaking with their own voice and showing up with something they want to say.

    Or, at least, something to say beyond "see this thing I found here? Look what happens when I do this to it."

    (Which is why Erro is so disliked, because often he doesn't even bring that second sentence in.)

    (And it's not like Warhol was universally loved then or now.)
  4.  (8576.45)
    to boil it down to an example given to me, my favorite album is pretty great-and i could reorder it and drop some sick damaged noise in between tracks. that may sound cool and all, but its not even remotely the same thing as me writing any single one of the songs on there. its a whole different collage/skillset.

    to reiterate: while i think that its definitely difficult to do well, mash ups are not the creation of something wholly new.
    •  
      CommentAuthorstsparky
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2010
     (8576.46)
    Most of "Art" is about art itself. It can get interesting if the artist is unaware of what he is referencing. Very often an unconscious interpretation brings newness to the table.

    It is very different from 'swiping' though.
  5.  (8576.47)
    Warhol ... bah wtf was the point? then or now?
    He was at best, a self fulfilling prophecy. But more just self filling. He did spark more pretentious, boring conversations than the word "deco".

    For me? not art, simply a loud fart, a foul ball, a big loud nothing.
    And yet, I have nothing to compare to his work... sad.
    •  
      CommentAuthoremonster
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd 2010
     (8576.48)
    "magpie" What a great word. I had forgotten about it.

    The lines are not so black and white for me. There is a lot of blurry gray area here.
    I like Air Pirates more than I like anything else Mickey Mouse has appeared in. Even Walt Disney himself was simply a mash up artist. Steamboat Bill became Steamboat Willy and just about all of Disney's features are swiped stories.
    The Rolling Stones tweaked southern blues and folk music. Most singers sing other peoples songs. As much as I love Johnny Cash (and I do) I like Ray Charles' version of 'Ring of Fire' better, sorry.
    Is anyone who draws Spider Man after Ditko a hack? I tend to think so, but I'm sure 99% of comics readers would disagree. That may get into corporate vs. private issues of art as well. Spider Man being a corporate whore and all.

    Speaking for myself, the point of "pop art" was similar to the dadaists or some of the surrealists. Object as art. Commercial art as art. It's a logical follow up to Duchamp's shovel and a good killing point for Pollock's drips. That's just my opinion.

    There is a great documentary called 'Rip' which talks a lot about mash ups. You can watch it here for free. It's interesting, even if I don't agree with it all, and I imagine some of you will disagree even more.

    Can we break it down Socratically?
    I also have a hard time seeing where something becomes "hack."
    If you do a painting from life? = not a hack.
    If you do a painting from a photo you took? =
    If you do a painting from another person's photo with permission =
    If you do a painting from another person's photo without permission =
    If you do a painting from another person's drawing =

    How much do you have to tweak it? I don't pretend to have any answers. It's just interesting to talk about.
    • CommentAuthorbumnote
    • CommentTimeAug 4th 2010 edited
     (8576.49)
    agreed, what a fascinating discussion. like a lot of things in life, the juice and the details are all in the grey area. these are my thoughts on the matter, i'm not saying this is how things are, just the way things appear from inside my head. please forgive my punctuation/grammar too, for i am no writer.

    this is an embarassing admission to make in such an esteemed company of artists n writers n creative types, but i have to admit i had to google erro. he reminded me of certain occasions years ago when i had homework assignments to do for school. i'd find something i needed that fitted the bill in a book, (pre-internet (pre-wiki) for the masses times), and i'd add a couple of sentences at the start, likewise for the end. and maybe i'd change the odd word of the swiped text here and there too. then i'd hand it in and pass it off as something i'd created. in short, i was a hack. this seems to me pretty much what erro does/is. and it also seems to me thats what a lot of hackery is - taking one thing, and adding a couple of frills etc here and there, but showing no real great creativity or skill of your own.

    now, to me, when something stops becoming a hack is when you can see the source of someones inspiration, but there's more of their style, their skill, their creativity, in essence - more of them in/on/all over it.

    but i suppose all of this really depends on how you are passing off/presenting your creation to people.
    sorry if i've yakked on a bit, toodlepip!
    •  
      CommentAuthor46&2
    • CommentTimeAug 12th 2010
     (8576.50)
    These are often very clever people. Their re-parsing of extant works can be very exciting, just as the Grey Album was very exciting. It is obvious, though, that some people don't respond in a lasting way, if at all, to these operators because they don't evidence the spark of what most people think as "creativity" -- making something from as unique a whole cloth as possible, speaking with their own voice and showing up with something they want to say.

    Or, at least, something to say beyond "see this thing I found here? Look what happens when I do this to it."

    (Which is why Erro is so disliked, because often he doesn't even bring that second sentence in.)

    (And it's not like Warhol was universally loved then or now.)


    That pretty much sums up why I never liked DYNAMITEs "version" of all these colorful anachronisms--er superanachronisms.
  6.  (8576.51)
    I'm having a time out until I can learn some manners.
    interesting site for Lictenstein fans :

    <a href="http://davidbarsalou.homestead.com/LICHTENSTEINPROJECT.html">

    tries to find the source of the major paintings
    •  
      CommentAuthorFishelle
    • CommentTimeSep 7th 2010
     (8576.52)
    @BettyBoolean
    That is amazing. Thanks for sharing.
  7.  (8576.53)
    I'm having a time out until I can learn some manners.
    @Fishelle yw :)
  8.  (8576.54)
    Jesus. And I thought I was loud.
    •  
      CommentAuthoremonster
    • CommentTimeSep 8th 2010
     (8576.55)
    Incredible article on plagiarism, copying, and culture. It's long but well worth the read for anyone interested in this topic.
    http://harpers.org/archive/2007/02/0081387
    Interesting quote pulled from the article: “He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.” - Thomas Jefferson