~WE LIVE IN PUBLIC/THE UNDERGROUND BUNKER
or: THE SOCIAL NETWORK vs THE HUMAN GRID vs THE MATRIX vs THE HUMAN CHICKEN FACTORY – as in – STACKED in CAGES. WIRED TOGETHER 24/7 on the inter-connective highway – that is the web & THANK GOD FOR HUMAN LUST, is all I can say. and can we leave it at that ? ditch the keyboards – and orgy – that was Josh’s message – in 2000. for sure.
WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – Director Ondi Timoner’s great graphics and branding – aside.
WATCH – OUT !! the grid is gonna – bite your butt. that’s Josh’s ‘human chicken factory’ message. it’s just one step from the polite mental grid – of FACEBOOK – to the human chicken factory – to the matrix. but in 2000 when laptop computers weren’t on everyone’s laps – Josh’s interconnected-ness was a pod hotel and the 24/7 cameras – caught the human nature that spilled out !! big time. and it got plenty low down and dirty – not mental.
WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – his series of ‘social experiments’ from year 2000 on for another year or so – til he burnt out and retreated to a farm – to tend apples – was wilder than you can imagine – and the capstone – the Pseudo-funded millennium party – he called QUIET – that became the basis of the film – WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – took the grid – to human biology 101. humans vs the machine, humans won. big time. it was messy. and it was wild and it wasn’t pretty – but it most definitely was – human nature – spilling – outta that grid, baby. hands down.
the QUIET ‘grid’ began as a ‘pod’ hotel – stacked cheap sleeping compartments – wired yes. but by surveillance cameras – not keyboards. inhabited by a wild hard-core artist crew – fueled by a visionary genius with a LUVVY the clown alter ego – what do you expect, it was raw human nature – it was a grid based on sleeping quarters, not keyboards – get it ?
yep. artists and open sleeping quarters. what do you think happened ? QUIET over a span of 2 weeks – quickly deconstructed into such racy basic human behavior – as in lust – as opposed to keyboards and the typed communication of today’s grid – which is wired – ok. but with each person isolated in their own web compartment bedroom – communicating – but here – at QUIET they were all stacked literally one on top of the other – and yes. it became absolutely human, as in touch and feel. fight and cry, male and female caught up in the earliest story – of being alive – Adam and Eve and the forbidden apple. let’s just say lusty human behavior rules – can we – and maybe, just maybe it is that lusty primordial human drive to copulate, compulsively – that at once undermines us, while saving us – from the matrix fate . . .
QUIET and in essence WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – was ultimately – not – about the first computer take-over – as much as it was about the hard-core drive of the human condition. bodily contact.
human beings doing the nasty – spilling out and rolling around – you know – the social networking – that used to be called basic biology = sex. as in man vs the machine – the complete opposite of social networking as we know it today. which is – computerized. it was all about the human drive – not the human keyboard. rock on.
THE OFFICIAL – WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – TITLE HEADER. DREAMED UP, FABRICATED & DESIGNED in 2009 by Ondi’s creative team – the year WE LIVE IN PUBLIC was finally edited & shaped & sent off to SUNDANCE – to capture the world ‘s imagination. as the very first – “social network”.
it was a very funny – cleaned up – brand – as in logo – to most of us who had lived through it – and knew it to be – so the opposite, even though the preppy ‘social networkers’ were wearing facsimilies of our uniforms. the real QUIET was – raw and wild. hence its superb name.
but in fact – that was Ondi’s filmmaker Sundance-winning (twice) genius – her special brand of magic – the storyteller’s magic – the ability to weave a greater truth from a rocked-out dot-com party – that pushed WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – beyond the NYC underground art scene – and I do mean very underground – no mainstream art critic in this lame town – except of course CHARLIE FINCH – ever got it . . WE LIVE IN PUBLIC went right over their poor little heads, and still does. unbelievable. sad but true. even though half the world has seen it . . . and it still continues to tour – almost 3 years later . . . WLIP won SUNDANCE BEST DOCUMENTARY (USA) in 2009.
but I digress – my favorite sport – art critic bashing, sorry.
(did you get that in the post below – StudioFilmClub called him – the “warhol of the web” – and nobody here in the art world proper gives him the time of day. such a friggin lame town or what. whatever. and all, I mean all the film critics did rave. )
yes. just as the title of our mad wild millennium party – was QUIET – the total antithesis to the rowdy action – so Ondi’s branding – was the yin to our yang – and that circle of a snake chasing its tail – that summation and parallel made everything – fall into place – and allowed for the vision – to come forward.
and she was right. Josh’s social experiment – art installation and performance piece – was the very seed – of the ‘social media’ web of today – wild and crazy – our grid interconnected living – stacked one on top of the other – was the grid. the matrix. the human chicken factory. we who were on the payroll of Pseudo web guru – and artist – JOSH HARRIS – were the interconnected living – 24/7 wired – that begat the social networks of today. but yo – we were we so much more rowdy and fun – or what. give me a hard-core downtown NYC artist !! – over a Harvard tech with dating issues – and some twin DNA rowers – any day.
what’s in the briefcase – Josh ? piles of dough . . . as in cold hard cash ?
JOSH HARRIS – dot.com mogul and C.E.O. – in 1999 – at the height of his game – worth $86 million. no joke. and like any computer nerd – just like the Harvard guys – totally into and absolutely fascinated by what separates humans from the machine – !! 2 guesses.
flesh and the drive to reproduce.
it was JEFF GOMPERTZ who built the ‘grid’ / hotel pod for QUIET – the grid, human grid – that was to became the basis of the WE LIVE IN PUBLIC social networking / branding logo of Ondi’s later design. JEFF built the pod ‘hotel’ where the 99+ in-house resident crew of artists – lived and slept – and really had more live sex – than anything else.
wired it was – but for surveillance !! polite keyboard networking – FACEBOOK – it was not !! though therein lie – the seeds.
reality show: yes. biology 101: yes. they networked up close and personal in 2000 – laptops were hard to come by – but surveillance cameras were not !!
JOSH HARRIS, right. and JEFF GOMPERTZ – at the pod hotel’s – earliest stage.
the pod hotel – became the ‘stack’ – the holy matrix – the mother of all grids – wired 24/7 with cameras everywhere. sending out streaming video in real time – available in multi-channels on small screens in each individual pod. you could choose which action – you wanted to watch. your neighbor’s – or – even your own. the transparent shower was a big fave.
the hotel as we called it – was designed after classic – poor journeyman – Japanese pod hotels.
in its sweetest early days – it even held a futuristic – pod boy !!
note the cameras and the screens.
but just as you might expect from a hardcore downtown art crew – funded by a wild crazy genius – in an underground bunker !! – as the pod hotel came to be know in the press – things got pretty racy – pretty quickly – and this is just the tip of the iceberg.
underground artists – in an underground bunker – perfect symmetry. raw and knock down – wild. no rules.
in fact even Josh got so fed up with the bad behavior and kinky drama – that this WWII concentration camp was the image he chose as the title image – for the first WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – RADAR VIMEO CLIP !! It was Ondi’s particular genius to come up with the ‘preppy’ social networking grid – several years, later.
the stacked grid – did actually re-surface this year (2011) in Australian director PETER WEIR’S – ‘THE WAY BACK’.
but of course it’s been around forever . . .
weaving a drama of gods and man – locked in transcendence, conflict, birth, death and sex. the cycle of human nature – in a nutshell. but a stacked one, for sure.
I bet when they get to the bottom of nano particles, and RNA – they will find stacked structures, too. like when you find a dead nest of roaches, cockroaches – hidden under a light switch in a creepy tenement – know what I mean. like cars in a parking lot. all in a row.
didn’t I just read that somewhere – science and art are one. 2011. yeah. WE LIVE IN PUBLIC/artfutura !!