SleepeelS at This Art Fair
At This Art Fair, Amsterdam 2021, digital persona SleepeelS (Mariah Blue’s alter ego) presents, Roses Rest, the debut album from musical duo Bots & Gas, consisting of Alexandros Papamarkou and Mariah Blue. As a digital entity, SleepeelS uses Youtube’s Creator interface as a medium. In her live performances and videos, she ‘lives’ through the digital devices of her audience via the Youtube platform. The album presentation was performative action by SleepeelS as the album’s promoter within the digital domain.
A limited edition of ten vinyl records is released and sold at the fair as art objects alongside other art multiples (merchandise) such as t-shirts, stickers and helium balloons.
In the booth, SleepeelS screens promotional videos while Mariah Blue and Alexandros Papamarkou are employed to work as her sales representatives at the art fair.
Each day, a live-stream performance of the album was presented by SleepeelS in the mezzanine and hosted the artist group, Bits & Pieces. This is where we also organized an improvised helium choir with other participating artists and art fair visitors.
A newly formed cross-disciplinary music and artistic duo consisting of Alexandros Papamarkou and Mariah Blue. Roses Rest is the debut album released at This Art Fair 2021. The songs have come from channeled sources, automatic writing, Ouija board and text writing algorithm. Following the whims of channeled material and leaving songwriting to chance results in a musical blend of styles and genres. The record interweaves experimental pop, dance music, multi-layered (choral) a cappella singing, spoken word and even a ballad written by a nineteenth century ghost.
Potluck, 2021, Gallery 17717, Seoul
Potluck is a collaborative video by the artists. It was filmed on the Scottish Isle of Lewis where they shared a house, meals, and conversations. The video examines topics of entanglement, nature, technology, silent space and friendship in relation to a society striving for optimization.
All footage was filmed with mobile phones originally to document our trip together. The idea to make a video came later.
What thoughts think thoughts
A riso printed book of images compiled by the artists, Mariah Blue, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, Younwon Sohn, and Amy Winstanley, designed by Alex Walker and published by Print Art Research Centre, Seoul.
The pages are bound with an elastic band, allowing the book to also function as a collection of separate prints. The cover displays an index and descriptions of the works written by the artists in English, Korean and German.
Looking For the Pixels
I zoom further into the screen of my smartphone, looking for the pixels. Every time I get closer I take a screenshot. My camera’s image processing algorithm blurs some parts of the image, sharpens other parts and it corrects the color. Rather than the photos becoming more abstract, the collaborative decision making between me and the camera creates strange and otherworldly forms.
Palma Song Room Poetry
One of many found poems that I discovered during my residency at the Seoul Art Space Geumcheon in the spring of 2020. By using the Google Translate camera app throughout the neighborhood in Geumcheon-gu Seoul, I was able to translate street signs, building logos, and even the random patterns seen in tiles and skyscraper windows into poetry. These poems were sometimes dadaesque, nonsensical strings of words or syllables and sometimes revealed more profound word combinations, relating to mundane, philosophical or even spiritual subject matter. This work has been exhibited this year for the Digital Program, Flash Fictions: Alternative Networks with the London based, Photographer’s Gallery.
Uses Google Translator App. to instantly identify and translate text in images from a mobile camera. The translated texts are read out and recorded on a video. Google's Translator App. also translates skyscraper windows into incomprehensible and nearly unpronounceable texts. The work playfully challenges the capabilities of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and translation systems, exploring their creative possibilities when confronted to simple everyday provocations.
A sound performance and video installation at Seoul Art Space Geumcheon, in April 2020.
Visitors listened to a spoken text and video soundscape through handmade paper cone speakers that created various sonic effects without the need for electronic sound equipment.
With these simple paper cone “technologies” the whispered performance was amplified and easily heard throughout the large exhibition hall. Echos and other sound distortions were created when I directed my voice against various acoustic focal points with a paper cone "microphone". This created a range of sound effects. Depending on where one was standing, the voice could be heard as if it were speaking very close to the ear and a quiet whispers echoed throughout the exhibition hall.
What ties ties, ties
A collection of essays by Mariah Blue, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, Younwon Sohn, Amy Winstanley
What ties ties, ties is a book created by five artists of different nationalities, backgrounds, ages, and gender identity. This book is tied by 'Doubt', a short story about questioning perceptions of the world by Scottish painter Amy Winstanley (b.1983), 'Call Us by Our Names', poems that are a collaboration between Mariah Blue (b.1977) and a machine learning algorithm, 'Housewarming, Dear Ghost Ants', an invitation essay about house, creature, and future scenery by Korean artist Younwon Sohn (b.1990), 'Tadpoles', a short coming of age story exploring friendship and imagination of young women by Scottish-Kurdish artist Lana Murdochy (b.1995), and 'Moving Matter', an essay on exploring the relationship between feelings and the design of surfaces by German sculptor Kathrin Graf (b.1984).
Sonic Meditation: Vibrational Bodies
In a collaborative sound performance with artist Tina Reden, we discovered the sonic possibilities of ceramic coil pots as natural speakers — think of the sound produced by a sea shell when held to the ear. The varying shapes and sizes of the hand built coiled pots create varied tonalities depending on how they are interacted with. These ceramic coil pots were made using similar techniques to those used since the stone age. We imagine alternative uses for technologies and play with the distinctions between hi and low tech by plugging in these stone age pottery vessels and using them as musical instruments.
Fictional persona, SleepeelS, uses Youtube’s Creator interface as a medium. In her live performances, she co-opts the digital devices of her audience through the Youtube platform. A cacophony of echoes can be heard in the room as phones playback her performance at differing stream rates. These echos are fed back into her computer mic and broadcasted again, creating a sonic feedback loop. Eventually all speech is drowned out by the intensifying reverb.
The Youtube algorithm is designed to selectively choose extreme content in order to captivate the attention of its audience. A feedback loop occurs between viewer and algorithm where ideologies become polarized in a self-fulfilling echo chamber of ideas. SleepeelS hopes to someday be an influencer of the Youtube algorithm.
Domestic Work Algorithm
These works examine the exploitative relationships between labor and digital platforms. I use my employee work data to create digital tapestries.This data is collected from my “day job” with the domestic labor platform Helpling, a digital platform described as “Uber for housekeepers.” The tapestries are created by a similarly exploitative online platform which outsources weaving to the lowest bidder.
Digital drawings can be made using the language of code. Anything can be used as data and therefor programmed into a drawing.
Symbols are hand drawn in repetitions following an algorithmic equation. The equation is created using dice. The dice choose which symbols will be used within the drawings, how many times they will be repeated, what order, and the colors which are used. The drawings can be hand replicated once an equation is formulated.