Telekom Electronic Beats

Audioccult Vol. 63: The Death of Collaborative Art

Light a candle. Draw the required sigils. Now, raise your arms above your head and slowly, gently, exhale your soul. You won’t need it here. This is Audioccult, and it’s time to get low. Illustration: SHALTMIRA

Yesterday, Jay-Z tragically rapped at Marina Abramović.* The seconds-long clips left me with several burning questions, such as, “What makes the face of corporate hip-hop pacing a foot away from the face of provocative performance art for four hours interesting?”, “Why does Instagram think aping Vine is a good idea and not a death-knell to the simplicity of their service?” and, “What is it like to kiss Beyoncé?” A bigger question might be, “Why haven’t we seen more terrible ideas like this before?” I wasn’t the only one to feel this way, as a flurry of press releases soon announced similar collaborations.

*As of the time of this writing, this occurrence hasn’t been beaten to death yet by referential memes. If it has been at the time of reading, please check out another recent Audioccult regarding DJ tips


THE SMOKING MAN (Kenneth Anger & Jalia Essaïdi)

This short film uses time-lapse video to show a man surgically implanting a video screen into his left thigh and watching every episode of The X-Files; numerous close-ups to David Duchovny looking into the distance as an ageless and unnamed protagonist grimaces. By season nine, the film begins to slow noticeably until the final episode “The Truth II”, when the skin alongside the wound begins to smolder and emit black smoke. “I made this!” mouths the man along with the Ten Thirteen logo, and then silence. He stares at the blank screen in his leg for four minutes, and then it begins to load the first season of Eerie, Indiana. Before it can finish buffering, however, another man who looks like Aleister Crowley bursts in and has sex with him.



TEARS OF EROS (Wafaa Bilal & Rick Owens)

For this collaborative statement on cultural heritage, voyeurism and the perceptions forced upon us by the Authoritative Gaze, the Iraqi-American artist places a normal blue polo shirt on the Parisian designer, and as the audience watches he films him dancing in front of a full-length mirror, pulling faces and laughing because it looks weird as hell.


THE SILENT TRAVELER (Ai Weiwei & Miley Cyrus)

This fifteen-foot tall sculpture depicts an anthropomorphized skyscraper wearing a “CZECH ME OUT” shirt beating up a tree in a “JAMAICAN ME CRAZY” shirt. Though credited posthumously Cyrus was unfortunately unable to participate in the piece, having suffocated beneath a pile of increasingly intolerable twerking references.


SPEAKING IN RINGTONES (Ryan Trecartin & DJ Assault)

Ass, titties, ass ‘n titties. Ass ass titties titties, ass ‘n titties. Ass, titwait I have more! Please, this one is a crazy frog.~


Published July 11, 2013. Words by Daniel Jones.