In February the Newsnight economics editor Paul Mason very succinctly laid out the radically different nature of recent popular uprisings across North Africa, the Middle East and Europe compared to earlier political movements, and the economic and sociological reasons behind it. This incisive blogpost rang true for many of those involved in those social movements, articulating, as it did, a new sentiment and new political priorities amongst those populations. The short article sketched out a more cohesive image which the media in general was missing, partly through structural failings, but largely because events were unfolding at speed and trying to drag the chaotic events into an understandable analysis was difficult.

Running alongside the (still unfolding) Arab Spring, informing and shaping and being shaped in turn by those events, was a developing online conflict with major similarities; young, optimistic graduates who saw societies in more generalised terms of “power”, highly networked, informal and decentralised decision making processes and a deep cynicism and mistrust of traditional power elites and political ideologies. In the last month especially we’ve seen a series of events and developments that are changing the game of cyber-war (and cyber-class-war).

So what’s going on in cyberspace? What we’re seeing is a significant escalation in serious geo-political combat, and the mainstream press has failed in it’s coverage so far. Perhaps years of rehashing press releases have left many hacks without the critical journalistic capabilities to monitor, study, explain and contextualise the recent events of the cyber-war, leaving the majority of the populace completely in the dark as to what’s happening, and how governments and (unelected) transnational organisations are investing significant resources in an attempt to limit online freedoms.

Make no mistake- this is not a minor struggle between state nerds and rogue geeks- this is the battlefield of the 21st Century, with the terms and conditions of war being configured before our very eyes. Given the significant economic disruption online activism and hacking can cause, and the power online tools have to agitate, plan and execute IRL activism, the current increase in tensions between hackers and the capital/state partnership is every bit as significant as the continuing developments of the Arab Spring, with which the online activist movements are inextricably linked. Below we have laid out a brief overview of recent events. This list is necessarily partial, given the complexity, history and depth of the situation, and we are by no means experts in the field; we would recommend people use it as a jumping off point to help get more educated (we have heavily hyperlinked the text FYI). Get googling.

1. At the heart of it is a newly politicised generation of hackers who have moved from a lulz-based psychic-economy to an engaged, socially-aware and politically active attitude towards world events, primarily as a reaction to the way governments and multinationals dealt with the fallout of Wikileaks. The “politicisation of 4chan” and the birth of Anonymous have set the stage for a practice of socially-engaged hacktivism of a form and scale we’ve not seen before.

2. This new “political hacktivist” class are digital natives and have become evangelised by passing through the immoral free-for-all of 4chan, to the development of a political critique and political programme through Anonymous.

“ this is the digital natives striking back here
people that live, eat, breathe and sleep on the internet”
(quoting from the lulzsec irc channel yesterday)

Digital natives are radicalised primarily by the threat to their internet freedom, with the continued shift in policy by global governments against the assumed freedoms of the net (laid out in the past). A natural by-product will be the continued radicalism of youth online.

3. Much like the IRL uprisings in Africa, Middle East and Europe, there’s a generational aspect to the way this conflict is playing out– although, like those uprisings, this is as much a symptom as a cause. A generation bought up on MTV, fed an endless stream of sophisticated advertising, naturally trained in memetic exchange, are going to know how to fight an infowar much more instinctively, and hence at greater speed and adaptability. An IRL manifestation being the role of the “citizen journalist” in the age of old media’s death rattle.

4. For net natives, there’s a definite sense of an international, borderless identity, whereby on a day-to-day level national borders hold less and less meaning. If your interactions with a fellow computer users are the same whether they live in London, Texas or Cairo, the narratives of national difference start to break down. Instead, they define according to their roles and activities online, and their values and political beliefs: a new, international class of immateriality, with all the repercussions of online solidarity that holds.

5. This erosion of borders has manifested itself strongly in the way newly radicalised hacktivists related to the unfolding events of the Arab Spring. As Paul Mason points out in his blogpost “People have a better understanding of power. The activists have read their Chomsky and their Hardt-Negri, but the ideas therein have become mimetic: young people believe the issues are no longer class and economics but simply power.” This highly problematic retreat from a fundamentally economic analysis has, despite it’s problems, enabled a casual ease with which the issue of international solidarity is approached.

6. There is a growing understanding of the infrastructure and fabric of the internet as a whole by a younger generation that grew up believing that decentralised infrastructure / free speech and the free sovereignity of the net was a given. That pioneer generation is now finding out that those ideals were only utopian notions afforded to them as result of governments slow ability to act and control the flow of data. As an (admittedly simplistic) example, whole organising infrastructures of UK activist and student groups were shut down wholesale during the recent purge of facebook groups.

7. There is an intensity of feedback that fuels the fire. Realtime results can be measured by everyone on the global stage, leading to a fueling of the ego of a close-knit group of hackers who are dropping the share price of a multi-billion pound corporation like Sony because it dared to assault the hacker ethic, one hack at a time.
This is sometimes matched by morale-boosting donations, such as with LulzSec, who yesterday received upwards of $7000 in bitcoins.

Not since the etoy.com saga of 1990s has the ability existed for real time participation in the dropping of a corporations share price been so readily available.

8. We are seeing the splintering of “hackers group” Anonymous into multiple manifestations that display a more comprehensive understanding of hacking techniques (although in many cases exploiting relatively low level techniques such as SQL injections; we’re certainly yet to see the use of computer science III).

These emergent groups are able to carry out sustained and targeted attacks under a rebrand of sorts, a multiplicity of approach that cannot be assigned entirely to the collective identity of Anonymous. This often allows group to act without the need to deal with moralfaggotry.

9. Anonymous is breaking apart but only in the sense that the media’s depiction of a grand narrative for the “hacking movement” ever held any truth. Anonymous as a group has always been inherently pluralistic with a healthy but constant wave of fail raids.
What creates this logical divergence from a single hive mind is the shift from a necessity for op in botnet assemblies, facilitated through the use of LOIC (Low Orbit Ion Cannon), with the DDoS now relegated to just another tool in a growing arsenal of a disparate emergent hackers movement.

10. The continued evolution of Operation Payback demonstrates both the power of this hacktivism, and how underdeveloped defence systems are. Op Payback was launched back in September 2010 as a reaction to the hiring of Aiplex Software by Bollywood movie rights holders, for the purpose of DDoSin’ The Pirate Bay for copyright infringment. During the first wave of attacks a large number of anons originating from 4chan targeted RIAA, MPAA and ACS:LAW in a revenge attack in defence of internet sovereignty. The operation evolved into a targeted attack on a series of laws firms who had targeted file sharers with legal threats. ACS:LAW was the worst hit when their database was leaked online leading to the demise of the company. These attacks continued, targeting, amongst others, Sarah Palin and Gene Simmons.

With the advent of the Wikileaks Cablegate saga we saw an escalation of Op Payback, in defence of the organisation with the creation of hundreds of mirrors for the site, the alternative dissemination of leaks and the attack on those that had withdrawn services to the organisation as a result of state pressure.
The operation has again shifted gears with it now focusing on the PROTECT IP Bill.

11. Beyond Anonymous and hacktivism there exists a greater threat, and despite the reaction of Anonymous to the rhetoric of the Pentagon, much of the new mantra being espoused by governments globally relates to the first age of real cyber warfare. With entire parts of infrastructure now plugged into the network, there exists a real threat and possibility for hacker/cyberattack based offensives across borders. We saw this during the South Ossetia War in 2008, when Georgia suffered extensive damage from cyberattack, or in the ongoing standoff between Iran and the US/Israel, where the US/Israel succeeded in feeding Stuxnet, a worm, into the Iranian nuclear programme infrastructure.

12. Governments are responding with a conscious and concerted effort to reframe cyber activity and activism as criminality against state and capital, which, no doubt, will soon be upgraded to a form of terrorism. This bears analogies to similar reframing of narratives around workers movements throughout the 19th and 20th Century, not least the “strategy of tension” in Italy in the 1970s.

The eG8 summit, held at the end of May, was part of this restructuring of the official relationship between State and Net. Nicholas Sarkozy spoke to attendees (including Mark Zuckerberg) on the cultural repercussions of Facebook et al, but his speech betrayed a more pointed message for those who seek IRL change through virtual means, as reported on IPtegrity-

“The Internet is ‘not a parallel universe stripped of morals and all of
the fundamental principles which govern society in democratic countries’, he said. ‘Don’t let the technology that you have forged…the revolution that have started [sic] … carry along the bad things without any brakes, don’t let it become an instrument in the hands of thow [sic] who would attack our security and therefore our liberty and our integrity.’

13. The Pentagon have declared cyberterrorism and cyberattacks as a conventional attack of war, with the right for reprisals.

14. NATO have also begun to redefine the parameters of war in relation to cyber attacks and acts of “cyberterrorism”, declaring conventional retalliation to acts of “cyberwarfare” to be legitimate. The Information and National Security subsection of the NATO Spring Report this year is focused very specifically on Cablegate and Anonymous as known identities. This is the first time a NATO report has cited the existence of Anonymous.

“Observers note that Anonymous is becoming more and more sophisticated and could potentially hack into sensitive government, military, and corporate files.”

In the same paragraph it is suggested that “It remains to be seen how much time Anonymous has for pursuing such paths. The longer these attacks persist the more likely countermeasures will be developed, implemented, the groups will be infiltrated and perpetrators persecuted.”

15. Anonymous reacted directly to the Spring Report and “declared war on NATO”. Perhaps you may think this is the idle threat of basement dwellers, but NATO certainly don’t. Things are changing at unprecedented speed in the infowar.

16. Anonymous have started to engage in more active outreach programmes, such as bootcamp training. This is of particular importance for the generation that grew up online or politicised through anonymous and 4chan, many who were drawn to the “movement” with more radical inclinations and have had the time now to develop a deeper understanding of hacking tools etc… or at very least become adept skiddys.

Much of this is basic advice for how to look after yourself online, a form of practical mutual aid analogous to the protest handbooks distributed by Anonymous during the North African uprisings; rather than advice on how to build a shield to protect yourself against watercannon, these “bootcamps” feature advice on how to use proxies and encrypt data, for example.

17. Governments worldwide are now entering a race to mass-recruit cyberwarriors in order to bolster cyberdefense, with UK security services launching the “Cyber Security Challenge” as an attempt to create an army of white hats.

18. Lulzsec is the fastest growing and most prolific hacking group the internet has seen in recent years, having single-handedly declared war by attacking an FBI affiliated website Infragard.

Yesterday Lulzsec’s twitter account jumped from hundreds to 75,000 followers. Lulzsec is fundamentally representative of the evolution loosely drawn out in previous points. They appear to descend if only in lulzy rhetoric from the likes of Goatse Security, the GNAA and Gnosis.

19. Despite the enormous presumed weighting in favour of the authorities, hackers still hold primacy, and that’s what gives the situation such political potency. When the white hat security firm HBGary Federal attempted to create an expose of the true face of Anonymous they were swiftly shut down by a sustained assault by anonymous that clearly demonstrated their abilities, illustrating the inherent security flaws created by human complacency.

20.Hackers are upping their game to match the rhetoric used against them; indeed, in the past few years security breaches have shown the potential weaknesses in systems that could, in future, be exploited as part of war. Today, however, hackers are, essentially, exploiting those breaches. When a group makes a “significant and tenacious” attack on a lynchpin of the military-industrial complex like Lockheed Martin, talks of “potential” cyberwar become a thing of the past. We have arrived, we are deep within the first cyberwar.

As a hacker wrote last Saturday, “We all know that cyberspace has come to an intense moment of confrontation; it will become more and more difficult to focus on the very reasons of the conflict opening, as the fog of war is rising.” We are no experts in the field, but given the increased tempo and ever thicker “fog of war” we felt these events and organisations need wider discussion. Developing a general public understanding of these issues is vital if we are to prevent governments manipulating our understanding of events in order to suppress the sovereignty of the internet.The hacker cause, if such a thing can be pinned down, must surely be opening up the free flow of all information as widely as possible.

The mainstream media are proving incapable or unwilling to contextualise, to bring light to complicated, discreet and hidden worlds and languages; whilst they dither on the Assange personality cult, and whether it’s possible to be both a liberal messiah and a rapist simultaneously, governments are writing the script for the next decade of online repression. Equally, those currently engaged in online skirmishes should at least heed examples from the past.

We must educate ourselves, but beyond this we must engage practically in the application of the tools we currently have. As the events unfolding begin to accelerate at a pace not unlike the Arab Spring, we should look to the technologies and networks that are being developed such as diaspora, a p2p DNS, flattr and bitcoin. There is a necessity now to understand the implication of such projects and the pursuit of their pragmatic ideals, so that we can begin to push the current trajectory of the net away from ever-increasing control and surveillance and towards a liberatory project of free information exchange.

Knowledge is free.
We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.

DSG: Ebaumsworld Division

PRESS RELEASE-For Immediate Release
Together– a film by The Dolphin Dance Project
“talented humans and wild dolphins dancing together on film”

NYC dancer/choreographer Chisa Hidaka initiated the Dolphin Dance Project (www.dolphin-dance.org) in 2009 to bring together talented human dancers and wild dolphins to co-create underwater dances and films that document them. Having initially encountered wild dolphins on a vacation, Chisa became intrigued by how much the physical play of dolphins diving and swirling amongst themselves or with humans had in common with the way that human dancers related to each other through movement. Through the Dolphin Dance Project, Chisa is exploring how this physical exchange can be an intimate and profound inter-species communication. Dedicated to a true collaboration between equal minds, the Dolphin Dance Project is producing films that capture this extraordinary relationship between humans and wild dolphins through a lens that integrates insightful scientific research with innovative, engaging underwater dance. This stunning co-creation, presented in the context of what scientists are discovering about dolphin cognition and behavior, highlights the creativity, intelligence, and spirit of wild dolphins with the hope of inspiring audiences to protect them and their ocean habitats.

“When we interact with dolphins as our collaborative equals, we suddenly realize in a profound way that we are not the only intelligent and aware species on the planet,” says Chisa. The works of the Dolphin Dance Project ask audiences to consider the different choices we would make if we fully recognized the consequences of our actions on every other sentient being, not just humans and, perhaps, to feel compelled to ensure that other animals! lives are not compromised by environmental degradation and other repercussions of our global scale society. The works also suggest how exquisite it might be to live in harmony with nature. Chisa says,“Meeting a wild dolphin eye to eye, it!s hard not to want to be more like her – more wild and more a part of the natural world.”

The films of the Dolphin Dance Project are aimed for a wide viewership, bringing awareness of wild dolphins and appreciation of dance to the large audience of nature film lovers. To make this possible, Chisa has recruited a team of talented collaborators, experienced filmmakers, and notably one of the foremost experts on dolphin cognition, Dr. Diana Reiss (see bios below). In the last year, the Dolphin Dance Project has produced a pilot film to build momentum for a longer composition and accompanying documentary.

TOGETHER: Dancing with Spinner Dolphins
“a human dancer and a wild dolphin discover a common language to express their mutual affection and delight”
Together: Dancing with Spinner Dolphins (3 min 33 sec, 2010), is the debut film of the Dolphin Dance Project.
It portrays Chisa and wild Spinner Dolphins forging a tender relationship through the graceful language of dance in the deep blue waters of the Pacific Ocean. While directing and performing in the film, Chisa used principles of dance improvisation to work with dolphins that are completely wild, participating voluntarily without feeding or any other coercion. To watch Together is to see the unfolding of a rare artistic collaboration between a human and completely wild animals. Together is a true innovation in dance and inter-species communication. It is also a poetic portrayal of the simple beauty of a human in harmony with Nature.

Together! is available for download or on DVD at http://www.dolphin-dance.org/together (A film trailer, in four languages including Japanese, Spanish, and French, is also available on the #Together! page mentioned above, Youtube, and the project!s #Gallery! page http:// http://www.dolphin-dance.org/dolphin-dance/Gallery/Gallery.html )

Watching the film, the audience will see the importance of eye contact between Chisa and her dolphin partners. “Dolphins! eyes are so expressive,” says Chisa. To keep eye contact, dolphins usually put themselves just a little ahead of her because, with eyes on the sides of their heads, they can see almost directly backwards. They also seem to know that with eyes that face forwards she can only see ahead, and would lose eye contact if she were in front. With an amazing sensitivity to changes in movement or direction, the dolphins can follow a dancer while in front of her and also gently lead her. In fact, the dolphins sensitively choreograph much of the dance. One thing that may not be obvious is how slowly the dolphins are moving to accommodate Chisa. Spinner Dolphins can easily swim at 25 miles per hour, and even at their slowest they move faster than any human swimmer. Occasionally, the viewer might notice the dolphins making curious wiggles to try to go slowly enough not to leave the human dancer behind – it is a sign of their generosity and their keen interest in prolonging these moments of together-ness.

The impact of Together is owed not only to the blue of the Pacific Ocean, spirited play of wild Spinner Dolphins and Chisa!s graceful dancing, but Bryce Groark!s shimmering underwater cinematography, which frames the action with masterful artistry. Bryce!s previous work has been featured by A&E and the Smithsonian Institution amongst others, and he is currently traveling with oceanographer Sylvia Earle, PhD on the team of Mission Blue. Additional underwater camerawork for Together was provided by Brett LeMaster, the North American record holder in free-diving, who used his breath holding skills to capture the most intimate moments of Chisa and the dolphins moving together under water. Other members of the crew included producers Loui Terrier and Benjamin Harley, and production coordinator Rick Osburn. Together was shot over 5 days in January 2010.

A short adaptation of Together, written and edited by Benjamin Harley, was selected as one of 20 finalists by the Ocean Inspiration Festival to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Jacques Cousteau. The Dolphin Dance Project embraces Cousteau’s belief that “People protect what they love”, and Together seeks to seduce audiences with an extraordinarily intimate experience of the curiosity, creativity, and generosity of dolphins in the wild.

Together! is the recipient of a finishing award from the Dance Films Association, and is now making a tour of film festivals, the first of which include the Colorado Environmental Film Festival (http://www.ceff.net/) and the Big Apple Film Festival (http://www.bigapplefilmfestival.com/) both on November 6th, 2010.

The Next Film: Sharing
Work has already begun for the next film of the Dolphin Dance Project, Sharing: Dancing with Spotted Dolphins, which will bring together three dancers and a pod of Altantic Spotted Dolphins in the waters around the Bahamas. The introduction of additional dancers is certain to bring new and exciting discoveries in human-dolphin interaction and choreography. To be filmed in the turquoise waters of the Bahamas with the charismatic Spotted Dolphins, Sharing promises to be even more beautiful than Together.

Chisa recently went on a field research trip to the location with scientific advisor Diana Reiss, PhD. Director of Marine Mammal Research at the National Aquarium and a professor of psychology at Hunter College, Dr. Reiss is an expert on dolphin cognition having published the seminal study using mirrors that shows dolphins express self-awareness. Incorporating Dr. Reiss expertise, Sharing will deliver not only more graceful inter-species dancing, but compelling scientific insights and interpretations of what passes between humans and wild dolphins as they dance.

In preparation, the Dolphin Dance Project is actively seeking out grantors and financial partners to contribute to the production of a full length documentary featuring the interactions of several dancers and wild Spotted Dolphins as well as the commentary of Dr. Reiss and other notable scientists – a program that promises to be an extraordinary hour of beauty, grace, and mind- opening new perspectives.

Dolphin Etiquette
The Dolphin Dance Project only works with wild dolphins in the open ocean, on the dolphins terms. We never feed dolphins, nor attempt to coerce or train them in any way. As a rule, the dolphins approach us out of their own curiosity. We do our best to be well-informed about the most current scientific research on natural behavior of dolphins so that we can interact with them in ways that are safe and appropriate for humans and dolphins. We understand that we are visitors in the dolphins environment and we never attempt to interact with dolphins if they are resting or feeding or show any signs of disinterest or annoyance.

We approach dolphins in a very specific and disciplined manner that is informed by our scientific understanding of dolphins and our specific artistic training and goals. It is dancing, not swimming. Viewers should not expect similar interactions with captive dolphins or even wild dolphins that are encountered on swim-with-dolphin tours. We do not share the locations of our encounters.

Our films give the viewer an opportunity to experience vicariously what would otherwise require significant training and expense. We hope they will inspire our audience to learn more about dolphins and to want to protect them. To that end, we provide a webpage for important information about the threats to wild dolphins and what we can do to resolve or minimize them: http://www.dolphin-dance.org/protect
©2010 Dolphin Dance Project

Biographies
Chisa Hidaka (producer, director, performer)
Inquiry and discovery are the themes that tie together Chisa Hidaka’s experience and training in dance, medicine and science, and which make her uniquely qualified to direct the ground breaking work of the Dolphin Dance Project. Chisa began performing in the mid-1980s receiving critical acclaim for her charismatic stage presence. As a choreographer, Chisa has been creating and performing in improvisational structures since 1986. Chisa has been active in the NYC contact improvisation community for over 20 years. Her work in the Dolphin Dance Project is a natural – if also radical – outgrowth of her long-term and ongoing investigation of dance improvisation. With an MD from the Weill Medical College of Cornell University (1994) Chisa trained in orthopaedic surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery where she was the head of a research group between 2001 and 2010. Currently, she teaches experiential anatomy at Barnard (where she is an alumna) and Manhattanville Colleges.

Over the past 5 years, Chisa delved into a period of personal research, interacting with wild dolphins around the world (the Bahamas, Azores, Hawaii and New Zealand) through the use of her dance improvisation skills. Bringing to bear her scientific experience Chisa has forged a relationship with scientific advisor Diana Reiss, PhD. Continued collaboration with Dr. Reiss and other dolphin research scientists will give the Dolphin Dance Project an enhanced educational value. Chisa is also working with Dr. Reiss on efforts to protect dolphins against capture and slaughter in Taiji and elsewhere in Japan.

Diana Reiss, PhD (scientific advisor)
Diana Reiss is a cognitive psychologist and professor in the Department of Psychology at Hunter College and the Biopsychology and Behavioral Neuroscience Graduate Program of CUNY. She helped to envision and implement the Animal Behavior and Conservation (ABC) Master’s Concentration in Psychology at Hunter College. She is a research associate at the National Aquarium in Baltimore and the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in DC where she conducts her research with dolphin and elephants. She was director of the Marine Mammal Research Program at the Osborn Laboratories of Marine Sciences at the New York Aquarium and co-chair of the Animal Enrichment Program of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). She was the director and founder of the Marine Mammals Research Program at Marine World Africa USA in California. Dr. Reiss served as a science advisor of the Animal Welfare Committee of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Dr. Reiss’s research focuses on cetacean cognition, communication, comparative animal cognition, and the evolution of intelligence. Much of her work focuses on vocal communication and vocal learning in dolphins using observational and experimental approaches. She pioneered the use of underwater keyboards with dolphins to investigate their cognitive and communicative abilities. Another focus of her work is comparative cognition and Dr. Reiss and her colleagues demonstrated that bottlenose dolphins and an Asian elephants possess the rare ability for mirror self-recognition previously thought to be restricted to humans and great apes. Her efforts also involve the rescue and rehabilitation of stranded marine mammals including the successful rescue of the renowned Humphrey, the humpback whale in the San Francisco Bay waters. Her advocacy work in conservation and animal welfare includes the protection of dolphins in the tuna-fishing industry and efforts to bring an end to the killing of dolphins in the drive hunts in Japan. Dr. Reiss’s work has been featured in hundreds of articles in international and national journals, science magazines, television segments and features, and newspaper articles.

Bryce Groark (underwater cinematography)
After working in the dive industry for years as a PADI and TDI Instructor, Bryce founded Living Ocean Productions in April 2004, with the goal of using powerful imagery to help minimize the gap between science and the general public. In the beginning, Bryce and his partner Jen Groark used their photography and videography to educate tourists about coral reef ecology, particularly on the Kona coast of the Big Island of Hawaii where they live. While these classes still carry on today, Living Ocean Production has expanded greatly, now focusing on television and documentary projects as well as several international conservation projects.

Bryce!s award winning photography and videography has been featured in magazines and newspapers, numerous television networks as well as in over 30 International Film Festivals, Aquariums and Museums around the world. Some of his shark footage is currently on display at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History as well as in multiple anti-shark finning television campaigns across Europe and China. His recent film on sharks, “Requiem” (2007) has won several awards including the Telly (2008), Aurora (2008) and Accolade (2007). In 2007, his shark footage was part of a Congressional Lobby Video produced by WILDAID with a push to help implement shark legislation within the US.$Most recently he has been working on the team of Mission Blue with producer Steven Fisher and scientist Sylvia Earle, PhD.

In addition to his work on sharks, Bryce has photographed and recorded many other marine species in waters around the world, including Egypt, Tahiti, Fiji, Australia, New Zealand, Raratonga, Japan, India, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, Indonesia, Costa Rica, Mexico, St Lucia and the Bahamas for diverse a list of clients such as A&E Television, Travel Channel, PBS, Telemundo, Sony Ericsson, PEW Charitable Trusts, Starwood Resorts, EA Sports, The Art Institute of America, Kona Blue Water Farms, Pacific American Foundation and The Kohala Center among others.

Loui Terrier (producer)
Loui Terrier received his BA in Film and Video Production from Pennsylvania State University in 1995 and studied fine painting at the New School in 1996. At the Pennsylvania production house Filmspace, Loui helped produce and/or direct over 50 documentaries, industrials, commercials and local music videos. His clients included Special Olympics, Alltell, Pfaltzgraff, Penn State University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, MIT, and Bell & Evans among others. Since 1994, he has lived in Brooklyn, working in film and TV with John Blanchard, Paul Miller, David Bar Katz, John Leguizamo, Michael Bergman, Michael Leahy and others.

In 2009 Loui produced a short film, A Big Ball of Foil in a Small NY Apartment, which won a Chris Award for narrative short film in the Columbus International Film and Video Festival and which has been screened in Europe, Canada, and in the United States as an official selection of several film festivals including the Big Apple Film Festival, NY Independent Film+Video Festival and Brussels International Film Festival among others. In addition to working on the Dolphin Dance project, Loui is currently developing three shorts films with Chicken Truck Productions, Pavaline Studios, Monkeyandweasel.com, and Wood Shop films.

Based on his visual arts training, Loui has also worked as scenic artist and art director on several projects. Loui has also exhibited his artwork in New York galleries like the Rotunda Gallery (1988), the Ward Nasse Gallery (1996), and the New York State Museum in Albany (1997). His highly developed sense of visual imagery is a guiding principle in his style as a producer as well. Between projects, Loui runs his decorative painting company, Leo & Raf, whose client list includes: Lidia Bastianich, Mario Batali, James Gandolfini, Robert De Niro, and Moises Kaufman, among others. Loui currently lives in Greenpoint, Brooklyn with his 5 year old son, Rayne.

Benjamin Harley (producer)
Ben started diving at fifteen, studied anthropology, philosophy, and theatre at Yale University, and fell in love with dance. Drawn into a productive career providing strategic advice to large corporations and startups, he travelled extensively, living in Europe and Asia. Taking time for creative and spiritual development has included, among other things, immersion in the practice of dance contact improvisation. Initially a confidant and advisor, Ben has become a de facto producer, collaborating on all aspects of the Dolphin Dance Project, stepping in to create supporting materials and to advise on the overall development of the work. He is particularly keen on devising a method for sharing video recordings back to our wild dolphin collaborators during future dance making sessions. It is only fair they know what they are participating in, and who knows what creative sensibility will emerge when they see themselves in performance.

“When Chisa shared with me her first inspiration, I was instantly captivated by the prospect of two intelligent species finding a common ground through dance to not only communicate but to create a work of art. It is compelling in so many ways – to nature film audiences, as a uniquely beautiful artwork, reconfiguring expectations about the relationship between humans and dolphins and the world. In my own experience, meeting the gaze of a dolphin and recognizing it as a true equal has been a transformative experience, profoundly reordering my relationship with nature as a whole. When we humans use our big brains, not to dominate the world around us, but to live in ever increasing harmony with the natural web from which we were born and on which we depend, then our intelligence will be proved. After waiting 15 million years for intelligent company, I think dolphins and whales are yet to be convinced.”
©2010 Dolphin Dance Project

This image is copywritten by Sara Knapp, 2010.

Transcript for “Distinctions or Dichotomy?: Large Scale, Big Box Shows Versus Art Made Out of Intense Personal Necessity”, a NYC panel discussion organized by Camilla Fallon, with Jill Conner, Lisa Beck, John Haber, Peter Reginato and Dennis Kardon

DK: I’ve shown internationally, and I’m still in this struggling-artist position, which I may be in for the rest of my life or may not. I don’t know what’s going to happen. The thing is, no one thing – I thought, “If I could only get a review in the New York Times,” and the I got a review in the New York Times: it was great and the world didn’t change. I thought, “If I could just get a Guggenheim grant,” and I got my Guggenheim grant and my world hadn’t changed. And even if it had changed, I’d still be faced with going back to my studio and being faced with, “What the fuck am I going to do next?”

LB: There is no end
AUD: And it did change, maybe you didn’t change.
DK: Maybe I didn’t see it as a change.
LB: It never ends.
LB: Nothing happening to you also changes you.
DK: When I did get my Guggenheim I told my wife that now if I get arrested I won’t be a self proclaimed artist anymore.

AUD: Face the same challenges no matter what happens inside your own workspace.

DK:You are launched into a specific arena I think that’ s something that is not always something that is in anybody’s control. Your way of interacting with your own work and the general public and curators and all kinds of people who suddenly want something from you really alters your position aside from making your work there is a duty to protect it and make a safe place for it in the world, you defend a position just to defend in a way to protect your work. If you are launched into another arena you may be forced to make work on a grander scale just to protect a place for it to exist.

LB: When you in a particular moment your conception of what’s happening isn’t necessarily accurate. Its accurate to what you feel at the moment. I’m sure there was shitty art in the Renaissance, too ,and derivative art, and art that people bought and later thought what the hell is this and got rid of it. We are left with the masterpieces and we think it’s all gone down the toilet and we say look at all this garbage. I was with a friend the other night who is a collector’s adviser and everyone complains about the Biennial, the art fairs and and we all know 85% of it is garbage and he said, “85%? How about 99%?”
Art schools are pumping out people and all of us are not going to be household names and most of us are okay at best. We are in a stew, about this kind of art, and this one is high and this one is low, and its is all so temporal.

PR: I had an epiphany. I am back in London 20 yrs ago in a well known painters studio. I’m sitting at a coffee table and I look at the painter’s catalogues and it is not very exciting work, and I say, “What kind of shit is this, third rate Abstract Expressionism?”
I look at it again and I begin to admire this guy because he wasn’t trying to bullshit anybody and he isn’t bad. The art scene has been for so long and lets find a way of being safe and its been technical or it’s a been about how something is made, and I’d like to see bad work: bad work that is honest.

LB: Well, there is a lot of that (laughter)

DK: I can’t judge that. We have to consider a secondary structure that has risen up: in museums and exhibitions spaces. There is a certain thing now, Art used to be an elite activity, very few people used to participate in it in our culture in general. We have the illusion that it is more democratic.

AUD: How long ago?

DK: It has always been an elite activity, these gigantic museums that have exhibition spaces to fill and people to fill them and they have to appeal a lot of people. We were better off when it was a more elite activity than that.

LB: There are places where that can happen, but not in this country.
People don’t want public funding because it gets into taste and what is okay or isn’t or whatever.

AUD: An organization has to justify to their people why they make their decisions.

AUD: Why would you have gone back to the Whitney to review Charles Ray had you not read a critic praise the work that you didn’t respond to?

DK: Well I went there with my third year painting class.
When I came to the city I could see every major exhibit, I had time to do my art and go to the galleries in Soho and maybe 57th St. once a month and the major museums. Now, I couldn’t even do Chelsea in a single weekend, let alone all of the other museums and the Lower East Side. I depend on other people who see a lot more that I do whose job is to see more than I do, and even if they get it wrong that is part of what they do. I am dependent on filters for what I spend time to go see. I do not see myself as having an infallible eye. I don’t get everything the first time. I have to see that I have rejected something because it rubbed me the wrong way on some level to understand how that was working. It is kind of the fascinating thing in art criticism for me to right now. Even if I ultimately reject it I want to understand it. Peter was looking that piece in a particular context and part of what he responded to was getting a very different feeling from that room than anything else in the Biennial and I understood that, and it did pop out in my mind, my whole feeling about it was very different from any of the other art and it did take another person to call that out.

AUD: John Currin who Scheldahl loves can make you change your mind.
AUD: What is wrong with that?
AUD: Nothing. Schjeldahl adores him.

LB: You can’t argue with John’s taste; people like different things. I‘ve gone back to see things. Someone else who I chat with, a critic, maybe might say, ”What do you mean you didn’t like that? What about this, that and the other thing?” I say OK, but I may end up liking it or agreeing with them, or, I may say, “Well, I see your point but it didn’t work for me. That’s OK.

DK: We all have a certain voice in our head that is the conventional wisdom and we can’t always separate it out from our own true voice, whatever, if there is such a thing.

To be continued.

Sue Stevens and Gregg Tome
Shark-Man
Showtel 2010 at Hotel Biba in West Palm Beach, Florida
http://www.showtel.org

Showtel is a yearly performance and art exhibition that is held at Hotel Biba and curated by Kara Walker Tome.

The artist wore a large hammerhead shark hat, examined a shark jaw bone with a flashlight in a well lit hotel room. As several of us watched his performance he fished for shark with a fishing line that was tied to a door knob. He used exaggerated movements as sweat poured down his face, so to speak. He avoided contact with us. Videos of shark and shark fishing helped to set the scene. After I spent time observing him from the doorway to his room I realized that I’d become a voyeur.