Thursday, 30 October 2008

Thursday Club

Quick post to let you know that Jason Singh and I will be talking about Sampler - Culture Clash and giving a short improvised performance next thursday 6 November from 6-8pm as part of the Thursday Club taking place at the Ben Pimlott Building, Goldsmiths College in New Cross, London.

"The Thursday Club is an open forum discussion group for anyone interested in the theories and practices of cross-disciplinarity, interactivity, technologies and philosophies of the state-of-the-art in today’s (and tomorrow’s) cultural landscape(s). The Club is supported by the Goldsmiths Digital Studios (GDS) and the Goldsmiths Graduate School.

Originally set up in October 2005 by GDS as a more informal setting for research discussions, it has grown to include over 150 members, artists,technologists, scientists, in fact, a growing diversity of people from different communities worldwide, that are now connected via a mailing list and online forum.

There are also regular meetings in ‘real' space at the Ben Pimlott site of Goldsmiths, University of London. Anyone can attend these events. By keeping these meetings free, informal and open to all, we provide a platform for diverse and open ended discourse, for people who perhaps would not have the opportunity to discuss ideas outside of their chosen discipline.

The Thursday Club brings together people from diverse fields and degrees of expertise, aiming to initiate discussion and debates among postgraduate students, researchers, academics, artists, theorists, and other cultural practitioners.

Since it focuses on interdisciplinary practices, the Club is interested to experiment with innovative formats of presentation that are appropriate to the nature of the subject. We particularly welcome the proposal of round table discussions, panels, screenings, 'hearings', live gigs and performance lectures as well as more traditional
presentations. We are also interested to platform experimental work-in-progress, of both practical and theoretical nature."

There's a really impressive and diverse range of UK and international speakers for the Autumn schedule, including Murray McKeith, John Levack Drever and Lawrence Upton, Harold Cohen, Tim Hopkins, Alexandre Antonopoulou and Dawn Scarfe, John Lechte and Liiane Lijn. So we're really honoured to be asked to participate and looking forward to the discussions. One aim of taking part is to get critical feedback from other people working interdisciplinary and crossdisciplinary and to develop ideas for potential collaborations with software programmers to move the research forward.

Be great if you could make it along and if you're at all interested in interdisciplinary practice I'd strongly recommend getting involved in the Thursday Club.

For more details contact:
Maria Chatzichristodoulou aka (Maria x) on

Monday, 27 October 2008

Diggin in Hamburg

The other week, my colleague Linda Florence and I were invited to run a workshop in the art school in Hamburg - which was fantastic by the way - thanks to renata for inviting us.

Whilst I was there I managed to squeeze in a bit of shopping. Thanks to all the students for recommending places to go. Hamburg has a fantastic selection of second hand shops, and to my delight second hand record shops - perfect for a bit of diggin'. The two I managed to visit were Back Records and Groove City. Groove City is a haven for the world of breaks and hip hop, with old skool ghetto blasters on the wall, trainer shop in the back.

Here's some of the gems I managed to pick up and spot on my travels.

Crate Diggin T.shirt

Behind the Beats

A fantastic book celebrating hip hop home studios, from dj's and producers including DJ Premier, Dj Shadow, J Dilla, Dj Spinna, packed with great photos. My favourite shots feature the studio of Farma G's "the Junkyard".

Behind the Beats is by Raph, published by Gingko Press
ISBN: 1-58423-197-1

A couple of 1 euro records picked up for breaks and samples

and last a great compilation The In-Kraut (terrible title) but it features some great tracks and breaks such as Why Don't you play the Organ- Memphis Black; Berlin - Heidi Bruhl and my favourite Undergroovin' - Eugen Thomass.

I'll definitely be back.

Sunday, 19 October 2008


As I've mentioned before women are the beating heart and soul of the sampler-cultureclash project. There has been a long tradition of embroidery as part of a young woman's education, social upbringing and cultural activity. Through the sampler project research we've been studying amazing embroidered samplers created by girls as young as 8 years old, such as this one from the V&A's collection by Mary Wakeling aged 10 yrs in 1742.

As part of the project we've been exploring the connection between embroidery made by young women in the 17th,18th and 19th centuries and the cultural, educational and social activities of young women (particularly urban young women)at the start of the 21st century. As part of that interest we've been looking at young women dj's, b-girls, spoken words artists and beatboxers and starting to find ways to involve them in the project and make those connections. Here's an awesome clip of 8 yr old (yes only 8 yrs old!) japanese turntablist sarascratch, she's tough!DJ Sara

Last evening I attended the b.young b.supreme event at the South Bank Centre in London, organised by Independance. Bsupreme aims to champion and support the development of women in hip-hop, and B.YOUNG is an initiative to give young women the opportunity to develop their dance skills, through a training and mentoring programme working with Nike artists D-Clash

The b-girls Hattie, Azara and Joanne who helped us out at the sampler-cultureclash event the other week in Brixton were taking part in the Dare2dance competition, as part of the dance group Stylinquents, mentored over the summer by Suzette Brissett. It was great to go along and give them my support. was a close call but fantastic news..they won. I'm sure they're going to go on to bigger and better things as they develop as artists. Just being involved must have been a rewarding experience for all the dancers. It was a fantastic event, which needs more support in order that it can continue and develop. The highlight for me, alongside H,A and J taking part and winning was the octagon battle later in the evening.

here's a link to the b-supreme website for more info on the programme.B.SUPREME
and here's a clip of a couple of the UK dancers taking part the other night.

and a huge thanks to Judi and everyone at Independance for the invite.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Archive Fever II

Just received some photos of the Archive Fever II conference I took part in last month at Goldsmiths, so i thought I'd post a couple. In one I look like I've turned into a preacher man..not sure what happened there. Thanks to David for the photos.

The theme of the conference was "Building a Virtual Archive: Collections in the making." My presentation focused on searching electronic archives, such as youtube and the art of crate diggin' (searching out and collecting obscure records). I consider there to be many similarities between the museum archivist and the crate digger. And I'm particulary interested in the phenomenum of collectors posting their record collections onto youtube, and the issues that brings up in turns of copyright vs the desire to share this music within the public domain. Here's a great short film on crate diggin', parts of which I sampled live during the performance. Free Samples

The evening before the event, I was running through the presentation, which was a standard powerpoint job and I thought there's something not right here, and it's a bit dull. Then I realised that I wasn't being true to the project's ethos of sampling, trialing and mixing things up. So I decided at the very very very last minute to give a kind of improvised performance - searching, mixing and scratching clips from youtube, one turntable and various vinyl from my collection, my AKAI MPC, and video and audio recordings from the Sampler-Culture Clash workshops we've run.

It was the first time I'd tried anything like that before, and in a more formal seminar type environment. Normally the room is dark, I'm drunk, and well the audience is drunk too!! Needless to say it was hmm..chaotic, particularly when my computer crashed half way through. As one audience member put it "yours was the distinctive presentation", which I took as a compliment. It seemed to go down well though, and was definitely more interesting for me in terms of presenting an idea in a lecture theatre setting. Something to think about and build on. If you were there it would be good to get your feedback.

I'll post a video of my presentation when I get a copy of the film. Oh and I really enjoyed the conference, with some really interesting and diverse speakers. I recommend you check the Constance Howard link on the right of my blog page to find out more.

Monday, 6 October 2008

Cross stitchin' Brick Lane

Just to say thanks to the fine and very helpful folk at Random Monkey Design for an enjoyable afternoon yesterday at their cupcakes, cocktails and cross-stitch event. It was a wet and cold sunday in London, but it was great to see over 100 people in 93feeteast getting into the cross stitch experience. Great cakes too. Looking forward to more of their events.

Here's the start of my ran out of batteries!!! Got to finish this one.

more info:

Saturday, 4 October 2008


Quick last minute post to let you know about a couple of stitching events happening this week in London town.

The fine ladies from the New Embroidery Group are taking a break from the world of performance poetry to return to their first love - embroidery. They are exhibiting at the Knitting and Stitching show at Alexander Palace 9-12 please make a trip and give them some support. I know they'd be delighted to see you. The show tours to Dublin and then Harrogate later this year.

For more info:

The second is the Urban Cross Stitch event Cupcakes, Cocktails and Cross Stitch at 93feeteast in Brick Lane at 3pm this Sunday 5 October.
For more info:

I'll be poppin along to see what it's all about. It seems like the perfect way to spend a sunday. Maybe see a few of you there for a Bloody Mary or five.

Oh, and for those kind souls who have enquired about their pattern to sound clips..Jason is away in India at the moment collaborating with folk musicians from Rajastan. So when he returns....