Archive for the ‘cutup collective’ Tag

All Hail The Arranger?

James Joyce is dead. The mischievous Arranger lives.

In 2009, ever more epic feats of creativity will be determined by the Arranger. Not a single mind scripting, drawing, sculpting, painting. But allowing things to happen. Then ordering them.

What the hell am I talking about? Here comes the three-way…

1. Mobilise

Fifty People, One Question: London by Crush + Lovely on Vimeo.

One kind of Arranger starts by mobilising. E.g. ask a single question to 50 people. Record what happens and arrange it. This is close to a notion of the meme but retains editorial control.

Think Sleeveface. Or even the new Saatchi & Saatchi spot for T-Mobile.

2. Scavenge


“One (Two, Three, Four)” by Kunst & Teknik and Martin Ström, 2009.

The Scavenger Arranger does a similar thing in reverse. He/ she is more of an archivist. It’s a retrospective arrangement.

You have an idea then set out to aggregate the material. Here Kunst & Teknik and Martin Ström found four different videos of kids playing Metallica on YouTube. Then they arranged and syncopated.

In adland, the Nokia Comes With Music campaign is a prime example. Idea first – track names spell out a message – then find the track names to achieve it.

3. Anatomise

Little Girl Loves Aphex Twin by IDMWEIGHTSIDM on YouTube.

The microscopic approach. The Anatomist Arranger will take a single passage in time, or a single event, then pull it apart. There’s an obvious analogy with remixing.

No new content is initiated or created. But the existing material re-spliced. Collagists like Cutup Collective fit this mould. And in some ways, it’s where those 1920s modernists – and Dadaists – began.

Is the Creative dead? Should we all hail the Arranger?

Update #1:

Iain at Crackunit has written at an extensive post on ‘mass collaboration’ advertising. Follow the debate on ‘Life Is For Connectedly Sharing Better.’

Update #2:

Read a section in Wikinomics last night that sums up this phenomenon far better than I did:

“… we are moving from the concept of emergence as a consequence of raw self-organization – the idea that the independent agents acting together unwittingly create some new thing (so-called “order for free”) – to a recognition that self-organization can also be encouraged and even orchestrated…” (p.44)

Street-Splintered Ad Mosaics

Toronto street artist Posterchild went to New York this month and transformed digital ad platforms into stained-glass graffiti installations. Watch the video below. (via)

At the same time, the CutUp Collective are removing London ad posters wholesale, cutting them into thousands of bits, then reconfiguring the display space with their recycled material. (via)

Do corporate identities represent the last big remix taboo? Now that brands are present in social online spaces, will they ever let themselves be personalised?

Or is it left for the street artist to educate them in humanity?

Previously: Brand logos remixed; Skullphone hijacks New York billboards.