shapeshifting (ii)

In mythology, folklore and speculative fiction, shapeshifting is the ability of a being or creature to completely transform its physical form or shape. This is usually achieved through an inherent ability of a mythological creature, divine intervention, or the use of magic.


^ the regimes (or AI algorithms) of Yelp and Facebook are not on board. hmm.



  • Website aesthetics

    • Redid all formatting for better legibility, and improved color palette of website

    • Especially paid attention to incorporating Lucida (Camera Lucida) as well as Futura Bold by Barbara Kruger

  • Site Navigation

    • created guide for internal structure: Vessel.Gallery NAVIGATION GUIDE

    • clarified organization principles of Catalog Book and entire endeavor

      • from "Book" I II III... to a more compressive 3-part structure for the entire year

      • new format based on definition of vessel (container / canal / ship)

      • inserted other shape to 3-part reference

    • set in stone the exact dates of structure in totality according to John Cage's 4'33''

      • o n e / 33'' [33 days, from 9.29 - 11.1]

      • d i a l o g u e / 2'40'' [2 months and 40 days, 11.2 - 2.11]

      • (not yet titled) / 1'20'' [1 month and 20 days. 2.12 - 4.1]


  • Performance piece: reconfigured Untitled (Free Ramen) in late November

    • problems of first iteration

      • it was hyper conceptualized, and simply too conceptual, failed to achieve its initial goal of producing meaningful conversation on any point

      • the resulting forced conversation between visitor and performer, as well as poor timing of audio and cooking components on my part produced confusion if not boredom with visitors

      • the social contract of the situation was not made clear, and my act of cooking for visitor without consuming the product I made, created an uncomfortable imbalance in the dual dynamics

      • execution of idea failed to correspond with original conceptual framework

    • towards second iteration

      • rather than cook and perform for visitor in prior attempt and in Rikrit Tiranvanjia's method, I will instead move the site of performance off my body to that of the space between the visitor and I, giving the visitor the agency to make the ramen

      • the conversation taking place during in this process will flow in a different and more free manner, without forced constraints on certain topics, and engage the viewer on a more personal and deeper level

      • the social contract will be made clear – I provide the raw materials, the visitor becomes the engine of transformation of the materials into meaning

      • I will also record this for the itunes podcast as a form of documentation of the performance

    • later update : endeavor of this project becomes more useless by the day, work lacks soul and intent, bad art, task abolished

    • #abandonship


have we arrived at critical mass? 





thinking about relationship of CURATION –– PHOTOGRAPHY

photographer and curator as creators and directors

both of whom who frame, associate, and stage ideas visually and define what it means to look at X ... 

as generators of knowledge, they take part in gestures and practices which occupy similar spaces


this relation is ^ to be explored by making a pop-up exhibition

(making up entails curating and producing content)

subject? on the 11/1 released Bin Laden files from the abbottabad compound


the decision of working with this particular image archive comes from the arbitrary and yet destined date of 11/1

which was the last day of first exhibition, o n e ,

which was decided upon by the chance structure above according to 4.33.  




On the format of TASTING MENUS and other structures which guide the viewer/consumer ... 

"More than merely a piece of paper (or cardboard), the menu is at once a parole (though the broader menu universe carries langue qualities), a cultural logic (or menu-logic?), a sociocognitive tool, a generative and structuring principle, a narrative, an organizational device (conceptual, taxonomic, as well as social), a civilizing machine, a conduit of (culinary) governmentality, an ideological vehicle (e.g., about choice, freedom, taste, culturedness, civility, cosmopolitanism, social class, etc.), an ideological state apparatus in the Althusserian sense, a textographic fetish or text act (Chau 2006, 2008), and so on. Each menu is a cosmo-menu (which is why in order to explain the menu to our imaginary premenu, prerestaurant tribal natives, we have to explain our whole world). But above all, and more specific to the theme of this HAU special issue on “translating worlds,” the menu is  o n e  of many “iterative/inscriptional stations” in the ensemble of acts of translation, or, more precisely, translocution and transinscription." 



Dialogue, 2017

Appetite for Art – LACMA, 1996

Dialogue in the Dark, 2017

The Art Gallery, 1989

Royal Viking Line, 1984

Seattle Yacht Club, 1978

Gallery Restaurant, 1976

Cantonesia & Jade Pagoda, 1960s

Hotel Vancouver & Hotel Leopold, 1944

Department of Education of British Columbia Banquet, 1938

- results on blog page -




Soundcloud Collection begins


  • Creation of a CLOUD of sounds for the permanent collection of this chapter concerning... d i a l o g u e

  • began three sound series...

    • inperson – conversations held or staged between beings

    • raw – curious collections of sound drops from chance encounters

    • doublespeak – dystopian visions from texts and voices which give me pause, with which I then process in text to speech software before render in the Great Hall of the People... this project resides in shadows of 1984 (this one has a special coverpage, necessary visual to the concept)

(actually this is essa speaking from later like March, I went back and did 2 playlist and 1 album instead. Doublespeak became a page on this site, and the two playlists make more sense as .raw for the raw material sounds I've gathered, and dialogue becomes more about composed/configured conversations. here are some corresponding album art/images)


Photoshoot "Dare to be in the RAW"


to photograph others in a state of vulnerability, I too have to partake –  I looked to a previous project...

(directly refer and reflect upon the visual vocabulary already put forth by Barbara Kruger)

First attempt lacked the impact I sought so I reconstructed again with a more direct appeal 

Also the criteria for the assignment referenced went like this: 

Choose a work at the Harvard Art Museum and copy it. You can choose to duplicate a work, meaning you need to find materials that create the same effects, or it may be a "drawing after" a work in another medium (a painting or sculpture for instance). You can use photography if the work is a photograph, but can't turn in a photograph OF the work.

If you have artistic training/skill/access to tools and materials, use them—the rest of us will have to pick works to fit our limitations. This isn’t going to be evaluated in terms of the “success” of the imitation--the point of the exercise is what you learn from the experience of trying, and what you will be evaluated on is the sensitivity of your attention to the work and to the process. In addition to the work itself, turn in a project statement answering the following questions:

what did you learn about the art work by copying it? based on your experience, what do you think copying might have taught artists in times/places where it was basic to art education? Bring your work and your statement to section. 10 points.

initial edition

initial edition

revised edition

revised edition


shared spaces and shared visual codes ?

(in any case, such photographs with 5 volunteers were made.)

pub dissemination documentation





Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 10.25.09.png

we're going to frankfurt


LE GRAND TOUR: field notes, findings



yes let's do it. (ARTSFIRST)



January 2018


certification of operations


Thank you!!! @Harvard


also Color RX + Salon Lucienne commences 



decided to toss out navigation map for site, dumb idea



also arrived to idea that all of \≃/ will culminate on this virtual site, always in flux. at this point and onwards, things are just manifesting and morphing onto this site

thinking about SITE-SPECIFICITY




[space]vessel = [space]ship = spaceship



made a cursor!

as of March 27

as of March 27


map making!


too much things having been done! no time to describe them all here, 

a thing about the catalog text though,

I listened/re: listened to Barthes' Mythologies, and suddenly realized that that my "writing" or methods of employing texts have become the epitome of mythologizing, and in the bad way too. The act of flat out stealing language, and the irresponsibility of it all, I can finally see more clearly now... Hearing the narrator voice the critical lens, concerning the petit bourgeoisie and frivolity of what I'd consider wallpaper art, I could feel Barthes lecturing me about the problematic nature of the texts I have "composed", and he is absolutely right.

So then I went back and tried to re: do everything in the catalog, or at least re: configure a lot of it, to mean what I really intend for it to mean. To some degree, meaning is generated, that's why we are here.  I need to constantly set and re: set my compass. 



new backdrop for home screen

the community around this live stream: