Anarchic highway systems. We have entered a new category of epoch: the anthropocene. Some day we may say to ourselves, we never knew what cinema was—doing to us. Or all this air is aerosol.


Anarchic highway systems. A man rides a silver horse between the cars. No one is moving but him. So the sharp image of the Lone Ranger comes into focus briefly before it withers. A real, very dirty window shutting out the sun.


Anarchic systems of vines. Lucille Ball in the jungle. Irony, pastiche, absurdity. Ricky peels a banana. Workers in pink hazmet suits prepare medicines. Materiality, natural or artificial, and both simultaneously; it is matter in movement, in flux, in variation, matter as a conveyor of singularities and traits of expression. This has obvious consequences: namely, this matter-flow can only be followed.


I Love Lucy catches fire, UFOs draw flame;
As tumbled over swimming pools in lush backyards,
Whiskeys neat as tennis rackets;
Soundless, like each tucked string tells, each hung bell’s
Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name.
Gelatin. Acrylic. Dust. Adherence.


We never see reality itself. We see reality on the silver screen. We see it on the billboards over Sunset. There wasn’t reality before Hollywood. There wasn’t you or me before Lucille Ball fell asleep and had a dream. In the jungle, Jung prepares the Lone Ranger for a journey. “Technical terms will roll off your tongue.”


Each mortal thing does one thing and the same:
Deals out that being indoors each one dwells;
Selves—goes itself; myself it speaks and spells,
Crying, What I do is me: for that I came.


In the last century, the longing to be famous was most intense. Now we are all famous. Our cameras are able to look in two directions at once. We are always before ourselves, mapping a path to an image we had once called—“myself.” Every day psychos directing traffic to a stand still. There’s a jungle in my stomach. Some day we may say to ourselves.

Nose Pressed Up Against the Glass: Dustin Yellin’s Metaphors of Opacity and Transparency

TED Talk

The Crack-Up

"Everything that I decide is necessary is necessary today." -- Dustin Yellin

A rarely seen early film which predates the mature work of Yellin's hallucinatory landscape tableaus by over a decade. The Crack-Up is a documentation of a psychotic episode that Yellin experienced and documented as the drama unfolded in Manhattan over the course of a proverbial lost weekend, ending with Yellin's incarceration in a prison and later, a mental hospital. As if to literally enact the cliché "I'll take Manhattan," Yellin's mental state allows him to appropriate private ownership of public and semi-public spaces so seamlessly and convincingly that the keepers of these landmarks -- performers of what Michel Foucault calls micropower -- are befuddled by this confident stranger's appeal, and unbelievably begin to yield to his will. A literal test of mind over matter, Yellin triumphs by equal parts charisma and chutzpah, proposing and succeeding at creating a pop-up utopia. But like most utopias, victory is short-lived and illusory as power is wrested from him in the cold light of day. Yet the sheer glee of a small window into the ideal is victory enough; utopia, Yellin asserts, is in fact, possible.

Utopia then becomes the subject of Yellin's later studio practice, which is possible within the safe and controlled confines of the studio, where the Duchampian infrathin -- the small slip between the real and the ideal -- is experienced in daily practice, positing the sites of studio and the artwork as our only realizable and sustainable utopias. -- Kenneth Goldsmith