Wednesday, March 15
Did I walk to Puotila at almost jogging pace, while listening to Robin Williams and his Merry Band? Yes I did! American Stonehenge still seems like a wonderful album, thirty years after I first heard it, and it makes a fine optimistic start to the day.
At Arcada I carried on with Julian Stodd’s MOOC on Curatr. I have found myself puzzling over two things. Firstly, as I progress through the course I seem to find the same few ideas restated, with little or no supporting evidence. Secondly, the video lectures all feature Julian, in the same clothes, talking straight to camera. They contain no visual content at all.
In fact they remind me of the story I tell in Media Management about Dragnet. I show an excerpt, usually from The Big Hammer, and point out that you can close your eyes and miss nothing. It consists of a radio show with pictures. Given this, and the fact that the MOOC also includes audio podcasts, I have become puzzled about what purpose the movies serve.
I spent the rest of the morning oscillating between conceiving a grant application for TUF, curating the reading material for Block 3 of Digital Mediascapes, and compiling the slideshow for my presentation.
Jutta had taken the day off because she has flu, so I ate her bananas for lunch.
In the afternoon I had a tutorial that lasted ninety minutes. Afterwards Nathalie said that she could hear my voice modulating in both pitch and volume and wondered whether I would storm out or throw something. I laughed and pointed out that the student had to write a thesis in six weeks that he had not managed to write in more than six months of intensive coaching. “Oh, carry on shouting then!”
Now I have walked down Tallinanaukio to Stoa. Naa arrives and, after a few minutes wait and a trip to the cloakroom to hand over our coats, we enter the Theatre Hall. To our surprise the hall fills up completely. I photograph the empty stage. In a couple of minutes Wimme Saari and Tapani Rinne arrive to begin their performance.
Tapani Rinne will employ a similar arrangement to the one that Robert Fripp uses to create soundscapes. He will begin pieces by creating several loops with his bass clarinet; loops that sound as though they contain bass and percussion. He will then solo on top of those, pausing from time to time to add to or modify the loop. Wimme will yoik on top of this, his own voice altered and added to by the man at the mixer.
By the end Naa will have decided that she has enjoyed it. “Interesting”, she will say, in a voice that indicates approval rather than sarcasm.