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Man Bartlett interactive web project and many street performances at Barnes in Feb; History map of West Philly needs you; Advice for DIY space safety; Plus Village of Arts and Humanities, Space1026 Auction, Return of Machete group, and More!

News today has several great things to do this week, something to watch and information on a great-sounding exhibition coming to Barnes Foundation. - Artblog Editor



After the Oakland fire, we are all worried about artists in DIY warehouse spaces with their iffy electricals and storage of who knows what kind of art materials. Philadelphia has some spaces I worry about. Here’s an open-source, editable tip guide for making collaborative DIY spaces more fire safe:


Somebody’s thinking outside the box at the Barnes, with street performances and a cyber-project.

Man Bartlett
Man Bartlett, 2010, at Cafe Olé. Man is featured in an Artblog Radio podcast

Person of the Crowd: The Contemporary Art of Flânerie, from February 25 through May 22, 2017, features works by more than 40 artists in the Barnes Foundation’s Roberts Gallery, along with street interventions throughout Philadelphia, and an interactive web project inviting public participation.

(The project) features works, new performances, and documentation of historical performance pieces by Marina Abramović, Vito Acconci, Eleanor Antin, Constant, David Hammons, and Zhang Huan, among many others.

…Person of the Crowd will also reach into the city of Philadelphia. A series of performances—by artists including Sanford Biggers, Tania Bruguera, Ayana Evans, Zachary Fabri, and Wilmer Wilson—will take place on the streets of Philadelphia, and billboard and street poster projects will activate the city throughout the exhibition run.

The Barnes has also commissioned New York-based artist Man Bartlett to create a microsite and digital artwork exploring themes related to the exhibition and the concept of “cyberflânerie.” Bartlett will act as a flâneur by documenting the street performances taking place throughout the run of the exhibition and inviting the general public to step into the position of the flâneur and share their perceptions of everyday urban life via social media using the hashtag #Personofthecrowd. He will also work with teens in the Philadelphia region to develop videos documenting their own experiences as flâneurs inspired by their engagement in the public spaces of the city.

Bartlett will weave together this rich digital content—his documentation of the performances, the public’s social media posts as interpreted by a custom-built machine learning application, and Philadelphia students’ videos—to create the final piece which will live on a microsite and will be projected inside the Barnes Foundation’s Annenberg Court. Thom Collins, executive director and president of the Barnes Foundation is curator of the exhibition.

Don’t know Man Bartlett? He’s really interesting! Listen to our 2010 podcast with the artist here. 15 minutes of good conversation.


TONIGHT – Working group gathers to write West Philly history map! Tuesday, Dec. 6, 6PM – 7:30PM at the Community Education Center, 3500 Lancaster Ave. Philadelphia 19104.

People’s Emergency Center, The New Africa Center and local partners are building an online interactive map that marks the historical events and places in West Philly and we need more information from you! Since we are just starting out, we are focusing mainly on the Black Bottom, Mantua, Mill Creek, Belmont, Powelton and Saunders Park. As time grows, we will be able to expand the online map to include all of West Philly! The map will be unveiled in January and will only grow from there as we add more historical information!

Invite your friends, elderly neighbors, grandparents and anyone who knows some history (or just wants to geek out with us). We’ll have a scanner available if you want to share photographs too!

For more information, contact Kevin Musselman at or 267-777-5824

Hosted by People’s Emergency Center (PEC), Lancaster Avenue – West Philadelphia, PA, ICPIC, Drexel University, Philadelphia LISC See their Facebook event page

Space 1026 Auction poster

FRIDAY, DEC. 9, 7PM – Do not miss the Space 1026 Auction, Friday December 9th, 7PM, Doors Open at 6pm, 1026 Arch St., 2nd floor.

FRIDAY, DEC. 9, 6PM – 9PM – Spaces International AIR Exhibit opening reception
Village of Arts & Humanities, 2519 Germantown Avenue (across the street from the main Village building).

We introduced you to Kwasi Ohene-Ayeh in our podcast interview yesterday. Meet the artist at the Village on Friday!

SPACES International AIR Exhibit Opening: Friday, 12/9 Every day since Kwasi Ohene-Ayeh (Ghana) and Olanrewaju Tejuoso (Nigeria) arrived in North Philadelphia yields a new story, a new connection. Studio manager Sherita Dill brings her family into the studio to help with the delicate handiwork of Lanre’s studio practice. Lanre swings Sherita’s granddaughter up on his narrow shoulders, and Kayyah collapses in giggles. Neighborhood Artist Tiyanna Scott radiates focus in Kwasi’s studio. With pastels, she’s meticulously inscribing a table-sized wooden cable spool in jewel-colored patterns.

SATURDAY, DEC. 10, 7PM – 9PM – Machete Redux! The return of the discussion group at Marginal Utility

Machete Redux: Art, Theory, Politics in the Present

This is not a time to bury the hatchet. It is a time to dig up the machete. After going partially underground and experimenting in metamorphoses elsewhere, the Machete Group has decided to come back in full force. In the coming months, we will be staging a series of collective, interactive symposia.

We enact intellectual events that are as much artistic workshops as political cells in the making. And we operate as a collective-in-struggle, seeking to recover the meaning of “cutting edge” from its vacuous appropriations by consumer society and the culture industry.

Join us for our first event on Saturday Dec. 10 from 7-9 p.m. at Marginal Utility Gallery. Come to engage in a collective, confrontational and uncomfortable conversation that seeks to rethink the state and stakes of contemporary art, theory and political praxis. We will use the constellation of artifacts (links listed below) to begin a discussion concerning how we can make sense of—and intervene in—the present. Participants in the conversation will include, but nowise be limited to, Avi Alpert, David Dempewolf, Sebastien Derenoncourt, Gabriel Rockhill, & Yuka Yokoyama. See the reading list for this discussion here.


Via Anne Fabbri

This Wednesday National Geographic Channel will air a documentary featuring my son Jay‘s work on Capitol Hill where he is trying to break down partisan barriers and bring Republicans and Democrats together on climate change solutions. In the episode, “West Wing” star Bradley Whitford joins Jay for meetings with Members of Congress and more.

Here is a 2-minute video trailer:

The show is part of the Emmy-Winning series, “Years of Living Dangerously.” It airs this Wednesday Dec. 7th at 10:00 pm on National Geographic Channel with next-day streaming on iTunes, Hulu, Amazon, and Google Play.