Category Archives: Canada

Article: ‘From financial crisis to world slump: accumulation, financialization, and the global slowdown’

David McNally, ‘From financial crisis to world slump: accumulation, financialization, and the global slowdown’, Marx and the Financial Crisis of 2008, December 2008

As the International Monetary Fund observed some months ago, we are living through “the largest financial crisis in the United States since the Great Depression.” But that was to understate things in two ways. First, the financial crisis is no longer largely about the US. It has gone global, rocking the UK, the Eurozone, Japan, and the so-called “emerging market economies.” A wave of devastating national and regional crises is just getting started, having already hit Iceland, Hungary, the Ukraine, and Pakistan. Secondly, this is no longer simply a financial crisis; a global economic slump is now sweeping through the so-called “real economy,” hammering the construction, auto and consumer goods sectors, and clobbering growth rates in China and India. Manufacturing output is sharply down in the US, Europe, Japan and China. The Detroit Three automakers, reeling from losses of $28.6 billion in the first half of this year, are teetering on the verge of collapse. World trade is in a stunning free fall.

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Article: Fillip 13: Intangible Economies

Fillip 13

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Fillip 13 introduces Intangible Economies, a new, ongoing series broadening the notion of economy beyond its financial dimensions. The series focuses on the multifarious forms of exchange fuelled by affect and desire, speculatively investigating the fundamental role these affective transactions play in modes of representation and, accordingly, in cultural production.

This issue includes series texts by Candice Hopkins, Jan Verwoert, and series editor Antonia Hirsch. Forthcoming installments will include contributions by Hadley+Maxwell, Olaf Nicolai, and Monika Szewczyk, among others.

Also in Fillip 13:

Carson Chan: Measures of an Exhibition
Anthony Downey: Camps (or the Precarious Logic of Late Modernity)

Lisa Marshall: An Evidence Horizon

Haema Sivanesan: Producing Images in Times of War
Ryan Trecartin in conversation with Kristina Lee Podesva
Claire Tancons and Jesse McKee: On Carnival and Contractual Curating

The issue also features a record of The AAAARG Library, a site-specific installation commissioned for Fillip 13 and the 2010 NY Art Book Fair. The Library, produced by artist Sean Dockray and curated by Jeff Khonsary, will be presented again this summer as part of Night Market, a Red76 project for the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, MA.

305 Cambie Street
Vancouver, BC
Canada V6B 2N4

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Art: Untitled New York

Sydney Hart
NY, USA / Canada
“Untitled New York”, 2009

“Untitled New York” (work in progress) is an ongoing series of photographs exploring the urban fabric of NYC and how its citizens relate to it, from the time I moved to the city in February 2009 to the present. I was interested in documenting the ruptures in an otherwise hyper-efficient network of grids and lines of mass transit; the organic interventions that anonymously comment on the status of these systems, with hints (that may fall on deaf municipal ears) as to how they should be improved. Having moved here in the midst of the economic crisis, I projected the state of the infrastructure as contingent on the self-made financial crisis of Wall st, on the expenses and budgeting of this financial hub now hit at its centre. The disruptions in the urban fabric (caused directly or indirectly by human intervention) were interesting to me as comments on the urban infrastructure’s use, from the people who use it, through indifference, neglect, transgression or facetiousness. In Bushwick, fire hydrants (in parts of Brooklyn called “johnny pumps”) were breached open, flooding the vicinity and making an island of a nearby Mercedes. In the same area, parked cars were used to block off traffic on Sundays, leaving locals the luxury of hanging a huge volley-ball net across two trees, with speaker piles in the middle of the street providing the soundtrack. Do these instances reflect a lapse in municipal amenities? Are the inhabitants of Bushwick merely filling in the gaps of the government’s neglect? Or are they -like the inconspicuous interventions into the grid of the subway with overtly domestic and personal items- necessarily personal and anonymous acts of generosity?”







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Art: Dance With Us

Source : Nasdaq Yahoo

Fred Astaire danse au rythme de l’économie américaine. Fred Astaire dances to the rhythm of the American economy.

Dance with US (2008)
Installation interactive / interactive installation
Vidéoprojecteur, écran LCD , bois, ordinateur, joggle, Director
Programmation / Software:Vadim Bernard
The scene, already employed in Possibles Bodies (2002), is connected to the American Stock Exchange in real time. Fred Astaire dances to the rhythm of the economy: the more volatile the tradings, the more fluid the movements.

Born in Paris.
Grégory Chatonsky currently resides in Montreal and Paris.
He holds a philosophy master’s from the Sorbonne and a multimedia advanced degree from the Ecole nationale superieure des beaux-arts in Paris. He has worked on numerous solo and group projects in France, Canada, the United States, Italy, Australia, Germany, Finland and Spain. His works have been acquired by public collectors such as the Maison Europeenne de la Photographie.
In 1994, Chatonsky founded a collective,, and has produced numerous works, such as the websites of the Pompidou Centre and Villa Médicis, the graphic signature for the Musée contemporain du Val-de-Marne, and interactive fiction for Arte. He has taught at the Fresnoy (national modern art studio, France) and at UQAM’s school of visual and media art.
Chatonsky’s body of work, including interactive installations, networked and urban devices, photographs and sculptures, speaks to the relationship between technologies and affectivity, flow that define our time and attempts to create new forms of fiction.

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Sound of Ebb: Super Mario Bros.

Name: Tiffany W.
Location: Canada (currently, Oxford, UK)


1) Super Mario Bros. Starman Theme

The first selection is the Super Mario Bros. Starman Theme. For those unfamiliar with this game, whenever the main video game character, Mario, catches a star, he becomes super energized for a period of about one minute where he flashes multi-colours and is invincible – able to defeat any enemy in his path. However, this is only short lived invincibility and he eventually returns to normal.

This is the sound of pre-recession expresses feelings of invincibility – the fun-hyperkinetic pace without knowledge that it would soon end. Many of us, especially those of the age who grew up playing the original Super Mario Bros. video games felt as if our childhood times of properity and economic security provided by our families would continue into our adulthood. The linear progression of working hard in school, endless extracurricular activities (swimming, math, piano/violin lessons), getting a post-secondary school degree in whatever we loved to do were meant to make us ‘well-rounded’ individuals capable of making our individual dreams come true. Now we’re back to reality.

2) Super Mario Bros. Game Over Theme

The second selection is the Super Mario Bros. Game Over Theme. Even if Mario has captured a star to become invicible, he can fall into a hole – you are then prompted by the game console to try again or quit the game entirely and it’s game over.

This is the sound of the recession. Sweet and simple – this six second sound byte expresses that things have slowed down and we can choose to try again or admit that it’s tryly Game Over. Our feelings of invincibility is gone. As the Nintendo generation that grew up with this video game recognize nostalgically these sounds, we also realise that making childhood dreams come true is not a linear progression from being a good kid in school and learning to play the piano/soccer to having a viable and satisfying career that will support a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Not too extravagant, but reasonably comparable to our affluent upbringing capable of combining amusements with hardwork.

This theme, like the Starman theme, and the Nintendo kids, is still somewhat upbeat, compelling you to try again and keep playing. It’s of course easier to shut down the game and cry about it. But what’s the point? There’s already too much bleakness and not enough optimism about the recession even when history (and basic economics) has proven developed economies to recover eventually. No matter how long that takes – that is the pattern.

So, that’s what we have to do: try again even if the economic, pundits, journalists and academics continue to tell us that it’s game over.

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Sound of Ebb: Heart-Lung Machine

Name: Eldad Tsabary and Yifat Cohen
Location: Montreal, Canada and Tel Aviv, Israel


The Sound of Recession

The sound of recession is collaborative. It is the result of music and art making that is based on sharing and working together. It focuses on shared intellectual, emotional, and body knowledge and creativity rather than ownership and ego. It is about opening up, experimenting with new ideas, listening to others, and letting go of personal fixations and old patterns. It requires disposing of self importance and experiencing the moment.

Heart-Lung Machine by Eldad Tsabary and Yifat Cohen (2009)
Duration: 5:51

Heart-Lung Machine is a collaborative composition between Canadian composer Eldad Tsabary and Israeli performer/improviser Yifat Cohen, in which Tsabary processed and reorganized improvised material provided by Cohen. The specific reorganizational technique used in the piece was the creation of rhythmic strata through multi-layered gating of individual sound sources, in which each gate was configured to open at different amplitude and in response to different parts of the spectrum of another (inaudible) sound source. Auditory streaming occurs as a result of developing rhythmic patterns in each gate, individual envelope settings, spatial positioning, and sometimes signal processing. This gating setup was created in Pro Tools.

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Sound of Ebb: Elevator

Name: Scant Intone
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Link: /

Title: Elevator
Description: This piece is taken from an album titled Swift Current, released earlier this year. This body of work is directly related to Saskatchewan, where I was born and raised. The name Swift Current is taken from the Cree word for the province, which means “swift flowing river”. It is a province which has endured many hardships due to economic turmoil, most memorably throughout the 1930s when most crops failed due to by drought, hail and grasshoppers. My aim was to explore through sound the feelings of some of these ghost towns and the modern ruins which dot the landscape. This piece in particular was one such meditation on the many grain elevators which have been abandoned. They stand as deteriorating monuments of times past. Their disuse has increased steadily over the past few decades, as there are approximately 200 elevators in operation today, down from 3000 in the 1950s.

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Personal text: Recession story

Tiffany, post-graduate student, Canada

In these times, things of significance have not changed for me personally. I’m still concerned with carving out a satisfying career that supports a meaningful lifestyle, however, it has become more difficult to achieve this personal goal when even getting a first job, paying graduate tuition fees and finding an unpaid internship is more challenging. Recruitment for unpaid volunteer work has been as rigourous as getting a permanent full-time job with benefits – the latter of which seems rarer these days and based more on personal connections and being the “right fit” rather than actual credentials.

The recession has affected my work and practice by keeping me more practical in general and less willing to take risks with new projects or courses unless they are absolutely necessary for building my future resume and/or job fit.

My daily life has been very much affected by the recession because I have to be more conservative with money. I am less willing to travel for pleasure or go out for dinner or even to see a movie. When I do go out, I feel guilty because I have looming student debt that could take longer and longer to pay off when I graduate.

I’ve remarked upon a change in myself because I am less willing to be adventurous – to do things just because I feel like it and because it is psychically rewarding. Now, I’m just about day-to-day living and trying to seek balance and shelter from a cruel and harsh outside world where work is a dehumanizing experience.

The kinds of changes that are needed is a leash put on the absolute and cheap, quantity vs. quality lifestyle of consumerism that pervades this capitalistic North America. It’s this type of bad spending habits that has put us in this recession, but sadly, I don’t see people truly learning to favour quality over quantity and who simply enjoy cheap, fast, quick, consumption for the sake of it.

I envision the future as a more conservative one. I’ve been a lot about generations and the next “Generation Z” will be more cautious, careful, conformist and less likely to rock the boat because they are growing up in the age of Post-911, global economic crisis, environmental issues etc. They perhaps will be more exposed to globalization and be able to open-mindedly travel the world much like younger members of “Generation Y” are doing right now.

“Generation Y,” however, is faced with a larger task of pulling out their Baby Boomer parents from a world of unchecked idealism that has put us in this state of affairs. As a generation that I belong to (well, about the tail end of Generation X and the beginning to Generation Y), we are a generation of “good kids” that excelled in school and worked hard with the expectation of getting solid full-time jobs and working linearly towards some kind of material goal

This is goal no longer exists. And Generation Y, given its enormous size, educational ability and characteristic optimism will have to muster up courage, independently, and without its characteristic dependence on their Baby Boomer parents to revolutionize the workplace to be more civic-minded.

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