The Operating System and Liminal Lab


Ripe For Pleasure on Mysterious Mountain – TRAILER from Eliza Swann on Vimeo.
In the 1960’s, Brion Gysin and William Burroughs developed a method which allowed them to free themselves, together, from the strictures of either of their minds, alone. ‘The Third Mind was meant originally as a kind of How-To manual for the use of the “Cut-Up Method” to free human creativity from what [Gysin] and Burroughs both called “Control” — the soulless rationality of the modern world, the evil specter of normalcy that they saw as their enemy.’ *
At Exit Strata — in our community, in our publication, in our collaborative content process — we strive to conjure something that is more than the sum of its parts.  Perhaps what we seek can be called hive mind or collective consciousness or we can find its roots in surrealism and dada — or perhaps its better to leave the defining aside, grateful as we are for the traditions that have come before.
I believe that I good curator/editor wants to be invisible, toeing the line between control and acceptance. Allowing and encouraging the work to be made more itself by its surroundings. And in our sophomore publication, I can with great gratitude and pride say that our editorial team and community truly came together to make such a process possible.
This issue is equal parts unsolicited submissions and solicited work — a confluence that allowed certain themes to come more fully to the fore. As submissions came in, they invited and suggested a relationship with other artists and writers that had come into our orbit. We worked both with our new contributors and existing community members, in particular drawing from our awesome creators participants, nurturing the volume that appeared to wish to come into being: a play, in three acts.
William Considine had sent us a classical, greek style play, which we loved but which was lengthy. I immediately considered if it wouldn’t be possible to run the dialogue through as a “Greek Chorus,” something the editorial staff quickly agreed to. It just so happened that we had received, in this case, multiple submissions from a number of artists and writers that we felt strongly about, as well… it just so happened that these came in threes.
The play emerged, as we realized that our “characters” / the voices in these pieces spoke to similar themes: self analysis, process, instructions/somatics, existential crisis and query, all themes that we had seen emerge repeatedly in conceptual work, field notes, and other web contributions over the course of two seasons. Artists we were already in dialogue with like Eliza Swann, Chloë Bass, and Sara Shaoul fit perfectly with the texts we found ourselves throwing, like an I Ching, into relationship with each other.
We worked as much as we can to allow the textual content to show us what it wanted to do and be, playing with visual work that enhances, supports, and plays off its intangible qualities without being immediately referential.
This, too, was the theme of our most recent CoCo “Illuminated Text” Salon, the collaborative work from which is featured in this issue (again, chance would have it, existing in a set of 3). Here we created collaborative pieces with the clear intention to explore and push the relationship between visual perception and text, and the relationship to emotion and experience that each of these evoke, alone and together.
These represent a mini-metamind experiment within the larger metamind of the magazine, and they are beautiful — certainly more than the sum of their parts.
PRINT! Vol. 2 also demonstrates a rigorous relationship with our ongoing online projects, intending from even before its solicitation to be deeply engaged with our web platform, which has grown so much since the publication of PRINT! Vol. 1 in May. It supports and invited web content — which encouraged video art, longer submissions, and more thoughtful relationships with contributors who were aware of this extended possibility.
It demonstrates a commitment to our contributors as new members of a community of support and collaborative inspiration — of a family.
We are thrilled to have in this issue many who have been engaged for some time, as well as new contributors from all over the globe. In the coming months, expect to see interviews and extended content from this incredible, passionate line up of creators.
In the interim, check out some of their previous contributions to the web community!
Jacob Perkins – FIELD NOTES : FROM THE CANNERY; POETRY MONTH (on Paul Legault, collaboration with Matt Nelson)
William Considine – CoCo GOWANUS ; POETRY MONTH (on Elinor Nauen)
Daniel Owen – POETRY MONTH (on Bill Kushner)
Lauren Marie Cappello – POETRY MONTH (on Lorine Niedecker)
Eliza Swann – ART: DO IT AWAKE (on Mysterious Mountain); AWESOME CREATORS (Heliopolis Collective)
also check out content from Caits Meissner, who generously agreed to read at our Launch: POETRY MONTH, ART: COLLAGE and (DE)CONSTRUCTION AT THE BROOKLYN MUSEUM
and from Bob Goldberg, who will grace the event with his accordian music! : MUSICIANS FOR SANDY
Check back in soon for extended and additional multimedia content!
– Lynne DeSilva-Johnson, January 4th, 2013

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