Sunday, December 02, 2007

Mapping/Tactical Media Brain Trust

This weekend's excellent symposium YOU ARE HERE, curated by Bree Edwards and co-presented by Aurora Picture Show and the Mitchell Center for the Arts, is immortalized via live blogging on Matt McCormick's Action Items.

The symposium featured artists and curators working with mapping and tactical media, including Matt McCormick (who performed his live score to his film
Future So Bright), and talks by Nato Thompson (Creative Time), Rich Pell (Institute for Applied Autonomy), and Matthew Coolidge (Center for Land Use Interpretation). Coolidge has begun a longer term project in Houston, investigating the ripe-for-the-picking Gulf Coast. This weekend the CLUI field office (a mobile trailer) arrived and was plunked down on the edge of Buffalo Bayou. So begins our journey...

Big thanks to curator (I mean cultural context provider) Bree Edwards, and Karen Farber and Nancy Zastudil of the fabulous Mitchell Center for the Arts at UH for making this event happen.

ISee (created by Institute for Applied Autonomy) a web-based application charting the locations of closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance cameras in urban environments.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Aurora Picture Show and the Menil Collection enjoyed a night in the park last Saturday. In association with the Menil Collection's exhibition A Rose Has No Teeth: Bruce Nauman in the 1960s, Aurora presented works by some of the artists working during the time of Nauman's early experiments in film and video. Artists featured included John Baldessari, Vito Acconci, William Wegman and Theresa Hak Kyung Cha. We'd like to thank Steve Seid from Pacific Film Archive for helping us pull together this screening and the Menil Collection for the opportunity. Also, if you missed this wonderful evening of early conceptual video in the outdoors, please join us Saturday, January 12, 2008 for another screening in the park -- this time featuring works from contemporary artists forging new paths in film and video. Save the date!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Aurora Advisory Board Member at MOMA

Aurora Picture Show's Advisory Board Member Kevin Everson has a series of screenings coming up in New York. Short films by Everson will be screened at the Museum of Modern Art in New York tonight, Monday October 22, at 7:00 p.m. and Thursday, October 25 at 6:30 p.m. The screenings will be in The Roy and Niuta Titus Theater 2, T2 at the Museum of Modern Art located at 11 West 53rd Street between Fifth and Sixth avenues.

Congratulations Kevin!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Rachel Blackney, Come on Down!

The Aurora girls (and one Guy and a Lama) are extremely excited about adding a new member to their team, Rachel Blackney. Newly engaged, Rachel recently moved to Houston to be with her fiancee, Dave, who works in sports radio. She is thrilled to be joining the Aurora Picture Show as Operations Manager! For the past four years, Rachel lived in Austin where she worked for the Austin Film Society as Director of Operations. She was responsible for the management and booking of their non-profit production facility, Austin Studios, along with oversight of general operations including the internship program. Prior to that, Rachel lived in Los Angeles for several years working in Hollywood for several television and film production companies, before returning home to Texas. Rachel attended the University of Texas at Austin and studied Radio/Television/Film. Returning to Houston is like coming back home for her, as she grew up here and her family still resides here. During her time off, you will find Rachel at Memorial Park running with her two dogs, Coach and Madden. Welcome Rachel!

Monday, September 17, 2007

One Month: Two Opportunities to Give

October brings many opportunities to show your love for Aurora! On October 4th, the Seventh Annual Aurora Award Dinner honors Steina and Woody Vasulka, founders of the legendary interdisciplinary art center, The Kitchen. This intimate evening and fundraiser is a rare opportunity to mix and mingle with these pioneers of electronic art. For tickets and table information, visit the Aurora website. Next, belly up to the bar for Aurora on Sunday, October 7th at everyone's favorite drinking spot, Poison Girl (1641 Westheimer). For one night only, bar proceeds after 5 p.m. benefit the Aurora Picture Show. So show you care, and make that a martini!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Successful Texting

Aurora's joint event with the Houston Center with Photography on Friday night, entitled "Spin 3: Txt Me L8r," drew texters and photography enthusiasts alike. The exhibit, curated by Aurora and HCP, explored the potential for distributed creativity through the use of cell phone technology. Artists and the general public were invited to sign-up to receive text messages with specific photography assignments sent throughout the course of the exhibition. Two screens were set up in the galleries showing both the slideshow of "Txt Me L8r" participants and a slideshow of cell phone photos taken that night by attendess of the event. See more photos on the Houston Chronicle website.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Take my class, please

Andrea Grover is offering a class at University of Houston, School of Art this Fall

Intermedia Course:
Participation Art: From Social Sculpture to Distributed Creativity

What was it about the social climate of the 1960s that gave way to group-participation, happenings and actions? And can today's networked communication give the crowd even greater creative agency? This course looks at the history of participation art from the 1960s to present, and examines the social and technological trends that have ignited a new genre of democratic art-making--incorporating ten to ten-thousand participants in the creative process. Students will become familiar with seminal participatory art works of the last 40 years, read critical texts on Social Sculpture, Distributed Creativity, Gift Economies, and Relational Aesthetics, and finally, collectively create a new "crowdsourced" work of art. Course #: Art 4397 / Section #15735 or Art 6397/ Section # 3344. Visit for enrollment info!

Image: Ant Farm,
50x50' Pillow, 1969

Monday, July 09, 2007

Grover Gets Wired

Aurora's Founding Director, Andrea Grover is interviewed this week in Wired by Leah DeVun for a story on art and crowdsourcing. The interview was a result of Assignment Zero-- itself an experiment in crowdsourced journalism.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Karaoke, Take Me Away

This weekend marks Aurora Picture Show's 9th anniversary, and 10th installment of Extremely Shorts: Works 3 Minutes and Under. One hour of short films and videos were selected by this year's juror, Jytte Jensen of MoMA, and will be screened three times during the course of the weekend. Sunday ends with the ritualistic backyard or indoor (depending on the gods) picnic and no-holds-barred karaoke singing. FYI, I have reserved all Peggy Lee titles, so don't even think about it, sister.

Pictured: Carlos Lama and Nancy Novotny

Monday, June 04, 2007

Aurora in New York Magazine Online

Look at all those pews. Isn't Aurora photogenic? Aren't we proud to be in New York Magazine's online Weekend Escape Plan?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

And the Winners Are

Thank you to everyone who bought a raffle ticket for Aurora's mini-fundraiser! We shuffled and shook a hat full of tickets and (drum roll please) ....the winning tickets belonged to Paul Nelson and Stewart Davis. Congrats Paul and Stewart! We wish you two the best of luck (not that you need it;-) in Vegas or wherever your airline vouchers take you.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Raffle Time

Support Aurora Picture Show's Mission with Aurora's Summertime Raffle

Aurora Picture Show (800 Aurora Street, Houston, TX 77009) is raffling off two packages to Vegas's Cinevegas Film Festival, taking place June 1st - June 16th, 2007 at the Palms Casino Resort. Two prizes will be drawn and each of the two winners will receive two rountrip airline vouchers on Southwest Airlines and 20 tickets to the film festival. The raffle tickets are $10 each and each ticket purchase enters you in a drawing to win one of these exciting trips to Vegas.

The Aurora Picture Show Raffle ENDS MAY 20, 2007, and WINNERS WILL BE AWARDED MAY 21, so buy your tickets now and enter to win a getaway to the film festival "...that mixes pure pleasure with a mighty serious ambition for discovery" (Variety)

Go to Aurora's homepage to buy a ticket now!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Bad-Ass Here: Quintron & Ms. Pussycat at Aurora's Media Archeology Festival (Orange Show)

John Carrithers contributes this lovely video of the fun times at this year's Media Archeology: Below-Fi Festival. I was in the pool, were you?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Media Archeology Hits Below the Technology Belt

Aurora's biggest and bestest annual festival of unclassifiable a/v performance starts this Thursday, April 19 and runs through April 21 at Aurora, Domy, and Orange Show. MEDIA ARCHEOLOGY: BELOW-FI is curated by musician/a/v curator Nick Hallett, and brings to town BRUCE MCCLURE, RAY SWEETEN, NAUTICAL ALMANAC, DYNASTY HANDBAG, TRISTAN PERICH, QUINTRON & MISS PUSSYCAT, and MIGHTY ROBOT. If you are interested in live, multimedia performance that crosses platforms, genres, and astral planes, Media Archeology is the festival to attend. Plus, it's fun, like a big nervous party.

Pictured: Dynasty Handbag who performs Friday, April 20, 8:30pm at Domy Books;

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

A Buzz That's Never Been

Aurora is abuzz with international publicity and blog posts surrounding the exhibit "Never Been to Houston," which was co-curated by Aurora Picture Show and Jon Rubin. With information being posted in Croatia, Italy, and Scotland, Aurora really is BIG in Europe. Here are some of the highlights:

More Croatia Coverage
And More from Croatia

Anyone speak Italian? And, for those who want to hear more, join us for a gallery talk with Jon Rubin (on his first visit to Houston!) at 6:30 p.m. April 11 at Lawndale, 4912 Main.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Kia Neill Joins the Aurora Team

Welcome Kia Neill! In addition to being our fabulously friendly new membership contact, Neill is a fine artist, who completed her MFA from The University of California, San Diego in 2005, and her BFA from The Columbus College of Art and Design in Columbus, Ohio. She grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago, and relocated to the Houston area last summer from Los Angeles, CA. Neill is very excited about Houston's immensely vibrant and arts-supportive community, and the many relevant and bracing contemporary artists, writers and collectors that reside here. We hope we have hooked her into staying a long time;-)

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Never Been To Houston

This image (by Lindsay Perth, Edinburgh, Scotland) is one of 100+ photos that make up the exhibition Never Been to Houston, curated by Aurora Picture Show and Jon Rubin, at Lawndale Art Center through April 14. More than 20 worldwide participants (who have never been to Houston) were invited to contribute photos of what they think Houston might look like, using their own city as the subject. The contributors upload images every day to a photosharing site that is projected live on a large projection screen at Lawndale gallery. The exhibit evolves daily, as the contributors continue to add photos and respond to other contributions. Read all about it in the Houston Chronicle.

Contributors include:

Blue Rihn Productions: Jan Van Woensel & Vanessa Albury (New York, NY USA); Takayuki Yamamoto, Japan (Nagoya, Japan); John Marriot (Toronto, Canada); Lindsay Perth (Edinburgh, Scotland); Francesco Nonino (Bologna, Italy); Elena Perlino (Saluzzo, Italy); Sean McFarland (San Francisco, CA, USA); Amirali Ghasemi (Tehran, Iran); Peter Edmunds (Canberra, Australia); Ana Rodriguez (Quito, Ecuador); John Marriott (Toronto, Canada); Marko Pekica (Zagreb, Croatia); Elia Patricia Pekica Pagon (Zagreb, Croatia); James Charlton (Auckland, New Zealand); Jon Rubin (Pittsburgh, PA USA); Eiji Watanabe (Nagoya, Japan); Sean McFarland (San Francisco, CA, USA); Heidi Hove Pedersen (Copenhagen, Denmark); Kurt Keifer (Seattle, WA USA).

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Anna Bids Auf Wiedersehen

After three months as the Aurora Intern Extraordinaire, Anna Ballheimer bid us Auf Wiedersehen in order to finish her degree in Cultural Design in Dinkelsbuhel, Germany. Ballheimer was the force behind the newly organized and appropriately "pretty" Aurora video library, and also served as Aurora's main functionability barometer with her famous catchphrase, "That is not working, girlfriend." Though we realize the importance of completing her undergraduate degree, we hope she'll come back to Aurora soon to remind us who's the boss and shower us with more German chocolate. God speed Anna to Germany and back.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Dance Power

The January screening of the DC cable access show Pancake Mountain turned into one big kiddie mosh pit at Aurora Picture Show. Learn the latest dance moves (through photographs) from these hipster toddlers and tweens on the Aurora Flickr site. Warning: Kids, don't try these moves without a parent or adult companion nearby. You could bust a groove or break something expensive.

Read Amy O'Byrne's report on her PM visit to Aurora Picture Show.

The success of Pancake Mountain has lead the Aurora powers-that-be to revive our Popcorn Kids screening series. You and your small humans will love coming to Popcorn Kids events, which highlights alternative kids shows geared toward pre-K through elementary school-age children and their parents. Check our website for updates on the series, or e-mail suggestions for kids screenings to Andrea Grover.

On a related note, those Dutch are planning to use dance floor energy to power their nightclubs!

Photos by Steve Patlan

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Sundance Bound

Aurora foxes Grover and Harvey are heading to Sundance this week. Naturally, our main purpose is R & D (research and development for you non-NASA types), so we will be seeing the latest in short films and animated shorts, documentaries and naturally investigating just how one makes a margarita in a dry state like Utah. Tough job, but someone has to fall on the sword........Wish us luck an let us know if anyone else is heading there as well.

For you name-droppers, artists from past Aurora screenings at Sundance 2007 include Nick Broomfield, Paul Chan, Martha Colburn, Mike Plante, Nicolas Provost, Jay Rosenblatt, and Travis Wilkerson, plus our friends Chris Wilcha (The Target Shoots First), Mark Elijah Rosenberg (Rooftop Films) and Ruby Lerner (Creative Capital) will be there to share their brains.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Aurora Makes Headlines

While the Aurora staff would like to think that we have trendsetting status (at least among the four of us), we were thrilled to find out that the Greater Houston Convention and Visitor's Bureau has graced us with that recognition (don't laugh). This week, Aurora Picture Show, will be honored along with The Art Guys, Chloe Dao, Rick Lowe, Carolyn Farb, and Lauren Anderson, as part of Houston's "headliners and newsmakers" event in appreciation of local media. We'd like to thank the fans, without which none of this would be possible, and the academy, of course.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Pancake Mountain Is Here

This weekend, Scott Stuckey's alternative kids show, Pancake Mountain, comes to Aurora. Amy O'Byrne, one of the show's producers and characters is arriving with new footage from episodes 9 and 10 featuring acts like Jenny Lewis and The Watson Twins, Built to Spill, The Flaming Lips, X and more.

The first 10 people to each showing will receive free Yummy-Scrummy Pancake Mountain pancake mix!! So, make sure to beat the competition and be the first through the door. Shows are on Saturday, January 13th at 10 am or Sunday, January 14th at 3pm.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Creative Capital Grant Applications Open Soon!

2007 is the year for Film/Video (and Visual Arts) grant applications to the world's greatest funder for artists: Creative Capital Foundation. What makes Creative Capital Captain? They don't just give you cash--they provide professional development support, and real life funds for things like childcare, a personal assistant, and other items which open up new paths to productivity. The online inquiry form will be available beginning February 5 - March 5, 2007. Go get it! You can check out past fundees on the Creative Capital Channel website.

Pictured: Still from Jem Cohen's Chain, a previously funded Creative Capital film/video project.