“How to Win” is a work in progress by Stephen Duncombe, an academic, and Steve Lambert, an artist. We are both long-time political activists and both of us believe that using art and culture to transform the world is a good idea. But we are both haunted by the same question: How do we gauge the success of our projects? Hell, how do we even think about success when our goal is utopia?
This site is a place to explore this and related questions. It is an evolving repository for our research. While far from a finished product, we’re offering it as an open window into our process.
Richard Huelsenbeck (1920) En Avant Dada: A History of Dadaism From En Avant Dada: Eine Geschichte des Dadaismus, 1920 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 61-68) From the First German Dadaist Manifesto, written by Huelsenbeck: “Art in its execution and direction is dependent on the […]
William Morris (1891) “The Socialist Ideal: Art” New Review, January 1891 (reprinted in Art and Social Change, Will Bradley and Charles Esche, eds., London: Tate, 2007, pp. 47-52) “…I assert that socialism is an all-embracing theory of life, and that as it has an ethic and a religion of its own, so also it has […]
In all honesty I don’t know Woods’ work well. Just finished this interview and he has a reputation for making radical work that changes perceptions. Some excerpts: “It wasn’t about cleaning up the mess or fixing the damage; it was more about a transformation in the society and the politics and the economics thorough architecture… […]
via: Time When the culture began to change in the late 1960s — when the old one-liner comics on the Ed Sullivan Show were looking pretty tired and irrelevant to a younger generation experimenting with drugs and protesting the War in Vietnam — George Carlin was the most important stand-up comedian in America. By the […]
BERKELEY, California — For most people, photographing something that isn’t there might be tough. Not so for Trevor Paglen. His shots of 189 secret spy satellites are the subject of a new exhibit — despite the fact that, officially speaking, the satellites don’t exist. The Other Night Sky, on display at the University of California […]
This is great speech by journalist John Pilger on the powers and dangers of corporate media. I think what’s most interesting about it is that he breaks from the Left/Right dialectic that plagues social change movements and takes liberalism to task for some of its crimes. The liberal Clinton administration increased the size of the […]
This is an old Eyebeam R&D Project. If you haven’t used Fundrace, try it out. There’s something amazing about having access to the information. But what is happening exactly? Accoutability? Transparency? What is the result? Maybe we should talk to Jonah. Excerpt of NY Times piece Fundrace was created by a small team at Eyebeam, […]
After reading this, I wonder if artists or activists have been unwittingly influenced/inspired by some of these token, ineffective campaigns? If the culture is openly celebrating these supposed victories, one might believe they are actually effective. By Anne Landeman Recently while browsing the Web I came across UrbanDictionary.com, which is sort of a wiki of […]
Q: Of the various projects the Anti-Advertising Agency has been involved in, which ones do you think have been most successful? A: I don’t really know for sure. To know we would have to do what is done in any marketing campaign, which is an impartial evaluation — surveys, testing, etc. And we don’t have […]
Web analytics allow you to track how many people are visiting your site, what sites they are coming from, what words they use to search when finding your site, and more. Without knowing who is looking at your site, you can know what they are looking at, for how long, in what order, they city […]
Here’s a pattern of tactics I realized have something in common. They all work by presenting a threat. Loss aversion, as it can be called, can be more motivating – using the stick instead of the carrot. ## Example 1 From Greenpeace:## The ranking criteria reflect the demands of the Toxic Tech campaign to the […]
Blackmailing (not really) store owners by offering to bring tons of motivated customers if they will do the most to make their store energy efficient. Documented very well – including dollar amounts. Carrotmob Makes It Rain from carrotmob on Vimeo.
Hans Haacke lecture Gallatin School, New York University, April 15, 2008 S&S: As a political artist, how can you know when you’ve been successful? Haacke: I’ve been asked that question many times, and that question requires one to go around it before one really avoids it. I believe it is a relatively new phenomenon that […]
Bad art makes bad political art….To those who would charge that thinking through the efficacy of political art turns art into propaganda I would say: absolutely. But sublime, and successful, propaganda.
One month after the United States invaded Iraq, Futurefarmers put out a public call for people to come to the Marin Headlands to join in a Human Knot. A human knot starts out with a group of people holding hands in a big circle. People are then asked to get tangled and twisted up without […]
By BENEDICT CAREY Published: April 1, 2008 Keep it above the belt, stop short of total humiliation and, if possible, mix in some irony, some drama, maybe even a bogus call from the person’s old flame or new boss. A good prank, of course, involves good stagecraft. But it also requires emotional intuition. “You want […]
Neuroscience can provide “a more accurate way to understand what consumers really like,” Mr. Stagliano said, which helps to produce ads and programs that “break through the clutter” rather than contribute to it. “We measure attention, second by second; how emotionally engaged you are with what you’re watching, whether it’s a commercial, a movie or […]