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V. Vale’s RE/Search Newsletter #153, August 2016: New York trip, Zero Days, Christopher Coppola, Ann Magnuson

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TABLE OF CONTENTS: NYABF, Zero Days, Ann Magnuson, 
1. V. Vale needs a place to “crash” Sept 14-18 for N.Y.ArtBookFair—Help!
1A: Guest film review by Sandra Derian: Zero Days
1B. Zora Burden interviews Ann Magnuson Part 3 (of 3)
1C. New Industrial Culture zine + poster available!
2. The Counter Culture Hour: every Saturday 4:30pm Pacific Time
2b: RE/Search Conversations Podcast Series: New Podcast!
3. FORTHCOMING EVENTS: Send Us Suggestions!…
4. OUR PAST LIFE: Books/CDs we’ve been given, etc.
5. Recommended Links – send us some!
7. Letters from Readers (send some!)

8. Sponsors (Check ’em out! – they make this newsletter possible!)

————–please add to your WHITE LIST in your email preferences, or to your ADDRESS BOOK. If you change your email, send it plus your “old” email address to delete. Lastly, forward our newsletter to your friends! If you are on AOL, please make sure you can receive our newsletter—we get the most returns from addresses at AOL, Hotmail, Comcast and Yahoo!
1A. MINI-EDITORIAL by V. Vale, Your Editor: We have a new podcast up featuring Christopher Coppola: The podcast can also be found on iTunes – please review the podcast in iTunes if you can! Thank you…
A recent hasty decision: we’re planning to attend for the first time the NY Art Book Fair Thu-Sun Sep 15-18 and if YOU can help V. Vale find a sofa to crash on (so to speak), please write: right away, or call 415-362-1465. You will be compensated by books, conversation, eternal gratitude, etc. Hopefully you will also attend the NY Art Book Fair “Zines Tent”, at MoMA PS1 (Long Island City, Queens) where the RE/Search table Shannon Michael Cane, Curator; Jordan Nassar, Coordinator; Leslie Lasiter, Printed
We’ve been given books both funny and deep recently, and cannot speed-read them fast enough to offer you sufficiently-comprehensive reviews. We will therefore merely list some of them and hope that  readers will be driven to find them and read them.
() David J. Haskins (of Bauhaus) autobiography, Who Killed Mister Moonlight? Bauhaus, Black Magick and – beautiful production, lots to read!
David J. is a low-key hypnotically-spellbinding live performer-musician, and a citizen of the world, culturally speaking. He visited William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg… both RE/Search favorites as mentor and patron, respectively. He knows Alan Moore, Genesis P-Orridge and other RE/Search-approved writers. He’s on a Punk Rock “living room show” tour of America, and for a relatively modest sum you can be in the same small space with him and experience a truly intimate concert which will take on special meaning as the years go by. Get your tickets now at Truly unforgettable… Guaranteed to be one of your favorite memories!
() Exceptional imagination, deep talent and disturbing subject matter characterize whatever Jay Elliot Davis chooses to release in print or vinyl. Dark Goth aesthetics assure that the art direction and visuals are  what we call “top-notch”. Worth going out of your way to find. It’s a bit like discovering that Edgar Allan Poe lives in Berkeley in 2016, a stone’s throw away…
() We saw a movie we liked because of its wit, and realized how important and rare wit truly is (Having said that, we note that John Waters always delivers…). Some people were shocked that we recommend Whit Stillman’s Love and Friendship, based on an early Jane Austen novelette, but so be it. See for yourself this costume-comedy period-piece-pirouette and reflect that the position of “woman in society” still has a ways to go… Kate Beckinsale is always amazing to watch… 🙂
() We saw Wiener Dog and were sad that, in brief, the four-short-movies-strung-together basically made fun of victims, not authority figures or authoritarian constructs. Hipster-trendies-who-love-irony-and-are-post-“P.C.” will no doubt worship this, but our Gold Standard for comedy continues to be Luis Bunuel, and Wiener Dog may as well be set on a different planet. Oh well, what we like (or don’t like) truly does reflect who we ARE, n’est-ce pas? Well, oddly enough, the wienie dog was the first dog we ever saw as a child; the myth that it had been bred by Germans to chase gophers down into their holes was presented as gospel truth… Uh, it’s called a “dachshund” (German accent) or in American-speak: “dash-hound”… Children probably really are fascinated by these dogs, and continue to be so, through the ages…
() We really enjoyed the essay on Joan Didion in Michiko Kakutani’s The Poet at the Piano: Portraits of Writers, Filmmakers, Playwrights, and Other Artists at Work.
() We started re-reading J.G. Ballard’s Kingdom Come and yes, Ballard also always delivers the goods… Feels like it was just written, oh, a week ago…
Again, if you can help RE/Search’s V. Vale find a place to stay during the New York Art Book Fair Thu-Sun Sept 15-18, please email or call 415-362-1465. Thank you!—V. Vale
1A. Film Review: Zero Days (2016)
by Sandra Derian
Back in 2011, the New York Times and Wired each had published in-depth reports about a zero-day computer malware called Stuxnet that hit Iran back in mid-2010. The virus shut down computers and destroyed the centrifuges in Iran’s Natanz nuclear plant, which is a highly secure facility under heavy guard without computers connected to the internet. A few media outlets covered it, but it wasn’t the top story of the day on typical prime time news feeds.
The phrase “zero days” refers to the amount of time that a malicious computer virus is known to any virus protection software providers and anyone that develops software. Stuxnet got exploited through infected USB sticks. It is 20 times more powerful than the average malware and completely autonomous. You’re given a USB flash drive that you then stick into your computer. Your computer begins to read any files on the USB and becomes infected with this virus. You wouldn’t know it. The virus uploads a partially encrypted file straight into your computer. If your computer is connected to a network, the virus will “worm” its way through the network’s computers. In the case of Stuxnet, it was made to target any computers that control industrial machine systems.
Present day (June 28, 2016), a preview screening of Zero Days is taking place at the Roxie in San Francisco. When asked, less than 10 people in attendance admitted to hearing about this zero-day Stuxnet virus prior to getting a seat for this film. A brief intro prepares us to see a mystery thriller, a cautionary tale of technology, power, unintended consequences, morality, and the dangers of secrecy. It is not as dry a subject matter as it seems. You will know more about cyber warfare after watching this and you may never feel safe knowing there are people attempting to hit computers in the U.S. on a large-scale with malicious viruses every day. However, the film uncovers a covert operation bigger than the technical damage that resulted from Stuxnet.
Indeed, Zero Days is a white-knuckle film lasting just under two hours. Imagine experiencing an entirely new Orwellian scenario that gives you nightmares! Enter feeling curious, intrigued, and you exit the theater feeling angry and betrayed by entities that use your tax dollars without full disclosure. Zero Days, perhaps, does a little better than what Michael Moore has done with Fahrenheit 9/11. Writer/director Alex Gibney is heard and seen much less because the subject matter is the star.
Gibney first heard about the U.S. government’s involvement with cyber warfare in researching the Wikileaks papers for his documentary We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks (2013). It was at that film that Gibney and New York Times journalist David Sanger had first met, and Sanger is featured prominently again in Zero Days. Sanger began covering Stuxnet in September 2010. In January 2011 Sanger and two other journalists covered how both the U.S. and Israel wiped out about one-fifth of Iran’s nuclear centrifuges. The article was controversial because they did not name their sources or provide solid evidence of how the U.S. and Israel pulled off this operation. Zero Days presents the entire story and includes some mind-blowing visuals to demonstrate how the virus is discovered, what’s in the code, and how the code tells a machine to change how it functions. Several disturbing conclusions are revealed. The nuclear analysts reading the monitors see nothing to alarm them; nothing warning them that the centrifuges are failing. There is no redundancy plan for a manual inspection of machines—there are too many to monitor by individual humans. Plus, no one would ever have suspected that a computer could be misled into thinking a machine is functioning as expected.
Gibney, famous for other heart-stopping documentaries such as Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (2015) and Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005), unveils the theory that a massive clandestine operation involving the CIA, the NSA, the U.S. military and Israel’s intelligence agency Mossad to build and launch secret cyber “bombs” took place called “Olympic Games.” Gibney asserts that this science-fiction scenario, possibly resulting in the loss of millions of lives, could happen without anyone—including our own government–knowing who is responsible.
The film’s experts include the anti-virus firm Symantec’s Liam O’Murchu and Eric Chien, who were the first code gurus to take apart Stuxnet. They narrate how it was delivered and what was in it. You find out how they came to name the virus. Gibney extensively interviews Russian anti-virus expert, Sergey Ulasen, who received calls from Iranian customers having their computers mysteriously shut down. Everyone agrees that a typical group of hackers or criminals couldn’t have had the manpower, time and resources like a nation-state would to infect 60% of the world’s Stuxnet-infected computers. The virus targeted a specific Windows software made by Siemens that is used for industrial machinery.
Executive producer Sarah Dowland did the near-impossible by making the deeply-layered Stuxnet intelligible to the average audience member. Visual effects company Framestore innovatively demonstrated the secrets of Stuxnet and its impact on the machines. We witnessed what a centrifuge does when it is sped up and becomes off-balance. Plotting points on a map showing all the incoming hacker attacks was hauntingly similar to the simulated attacks in the movie War Games (1983). As a teenager we were all under the fear of a cold war era and this was a reminder. We get past the technical know-how to be overwhelmed by the fact that Gibney cannot get the officials to admit on camera whether or not they were behind the “Olympic Games” program. Even worse, it is the realization we could be victims of an attack if both terrorists and authoritarian states learn ways to use this virus to gain advantage over western nations. Cleverly, the visual techniques used in the film provide access to classified information without revealing the source.
Supposedly U.S. presidents were presented with the facts and the successful results of Stuxnet to be convinced to increase the budget on cyber-intelligence work, employing several thousand government personnel in the coming year. The focus of the film is the secrecy of the whole operation. Who is going to insist that the U.S. or other nations admit the truth; explain what happened? At what pace is the U.S. on the offense or how weak is our defense from large-scale attacks? When will there be an international agreement on cyber warfare? North Korea was supposedly behind the Sony attack that occurred in 2015 with the opening of the movie The Interview. How much have we learned from it? The code for Stuxnet is out there and the entire world is doomed once it gets into the hands of terrorists. Stuxnet is just the beginning of a much larger effort to control and gain advantage over those that may be a threat, whether it be the U.S. trying to weaken another nation’s power, or another nation trying to weaken the U.S.
This film hopes to wake up the politicians and create enough public oversight to keep it from getting us to a point of having to start from zero if we’re ever attacked. Sadly, so many politicians will be in denial, and then it could be too late. Think of how we cannot do anything without the internet; without computerized machines regulating delivery of food, water, fuel, money, power, medical supplies, and public transit, just to mention a few essentials. “Such is mankind’s innate optimism, our conviction that we can survive any deluge or cataclysm… confident that some means will be found to avert the crisis when it comes.” J.G. Ballard, Crystal World, (1966)
1B. Zora Burden interviews Ann Magnuson, Part 3 (of 3 parts; see May Newsletter for Part 1; June-July for Part 2): 

ZB: I can see you as the female Alfred Jarry in a way, addressing absurdities in society—
AM: That is the best compliment Ever!ZB: Your performances have been described as Neo-Dada theater. Many of your peers were inspired by the Theater of the Absurd, and the Surrealists. In honor of Dada100, if you were to put on a Dada production, what would it be? Who would be the Ubu Roi of today?

AM: Well, Donald Trump is the obvious choice. Kim Jong-Un a close second. Putin is a different kettle of fish—more Emperor Ming in the old FLASH GORDON serials. But also the so-called liberal billionaires, the “tech elite”, the people who put on that Burning Man for the 1%. I’d stage Ubu Roi like a TED talk. Steve Jobs would be an ideal updated Pere Ubu. Stage it like one of those Apple “innovation” rallies.ZB: You’ve talked about ageism in performance—especially how bad it is in LA. Have you read Diamanda Galas’s essay “The Greek Vampire: A Threat To The Enemies of Artists,” in which she confronts, aggressively, ageism in music?

AM: I haven’t! I gotta read that. Ageism is so rampant. Actually one of the songs on my new CD addresses that. It’s called “Relieved to be Irrelevant.” I was forever seeing older artists (usually performers) being trolled with the accusation that they were “no longer relevant”. And it always irked me! (Even when leveled at people I didn’t necessarily feel like defending.) Because it was usually connected to age. I thought, “Jesus, everybody is irrelevant! And everybody is relevant!” Let’s take it to the quantum level: it’s all one, so let’s stop tearing each other down. Then I thought, “Wow, I’m relieved to be irrelevant in a world of Kardashians and American Idol.”ZB: With social media rewiring our brains, no one is a critical thinker anymore. It’s created this world of superficiality and hive mind. People who never cared or needed the approval of others are now desperately seeking it on social media—this is really disheartening.

It’s so strange to me: this self-policing and self-censorship—so-called “trigger warnings.” We’re all our own Big Brother now. Because so much of your work is about spontaneity and engagement, how do you feel about what the internet is doing to society?

AM: Social-media-and-the-internet has its uses, but it’s highly addictive, and a major distraction from doing more nourishing things like watching the birds in the birdbath—my favorite pastime of late. I agree with you: I believe it’s rewiring our brains… and not in a good way.

We are our own Big Brother.
It’s already like the East German Stassi: with people public-shaming others and ratting them out about all sorts of things.
But that’s the price of “freedom.” As long as it all remains free! But is it? Doesn’t Apple and Google and Amazon own all of us now? But we are always the most effective prison wardens of our own minds. So one must constantly be vigilant regarding how any ideology or stale programming and old habituations take over our thoughts and behavior.
I do think the pendulum will swing, though—it always does. But where to—who can say? I rarely use Twitter and I’m not on Instagram but I think I have to get on it all so I can try to sell some CDs… so I can make some of my money back… if for no other reason that I need it to finance the next one!

ZB:I compare social media to a Panopticon—
AM: Panopticon—yes, exactly!ZB: What is your opinion of artists who use the internet to create, or, as their platform? Do you think this has taken the “soul” out of art? It feels like the internet has killed ingenuity and the spontaneity you feel is important… and makes art less genuine.

AM: Well, I think one has to accept that the internet (and any new technology) is a new medium that any artist can use is any way they want. People leveled similar accusations at television and movies before that, and the telephone and telegraph and steam engine… and maybe even the wheel! This is all part of our present evolution… and how we use and abuse it is up to each individual.

Actually it connects back to something Patti Smith was talking about the other night: That every artist has to remain true to their soul and not worry about whether they achieve the kind of “recognition” the outside world deigns to bestow. Not so easy when everything around us tells us we are worthless without fame or fortune!

Maybe in that way social media is “good.” Everyone can feel they have a voice… everyone has their own “network” now. How this shakes down remains to be seen, but I think it’s good people wrested the power away from the old cabals. Of course, now The Who song comes to mind: “Meet the new cabal, same as the old cabal”!

ZB: You talk about the artist as storyteller. Will you talk about your first experiences with this… who you see—musicians and artists—as storytellers?

AM: My mother was definitely the first storyteller in my life. She would read to me before bed the usual “Wynken, Blynken and Nod”… but then Mother Goose, the Brothers Grimm, and also some rather sophisticated fare. I still have the old illustrated book of Greek mythology she read to me and—get this, she read Beowulf to me… as a bedtime story… when I was six! I was terrified to swim in lakes from an early age because of that; terrified of Grendel.

The other storyteller was the television. Everyone my age was parked in front of the TV. My earliest heroes and influences were Bugs Bunny, Soupy Sales and Captain Kangaroo, Rocky and Bullwinkle. And let’s not forget Walt Disney. TV in the 1950s and ‘60s was a wondrous Pandora’s Box, plus there were all these snake-handling, strychnine, atonal gospel singers and backwoods preachers on the local TV and radio in West Virginia that I was fascinated with from the get-go.

And. of course, the Bible: archetypical storytelling at its finest! Also, Chiller Theater, I loved monster movies and The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits. In fact, I ended up having so many nightmares after I watched Outer Limits that my mother forbade it, so I learned how to be crafty real fast and told her I was going over to a friend’s house to play, then convince them to put on the Outer Limits. My brother and I loved science fiction and especially anything with Ray Harryhausen animation. Anything with the Greek myths was a hit with us! And Jules Verne! We ate it all up, with relish!

ZB: Will you talk about the Club 57 show you’re co-organizing for the Museum of Modern Art?

AM: The Museum of Modern Art is going to put on a film series and gallery show celebrating Club 57, the “neo-Dada” club space I managed form 1979-1981 and performed in off and on until its demise in 1983. The show initially began as a film series curated by John Epperson, a.k.a. Lypsinka, who was a regular member there.

The film curator Ron Magliozzi asked John to host a film series and after several discussions it was finally decided to make it about the films shows at Club 57. I was brought in at that time and encouraged them to do an accompanying gallery show – and soon became the co-curator of said show.
I had organized a show featuring art, video, photographs and ephemera along with Kenny Scharf for a gallery/kunsthalle-style place called Royal T in Culver City in 2011. The show was called “East Village West.” This MoMA show will be a much better organized and thorough version of that… it will open Spring 2017. By now it’s becomequite a show—MoMA is doing a catalogue for it as well! And, I plan to put together a limited-edition art book of all the calendars, flyers and newsletters I made, as well as choice photos and memories. It will be mostly a visual book.

ZB: Can you describe some of the themes of the performances you did there back then?
AM: Oh, there were so many:

() The Stay-Free Mini Prom, where those of us who skipped our high school proms threw a twisted, alternative prom.
() Putt Putt Reggae, an evening of miniature golf in a Jamaican shanty town made from cardboard boxes, while dub music played.
() The Rites of Spring Bacchanal, where Pulsallama debuted and magic mushroom punch was served.

() Radio Free Europe, which indulged my obsession with life behind the Iron Curtin and debuted my Soviet pop chanteuse, Anoushka… The list goes on and on!

ZB: Will you talk about how you’ve addressed in your art and performances: coping with the trauma of loss due to AIDS, especially the loss of your brother? How can people cope with the continued loss of loved ones to AIDS?

AM: Personally, my performances were the only way I could cope. I created so much with people who were HIV-positive and who have since died. It was their way of coping too—we had to laugh. We had to keep the show going—we got so much joy from it; it was the only life-affirming way out of the horror of it all.

And there was activism, of course: so many benefits, so many ACT UP marches, so much rage against Reagan… expressed in art as well as political activism. The voices got louder – people were not going to let Reagan sweep AIDS under the rug or make it a joke for his smarmy press conferences.  It’s important to express the anger, the pain, the hurt, the confusion, the TRAUMA—even if it’s in roundabout ways.
Because my brother was so adamant about not telling anyone about his illness, I had to keep it a secret. I had several people close to me who wanted me to keep their secrets. That will kill a person, but you have to respect another’s wishes. So, many of my shows then were about expressing the anguish… but not in a direct way. I let the subconscious run the show then.
Bongwater was so much about the pain, the confusion, the psychosis of the time. People had so many different ways of dealing with it—imperfectly, to be sure. The fear factor then was off the charts! It was incurable, an instant death sentence, and no one knew how it was transmitted.
It is painful to look back and take in the enormity of all that. I think a lot of us who lived through those awful plague years are somewhat on the other side of “PTSD.” I’ve heard that from others. Now we are all able to  talk about it without falling down into a black hole of grief and despair. That is yet another part of the journey: getting on the other side of pain, and letting wisdom rule.
I lived in a major state of disassociation while everyone was dying… along with a host of other defense mechanisms that proved to be more detrimental in the long run. I do feel I am finally on the other side of all that, but boy—it took a long time!
Therapists can help; I recommend therapy to anyone brave enough to begin the deep exploration of self-examination. But choose wisely! 12 step programs are great, too—the 12 steps are basically Jungian; he helped devise the “spiritual solution.” I did some EMDR [a form of psychotherapy devised by Francine Shapiro] as well. I think that helped.

ZB: Will you talk about the art you want to create out of the answering-machine messages left behind by those you lost to AIDS?
AM: I have wanted to do something with all the answering machine messages I’ve saved since the ’80s. I really stopped saving them after answering machines stopped using cassettes, because it wasn’t as easy to do. Some of the earliest ones got lost, but a few of those are on the Bongwater records. One was from Klaus Nomi when I had called him to see if I could visit him. He called back and said he really couldn’t have visitors; that people meant well but it made him sicker than he already felt. It was heartbreaking.

I have a lot of messages from many, many people who have since died, including my brother. I actually haven’t listened to them much since I first heard them. I listened to some about a year after my brother died and it was so painful I couldn’t continue. I might be able to listen now—I’m not sure. I have a box full of those, as well as several boxes full of mixtapes people made me in the ’80s and ’90s. Those mixtapes, now—ohmigod—vintage, are so special!

ZB: Do you think that we’ve lost a lot of our humanity via our use of communication through technology? We never use the human voice now that everyone uses texting. We’ve lost that intimacy that the human voice creates, like with those answering machine messages.
AM: Possibly. I know that when I take a few days off all internet activity, I feel liberated and able to get in touch with aspects of myself I feel haven’t been in full flower since childhood! Certainly since the days before iPhones… even before answering machines or Walkmans! That’s why I love—need—to go to the desert on a regular basis. We don’t have wi-fi where we live there, and there are so many places, like in that extraordinary national park, that don’t get any cell reception at all —I love it!

On the other hand, the new technology has allowed me to connect with people I never knew were touched by a song or something I once did. And I learn more about others and what is happening in the world. There are pros and cons and, like so much in the world, we have to find a balance.

ZB: I like how you have said that much of the performances you did in the 1970s and ’80s were more about just having a laugh with friends, and the fun of entertaining each other… and if the audience enjoyed it, so much the better—
AM: Oh yes! I always created shows, at least early on, with friends, just so we could make each other laugh. Especially at Club 57 and all the ’80s club performances. But now I also see that many of those performances were ritual exorcismsand ways to process experiences and shared memories of the collective unconscious that formed the cultural sensibilities—and the rebellions against other sensibilities—at the time. My friend William Fleet Lively, who also passed away from AIDS, wrote a lot of that early material with me. We laughed harder than I have ever laughed in my life.

I can see now that we, and many others in the club scene and beyond,  used theater as a ritual and a way to keep us from going batty in a mainstream world we wanted no part of. But also, as a way to just share the joy of living, the pure joy of existing and just being in each other’s company. That to me is what Club 57 was. Here we all were in the bleakness of New York in the late ’70s, with the burned-out buildings and the crime and the abject poverty, and many of us feeling alienated by a culture that didn’t accept us, or by parents that were checked out or abusive, or by any of the many things that turn kids to art or punk rock. It was the “Island of Misfit Toys” and we needed to find joy in the creative act or wither and die trying to “fit in” with a world that produced Charlie’s Angels and gave us the Ronald Reagan presidency. In a nihilistic landscape, Club 57 was a hub of optimism… often snarky, sarcastic optimism—but optimistic, nevertheless! That’s the way I saw it, at least.

ZB: Do you feel there are any taboos today to confront or have fun with, like there were during the 1970s and ’80s, when conservatism and censorship were so rampant?
AM: Oh sure, there are plenty of taboos today that would make the unbridled mad, mad, mad, off-the-hook D.I.Y. don’t-tell-me-what-do-do creativity of those times impossible.

First of all, there is the “regressive left” (what a crazy phrase, I feel like a Fox commentator even using it, but it’s a convenient shorthand) policing everyone for how they say things… But with the internet and instant-shaming and witch-hunting going on today… this stifles the urge to connect with a deeper primal energy, and do things in a messy, who-cares-if-this-works-or-not (or offends-or-doesn’t-offend) or whatever way. Because a) everyone is forced to fucking hustle every moment of the day and night in order to push their “brand” and try to make a living. Because b) everything now is so overpriced; real estate is way overvalued, and everyone is so obscenely underpaid.
I think that’s why so many people are moving to Joshua Tree, which kinda bums me out because all these monied folks are coming in and buying the shacks and turning them into airbnbs, so it’s gonna go the way of the East Village and Silver Lake. I watched both of those places that I called my home get transformed from affordable “edges of the universe” into grotesque advertisements for the Luxury Bohemian Lifestyle™. Joshua Tree’s only saving grace is that now all the airbnbs are being robbed by tweaker gangs. But… I don’t want to be looking down the wrong end of 12-gauge, either!
I’m no longer so concerned with parsing the media or satirizing pop culture as I was back in the day (maybe because it’s all jumped a flotilla of sharks?!) as I am in exploring the human psyche through dreams and the collective subconscious. I’m older now and want my creative energies to go towards more divine pursuits. I’ve had enough of the Ridiculous and the Obscene. That doesn’t mean to say The Trickster is going away—she’s here to stay!

ZB: With gentrification in cities destroying the creative community, and money coming in so artists’ work becomes business rather than art, where could a new community of bohemians and artists thrive again? How can an artist find a “sacred” space today, especially if they live in these now-gentrified communities?
AM: I think people are finding ways to create thriving communities all over the place, but usually outside of the big cities. Even those of us in the big cities are navigating our way around the negatives to keep on keeping on!

I love Joshua Tree because the artist community there is much like it was in the East Village before Reaganomics took hold. Shari Elf is a perfect example of the kind of “pure” artist I admire—everyone should know about Shari! She has a gallery compound space in JT called ART QUEEN that also houses the “World Famous Crochet Museum.” Her art is made from found objects and bits and bobs that remind me so much of the stuff my Grandma used to make. Noah Purifoy’s Art Site is another joy to behold. He is a renowned “outsider artist” who created (he is deceased) what is now called Dada Junk Art.  I love all that stuff! So I think of Joshua Tree as a sacred space… though it is getting discovered—and we all know what happens next!  I just hope some of these city slickers will buy some of Shari’s art…

ZB: Much of your life and work was documented in The Art of Living: An Oral History of Performance Art by Dominic Johnson. But will we see an autobiography from you any time soon? Have any of your opinions or views changed since this book came out?
AM: Dominic Johnson’s book is the most articulate and thorough in terms of presenting my past, although it—like any history—is selective. He has interviews with a lot of unsung artists who I find fascinating, and who live their lives as art. I highly recommend that book for anyone interested in outré performance.

I have plans for a memoir and have to finish the proposal soon; it will be more specific to my time in NYC in the early ’80s. An autobiography is much too much—plus, I feel my best years are ahead of me! I gotta focus on living and creating more, so I can have a boffo ending to the story! [end]
Here’s the link for her whole website-
Here’s the link for the pre-sales of her CD coming out mid May
Here’s the link for her Puppet Theater trailer
1C. New Industrial Culture zine + poster in 2 versions!
() Artists of the Industrial Scene – NEW! Color Zine in French and English! Interviews with Genesis P-Orridge (Throbbing Gristle/ Psychic TV), Mark Pauline (Survival Research Laboratories), Johanna Went, Jim Thirlwell (foetus), Ryoichi Kurokawa, Ilpo Väisänen and Mika Vainio (Pan Sonic), Peter Christopherson (Throbbing Gristle), Graeme Revell (SPK), Naut Humon (Rhythm & Noise), Gerald V. Casale (DEVO).
() Color Poster from Paris show! 2 versions! With Monte Cazazza image! Check it out!
AND a 2-sided deluxe version! – 2 copies only
() V. Vale’s work-in-progress zine, on the Philosophy of Punk titled Terminal Punk, may be had for a mere $5 plus $5 shipping, or come by our office and score your copy! You might also want to score a rare RE/Search T-shirt; we’re already running out of the “small” sizes!
2. Counter Culture Hour – every Saturday  4:30pm Pacific Time Watch for it this month as Channel 29 re-airs our shows frequently.
The Counter Culture Hour (aka RE/SEARCH TV) is also simulcast ON-LINE as well as on cable access San Francisco Channel 29 — 4:30pm Pacific Time, now EVERY Saturday! – see this link at broadcast time: You need a fairly decent internet connection and computer to “get it.” USA west coast: 4:30 PM Sat west coast; east coast: 7:30 PM Sat; Tokyo: 8:30 AM Sun, If you cannot get this online email us at See RE/Search channel on youtube: “researchpubs”
2b. RE/Search Conversations: podcast series
Most of us are too busy to sit down and watch a “TV show,” so now you can listen to some of the conversations that happen around the table at the RE/Search office. For Daniel Miller Part 2** go to:
For Jarett Kobek’s podcast-visit  as well as at the Apple podcast ‘store’ (they’re free and available to all who can find them). Here’s the link to the offerings to date (Penny Rimbaud, Rudy Rucker, Lyle Tuttle, and now Parts 1 AND 2 of Daniel Miller!
Please send us feedback if you listen to these podcasts so we’ll know someone out there is listening!!
For the brand-new Christopher Coppola podcast, visit
And for the Thorsten Schutte podcast [director of Frank Zappa documentary “Eat That Question” go to:
3. FORTHCOMING EVENTS (San Francisco unless Otherwise Noted)
() FREE Thur Aug 11, 7-10pm Cultural Incubator Showcase including: Fortune Telling Machine by Daniel Konhauser and something cool by Jonathan Foote. 2665 Mission Street
() $ – our favorite local Grand Guignol Theatre Company at the Hypnodrome – support live local theatre!
() Support the Roxie Theater: great programming EVERY NIGHT (our opinion). Also support the Castro Theater! A beautiful Film Palace!
() S.F. EVENTS to Check Out Regularly: Long Now Foundation. Goethe Institute. The List (Punk Rock). Dorkbot. Bottom of the Hill. INdependent. Thee Parkside. The Chapel. Brick & Mortar. ATA Gallery (last “underground” film place?). The Lab under Dena Beard. Southern Exposure Gallery under Patricia Maloney. Mule Gallery.
() FREE Summer Film Series at Goethe Institute – many free films!
() FREE now thru Sat Aug 6: 620 Kearny St Gallery hosts Anne McGuire Mirror Ball art show!
() $13 4 Wednesdays in August: Double or Triple Film Noir Films at Castro Theatre. RE/Search will go Wed Aug 3, 6pm to see Black Angel & Nightmare Alley (one of Anton LaVey’s faves).
() Free Aug 2 Tue: Cont.Jewish Museum, de Young, Legion of Honor, Yerba Buena.
() $7-10 Fri Aug 5, 8pm: Amazing!  Speculation Nation
In this impressionistic documentary film, Sabine Gruffat and Bill Brown travel across Spain to explore the consequences of the housing crisis. What they find are Spanish citizens, inspired by the politics of The 15M Movement and Occupy Wall Street, who are mobilizing, collectivizing, and fighting for the right for a decent place to live. Along the way, the filmmakers visit young mothers and their families squatting in failed condo developments; intentional communities of mountain cave dwellers; protest campsites that have sprung up in front of bank branches; and empty apartment buildings transformed into experiments in utopian living. The film examines the ideologies that separate housing from home, and real estate speculation from speculations about a better way to live.
Speculation Nation, Sabine Gruffat & Bill Brown, 75 min, USA/Spain 2014
() Free Sat-Sun Aug 6-7 – If you have a B of A credit card, you can get in free to de Young (Ed Ruscha, yes!, Bruce Davidson), Cont.Jewish Museum (Kubrick, yes!) and Legion of Honor! Also, annual Japantown Street Fair is free!
() $100-plus Tu Aug 9 Bryan Ferry at Masonic Auditorium. Tue Aug 16: Jeff Beck & Buddy Guy. Oct 12-13 Brian Wilson.
() FREE Sun Aug 14, 2pm SF Mime Troupe at Washington Square Park
() $75 Aug 20-24 4 Nights with Willie Nelson at the Fillmore. Oct 11: The Julie Ruin
() $15 Sat Aug 27 Mike Watt + The Secondmen at Bottom of the Hill.
() FREE? Wed Nov 3-Sat Nov 12, 2016 Dada World Fair 2016 at City Lights Bookstore (Plan ahead to come to San Francisco!)
() NY MOMA – very extensive Bruce Conner retrospective! Don’t miss if you’re in NYC!! Also in NYC Nov 20-March 19, 2017: the Francis Picabia Retrospective.
() $ Thu Dec 29 Henry Rollins at Herbst Theatre. (quite a few shows are already sold out way in advance!)
4. OUR PAST LIFE: What We’ve Received, Liked, Experienced:
() Jay Davis saw Winston Smith & V. Vale do a “panel” July 6 at Pegasus Bookstore in Berkeley, July __, and sent us a care package of his books and records! His Thomsky Fluke is truly disturbing sci-fi-horror updated, in a way reminiscent of P.K. Dick, J.G. Ballard, Edgar Allan Poe and other pioneers of the “unreliable (or insane) narrator” “genre”. Write us if you can’t find the books of Jay Davis…
5. LINKS (Send Us Some!)
() from Don Ed Hardy: “I’ve never had a site focusing on my personal art. Finally got one done with the help of a great web designer—paintings and works in other media, but not prints on this one as yet. Check it out…
() “7-17-2016 8 pm to 10 pm Henry Rollins tribute to Alan Vega
() – check it out!
() – the artist is trying to fund Last Call: The Specs’ Film, about RE/Search’s favorite bar, Spec’s 12 Adler Place in North Beach (Vesuvio’s runs a close second, and Caffe Trieste is also a fave),
() RE/Search’s favorite affordable and super-delicious restaurants are a block away: Noodle Bar & Grill (great Thai food) at 631-633 Broadway, and across the street, the My Canh at 626 Broadway, open til 2 or 3 a.m.! These restaurants are overlooked, family-run gems, and we recommend them highly. Email us for our recommended favorite dishes. Of course, we still like the House of Nanking…
() “finally got a copy of this gorgeous book Some Wear Leather, Some Wear Lace by Andi Harriman documenting the 1980s “Goth”, Death Rock and Post Punk movements internationally.. that captured my youth. It’s absolutely gorgeous and really well done, thick book .. lots of wonderful photos that make my heart ache for those days.. it was a magical time that you had to be there to understand. When I’ve chatted with the author, I could tell before even seeing the finished book that she understands and gets it. I think she was born in the wrong decade. She’s also incredibly genuine, kind and way too humble. Thank you so much for making this book Andi!! Oh and the first page I opened it to was a photo of Dave Vanian..—Zora Burden”
() “Howdy Vale, Good meeting you at Dorkbot. I mentioned reading+ enjoying Ice Party thanks to RE/Search, and making a Spotify Playlist for the songs from the book, which you expressed interest in sharing as a follow-up on the newsletter.
Here’s that playlist…
It’s about 70% complete, and I made it collaborative, so I’m hoping Sumeet (CC’d) can add the songs I missed.
Blessings to y’all beautiful humans ^_^ ☯S
9) “Hi All, I will be unveiling my Fortune Telling Machine at Gray Area (2665 Mission Street near 23rd Street) on Thursday, August 11th, starting at 7pm.
A Mystery Assistant will guide you through an Electronic Oracle Experience.
This work was developed during a residency at Gray Area –  the following link details more about the Cultural Incubator Showcase and the other amazing artists in the show:
() “Hi…  I just wanted to say that V. Vale’s Terminal Punk zine was a really smart, timely purchase for me. I had been laid off from my job that day working in a department at the ___ office of education that ran professional development programs for teachers to integrate art into their curriculum. The goal/driving philosophies of this work to me had always been very Punk, and encouraging of every child to think of themselves as both an Artist and a Scientist (and the teachers themselves). It was really heartbreaking to be let go, and your writing helped me feel less isolated and not as blinded to think this job was my only avenue to pursue that “mission.” Thank you for that, —J
() “Vale! You and Search & Destroy are mentioned in the wall text for the Bruce Conner show at MOMA! In the section about his photos of the SF punk scene. That’s twice for MOMA and once at the Met that I’ve seen you referenced in big museum land exhibits out here. Also, on the way out of the museum I ran into this kid wearing this SUPREME brand t-shirt. Homage or rip-off of your WSBurroughs T-shirt? Either way, clearly NY loves RE/Search! – Kiowa Hammons”
() “We were just at The Pompidou—lo and bold RE/Search figures into the Beat Generation exhibition! That was so wonderful getting a little SF nostalgic in Paris! Perfect! — Julie Franklin”
8.  **SPONSORS** (Without them you would NOT be receiving this newsletter – Please go to their websites!) Here, a personal thanks to Dave S and to Paul L. And this newsletter would not exist without Andrew B. and Emily.
If you would like to subscribe, we ask for a 6-month minimum of $72. (But, we will take sponsorships @$12/month!)
1. BEYOND BAROQUE: Only bookstore in L.A. with a complete stock of RE/SEARCH BOOKS! Please patronize them… (Also, some RE/Search titles at The Pop-Hop in L.A.; thanks, Rhea Tepp!)
2. Kevin O’Malley+Christie Dames, the High-Heeled Anarchist: TechTalk/Studio: + Commonwealth Club, San Francisco. (x4/31/16)
3. $0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0$0
V. Vale’s RE/Search Newsletter is cordially sponsored by “Beyond the Beyond.”
Information Wants To Be Free WE MEAN IT MAN!
4. Beverly Potter sent us her newest ultra-fun memoir, Animal House On Acid which includes tales of Punk Rock in Berkeley, specifically the Barrington Hall co-op. Order from: (x7/31/16)
5. Reid Mukai (Cascadia Vape) wants you to know e-cigs and vaping aren’t just about nicotine. He carries vape pens for dry herb/oil concentrates and e-liquids containing CBD and Kava. To learn more, visit (x05/31/16)
6. Flesh and Excess by Jack Sargeant (new book) (x05/31/16)
7. a San Francisco music production company creates innovative/original music for YOUR films/videos: CD’s, mp3 downloads, studio session work, soundtracks by ‘Sound Behavior Troupe’—experienced Bay Area musicians (x1/31/17)
8.  Writer Fiona Helmsley at (x11/30/16)
9. Try visiting VOYAGER, 365 Valencia/15th St. Not only did they give RE/Search a pop-up store, they are VERY interesting! Like, almost everything we want, under one roof
10. Paul L. many many thanks!! Also, thanks to Dave S.
AUGUST 2016 RE/Search eNewsletter #153 written by V. Vale & other contributors. RE/Search website poweredby  Add us (““) to Your Address Book++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++Physical Address since May 1979: RE/SEARCH | 20 Romolo #B | San Francisco CA 94133-4041 | 415.362.1465 | |  facebook: “RE/Search Fan Page”    twitter: @valeRESearch  Instagram: Vale_Research
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