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Look! A kitten! At Motto! - click opera
February 2010
 
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Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 09:17 am
Look! A kitten! At Motto!

(Assumes David Shrigley-esque voice). Things that are popular on the internet:

1. Naked attractive people.
2. Cute kittens, jumping.
3. Opportunities to call strangers "asshole" and "douchebag".
....

89,374. The sort of things that Momus writes about on his blog, like arty bookshops in Berlin.




As a matter of fact I was planning to write today about an arty bookshop in Berlin, Motto, knowing full well that almost nobody would pay any attention whatsoever, and preparing to console myself with an insight of the Dalai Lama: "If a practitioner thinks I hope people admire what I'm doing, expecting to receive praise for the great effort he is making... these are mundane concerns that spoil one's practice, and it is important to ensure that this does not happen so we keep our practice pure."



But then something remarkable happened. As I was browsing at Motto, making notes of interesting things they stock -- a book called L'Humanisme de Michel Foucault quirkily illustrated by Isabelle Boinot (whose work is really quite reminiscent of Shrigley's), some short stories art critic Jeff Rian wrote about Paris for Purple magazine (Purple Years, which in fact you can download for free as a PDF file here), a book by Margot Zanni about film locations rather excellently designed by Swiss designer Corinne Zellweger (it made me want to produce a much more illustrated and designed book next time), a British magazine called The Mock which proclaims, in its second edition, that anecdote is the new theory (you can read the issue free online here), and the gorgeously-designed (by Zak Kyes, natch) Exhibition Prosthetics co-published by Bedford Press and Sternberg -- I was suddenly attacked by a small black kitten.



Akiko Watanabe, who runs Motto, has just acquired this captivating beast -- a white-pawed small black cat, two months old, with huge pupils and a miniaturised instinct to murder. For this kitten (I didn't discover its name), Motto's piles of arty, gorgeous, intelligent and obscure books are nothing more than rocky outcrops in a tiny landscape, a "killing fields" populated by "mice" and "birds" evoked by a playful customer's wriggling, darting hands. For the kitten, a free handout advertising an art event, rattled in the air overhead, is enough to make a half-convincing sparrow.

Like a masturbating internet-user or the audience at a Keiji Haino concert (I saw one last night), the kitten is willing to suspend its disbelief in the interests of having a more exciting and fulfilling life. Yes, that's almost a real naked woman on my screen! Yes, Haino really is flexing, thrashing and swishing his blond mane around in an orgiastic access of Bacchic excess, and not faking or formularising it! Yes, that really is a sparrow, flying around the shop at such a low height that I could plausibly catch, kill and eat it, staining my furry black kitten lips with warm, red bird blood!

While the kitten calculated this, I was calculating myself. "If I make a short video of this kitten," I reasoned, "I could post it to YouTube, and in no time at all rack up something like eight million views. Because kittens -- along with Magibon not even bothering to hide her product placement -- are what YouTube users love more than anything else!" Then, I calculated, I could simply add the URL for Motto Distribution and I'd be transforming the Motto kitten into a very successful and effective viral sock puppet ad.

What would be in it for me? Well, I'd find a populist peg to hang an unpopular blog entry on, for a start. Look, a kitten! But also, by making a free viral ad for Motto, I'd lessen my guilt about the freeloading way I tend to use the store myself: browsing the interesting paper publications Akiko has curated, noting the most intriguing names and URLs, then going home and downloading free PDFs and JPGs of the stuff off the internet. Look, everyone! A kitten! At Motto!

54CommentReplyShare

vikinggreeneyes
vikinggreeneyes
vikinggreeneyeswithgold
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:59 am (UTC)

grasped well


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 09:33 am (UTC)

Momus, you douchebag asshole.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 09:44 am (UTC)

GO BACK TO YR KITTIN BASKET, ASSMUNCH!


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 10:05 am (UTC)
Adolf Kittler

a white-pawed small black cat, two months old, with huge pupils and a miniaturised instinct to murder

Actually, I just figured out the connection between the internet's two greatest obsessions, kittens and Hitler. They are, as Art Spiegelman pointed out, basically the same thing.



The difference between "cute" and "evil" is just a matter of scale.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 10:19 am (UTC)
Re: Adolf Kittler

Actually, remarkably, there is someone called Adolf Kittler. Friedrich Adolf Kittler is a German media theorist:

"Kittler's central project is to "prove to the human sciences [...] their technological-media a priori", or in his own words: "Driving the spirit out of the humanities", a title that he gave a work that he published in 1980. Kittler sees an autonomy in technology and therefore disagrees with Marshall McLuhan's reading of the media as "extensions of man": "Media are not pseudopods for extending the human body. They follow the logic of escalation that leaves us and written history behind it."

"Consequently, he sees in writing literature, in writing programmes and in burning structures into silicon chips a complete continuum: "As we know and simply do not say, no human being writes anymore. [...] Today, human writing runs through inscriptions burnt into silicon by electronic lithography [...]. The last historic act of writing may thus have been in the late seventies when a team of Intel engineers [plotted] the hardware architecture of their first integrated microprocessor."


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 10:28 am (UTC)
I am a kitten



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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 10:36 am (UTC)
Re: I am a kitten

I'm one of the 19 million people who've already seen that one.


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 10:49 am (UTC)

Please start work on a new album very soon!

I would love to hear another release sans the pyro-wizardry, with a return to emphases on melody and words. You write such beautiful melodies, I must say.

Goodrich (I too am Scottish-Canadian)


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 11:03 am (UTC)

I AM 100% SCOTTISH, CANNNUCK WOODCHUCK!


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 12:09 pm (UTC)

It's a shame that nearly all black pen line drawing (and anything handwritten in capital letters) these days gets referred back to the Great God Shrigley, as if he is the only possible reference point, no-one had ever done such a thing before and he was shot down to earth to educate us in the ways of line n' joke. There's obviously a sense to it because he has been so -oh god I have to say that word- influential, but Isabelle Boinot's work looks like a lot of other work (esp. in contemporary illustration) before it looks like his. For an example see the Neil Fox illustration accompanying the Amis book review in your beloved Guardian today. Boinot's stuff is not really my bag, but there is a quality to it, and a different precision and labour behind the knowing naiivity than Shrigley's. And the all important humour element is not off-the cuff a-la DS, that being the thing that -whether or not you enjoy his humour of course- sets him apart from any disciples and copyists. But there are also aesthetic neighbours, and those caught in the large shadow he casts despite the possibility that they may have been working the land prior to it becoming overcast. To say nothing of prescedents -Sean Landers, Philip Guston (esp. his 'poem paintings'), early Sigmar Polke drawings, amongst others.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 12:30 pm (UTC)

Isabelle Boinot's work looks like a lot of other work (esp. in contemporary illustration) before it looks like his. For an example see the Neil Fox illustration accompanying the Amis book review in your beloved Guardian today.

Here's Fox, followed by Shrigley and Boinot:


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 02:06 pm (UTC)

twenty fifth!!!1!


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 02:12 pm (UTC)

Hey, for an art/design post that's titanic, they usually get 8 max. It can't all be the cat.


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 02:24 pm (UTC)

Momus, who do you think did good work or even their best work in their fifties? I can think of novelists, but precious few musicians, and even fewer pop musicians. Scott Walker, maybe.


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 02:27 pm (UTC)

(and even then, he only made one album in his fifties)


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count_vronsky
count_vronsky
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 03:49 pm (UTC)

Oh momus. You need to take your kitten playing skills to the NXTLVL. Paper and bits of string are so bourgeois. Next time you go in that store take with you a laser pointer, an air-horn, a bullwhip, and a large bucket of water.

Oh momus, if only Click Opera weren't ending I could teach you ways to play with a kitten that would BLOW YOUR MIND!


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)

You still have eight days! It can't be that elaborate...


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 05:40 pm (UTC)
Chat Roulette.

Have you seen/experienced this yet? http://www.chatroulette.com


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microworlds
microworlds
Sparkachu Maelworth
Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010 04:47 am (UTC)
Re: Chat Roulette.

I THINK I WOULD DROP DEAD OF A HEART ATTACK IF I EVER GOT MOMUS AS ONE OF THE RANDOM PEOPLE ONLINE. SERIOUSLY. I EXPECT P33NS, I WOULD NEVER EXPECT MOMUS AS MY STRANGER.


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milky_eyes
milky_eyes
milky_eyes
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:19 pm (UTC)
grown dog

this is my favorite although I do try to not engage with tons of kitty porn... and this isnt even a kitty... its a gown dog... I'm a perv I know




haha... I'm totally laughing about the Keiiji Haino knock you couldnt help but throw in there... I saw him a few years ago.. in Tokyo... ah... it was cool, but not the mythic experience that I had in my head from the Fushitsusha days... also he was using a drum machine of sorts that was like... the stupidest thing ever... I mean, he sucked on that thing...

but suspend disbelief? he is who he is... (sort of a non-statement I know but... he's kinda like an aging cartoon character... although.. an aging PeeWee Herman could easily outdo him at this point. )

oh yeah, suX dick, cunt-licking bitch your blogs for jackoffs


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count_vronsky
count_vronsky
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:35 pm (UTC)


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 09:40 pm (UTC)

Hey, that's my next hair and tooth style! (Girl, not cat.)


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:08 pm (UTC)

Ok, great idea, but i'm with the Count; this kitten video idea needs A LOT of work! You think you can just waltz in here with your waggling piece of paper and steal the limelight? Nice try buddy! These things take time, planning, preparation, rehearsals...bzbzbzzzzzzz

Is there not going to be a countdown till the end with some kind of anticlimax-whimper party?


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jdcasten
J.D. Casten
Tue, Feb. 2nd, 2010 09:13 pm (UTC)
Future Lurking Good?

Kitten Dandy

I’ll be missing the Click Opera community… regular anons, etc. but especially the lurkers!


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microworlds
microworlds
Sparkachu Maelworth
Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010 04:52 am (UTC)

MOMUS IT'S TERRIBLE BUT THIS POST WAS ABOVE THIS POST ON MY FRIENDSLIST:


BECAUSE MY LAYOUT FUCKS UP WITH THESE KINDS OF IMAGES IT PUT THE CAT ON MY FRIEND'S POST AND UNFORTUNATELY POOR KITTY IN YOUR POST IS GOING TO DIE SOON ACCORDING TO IT.


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(Anonymous)
Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010 10:00 am (UTC)

OMG HILARIOUS

TELL ME YOUR DREAMS


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(Anonymous)
Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010 09:13 am (UTC)

Did you have a chance to read Isabelle's little book about Japan called "Sumimasen"? It's really charming, full of those precious emotions that one has when he travels Japan for the first time. You couldn't be farer from Shrigley, both in term of graphic sensibility and tone, though.

Olivier


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(Anonymous)
Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010 10:01 am (UTC)

further?


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cczy
cczy
cczy
Thu, Aug. 30th, 2012 07:19 pm (UTC)
Kitten

This kitten is really nice. ou can visit http://cczy.blog.ru - there are a lot of cat's photos.


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