Yes we're open works


unCloud, 2012

Internet freedom has become increasingly disputed. Governments want to regulate it and internet providers want to restrict access to parts of it. The rapid growth in popularity of social networking sites and the current developments in the field of service-based platforms (which is known as 'cloud computing') are explicit examples of the privatization and commodification of social production. It has become clear that our experience of the web is tied to inherent paradoxes that are reflected in its technical organization. To help us remember that the internet can exist without centralized control, INTK has created unCloud.
UnCloud is an application that enables anyone with a laptop to create an open wireless network and distribute their own information in a local context. Once it's launched, passers-by with a mobile internet device (smartphone) can connect to this open wireless network. Users can access information while at the same time remain disconnected from the internet since the network is only local. The person running the application decides which information is shown on any web address. So, a user who connects to the open wireless and tries to visit, for instance, will instead receive information selected by the person running unCloud.

At NIMk you are offered the possibility to download the software and start your own unCloud network. As part of a new extension of the project, INTK has installed unCloud in 5 different locations in Amsterdam: NIMk, de Balie, SMART Project Space, SMBA and Trouw. Each unCloud contains audiovisual material from the archives of a different organization. For example, the unCloud installed at NIMk contains political debates from de Balie archive whereas the unCloud installed at de Balie contains video art from the NIMk collection.

unCloud is a co-commission by STUK, Leuven, Belgium and Arnolfini, Bristol, UK.


Martijn Engelbregt
ERGONED 'illegalenformulier', 2003

Martijn Engelbregt is a process artist. He is the founder of EGBG (Engelbregt Gegevens Beheer Groep) with which he researches the reciprocal role of the individual within a group and uses relatively elementary means to uncover complex bureaucratic structures. Engelbregt designs declaration forms, surveys, institutes and enterprises based on existing structures. He then invites the public to react to what he offers. The artist does not judge, doesn't make an hierarchical distinction and does not separate the wheat from the chaff: for him, the artwork is defined by the process.
During the Christmas holidays of 2003, 200.608 households in Amsterdam received a declaration form which the inhabitants were asked to fill out. The questions were about their names and address, if they were illegal immigrants and if they knew any illegal immigrants. If the latter were answered in the affirmative, respondents were asked about the nature of the relationship with the supposed illegal immigrants and whether they were prepared to report them.
Martijn Engelbregt, who developed the declaration form and founded REGONED (Registratie Orgaan Nederland) was curious about how people would respond to such questions. At that time tests were carried out in the Netherlands with so called 'kliklijnen', anonymous tip lines that allowed people to report each other's illegal activities to the government. The forms were sent preceding a specially themed weekend with (book) presentations, debates and screenings titled Grenzeloze Solidariteit (boundless solidarity) which took place at debate centre de Balie in Amsterdam in January 2004. Engelbregt wanted to exhibit the completed forms during that weekend, but couldn't follow through with these plans due to received (death)threats. Yes, we're open is the first public display of these controversial forms.


on view: July 27th - the end
Harrell Fletcher
Where I’m Calling From
BMW Tate Live Performance Room

Where I’m Calling From by Harrell Fletcher continues the BMW Tate Live Performance Room series - a programme of live, online performances simultaneously seen by international audiences across world time zones at

Artist Harrell Fletcher invited a busker to take his performances from the tube stations and streets of London into the gallery to play live, online to the BMW Tate Live Performance Rooms global audience on 28 June, 2012.

Harrell Fletcher’s work often takes the form of socially engaged collaborative and interdisciplinary projects. For his BMW Tate Live performance, Where Im Calling From, a busker shifted from playing to a local London audience to performing on a global online stage. By moving this musician from the tube station, to gallery space, and then back out to the world through the web, Harrell Fletcher aims to question value, and the influence of the internet.


on view: June 2nd - July 8th
DUS Architects
Bubble Building, 2012

As it is literally a giant bubble waiting to burst, Bubble Building is a delicate and temporary pavilion. The pavilion instigates interaction and collaboration, because it only appears when visitors work together. The Bubble Building consists of several hexagonally shaped ponds with soapy water; a form found naturally in clustered bubbles. Together they create a large reflective surface on which visitors can tread. At that point, the building is nowhere to be seen and only a few handlebars hint at what needs to be done. Only when everyone takes up their respective positions and pulls up the steel frames together, do the immense iridescent soap walls appear like wafer thin façades of liquid glass. Although this spectacular result of a collaborative effort is of an ephemeral nature that might be gone in the blink of an eye, Bubble Building refers to monumentality. Like the eternal cycle of building and rebuilding within the urban landscape, the thin walls of the pavilion are continuously renewed and regenerated.


Spiros Hadjidjanos
Network Time, 201

Wireless router, custom router firmware, fiber optic light, electronics
Dimensions variable
New means of visualizing time can not only reflect, but also change, our understanding of it. Network Time is driven by similar beliefs about how the instruments at our disposal change the way we think about what is being measured. Network Time consists of several wifi routers set up in an exhibition space to be freely used by any mobile device with internet access. Attached to each router is a slender fiber optic cable, aligned to absorb and magnify the incessant flicker of its traffic LED. The visualized data exchange creates a space viewers can interact with not only physically, but also informationally. Any email sent and every website checked on a smartphone logged in to the routers’ signals modifies the frequency in which the fiber optics light up, ranging from occasional, idle blinks to a frenetic flicker.
Of course, time has not always been thought of as something linear and unchanging, but could only be imagined that way after Enlightenment thinkers had gained access to accurate pendulum clocks that ran independently of perpetual maintenance or weather conditions. Seen as a kind of walk-in clock, Network Time could have a similar power to shape our experience and understanding of temporality. In contrast to our idea of time as progressing in unflinching lockstep, the network time is so susceptible to individual touch that a growing number of single alterations can eventually cancel out each other’s visible effects. The more data is exchanged, the faster the blinking gets, and the harder it becomes to differentiate between individual illuminations. By suggesting that the fourth dimension is dramatically pliable, Hadjidjanos ventures to evoke a concept of time compatible with the internet’s paradoxical ability to at once empower and efface the individual. In Network Time, time seems to be on each and everyone’s side a ll at once.


on view: July 27th - the end
Metahaven & Jonas Staal
Nulpunt (0.)

Nulpunt, the latest addition to the ever expanding exhibition Yes, we're open focusses on striving for a democracy without secrets. Like the works by !Mediengruppe Bitnik and Martijn Engelbregt, this work is of a particularly political nature and deals with matters surrounding in- and exclusion and the (in)accessibility of information.

Artist Jonas Staal and design studio Metahaven have set up a collaboration developing 0. (Nulpunt), a FOI (Freedom of Information) website that works like a merger between Wikileaks and social media. 0. would aggregate all documents produced by the Dutch government and public sector into an on-line database. Users can then search through this information stream, comment on documents, and share them. %u2028Nulpunt has been conceived as a user-friendly tool to follow and control government. It would coincide and interact with a new Dutch Freedom of Information Act, which is currently in preparation.
The Law on Transparency of Public Authorities (Dutch: Wet Openbaarheid van Bestuur, or “WOB”) specifies how citizens' requests for government policy information are to be dealt with when related to matters of public interest. Conceived in 1980, the current law is seriously outdated, a product of the pre-digital era, and embodies an authoritarian bureaucratic culture which considers access to information a favour to citizens instead of a right. The new law, currently in preparation, enshrines public access to information as a citizen's right, and impels public authorities to make it widely and quickly accessible in a digital format. The new law guarantees that in future all public documents produced by the government will be automatically made accessible, and that these will be stored on a permanent electronic record.

Metahaven and Staal, who partner with Iceland-based IMMI, an organization responsible for far-reaching transparency reforms in that country, conceive Nulpunt as one step towards the paradigm of a “Democracy without Secrets.”

For more information go to:
De Nieuwe Reporter, "Pleidooi voor een lekkende overheid" by Jonas Staal, Vinca Kruk, Daniel van der Velden and Brenno de Winter,%u2028
The Verge: "FOIA with friends: social platform Nulpunt looks to abolish government secrecy"


Elín Hansdóttir
Taking Time, 2006

Taking Time is a slide projection consisting of found images of demonstrations from the early 20th century until 2006. The people in these images are holding up signs that are supposed to draw attention to the messages expressed: protest phrases, advertisements or otherwise. However, the messages have been erased and the the signs have lost their significance. What was originally meant as a means to make a clear point, has now become a black slate. As a viewer, you may search for meaning beyond the sign and read other signals within the image, but you won't reach beyond an interpretation.

Caleb Larsen
A tool to deceive and slaughter, 2009

Inspired by Jean Baudrillard's writings on the art auction, A tool to deceive and slaughter exists in an eternal state of flux. This black box, which is indebted to Box with the sound of its own making by Robert Morris, is perpetually attempting to auction itself on eBay. Every ten minutes the micro-controller within the box contacts a server on the internet via an ethernet connection to check if the artwork is still for sale on eBay. If its auction has ended or the piece has been sold, it automatically creates a new auction for itself. If a person buys the artwork on eBay, the current owner is required to send it to the new owner. The new owner must then plug it into ethernet so the cycle can repeat itself. The box itself, like Morris' artwork from 1961, provides the viewer with little visual information as to what the artwork is about. The minimalist shape denies the presence of the often so cherished hand of the artist, and so, combined with the cryptic title, leaves a lot open to interpretation. Since this work exists as an object, auction and exchange, it is required to be connected to the internet at all times. This has been stipulated in a contract and if it is not adhered to, the work is invalidated and no longer considered a work by the artist.

Green Grass Fungus, 2012

Green Grass Fungus is a follow up to Red- and Blue Fungus, but with different rules. As a visitor of the exhibition, you have been given a sheet of stickers upon entering the NIMk and you are invited to affix these stickers on the exhibition floor, according to a simple set of rules.
Having only four stickers consisting of basic shapes – two sizes of lines and circles – limits the scope of expression. While each visitor executes only a simple task, the repetition of these tasks, combined with the collaboration of other visitors, will lead to a more complex image. The freedom of direction and positioning of the sticker (within the limits of the rules) confronts the visitors with the impossibility of making an arbitrary choice. Patterns emerge because people will observe what others previously have done and react accordingly. So, ultimately the visitors work as a collective force to create an image. In this way, the Fungus series is about the comparison between 'computational randomness' and (un)conscious human action.

Baden Pailthorpe
Formation VI, 2012

HD Video/Video Game Performance
16:9, colour, sound. 8'34 minutes

Created inside one of the US military’s training simulators for Afghanistan, Formation VI is a study of militarised movement and geography. In this work, groups of US soldiers and Taliban fighters have been ordered to run unknowingly side-by-side towards an endless desert horizon. Oblivious to each other’s presence thanks to a hacked game setting, each fighter is unable to perceive hostility in the other. They are left together to perform one of the most simple and unifying of human actions: running.
This simple performance, with its uncanny body rhythms, deserted landscapes and the crunching of virtual boots usurps the usual depiction of violence of this hyper-mediated war. The strange forms amplified by each soldier mimic the classic military strategies of perceptual deception, camouflage and confusion. As is prevalent in military vocabulary, references to the collective body (marine corps) connote the machine-like structure and strength that follows a military assemblage of disciplined bodies. These formations serve to deny the physical limits of the individual and replace them with the power of a hardened, networked collective of singular units.


!Mediengruppe Bitnik
Opera Calling - Arias for All, 2007/2008

Intervention / Video Installation
Opera Calling - Arias for all was an artistic intervention into the cultural system of the Zurich Opera from the 9th of March till the 26th of May 2007. By means of audio bugs hidden within the auditorium of the local opera house, the outside public was given access to the performances on stage. The performances were retransmitted to the public not through broadcasting, but by telephoning each person individually. The audio bugs transmitted the performances of the Zurich Opera to randomly selected telephone land-lines in the city. Anyone who picked up the telephone, was able to listen to the on-going opera performances for as long as they wanted via a live connection with the audio bug signal. As soon as the listener hung up, the telephone machine would call the next random number. Using the telephone for the dissemination of the opera transmissions, a virtual auditory space was opened not with so called blanket coverage (as with broadcasting media) but as a home-delivery service: Every person is connected to the opera individually and can eaves-drop at their leisure from the comfort of their own living room. In the end more than 90 hours of opera performances were retransmitted to 4363 households.
The Zurich Opera launched a search for the bugs and in a first reaction threatened to take legal action if the transmissions weren't stopped and the bugs not removed. This lead to a lively debate in the media about cultural ownership and cultural subsidies. Eventually the Zurich Opera decided to tolerate Opera Calling as a temporary enhancement of their performance repertoire.


Annlee Audience input

In 1999, the artists Pierre Huyghe and Philippe Parreno bought a manga character from “K” works, a Japanese firm that develops Manga figures. Huyghe and Parreno decided to 'free the image from the animation market', named 'her' Annlee, made their own initial works and invited other artists to use Annlee for new art projects, free of charge. Annlee was given a voice, history and an identity and she popped up in animation videos, paintings, objects, installations, posters and a magazine, soundworks and a book. In the end 28 works were produced by 18 different artists. The project was finalized in 2002 with the artists definitively killing her off (including a coffin) and liberating her from the realm of representation -as they described it- by signing over the copyrights of the image to Annlee herself.

NIMk wondered if this really was the end. Is Annlee dead, truly free, or both? Copyright was used explicitly to lock up an appropriated image that has the potential to flow freely as an open art work. Annlee has disappeared as an image, but not as an entity that can be discussed and talked about or as a subject for new artworks. As Philippe Parreno suggested: “the project doesn't stop in the absence of Annlee, it can always produce more authors.” A decade after the project ended, NIMk invites you to “unofficially” respond to the Annlee project. Reactions can be uploaded to the blog of the project which is also presented at NIMk:

Wayne Horse
interpretation of the No ghost just a shell project
Willehad Eilers, also known as Wayne Horse, lives and works in Amsterdam. He's an interdisciplinary artist whose work ranges from drawings and wall paintings to animations, video works, installations and performances. Horse experiments with different ways of exploring a story, with the aim to allow the story to tell itself. A sense of adventure plays a key role within his oeuvre: movie scenarios are written during the editing process, random acts set the rules for projects, and become the basis for further decisions. His works turn into paths to be traveled and everything encountered along the way falls into place.
Within the framework of the call for new reactions to the Annlee project, NIMk has invited this multi-talented artist to give his interpretation of the No ghost just a shell project by Philippe Parreno and Pierre Huyghe and to give Annlee a new lease of life.

Wayne Horse about his work:

"The contract burying annlee, laying her to rest without letting her die seemed a rather gloomy vision to me. My aim is to show that annlee's spirit (no ghost just a shell) lives on. Now more than ever.
In times of endless amounts of images being added to the ever growing image bank of the internet everyday. Basically everybody supplies a shell to use for anyone willing to do so. It is impossible to control who will do what with any image uploaded onto the world wide waters of the internet. The whole internet is a playground for anyone who wants it to be.
All images used in this video are random portraits found through social networks and Google Image Search. Of course there are characters and life's connected to each of these persons. I decided to completely disregard that and use the portraits as moldable empty models instead. The reason these portraits were being chosen was that their face would be one of the first to pop up during the image search. To further underline their function as an empty shell their faces were distorted to match annlee's features. In the end of the video clip we see annlee age and finally rest. The torch is being carried on by an army of millions."