AXON: July 29, 2011

So this is my last little reflection on The X-Files, and it's been kind of tough to come up with content for it. I thought I would be finished watching the series by now but I'm only near the end of season seven. I wanted this to be a bit more intelligent than the last ones, but it will still read from a fan's POV.

I'm annoyed because I can't find one of my course readers from a Television Studies course I took that had an X-Files essay in it. I would have liked to read it to come at this. I found a course page and it looks like something I'd enjoy.

Anyway, that was a long aside. This AXON is capping with things I DIDN'T like about The X-Files, from worst episodes to subtexts I didn't like.

1) How'd you get out from there?
In the early seasons there was a tendency for people to get trapped (like our heros) and then find themselves free back in the real world, with little plausable explanation. For example, in Small Potatoes (season four), Mulder gets locked in the boiler room of a hospital while the Eddie, the shape-shifting nemesis disguised as him returns to DC. The real Mulder re-appears busting down Scully's door while Eddie attempts to seduce her. It's possible some janitor let him out or he was found conveniently, that's not even the worst one. The biggest question is how Alex Krycek got out of the Silo he was trapped in with the Alien ship in North Carolina. It doesn't make sense. According to wikipedia, “Krycek was recruited on a salvage hunt from the silo in North Dakota, and he informs the agents they must track the source of an extraterrestrial rock, brought to America by a foreign diplomat, to a gulag in Russia.” No timeline for this, just kind of happened? It doesn't make sense. And don't ask me how he got BACK into a Tunsian prison. Apparently, he “ended up being thrown into a Tunisian prison by the Cigarette Smoking Man,” but this totally didn't happen on camera. I didn't see it.

2) Alvin Kersh
So it's early 2000s, but it's still TV. The only black character on the show with presence and power is totally the bad guy for trying to close The X-Files and chastising Mulder and Scully, giving them menial tasks and forbidding them from persuing X-Files related phenomenon. He was introduced at the end of season six with SCARY MUSIC. I kind you not. In reviews, people rave about the actor's performance and his ability to carry the plot of several episodes. He even became the Deputy Director of the FBI, but obviously that's a conspiracy too. "After [Agent] Doggett saw Kersh in a late night meeting with two conspirators, Knowle Rohrer and Gene Crane, Doggett brought in Monica Reyes to help him investigate Kersh's involvement in Mulder's disappearance." Seriously. One could very much read and understand Kersh presence on The X-Files as positive and very productive. Still, the nature of this role always got under my skin a little bit, and it is totally from that first introduction with the SCARY MUSIC.

3) What, were the other writers busy working on the movie or something? That sucked!
There's been a few episodes where Chris Carter tries to be meta or something or when certain people don't stick to their day jobs. It started with the Syzygy episode and included one episode shot in black and white about a monster who loves peanut butter (The Post-Modern Prometheus), it's hard to tell which episodes are actually going to hold together creatively and which will fall about.

Ok, this kind of goes without saying, but is an X-Files episode starring Kathy Griffin actually going to be good? Star says no. Further, this episode has Kathy Griffin playing her own twin. Seriously, Fight Club is a really lame episode. The only interesting part was the cameo by the actors who usually play Mulder and Scully's body-doubles. I accidently stumbled upon a Kathy Griffin fansite where they loved the episode. No comment. Previous to that was another terrible episode where Hollywood (fake TV Hollywood) makes an X-Files movie. The episode is called Hollywood A.D. It was written and directed by David Duchovney and featured his then-wife Tea Leoni. Total narcissism and totally bogus. Maybe this was Duchovney's cry for help to get out of The X-Files all together. After all season seven ends with him being totally abducted by aliens....

Unfortunately I was told to expect more episodes like this. Since two of the main conspiracies have been pretty much resolved, new story lines and new enemies had to be created to keep the franchise afloat. I don't even want to talk about how bad First Person Shooter was...

4) This video is just for fun....thankfully this didn't happen after each two-part episode...Skinner recaps the plot from Tunguska episode

I think I've run out of steam and browser space, but those were the big highlights of things I found problematic, and I'm sure you have your own that you want to share. I'm leaving you with a link to this editorial from The New England Skeptical Society's newsletter that speaks briefly about television and the X-Files.


In this issue of AXON:

  1. Headlines
    • AXON is on holiday
    • InterAccess is seeking an Executive Director
    • Ableton Live Workshops
    • Summer workshops
    • Twitter and Facebook? We're all over it!
  2. InterAccess Events
    • DIGITAL ALTERITIES: 11th Annual InterAccess Emerging Artist Exhibition
    • Our Ongoing Calls for Submissions
    • InterAccess OpenLab at DDiMIT
  3. Toronto, Provincial and National
    • Haute Culture: General Idea -- A Retrospective, 1969 – 1994: The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto
    • My Precious Novella: SAW Video, Ottawa
    • Kevin Schmidt, Epic Journey: Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, Toronto
  4. International
    • Melanie Gilligan on Josephine Pryde -- available online
    • 21 Rooms: Nam June Paik Center, South Korea
  5. Calls for submissions, jobs, etc...
    • Call for Applications: Residency Program, 2012-13, Fogo Island Arts Corporation, Newfoundland
    • Call for Applications: Games Incubator Program, The Hand Eye Society, Toronto
    • Call for Applications: Lab Coordinator, Artengine, Ottawa

1 Headlines

* AXON is on holiday

AXON will be taking a wee holiday for the month of August but, weekly newsletters will resume in September.

In the meantime, stay up to date with InterAccess news through facebook, twitter and our website.

* InterAccess is seeking an Executive Director

Where: InterAccess
Deadline: August 12, 2011

InterAccess is currently seeking an Executive Director to lead the organization and steer its future development. The Executive Director, in collaboration with the Director of Programming, will oversee all aspects of the organization’s operations, including development, budgeting and finance, communications, partnerships and future planning/visioning, under the guidance of the Board of Directors.

Please see for a full job description and details for how to apply.

* Ableton Live Workshops

Where: InterAccess
When: August 4th, 11th and 25th, 6:30-9:30pm

InterAccess is pleased to present Noah Pred's Ableton Live workshops series, formerly presented at the Rich Media Institute. The workshops are normally $99 each or $249 for all three but InterAccess members receive 10% off -- that's $89.10 for one workshop or $224.10 for all three! Space is limited, so register soon to ensure entry.

Divided into three levels - Basic, Advanced and Expert - Noah's Learning Live 8 training program provides a comprehensive education on the many facets of Ableton's extremely powerful and flexible Live application, covering techniques for production, performance, remixing, DJing, sound design and more...

Email to register.

* Summer workshops

Where: InterAccess
When: August

There are only two more workshops left in InterAccess' summer workshop series! These cheap and cheerful summer workshops are just $19.99 so make sure not to miss this great deal.

Remaining workshops:

Email to register now.

Full details and descriptions are available at

* Twitter and Facebook? We're all over it!

InterAccess has a new Facebook page and Twitter account!

Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at

2 InterAccess Events

* DIGITAL ALTERITIES: 11th Annual InterAccess Emerging Artist Exhibition

Where: InterAccess
When: June 30 -- August 13, 2011

InterAccess is pleased to present its 11th Annual Emerging Artist Exhibition, DIGITAL ALTERITIES, curated by our 2011 Curatorial Intern Scott Gamble.

The intermingling of humanity and technology has blurred the line between real and fabricated, between natural and digital. We live in a constant state of cyber-flux, bombarded by the seemingly endless supply of digital noise. Digital culture has permeated every micrometer of our natural being, and the discrepancy between the real and virtual is increasingly difficult to discern.

DIGITAL ALTERITIES is a showcase of six emerging artists who are living within the confines of a relatively new digital era- one of seamless integration of humans and technology in everyday life. According to Donald Ihde, this condition, known as the "alterity relation", is the moment of symbiosis between the self and the digital other. Ihde's "alterity relations" are a conscious awareness and appreciation of the union between humans and technology and the results of their interaction. Technology no longer represents a solely utilitarian use, but can open up new avenues of exploration, both philosophically and personally, often with unexpected results. It is a gateway to new realities and digital alterities.

Featured artists:
Anyse Ducharme
Thea Jones
Mani Mazinani
Tamara Platisa & Sasa Rajsic
Santiago Tavera
Calvin Winter

* InterAccess' Ongoing Calls for Submissions

Call for Multiples: Electronic Bric-a-Bracs
Deadline: InterAccess is seeking submissions on an ongoing basis

InterAccess is seeking new media ephemera, multiples and publications for its new mini-shop. Electronic Bric-a-Bracs will provide an alternate platform for the dissemination of new media work by showcasing small, cheap and multiple objects. Housed in a single shelving unit nestled between our offices and the washroom, the shop will receive a high volume of traffic from staff, artists, gallery patrons and anxious members of the public.

Call for Submissions: Plexi Pavilion
Deadline: InterAccess is seeking submissions on an ongoing basis

InterAccess is pleased to announce its new project space, Plexi Pavilion, a body-sized plexiglass box on wheels, situated in our front stairway. Plexi Pavilion is best suited for single works which, since the pavilion can be moved by the viewer, can be viewed from any angle. The pavilion can be seen from the street and will be accessible to the public outside of regular gallery hours.

Projects must fit within the pavilion (and through its door, which measure 1’ 20” wide and 5’ 6” tall). The pavilion measures 6’ 1.5” x 2’ 5” x 2’ 5”.

Submissions should include:
- A brief description of the project (max. 250 words)
- Documentation or a mock-up
- a CV and bio

Please see for more information about all our current Calls. Questions and submissions can be directed to

* InterAccess OpenLab at DDiMIT

Studio members! InterAccess has recently joined a brand new fabrication lab located at 374 Bathurst, in the old Balloon King building! 'Designing Digital Media for the Internet of Things' -- or DDiMIT -- is equipped with a 3D printer, laser cutter, and CNC mill, with more equipment on the way. InterAccess studio members can access all of this equipment, after some orientation, as part of their membership.

To help you get acquainted, InterAccess hosts an OpenLab at DDiMIT night every Tuesday from 7-10pm. InterAccess OpenLab is an opportunity to learn and experiment with these new tools and connect with folks making some nifty stuff. We are thrilled to offer our members access to DDiMIT and its unprecedented facilities, so come nerd out with us on Tuesdays.

While the DDiMIT facilities are only open to InterAccess' Studio Members, OpenLab Tuesdays are open to all InterAccess members and the general public so come on down.

3 Toronto, Provincial and National

* Haute Culture: General Idea -- A Retrospective, 1969 – 1994

Where: The Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto
When: July 30, 2011 -- January 1, 2012. Opening reception, Friday, July 29th, 6 - 9pm

Featuring more than 300 works spanning 20,000 sq. ft. of Gallery space, Haute Culture is an exhibition of unprecedented scale celebrating the groundbreaking work of the seminal Canadian artist group. The exhibition is the first comprehensive retrospective devoted to General Idea, the collaboration between artists AA Bronson, Felix Partz and Jorge Zontal that began in Toronto in 1969.

* My Precious Novella

Where: SAW Video, Ottawa
When: Saturday, July 30th at 8:30pm

On Saturday July 30th, SAW Video presents My Precious Novella, an outdoor screening of unconventional short videos. The nine vignettes, which all run under ten minutes, range from dream-like parables to performance art, and sharply edited mini-documentaries. The shorts featured in My Precious Novella, put a twist on traditional narrative forms, presenting personal stories with unexpected turns. The show was curated by Mireille Bourgeois, former Programmer at SAW Video.

Featured artists: Lisa Lipton (Halifax), Cameron Woykin (Calgary), Andrea Cooper (Newfoundland), Trevor Anderson (Edmonton), Roger Wilson (Ottawa), Millefiore Clarkes (PEI), Cecilia Araneda (Winnipeg), Jan Peacock (Halifax) and Divya Mehra (Winnipeg/New York).

* Kevin Schmidt, Epic Journey

Where: Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, Toronto
When: Wednesday, August 3rd, 9:30am - 9pm

The Justina M. Barnicke Gallery presents a special screening of Epic Journey in its entirety on August 3rd, from 9:30am – 9pm. There will be couches and snacks, and most importantly, A/C. Do you have the steely resolve of a Tolkienian character? Will you join us on this epic journey?

Epic Journey is a single long-take film that documents a small aluminum boat as it drifts languidly down the Fraser River while Peter Jackson's acclaimed The Lord of the Rings Trilogy is screened on board. Impressionistic, lit with incident and trailing wanderlust, the boat takes its viewers on an odyssey through the suburban and industrial landscape of the BC Lower Mainland, alluding to themes of industrialization portended in J.R.R. Tolkien's World War Two-era novels and engaging with the British author's Homeric style.

4 International

* Melanie Gilligan on Josephine Pryde -- available online


You can now listen to Melanie Gilligan's discussion of Josephine Pryde's work and recent exhibition at the Chinsedale Gallery, 'Embryos and Estate Agents: L'Art de Vivre'.

Pryde often references the history of both commercial and fine art photography in her work and also the impact of technological advancements in imaging upon scientific discovery. Pryde’s work is situated at the intersection between the representational strategies of science, commerce and art, with all of these fields treated as a common site of production. Her work often problematises her own role as an artist and the condition of art production at large.Melanie Gilligan is a Toronto-born artist currently based in London and New York. Gilligan has shown extensively in both Europe and North America, including recent exhibitions at InterAccess (2011), Chisenhale Gallery, London (2010), Kolnischer Kunstverein, Cologne (2010) and the Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff (2010).

* 21 Rooms

Where: Nam June Paik Center, South Korea
When: July 20 -- September 13, 2011

21 Rooms was inspired by Symphony for 20 Rooms, a score composed by Paik in 1961. The term 'score' used by Paik and Fluxus artists referred to instructions of actions to be performed. Paik's Symphony for 20 Rooms, as a visualization of 'music,' is made up of descriptions of various sound installations and interactions with the audience. Still awaiting a first performance, this piece contains Paik's creative and innovative ideas for music and exhibition, which he was to materialize in his later performances and exhibitions.

As Paik and his Fluxus friends did, the artists in this festival will present 'scores' to engage with the audience. By performing the scores as instructed, the audience will cut through genres and spaces, moving around the 20 rooms (or works), and realize the 'unblinded' participation, which is the central tenet of Paik's score.

5 Calls for submissions, jobs, etc...

* Call for Applications: Residency Program, 2012-13

Where: Fogo Island Arts Corporation, Newfoundland
Deadline: July 31, 2011 (postmarked)

The Fogo Island Arts Corporation Residency Program aims to bring contemporary artists of international caliber to live and work on Fogo Island and Change Islands. The program encourages the participation of artists working in a wide range of disciplines, including – but not limited to – visual arts, new media, design, music, dance, writing and film. Four studios of six are built so far. We expect to have all facilities up and running by the end of 2012.

Visual artists, curators, writers and filmmakers can apply for residencies on Fogo Island in 2012 – 2013. Residencies are from 3 to 6 months. Visiting professionals are provided with a studio (work space) and a house to live in.

* Call for Applications: Games Incubator Program

Where: The Hand Eye Society, Toronto
Deadline: July 31, 2011

The Hand Eye Society's Difference Engine Initiative aims to introduce new gamemakers from under-represented groups into the gaming community and diversify what kind of videogames are made.

The Hand Eye Society's first focus is women, and so we have named this version of the Difference Engine after Ada Lovelace. As part of the OMDC-supported TIFF Nexus, the Hand Eye Society will be running two gamemaking incubators for women in Toronto, one in August-September, and one in October-November. Each incubator has a maximum of six participants. Participants will attend a 3 hour session once a week for six weeks. After the six sessions, each individual participant will have a made a game by themselves that will be presented at an event attended by Toronto's gamemaking community. Some of the incubator games will also be included in the WIFT showcase in December.

* Call for Applications: Lab Coordinator

Where: Artengine, Ottawa
Deadline: August 11, 2011

Artengine is seeking a creative technical individual to join it’s unique organization. The Lab Coordinator will assist in the ongoing operation of it’s dynamic production facilities including it’s electronics lab, media lab (shared with SAW Video) and it’s field equipment. They will also work with the Artistic Director on the overall development of the Artengine facilities.


InterAccess wishes to thank Laura Paolini for her Artist AXON design has been featured throughout July. Laura is a Toronto-based performance and media-based installation artist, curator and writer. When she isn't busy serving as Vtape's Internships/Projects Coordinator, Secretary to the Board at FADO or teaching workshops at InterAccess, you can find her catching up on her X-Files viewing.


AXON is the e-zine from InterAccess Electronic Media Arts Centre. It features information and resources on new media and electronic arts as well as local, Canadian, and global events. The Artist AXON is meant to be sent exclusively to InterAccess members. There is nothing to stop you from sending this to other people for their enjoyment. However, we'd like to remind you that the artist and InterAccess put a considerable amount of time and energy into the design to make your membership even better. If you pass on the AXON to others, please bear this in mind and let them know about InterAccess membership and all its attendant joys.

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