Volume 1 Issue 4
Telephone Update
Nathan Langston, Head Curator
Telephone has generated works by over 300 artists from 165 cities in 43 countries and 39 states.

In July 2013, Satellite Collective launched Telephone, an international, interdisciplinary arts experiment. The project works much like the children’s game of the same name (also called Operator, Whispers, Phonebook, Ear-to-Ear, and Telefono Roto), in which a message is whispered from player to player. Our version of the game employs two major variations.

The first is that the message is being passed from art form to art form. The message could become a poem and then a film, then music, painting, dance, sculpture, and so on. We get to watch the message come to life as it evolves through a panoply of artistic vocabularies.

The second variation: Each interpretive work returned to us is then reassigned for translation to two or three artists in various parts of the world. The linear threads of Telephone works are branching out like the boughs of a vast family tree. At the outset of this project, we ambitiously hoped to incorporate the work of 200 artists. After six months, Telephone has generated original, sequentially created works by more than 300 artists from 165 cities in 43 countries and 39 US states.

In the early autumn of 2014, we plan to simultaneously reveal all of the works in an enormous, interactive online exhibition. Until then, the entire arc of the game, including the original message, will remain secret. Even the participating artists are only aware of the work that directly preceded their own. That said, we wanted to give you a small taste of the prodigious talent we encountered during the course of Telephone. Of the hundreds of artists involved in the project, this issue of Transmission features only four.

Thomas Patterson is a photojournalist based in Portland, Oregon, who has shot widely for publications such as The New York Times, Wired magazine, USA TODAY, and Vice magazine. In this issue, Patterson shares a series of photographs of the last nights of a newspaper press in Salem, Oregon. There is a sad and beautiful ache in these images as past gives way to the future. For more about Tom: http://yourpaltom.com/.

View his work in this issue.

Julie Upmeyer is the co-director of the Caravanserai Collective in Istanbul, Turkey. Upmeyer’s work bridges the divide between sculpture and photograph by layering cutout images of the Karaköy neighborhood in three-dimensional space. For more about Julie: http://www.julieupmeyer.com/.

View her work in this issue.

Daniel Wilson is a Canadian-born filmmaker based in New York City and Berlin. You can read about a funny and poignant work he created via NYC cab during the Armory Show last year in The New York Times. This issue of Transmission debuts the newest of his works. For more about Daniel: http://www.danieljwilson.com.

View his work in this issue.

Akmar Nijhof is an installation artist, sculptor, and animator living and working in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Trying to translate time into the physical, she calls her video work, “Newspaper Hat,” a continuation of her method of creating “dysfunctional objects.” For more about Akmar: http://akmar.nl/.

View her work in this issue.

Our curators, designers, programmers, and writers are hard at work, drawing together the final presentation of Telephone. We are almost unbearably excited to share the astonishing culmination of this yearlong experiment with you, our supporters, our collaborators, our friends.

Satellite Press