Alexi Shulgin “386 DX WIMP”

Alexei Shulgin

Alexei Shulgin In his New York debut
386 DX WIMP

One Performance Only:
February 13, 2004 8 PM

Admission: $15, members free
(No advanced ticket sales;
Doors open at 7:30 PM)

Alexei Shulgin created Cyberpunk six years ago. At last, he’s bringing his bizarrely affecting techno-pop musical art to New York, for a single performance on February 13th at Location One.

Shulgin’s Cyberpunk “band”, 386 DX, consists of an archaic computer that plays MIDI tunes with speech-synthesis “vocals” accompanied by Shulgin who “operates” the machine through a computer keyboard slung over his shoulder with a guitar strap. Their repertoire spans 30 years of pop music (from The Mamas and The Papas to Nirvana), and is by turns satirical, sentimental, innovative and just plain weird – - accompanied, as always, by Shulgin’s irreverent insight into net art, techno, and the contemporary entertainment scene.

Shulgin has played concert halls, clubs and every kind of venue throughout Europe and America, most notably through a chain-link fence from the American side of the US/Mexican border at Las Playas de Tijuana while his computerized counterpart was free to perform on the Mexican side of the border. The computer has performed as a solo act as well, singing pop songs to crowds on the streets of Graz, Austria and receiving tips for its musicianship.

WIMP (Windows Interface Manipulation Program or Windows, Icons, Menus and Pointing device – the prehistorical GUI of the 1970′s) is a program for creating full-screen visual animations synchronized with sound in real time. WIMP utilizes the graphical user interface (GUI) of the Windows operating system as its only visual source of inspiration. Standard interface elements from the desktop such as applications, windows, icons, images, pop-up menus and text are manipulated and transformed through the use of VJ effects. These animations are generated by simple 2- and 3-D effects and filters and their superimpositions. The versatile nature of WIMP allows it to be used as a VJ tool, a screensaver, a cool grafix generator or as a piece of conceptual art.

WIMP was created by Shulgin in collaboration with Victor Laskin and had its world premiere in October of 2003 at Dorkbot Rotterdam (http://dorkbot.org/dorkbotrotterdam/). It is downloadable as freeware at http://www.wimp.ru.

Alexei Shulgin is a Moscow-based artist, musician, curator, activist and professor. Shulgin has participated in numerous exhibitions and symposiums on photography, contemporary art and new media. He is the author and curator of several Internet projects including Form Art, which first introduced this new art form based on the aesthetics of a computer interface to the internet community in 1997. He also collaborated on the development of Runme.org, launched in January 2003 as an open database for people around the world to showcase their examples of software art. Since the creation of 386 DX in 1998, Shulgin has released two albums with the band including The Best of and Legend of Russian Rock.