Saturday, May 28, 4pm Crafty Workshop with surprise Artstar, $free

Come find out what kind of crafty stuff we have laying around the shop. Downstairs we have so much fun stuff: paper, fabric, sequins, feathers, belt buckles, pins, bendy, sparkly, fuzzy things. We thought we ought to have a workshop. We will be there to help you complete a project of your choosing. We’ll be there with some suggestions, or maybe even a challenge. Make a costume or a mosaic or a cool thing with whatever we have, at the moment, downstairs. It’ll be fun. There’s room for a lot of people, but you must pre-register. Leave with skills: Girls love guys with skills — and vice versa.
Sign up by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com.

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Thursday, May 26, 7pm Beginning Welding with Kim

Basic welding — always full, often overbooked. Always fun, messy, and dirty. Sometimes scary, hurty, and cold — or hot — depending on the season. I suspect this class will be a perfect spring class, the kind where you go directly outside to drink beer and brag about your new skills, wearing your face dirt proudly because the night is so nice you can’t go back inside. This is our most popular class and is always full, with a waiting list, so sign up ASAP by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com. After you pre-register, you must pre-pay.

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Saturday, May 21, 4pm Pinching and Twisting with Mistress Jacquie

Balloon Animals!!! If you want to learn the basics of sculpting with inflatable latex, or want to develop basic twisting and pinching skills, this is the class for you! If you want to impress those 3-to-10 year olds who’ve been dissin’ you lately, or you who want to appear disarmingly charming to the sexy single-parent who lives next door, you want to earn extra cash at birthday parties, or want to add to your nascent clowning resume, you should definitely drop by. Leave with your own hand pump (yes, hand pump). Hand pumps and balloons will be provided. This is sure to become Madagascar Institute’s most sought after new class, so sign up ASAP by emailing classesd@madagascarinstitute.com

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Beginning Welding with a surprise Artstar

Same class different month. Any one of our frighteningly talented and attractive artstars can teach this class. Come take a chance and see who it will be this time. Learn the basics: safety, how to weld, the difference is between the various welders, why you won’t electrocute yourself, welding fashion, and depending on the teacher, the welder’s mask flip. That would even impress the Flashdance chick. This is our most popular class and is always full, with a waiting list, so sign up ASAP by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com. After you pre-register, you must pre-pay.

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Saturday May 7, 1pm Using the Lathe with Hackett

Hackett has been slaving over this thing — making his own bolts, turning rebar into jewelry, and more. Learn how to use this miraculous tool yourself; why should Hackett have all the fun? The lathe is set up for metal work but can we switch it out for wood to. Learn how to set it up and what you can do with it. If you come to the free What’s That Do? workshop, you’ll get a preview, but you can’t use this beauty without a class. This class will fill up *very fast,* so sign up ASAP by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com. After you pre-register, you must pre-pay.

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Saturday, April 23, 2pm What’s That Do? with Hackett $free

Hey what’s that tool? And what’s that do? How’s that work? This is a free workshop in *what we have.* This is not so much a "how-to" but a "what’s that thing do?" Hackett will take you around the shop and show you the lathe, the cold saw, the chop saw, the bench grinder, the mill, and tell you the difference between the TIG, the MIG, and the ARC welders. Again, this is more a show-an-tell rather than a hands-on class. There won’t be time to try everything, but Hackett will show you what we have and how it works. It’s up to you to make something out of this stuff in the future. This class is free but you must pre-register by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com

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Thursday, April 21, 8pm Sewing with SarahMac

You asked for it, here it is: sewing. We have tons of fabric and several machines. And after our big-ass fabric ceiling project for the Scope festival, we’re pretty much all proficient at sewing (except me), but none as professional as SarahMac. She’s a crackerjack, that Sarahmac. Learn how the machine works, some things to making sewing easier, basic troubleshooting, etc. You will leave with a very basic knowledge — enough to finish a simple project yourself. Sign up by emailing classes@madagascarinstitute.com. After you pre-register, you must pre-pay.

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The Curtain Falls On What Did Not Happen

Scope Art Festival, NY

Three fleeting projects in one night, produced under one title. In Top Secret Project: Skorpion, Madagascar performed as a costumed marching band that played custom-built, portable flamethrowers and air horns. The site-specific sculpture A Short Room Full of Tall People gently lowered a 2,000 square foot red ceiling before dropping it on hundreds of partygoers. Finally, local police put the brakes on Jetbike, a jet-propelled motorcycle, replacing the evening’s exclamation point with an ellipses.

curtain6

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colorfield

conceived by sir mike ross:
colorfieldpan

A large-scale, interactive sculpture in a park on the edge of the East River. Also practically the first thing we’ve ever made that could be touched by children. Twenty towers supported 10 panels of translucent color that zipped back and forth on cables. On a sunny day the panels cast rich shadows to collage at your feet. Part of the Waterfest Grand festival, in conjunction with WaterMonsters, Inc.

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MADAGASCAR INSTITUTE GOES CRAZY BROADWAY STYLE

New York, NY
June 14, 2003

broadwaystyle

This all-dance, three minute and 19 second production went off between the lions on the steps of the New York Public Library and finished before guards had time to ask for the permits. Choreographers trained 75 dancers with little to no previous dance experience to count eights and hit marks. Featuring prostitutes, police, poodle ladies, gutter punks, yuppies, tap dancing rats, and giggling garbage cans. Also known as our gayest event ever.

The header photo is by Bill Lanides. More of his Broadway Style photos can be found at http://artstarphoto.com/gallery/broadwaystyle

download video: broadway.mov

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This Week at the Madagascar Institute

So- it has been months (has it been months? It seems like it, as least
to me, who cares, and maybe to the others that do as well.) since you
ungrateful bastards have been blessed with another missive of sweetness
and light from me, and oh what those months have contained- amazing
events, radical leaps in technology, the dawn of tank-top season and oh
so much more (some of it detailed below, most not) but you will all be
pleased to know that I am still more or less crippled by rage, no matter

how pleasant the weather is. My valuable work time has been spent
actually slaving away doing what I am paid for (as long as I am being
paid to think of ways to get fired that will include severance pay and
qualifying for unemployment payments) and not sending e-mail to the
likes of you, but so much is happening and about to happen at the
Madagascar Institute that it must be shared.

So, without further delay and with only a few (minor) tangents and
bile-choked rants:

This week at the Madagascar Institute

What you missed:

First and foremost I want to underscore that e-mail announce or not, the

Madagascar Institute is open every Thursday and Saturday, (which you
should have known) and Tuesday as well (which you might not have known).

A select few artstars have been showing up regularly and doing, and oh
what they have created. There are 8 kinds of art bikes rolling around,
bikes so bad ass that people have actually been crippled on them (sadly
enough, I am not joking), machines of “amusement” whose only purpose
seems to be to maim, and spectacular events both past and future that
will be or were (tense depending on the event, of course) the best thing

ever.
We are not fucking around, and if you come down you will not be either.
For example:

Remember how I used to recommend that after an evening of welding at the

Institute you could strut into Rubulad or wherever the kids go these
days to pose and drip with irony and flirt and drink and brutally shove
whoever was in your way? Well, no need to get your artstar mitts filthy
with hipster sweat or blood- after several weeks of intense work at the

Institute, artstar Jeff S. discovered he could COMPLETELY VAPORIZE
anything/anyone he wanted to, just with a focused thought. Soon, other
Madagascar Institute regulars reported the same, or similar powers.
It is so cool.

Enough of the past. Well, except for this:

If you have footage or photos or vaguely expressionist drawings of the
latest Madagascar Institute event (The Feast of Saint Madagascar) send
it to me. We need it, and you will never never use it except to clumsily
project at some suck ass party where people will really not enjoy it
because they will too busy drinking or cruising or waiting to pee.
Unless, of course, it is one of our parties, where they will be
quivering in amazement and awe. (or is that fear?), and along those
lines we need the services of a crack video editor, quick like a bunny
now, so if you are one of those let me know.

Also, there was a touch of , uh, unpleasantness as a result of that
event, that led to some of our comrades in the beloved Hungry Marching
Band getting led off in chains. They can use your letters of support for
their court date. To quote HMB spokessiren Ms. Tara Ball:

————————————————————————

Hello Citizens and Comrades,

We, the Hungry March Band, need your kind and urgent assistance.

I know this is late notice but we are in need of your support! Five of
us we arrested after an event on Friday April the 13th. Our court date
is
Friday morning, so please hurry! See Story Below.

Please quickly write an email and send it out extolling and exclaiming
all
the good we do for the world, the community, the individual, the human
spirit, you and even the furry little creatures. Any thing at all so we
can show we are community minded, virtuous, helpful, professional,
wonderful, caring, kind, good citizens that just want to do the right
thing. If you have witnessed one of our shows, if we have played at an
event for you, anything at all, please send an email. If you are a
bigwig
w/a fancy title or just some person who knows love when he/she hears it,

send out your words now.

We want to show the Judge we are not a bunch of lowlifes just trying to
make trouble or something like that.

PLEASE SEND TO:

HungryMarchBand@usa.net

This way I can print them out at work as my printer in broken and it
will
be good if they are going to bands email addy instead of mine.

The Story in Brief…
We were doing what we always do, making music for the people. This time
it was for the Good Friday Poets Parade after one of our bandmates shows

in the same LES neighborhood, around 9/9:30pmish. It was a simple parade

but a lot of people came and that made the police nervous we think.
Some
kids made a religious icon statue/float that was quite nice and carried
it around for the parade. It had attached to it a somewhat spectacular
sparkler/light/smoke show. We were just playing music, never were we
asked to stop or move on or anything. They just nabbed a few of us, well

after the event was over. I think mostly because they were confused and
just wanted somebody to use as an example. Nothing was broken, no one
was
hurt, everyone seemed to be having a good time and enjoying the
festivities until the police arrived. They just blocked traffic and
scared everyone away. I think they were upset over the icon float, but
we
did not make that, only music and it wasn’t even late. We all ended up
in cuffs and jail. We got out relatively quickly. We were charged with
Disorderly Conduct.

We just want to prove that we do this sort of public event all the time
with no ill intent. We do our part in the community. So please help us.

A simple letter will do.

thanks and love,
xxxT the jailbird
————————————————————————

Let us move forward.

Several big Madagascar Institute events are coming up, in what looks to
be the busiest and best spring ever. There are a number of opportunities

for you to take a part in the creation of these events, and if you can’t

do that then you can show up and still out cool everyone else in this
fair city. In addition, there are a number of events in the near and not

so near future that are not Madagascar Institute events per se, but are
endorsed by the Institute or involve a number of Institute people and
efforts, or both.
All of these things are listed below with varying levels of detail, in
something approaching chronological order.
For those of you that are not strong readers this is the skinny:

May 19th – Madagascar Institute toys on display at Blackkatt party in
Dumbo
– Also, special advanced welding class at the Institute
May 20th- Million Chenguin march, 3pm, Astor Place
May 26th- Madagascar Institute Fundraiser, at the Institute, so we can
buy a truck
June 9th Running of the Bulls, Brooklyn
August, sometime: Madagascar Institute Luau

Lastly, we need obtanium, as usual. Please note that
“obtanium” is not the same as “trash” . Specifically, we need scrap
metal, working (at least partially working) electronics, motors, power
tools, shop and lab equipment, art supplies, fabric, engines, and shiny
things.

On to the events:
Blackkatt: THE CIRCUS B4
Saturday MAY 19
D Space in DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass)
27 Bridge St, F train to York, walk 3 blocks towards the water.
Brooklyn, NYC

multimedia madness and midway
in a 7,000 sq foot warehouse complex with a huge, 3,000 sq ft. outdoor
courtyard, DUMBO, Brooklyn NYC

This will be a big crazy party featuring DJs, booths, and performances
that I am betting you will dig and that I don’t feel like listing here,
and, as the invite promises:
“Apocalyptic circus toys from the MADAGASCAR INSTITUTE”
It will be good. We will be demoing some of our new creations. You will
like them.

We need all the lively monkey hands (not literally, but if you have
actual monkeys or monkey hands please do bring them by- that would be so
punk rock) possible to help us finish some of the creations. No
experience needed. Also, Ms Tara Ball has the following specific request
for help:

————————————————————————

Can you post to see if there is enough interest to help me man the peep
show, to set up and break down for Saturday night. I need people to…
_ “perform” some “art act”, rude is okay, sexy is okay. They will be on
the other side of a Plexiglas partition. There will be a slot for tips
that they can keep but must give me a part for bringing the fucking
thing

_ people to help be set up and break down, not to hard but I can not do
by myself

-People to barker outside…draw them to booth and then drag them out
when turn if over.

All easy and fun. But I need help.
xxxT
————————————————————————

In addition, Saturday at the Institute master welder Garth Heck will be
teaching an advanced welding session and telling stories of smacking
Gavin around when he was little (yeah- I find it hard to believe that he
was ever little too) and life as a welder in the Coast Guard.

Sunday, May 20th- Million Chenguin March
Chenguin fucking rocks. While this is not a Madagascar Institute event,
it has our full support and we lent our expertise to some of their
special effects. Go.
Be at Astor Place at 3pm on Sunday and follow the 9 foot tall
Chicken/penguin hybrid. All will become clear shortly. For those of you
who like internet, they have some sort of “page” at www.chenguin.com

Madagascar Institute Fundraiser:
Saturday, May 26th, at the Institute
You will be bombarded with clever invite text shortly. Stay in NYC
Memorial Day weekend and enjoy the uncrowded streets and bring all your
friends to the Institute so we can make money so we can buy a truck.
There will be DJs, art, and maybe a performance or two in the style you
have come to expect from the Institute. It will be glorious, and
reasonably priced.
If you would like to volunteer to help set up, clean up, decorate, or do
other things contact ryanoconnor9@hotmail.com.

Running of the bulls- June 9th
This is the next big Madagascar Institute event. In the professional
quality words of Jeff Stark:

————————————————————————-

1. the running of the bulls is a madagascar institute street event on
june 9. the event will start at the corner of carroll and nevins, in
gowanus, brooklyn, near a lovely little retractable bridge. we should
expect 200-300 guests, most of whom should be wearing white-and-red
outfits. we will line up 40 bulls — puppet bulls, costume bulls, art
bike bulls, car bulls, skating bulls, chinese dragon bulls,
sound-sculpture bulls, etc. — and chase everyone down the street for
several blocks. afterward, there will be a party at madagascar, with
sangria, bad flamenco dancing, good music (dj and otherwise), a bull
fight, and a boxing match between an old hemmingway and a young
hemmingway, and anything theme-appropriate you might be able to dream
up. it’ll be ridiculous fun.

2. we need bulls! youre on this list because we’re pretty sure that
youre going to make a bull, but please let us know, just so we can be
positive. (yes, right now is fine.) there’s already some activity and
much planning. i’ve got four different bulls in progress right now,
and i’ve seen some other stuff coming together around the institute.
basically, your bull can be as elaborate or as half-assed as your ego
will allow. i will not mock anyone’s involvement. (note: i speak for
myself, and not your peers.)

we could actually use more bulls from strangers or people who might
not be on this list. please feel free to recruit your friends to make
bulls. there are only two rules: one, the thing has to invoke or at
least hint at bullness; two, it must move. please do any recruiting
on an individual basis; dont just broadcast this message to an
external list. this event does allow for a lot of participation from
others outside of our core group, and those people should be
encouraged. at the same time, we don’t plan on counting on most of
them just in case they slack off and dont come through.

3. again, the bulls are really individual projects. there is a lot of
junk for you to use around the madagascar institute. you can also
find some pictures and examples of bulls hanging out on the walls and
such. plus, there’s often free labor if you want someone to help you
and attractive people to flirt with. youre of course welcome to work
at home or in your studio if you want, but know that if you need
something, hackett probably has it. come on by. the institute will be
open tuesdays, thursdays, and saturdays, and then every day the week
prior to the event. email me if you need directions.

in addition to the personal project commitments, we need some help
with the party afterward. some people have expressed interest in
certain parts of the planning, but feel free to send us an email and
say that you want to join that group or work on that section of the
party. there’s plenty of work to go around, and as always, roles and
fiefdoms are pretty fluid: the best thing you can do is to show up on
a tuesday, thursday, or saturday and prepare to work.

special question: does anyone know how to play flamenco guitar? do
your friends?
———————————————————————-

Contact me or Jeff (jstark@salon.com) if you want to help, or just show
up at the Institute.

Ok- that is it for now. Is that enough for you? If you are looking for
direction to nurture that budding artstar deep inside you that has been
stifled by television and bad cocaine (is there any other kind) then
show up and you will be put to work on making something that you can be
proud of, and what feeling is better than that?

To be removed from this list eat glass.

The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins

and Bond, ground floor.

Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on
the F) Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow
of traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks
to Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer
#1.You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and
the Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to
do that.

Car/cab from Manhattan:
Go over the Manhattan Bridge. Once on the Brooklyn side, you will be on
Flatbush. Follow Flatbush a few (like 6) blocks and take a right on
Nevins (right after Fulton, with its bright lights and disturbing amount
of wig shops). Go down Nevins like 6 blocks, watching the neighborhood
get progressively more industrial, until you get to Butler. Take a right
on Butler. 217 is halfway down the block.

Car/cab from Williamsburg (Thanks to Tara Ball)
easy driving directions to Madagascar Inst by Tara

get off BQE Manhattan bridge exit, drive down very big street of
Flushing Ave. Make right on Nevins which is just after Juniors (stop buy
me cheese cake for doing you this favor) 2 or 3 blocks. Drive a little
ways keep eyes open and brain working look for BUTLER. then find 217
Butler (btwn Nevins & Bond.) If you see 3rd Ave you are going wrong way,
turn around. Across street from brick structure.
Easy and remember cheese cake.

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This Thursday at the Madagascar Institute

-Welding with Fire: Using the new Oxy-Acetylene torch; or:
New ways to horribly maim yourself, just in time for the holidays.
-Practice, practice, practice.
-Cheap and crappy but very hazardous holiday gifts, part whatever.

Last Saturday saw the first steps of the Madagascar Institute volcano,
the centerpiece of the upcoming luau to take place Jan 13th. So far, it
stands fourteen feet high, looming over the rosebushes and spent crack
vials in the back yard. It is impressive. I’m not sure how high it will
eventually be, but if anyone knows the specs for aircraft warning lights
let me know. Personally, I want the fucking thing to be so big that when
it is ignited astronauts on the space shuttle will scream like little
girls and soil their space suits. I want a plume of home made lava to
punch right through the ozone layer and surgically obliterate San
Francisco when it lands. I want massive climatic destruction, tetonic
plate shifts, left-handed people gaining superpowers and monkeys driving
mopeds, and after all this happens you can turn to your cowering loved
ones and say: “Hey- I helped out on that.” So, if you want the type of
bragging rights that come with building a really big volcano please show
up at the Madagascar Institute or e-mail me.

Note: This list goes out to like 100 people now, and like the same two
dozen keep showing up. If you have not shown up don’t be shy. Last week
had a good number of new people show up, and their skills and enthusiasm
were appreciated. If you have always wanted to come but feel like you
have missed the boat don’t worry- you haven’t. The Madagascar Institute
is always looking for good (or at least good-looking) people.
Note2: The Surveillance camera project is postponed. It will happen in
January. You will be informed.
Note3: The Madagascar Institute is looking for web geeks and Flash-heads
of all skill levels to work on the Madagascar Institute web site, which
has like directions for an event we did a year and a half ago. We have
shitloads of text, video, and pictures that need to be put together into
a good site. After all, how can you tell if something is fun unless it
has a web site?
If you want to work on www.madagascarinstitute.com contact me.

Anyway- this week we bid good-bye to Hans, our master welder and
coverall enthusiast, who is off for a few month sojourn to Notamerica.
He will be missed, but he will be back. Until then we can content
ourselves with his Oxy/Acetylene torch. Good bye Hans, and take
advantage of those liberal foreign prescription drug laws for us.

-Welding with Fire: Using the new Oxy-Acetylene torch; or:
New ways to horribly maim yourself, just in time for the holidays.

As stated above, Hans donated his fancy gas welder to the Madagascar
Institute. (Or long-term loaned it- whatever. It is ours now.) For those
of you that do not know, Oxy-Acetylene is the type of welding that uses
actual flame instead of electrical current to melt metal. It is
considerably more difficult to master than arc welding, but is a great
skill to know and if useful in a wide range of applications where arc
can not or should not be used.
It can also be incredibly, awesomely, dangerous. A common use of this
type of rig is in cutting steel. A fire hot enough to rend steel is a
vulgar display of power- I once say one of these things rip a man hole
cover in half in about a minute. I still have a neat pair of scars from
a run-in with the molten steel that flies when a cutting torch is being
used, and I thought I was being careful. Learn how to use this beautiful
thing this Thursday and Saturday.

Bring:
-Welding goggles- the arc welding helmets are too dark for this type of
welding. You need those cool little welding goggles like you see stupid
fucking ravers who don’t know what metal is wearing- the roundish ones.
You can get them at good hardware stores.
-Good, long gloves/welding gauntlets. This is where you really, really
need them.
-extra torch tips- we need some. Contact me if you live or work near a
welding supply place and want to pick some up.
-a health respect for anything this powerful. Remember- if it can slice
inch-thick steel in half, imagine what it can do to you.

-Practice, practice, practice.
Remember, just because you know how to strike an arc and draw a bead
does not make you an artstar. Practice your skills and you will get
good. Otherwise, you will suck. Being half-assed at something does not
impress people. Projects will be selected for those who want something
to practice on. Also, if you have not been able to weld yet you will
this week, promise.

Bring:
Scrap metal
Obtanium
Ideas

-Cheap and crappy but very hazardous holiday gifts, part whatever.
This is basically the same thing as above, only with a holiday slant to
it. Write your own blurb. I need to get back to work.

Thursdays at the Madagascar Institute run from 7 pm until around 10:30
pm. If you get there late or too early the ice weasels will get you. Big
thanks to Albert for getting the tanks filled and Hans for the welding
rig.

As always, to be removed from this list eat glass

Hackett

The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins

and Bond, ground floor.

Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on
the F) Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow
of traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks
to Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer #1.
You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and the
Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to do
that.

Car/cab from Manhattan:
Go over the Manhattan Bridge. Once on the Brooklyn side, you will be on
Flatbush. Follow Flatbush a few (like 6) blocks and take a right on
Nevins (right after Fulton, with its bright lights and disturbing amount
of wig shops). Go down Nevins like 6 blocks, watching the neighborhood
get progressively more industrial, until you get to Butler. Take a right
on Butler. 217 is halfway down the block.

Car/cab from Williamsburg (Thanks to Tara Ball)
easy driving directions to Madagascar Inst by Tara

get off BQE Manhattan bridge exit, drive down very big street of
Flushing Ave. Make right on Nevins which is just after Juniors (stop buy
me cheese cake for doing you this favor) 2 or 3 blocks. Drive a little
ways keep eyes open and brain working look for BUTLER. then find 217
Butler (btwn Nevins & Bond.) If you see 3rd Ave you are going wrong way,
turn around. Across street from brick structure.
Easy and remember cheese cake.

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This Saturday at the Madagascar Institute

This Saturday at the Madagascar Institute:

Networking 101
Scary Dangerous X-mas gifts
Event planning: Luau
Work on your own shit

This has been a busy week so far at the Madagascar Institute. Thanks to
Mo and her army of confused men the welding curtain is up and working (
I guess, unless the people who were doing printmaking last night have
all gone blind.) so we can now weld inside. There is a bit of a noxious
fume issue, but hey, New York is a tough town, and you Williamsburgers
will get a sneak peak of what living near generating plants is like (by
the way- I have received a bunch of e-mails asking me to join in a
protest against the proposed generating plants. To all of you that are
righteously against these things- when you moved into an industrial
neighborhood, what exactly did you expect ? You didn’t move there
because it was cheap- if you wanted cheap Brownsville and the Bronx have
cheap- you wanted gritty industrial hip and nearness to Manhattan.
One of the downsides of living in an industrial area is that you get
industry, like power plants. I live in an industrial area that does not
have a bar or art gallery on every corner, and the canal in front of the
Madagascar Institute lets off a serious funk and I have heavy metals in
the soil and there is a garbage truck lot next door, but I knew what I
was getting in to and so did you. Besides, power plants aren’t that bad-
there is a big, dangerous old school one on 14th street and no one
cares. Also, maybe the toxins will drive the Yuppies out and enable you
to all have the lofts of your dreams. Fuck- if I lived in Billyburg I
would be out supporting the plants and asking for more.).

Anyway- the printmaking class drew the crowd in on a cold, weekday
night. I’m not sure if it his skills at slicing out a jesus or building
a wall, his tough-guy bike or just his boyish good looks but Eric had a
devoted crew of (mostly) women hanging on his every word and making
prints like mad. Printmaking was a success, and hopefully will be
repeated at some point in the future.

On to the future:

Introduction to Networking

No, not “Networking” as in schmoozing and making connections, but
“Networking” as in wiring and making connections. This Saturday that
Irish guy will be hooking up the Madagascar Institute LAN, and teach all
interested parties the basics of computer to computer communication.
This is a very useful skill for cool connected digital art pieces, and
will be important as we start working on digital interfaces for machines
and telepresence robots. This will be a good starter course for the
upcoming hacking courses as well. Besides, he has a cool accent.

Bring:
Network cables.
Computers and parts for donation.
Shitty, rainy weather and horrible food to make the instructor feel
right at home.

Scary Dangerous X-mas gifts
Give the gift of puncture wounds and Christmas morning emergency room
visits!
This is not a class, per se, (there will be a more formal gift making
session next week) but rather an opportunity for you to use the skills
you have learned to make sharp, unwieldy, dangerous holiday gifts for
your loved ones and enemies. This might sound kind of lame but
everything welded is cool, and things that are welded by you are even
cooler.
Remember- art is always a great gift, and as long as it is weird enough
no one can ever be sure that it sucks.
Our team of creative geniuses will be on tap to help you come up with
ideas for shit to make.

Bring:
All the scrap you can carry. There is a chance that we will make an
obtanium run before class so there should be plenty of materials on
hand.
Ideas
tetanus shots

Event Planning:

Not a class at all but actual, real, event planning. Two things are in
the works- first, Veronica’s surveillance camera project, which will
have its final touches done on Saturday, and the first giant project-
the luau. If you are interested in participating in the surveillance
camera project e-mail or speak to me or Veronica. We don’t need many
helpers on that, but all players are welcome. The Luau project does need
lots and lots of helpers, and will get started this weekend.

More information, supplied by Erok:

Giant Project #1: Luau

On January 13th, the Madagascar Institute is throwing a luau.  The
main event will be a performance featuring hula dancers, human
sacrifices, a large volcano and the kind of grand finale that the
Madagascar Institute is famous for.

Creating the event will be the first big group project at the new
headquarters.  We have one month and need everyone to be involved.
Things to be done include volcano construction, set decoration,
idol-making, “special effects” rigging and more.

We begin on Saturday, when we will reveal the performance details and
outline the production schedule.  Then, we’ll start erecting the
volcano in the back yard.

Bring:
Your lovely selves.
Work clothes.

Work on your own shit
I cannot stress how important practice is to keep your skills up. If you
do not stick at welding, electronics, or the other artstar skills you
will lose them. The best way to keep in practice is to have a little
project to work on, be it an X-mas gift, little doodad for yourself, or
a project to improve the shop. If you don’t have anything to work on you
can be assigned a project that will stretch and expand your skills-
between building furniture and storage for the shop and working on the
Luau everyone that wants to will have an interesting, rewarding thing to
work on. It will keep your skills sharp and impress people when they
comment on the well crafted and funky workbench, desk, shelving, volcano
or artbike and you can say “Yeah- I made that.” Shit like that will get
you so laid.

Bring:
Scrap
Printmaking stuff if you attended the class and didn’t get to actually
make and use your screen
More welding rod
Lumber
Hardware
Bike parts
Obtanium.
An air blower and vent so the welders won’t choke out everyone else.

The Madagascar Institute will be open at 2 pm on Saturday. Show up on
time. You will get more shit done and really feel like you deserve your
Saturday night of excess. Showing up three hours late impresses no one.
If you have never made it to a session, come anyway and you will learn
how to weld. Last night four people were started on the artstar path. It
is never too late to begin.

The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins

and Bond, ground floor.

Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on
the F) Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow
of traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks
to Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer
#1.You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and
the Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to
do that.

Car/cab from Manhattan:
Go over the Manhattan Bridge. Once on the Brooklyn side, you will be on
Flatbush. Follow Flatbush a few (like 6) blocks and take a right on
Nevins (right after Fulton, with its bright lights and disturbing amount
of wig shops). Go down Nevins like 6 blocks, watching the neighborhood
get progressively more industrial, until you get to Butler. Take a right
on Butler. 217 is halfway down the block.

Car/cab from Williamsburg (Thanks to Tara Ball):
easy driving directions to Madagascar Inst by Tara

get off BQE Manhattan bridge exit, drive down very big street of
Flushing Ave. Make right on Nevins which is just after Juniors (stop buy
me cheese cake for doing you this favor) 2 or 3 blocks. Drive a little
ways keep eyes open and brain working look for BUTLER. then find 217
Butler (btwn Nevins & Bond.) If you see 3rd Ave you are going wrong way,
turn around. Across street from brick structure.
Easy and remember cheese cake.

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This Thursday at the Madagascar Institute

This Thursday at the Madagascar Institute:

Printmaking, Part 2
Intro to Networking
Welding and Machinery practice session
Work on your own stuff

Thursday, 12-07-00 from 7-10 pm.

Another midweek session, soon to be a regular feature of the Madagascar
Institute. As it looks now the shop will be open every Thursday as well
as Saturday. Soon, the shop will be open another weekday (maybe Tuesday)
and then maybe yet another, depending on interest and the number of shop
stewards available. The eventual goal is to get the running as an
autonomous entity, heading closer and closer but never actually
achieving the Platonic ideal of the workshop, with more refinements and
features coming online regularly. We still need a shitload of equipment
and supplies and skills so if you have any bring them by. If you need
details e-mail me directly.

Last Saturday’s Intro to Printmaking class was a success. Eric spread
the gospel of DIY printmaking, combining theory and practice nicely.
Thursday’s session will concentrate more on practice. In Eric’s words:

Holiday fun with silk screening!

Thanks to everyone who stayed for Saturday’s Silk Screening class…
Part II
of the class will be held this Thursday at 7:30 pm… There we will
cover
coating and exposing silk screens and printing on various materials.  We

will also begin to touch on finer skills such as high resolution
printing
and multi-color printing.  For those interested, we will hold an open
studio
on Saturday to brush up skills, go over techniques or solve any problems
you
may be having on your own.

REMEMBER TO BRING your stretched silk screen, and your Positive image on

clearfilm (can be amberlith, photo clear film or photocopied… for
photo,
ask for a positive, reverse reading, emulsion down… for photocopied,
bring
two copies) and something flat and smooth to print on, i.e.. paper,
cardboard,
plastic, fabric.

NOTE: If you missed Saturday’s session don’t worry- show up on Thursday
and you can be brought up to speed. I think. Just show up.

Intro to Networking

The inability of the pigfuckers at a certain online realtor to deliver
the networking cards and hub on time forced the delay of Intro to
Networking to be postponed, prob to Thursday but maybe to Saturday. Prob
Thursday.
The Madagascar Institute Big Main Computer is up and running (thanks to
the Dell owner and two professional geeks that swarmed all over the
equipment, configuring everything in a snap while I stood to the side
and smoked cigarettes) with a pretty good DSL connection and nicely
stocked with war3z from the ftp server of one of the aforementioned
alpha geeks. This will be the main audio, video, and imaging computer.
We also have a bunch of decent boxes that will make do as e-mail,
writing and hacking machines. They will all be smoothly networked this
week, so if you are interested in how to set up a small network come on
by and let yourself be soothed by the dulcet tones of that Irish guy. He
knows his shit.

Bring:

Copies of Quake for network testing
war3z for all the computers (PC only)
network cable (or a crimper, cable, and ends if you know how to make
them- this would be cool to learn)

Welding and Machinery practice session
The (hopefully) protective curtain will be put up on Thursday, and the
wonders of climate controlled welding will begin. All attendees will be
schooled on the wonders of the drill press, bench grinder, and Super
Sawzall. Also, all new attendees will learn how to weld.
Remember: the only way to get good at welding is to practice, so show up
and do that.

Bring:
Scrap. The fully functional and butchly stylish table you will be
welding on was built from obtanium, and many many other cool things can
be as well. If it is metal, bring it. I spotted some bed frames on the
way to the subway this morning and you prob did too. Bring them.

Work on your own stuff

Any projects you have been thinking about or have started (art bikes,
firework guns, blinky light things, etc.) can be worked on Thursday
night. If you have some ideas but haven’t started or even attended a
session and need help show up and it will be given to you.

Bring:
Duh.

Thursday’s session will begin at around 7pm, and go until 10 or so.  No
fucking around. If you show up after 10 you will be sorry. In this area
the Gowanus C.H.U.D.s have been getting a little out of hand late at
night. They mostly just eat the crackheads, but crackheads are all
stringy and stinky while you are firm and full bodied and slightly less
stinky so the C.H.U.D.s will go after you first. I have an agreement
with them, where they leave me alone and do a little work for me now and
then in exchange for me not opening the door no matter how loud the
screams get or how impassioned the pleading. THey like to play with
their food, those C.H.U.D.s.

The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins

and Bond, ground floor.

Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on

the F) Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow

of traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks
to Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer #1.

You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and the
Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to do
that.

Bodega-style refreshments were available at the corner of Baltic and
Bond, one black away.
Many students have raved about the quality and price of the sandwiches
offered in the supermarket up the block. They close at 8pm.

Smith Street has many fine places to eat. Bring your own.

If you have any question’s e-mail me.

As always, if you want to be removed from this list eat glass.

Hackett

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This Saturday at the Madagascar Institute

This Saturday at the Madagascar Institute:

– Other people’s depravity is our shopping value; or; how blue-collar
desperation can make for a great machine shop.
– Home networking Gowanus style

And:

– Printmaking 101

Welcome back, me, from the Great American Flyover where the high desert
was explored, roller coasters were ridden, and a quest for “meat that
can’t be bought nor raised” was unsuccessful, but one for Navajo
cuisine, unfortunately, was not. I won’t expound on those references
except to say that the desert rocks, New York needs more roller
coasters, and that the Navajo are apparently trying to kill off every
non dine that dares sample their cuisine.

Welcome back, everyone, who missed out on last Saturday’s session to do
whatever you did..

Good job, Mo, for running a mini session last week with only one
accident.

The shop is officially indoors now, thanks to help from Hans and Kara,
builders of the big shop table. In addition another solid steel work
table should be arriving tomorrow.

– Other people’s depravity is our shopping value; or; how blue-collar
desperation can make for a great machine shop.

Tools are rolling in from the west- excursions to the intensely
depressing pawnshops of the Southwest (In Vegas there are many, many
places where you can pawn your CAR. Most of the ones in the lot were
family station wagons. This is too depressing to think about.) have
yielded a bad-ass Sawzall, a bench grinder, a MIG welder that might just
work someday, and and oscilloscope that oozes science. From the garages
of Palo Alto comes an oxyacetylene welder (due in next week), and from
the warehouses of Fenerly, Nevada, comes some work tables and hearing
protection. Also, two air compressors were ground scored right here in
Brooklyn.
The list of needed tools is growing shorter.
Lots of new tools to teach this weekend.

Bring:

Personal hearing protection if you don’t want to share.
Personal eye protection if you don’t want to share (full face shields
are best, goggles are ok for some of the tools)
All of the usual scrap, old engines, motors, and electronic crap.

– Home networking Gowanus style

The Madagascar Institute DSL connection is in and the network will soon
be up and running. Right now we will have space for 4 computers in the
shop to be networked. The networking (including installation of network
cards and configuration) will be done on Saturday, so if you want to
learn how to set up a small network this will be a good time. Come early
for this one.

Bring:
– Any old computers or printers you want to donate to the cause
– Network cables- we need these. Steal them from work.
– Any cool, multi-player kill kill kill games you think might belong on
the network
– Any video or audio processing software you can donate to the new,
super-powerful Madagascar Institute main PC.
– Extra geeks (like we don’t have enough)

– Printmaking 101
This looks to be a great class, for all of you that want to learn how to
make prints and silk-screen shit. The skills taught here will allow you
to make T-shirts from any image you choose, or whatever. This class will
be taught by Eric, and here is his description in his own words:

“Anyway,  as for Saturday, just make up something catchy, but people
interested should find some
image or artwork which is one solid color (or black) and make two copies
of it on clear film or
acetate… Any copy shop can do it.  Also, we are going to start
PROMPTLY at 3:00 because I have to
work Saturday night, and will have to leave by six or so. ”

Got that ? This is an intro course, and if you ever want to know how to
make more advanced prints (full color, I guess) you need to take this
one.

This will be a busy Saturday. If time allows and interest is there we
will be having a weekday session as well, maybe on Wednesday. Let me
know any preferences.

As usual, welding and machining will continue, and all newcomers will
learn how to weld.

As always, class begins at 2:30 or so, but you can come early to get
practice in or talk about upcoming projects. If you come late this time
you will miss out on printmaking and when everyone else is showing off
their printed art and shirts and stuff that you missed out on because
you decided to sleep off Friday’s E for another hour they will laugh and
laugh at you, and they will be right to laugh at you, and you will cry.
You’ll deserve to cry, too. Just save yourself the trauma and be there
on time, or a little early.

In upcoming weeks we have possible Hacking for Retards, and a couple of
special sessions on making holiday gifts like magnets, switchblades and
zip guns (no, I am not joking).

The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins

and Bond, ground floor.

Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on

the F) Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow

of traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks
to Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer #1.

You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and the
Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to do
that.

Bodega-style refreshments were available at the corner of Baltic and
Bond, one black away.

Many students have raved about the quality and price of the sandwiches
offered in the supermarket up the block.

Smith Street has many fine places to eat. Bring your own.

If you have any question’s e-mail me.

As always, if you want to be removed from this list eat glass.

Hackett

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This Sunday at the Madagascar Institute

This Sunday at the Madagascar Institute:

SEE the new workshop plan !
CUT solid steel with a spark-shooting grinder!
PROVE that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts by welding
scrap metal into art!
COMMIT various felonies by building a rocket launcher!
AND various other activities that fit worse than these into a sideshow
barkerish sentence structure.

So.

As some of you prob know there is no big Madagascar Institute Halloween
prank this year. There will be something that breaks a few laws and
scares the shit out of people, but it won’t be anywhere near as
wonderful as flaming soccer so don’t get all hyped up. More info will be
presented Sunday.

This week we will be asking for a small contribution to offset supplies,
like 5 or 10 bucks or so. It is not mandatory and old engines, scrap
steel, and tools will be gleefully accepted in lieu of the cash.

This Sunday at the Madagascar Institute:

Welding school, part 3.

Some of the people who have been in attendance for the first two welding
sessions are starting to get good. If you haven’t been to one yet don’t
worry, you will be brought up to speed quickly.
This week the welding shop may or may not include a second welding rig
so that groups at different levels can both work at the same time.
Beginners and non beginners will be doing different things.

Bring:

Scrap steel. Remember, if it rusts or a magnet sticks to it it is prob
steel.
Gloves, welding masks, electrode. There are enough of these things to
share but you will prob want your own gloves and maybe mask so you don’t
have to keep sharing them with the skanky guy who used it before you. If
you want to know what type of stuff to buy e-mail me.
Ideas. We will start working on individual projects soon.

Engine School, part 2.

This week, the snowblower will hopefully get running. Clay (or someone)
might lecture on this. Remember, little engines can be the base of cool
robots and machines.

Bring:
Any old engines you come across. If you see an old lawnmower,
snowblower, chain saw, whatever (like you ever see any of this shit in
NYC) grab it and bring it down. It will be used.

Cutting metal 101
Learn to cut solid steel with a hand-held angle grinder. It shoots out
some really cool sparks, and with the grinder to cut and the welder to
put together you can make anything.

Bring:
Scrap to cut.
Extra cut-off wheels (if you are really going to bring one tell the guy
at the hardware store that you need a cut-off wheel for a Mikita 4.5
inch angle grinder. He will understand even if you don’t.

Project 1: Rocket launcher

We will try to put out scanty skills to the test to start building a
little hand-held rocket/fireworks launcher. Also, we will be taking
ideas for future projects.

Bring:

steel pipe, hinges, angle iron, ideas.

Halloween workshop:

If you got any last-minute additions or work that needs to be done on
your costume you can use the Institute workspace and tools. Bring
whatever you will need- I have some supplies (hot glue sticks, solder,
etc.) but not a whole lot. All are welcome.

In addition to all this you can view the latest plan for the
workshop/meeting area/studio space. It will prob be on the wall
somewhere. Also, if you get there earlyish you can help set up the new
storage stuff and equipment Erok and I will be setting up.

When/Where:

This Sunday, around 2:30-3pm at the Madagascar Institute.
The Madagascar Institute is located at 217 Butler Street, between Nevins
and Bond, ground floor.
Directions:
Take the F or G train to the Bergen Street stop (3rd stop in Brooklyn on
the F)
Exit at Bergen and Smith Street. Walk up Bergen, against the flow of
traffic, 2 blocks to Bond. Take a right on Bond, walk 4 or so blocks to
Butler. Take a left on Butler, walk 1/2 block to 217. Ring buzzer #1.
You can get there from the N/R train at Union (about 8 blocks) and the
Atlantic/Pacific street stop for everything, but I don’t know how to do
that.

Bodega-style refreshments are available at the corner of Butler and
Bergen. Smith street has many fine places to eat. Bring your own.
If you have any question’s e-mail me.

To be removed from this list eat glass.

Hackett

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Flaming Popes

Brooklyn, NY

For all purposes, the first Madagascar event. The plan: A dramatic interpretation of the schism between the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches in the 11th century, with drama, betrayal, and a whole lot of shit blowing up. The execution: Horrible delays followed by poorly aimed fireworks set to a boombox with faltering batteries in sub-zero weather on the Williamsburg waterfront. Now celebrated annually as the Coldest Day Ever.

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