Machine this Week : NYC Butter Aerobics

EVENT : PopSoda (Jimmy Fusil and Mike Wait) – Feel the Churn!
September 26th-28th at the Rauschenberg Project Space, 455 West 19th Street, New York, NY

Hey NYC Machine fans! We’re pleased to announce Feel the Churn!, the only fitness system that allows you to make butter as you burn fat, located in the heart/stomach of Chelsea.

Feel The Churn!, a simultaneous aerobics class and butter-making workshop by PopSoda (Jimmy Fusil and Mike Wait), is the second work in our year-long project at the Rauschenberg Project Space, located at 455 West 19th Street in NYC. Sessions take place in the mornings and evenings of September 26th – 28th. Space is limited for this very special event. Tickets and more information available HERE.

Day-glo shorts and leopard-print unitard workout gear encouraged.

Alvarado Caverns and Mystery Theater

UNDER CONSTRUCTION : Alvarado Caverns and Mystery Theater

Here’s some exciting news – we’re building a cave and secret underground theatre. Chris Weisbart’s ambitious transformation of our space (working title Alvarado Caverns and Mystery Theater) is well underway. Stay tuned for a calendar of events related to the uncanny, hauntings, and overall mysteriousness, scheduled to start in mid-October. If you can’t wait that long to see what’s going on in our storefront, here are some pictures!


The mystery theater


The haunted cavern

Machine this Week : California Living, September 19th


EVENT : California Living, Eichler’s Balboa Highlands Tract – Nate Page
Thursday, September 19th, 8pm-11pm

This event is a one night, outdoor, multi-channel video installation that treats Joseph Eichler’s Balboa Highlands tract neighborhood as both subject and object. With their fortress-like walls and airy interiors, the Eichler houses epitomize construction techniques for modern homes, and the piece explores the tract home’s iconic role in California architecture and history.

Using the expansive, impenetrable facades as projection screens, the videos show homeowners moving about inside, as they would normally be seen through the translucent glass walls facing their backyards. The projections are spaced throughout the neighborhood, activating a few houses, and implicating any of the tracts’ other 90+ homes as a possible projection sites, imagining the lives within.

The event aims to create a casual evening of self-directed exploration through the neighborhood, a chance to bring out the neighbors and public for a voyeuristic stroll through a Modernist paradox of isolation and openness.

For directions and details click here.

This event is part of Machine Project’s Field Guide to L.A. Architecture.

Machine Project’s Greatest Hits DVD Release Screening

EVENT : Machine Project DVD release screening
Thursday, September 12th, 8pm

Join us at the Downtown Independent for a screening of selected pieces from our DVD, featuring some of our favorite performances from 2010-2012. Videos screened may include pizza, babies, psychics, trapdoors, an opera for dogs, plants on vacation, amplified tea kettles, some interesting new directions in drag makeup, and simultaneous aerobics and butter making.

We will also be joined by some performers from said video selections including Emily Lacy, ing, Jimmy Fusil, and maybe a French bulldog in a blond wig.

Doors open at 8pm, with the program beginning at 8:30. This event is free of charge, or $10 with a newly-minted DVD. Additional amenities include air conditioning, beer for sale on-site, and luxurious theater seating. Suitable for a night out alone, with your friends, or with your grandparents.

Please note! This event takes place during Downtown’s art walk, so street parking will be challenging. Garage and lot parking are available at 233 South Main Street, or consider taking public transit. (The Independent is located near several bus lines on Broadway and Spring, as well as the subway and trains at Union Station.) Directions to the Independent and more information are here.

Two New Videos

ARCHIVE : Hafosafo Chorus & – Jessica Cowley and Bennett Williamson
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to sing Sweet Caroline while standing on a busy Los Angeles street corner, wonder no more! We present to you documentation of perhaps our most cumbersomely-named event ever. (And if you’re in the market for fate-prediction services, click on to have the quality of your day foretold by a digital version of the Happy Foot / Sad Foot sign.)

Hafosafo Chorus & by Jessica Cowley and Bennett Williamson from machine project on Vimeo.

ARCHIVE : Everyone Will Be Here Now But Me – Jacqueline Gordon
Jacqueline Gordon’s Everyone Will Be Here Now But Me allowed visitors to explore a four part sound installation after hours inside the offices of the Los Angeles Food Center — occasionally with the aid of binaural microphones monitored through sculptural ears.

Everyone Will Be Here Now But Me, by Jacqueline Gordon from machine project on Vimeo.

Both of these events are part of Machine Project’s Field Guide to L.A. Architecture.

Machine this Week in LA and NYC, plus our upcoming DVD screening

EVENT : Hatch Chile Potluck
Thursday, September 5th, 8pm-10pm

You’re invited to pick up Hatch green chiles at the Machine Project storefront on Tuesday, September 3rd from 1pm-6pm and Wednesday, September 4th from 11am-3pm and 5pm-7pm. Then, bring a chile-centric dish to share at our potluck on Thursday, September 5th at 8pm to celebrate the changing of seasons with dishes that may include chile stew, chile chili, chile rellenos, or enchiladas, plus tortillas, beer, and musical accompaniment.

Thursday, September 5th, 6th, and 7th, 8pm

Emily Mast’s B!RDBRA!N will kick off our year-long project with the Rauschenberg Project Space in New York City. Seven performers ages 8 to 68 will perform a series of vignettes that expose the problematic nature of communication. Tickets are free, but space is limited! Click here to reserve your seat.

NEXT WEEK : Machine Project DVD Release Screening
September 12th at 8pm

Join us at the Downtown Independent for a screening of selected pieces from our DVD, featuring some of our favorite performances from 2010-2012. Videos screened may include pizza, babies, psychics, trapdoors, an opera for dogs, plants on vacation, amplified tea kettles, some interesting new directions in drag makeup, and simultaneous aerobics and butter making.

Machine this Week: August 28th – September 1st

EVENT : Collaborations with Electricity-Producing Bacteria
Thursday, August 29th, 8pm

Artist Mick Lorusso will come to us from Mexico City to speak about his projects with Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs). MFCs contain bacteria that have the ability to release a small current of electricity while they decompose organic matter. After the talk, Lorusso will give a short demonstration on how to set up a simple MFC, using only basic materials like mud and sugar.

EVENT : Max Factor’s Hollywood and the Wonderful Invention of Pan-Cake Make-Up
Friday, August 30th, 8pm

Sasha Archibald will give an illustrated talk on make-up in early cinema (1910-1940) and cosmetic pioneer Maksymilian Faktorowicz. This is the first event for Quarterly, an occasional series of Machine Project events organized in conjunction with Cabinet, the quarterly arts and culture magazine based in Brooklyn, New York.

WORKSHOP : Experimental Casting Workshop
Saturday, August 31st & Sunday, September 1st, 1-5pm

In this two-day workshop, students will pair traditional and non-traditional mold-making to create work that is first classical and then distorted. Make life casts and silicone molds of found objects, learn to cast with wax, plaster, and resin, and then push each material past its conventional use to achieve curious and surprising results. There are only a couple spots left in the workshop, so register now!

Registration is $105 for Machine members and $120 for non-members. Visit the following link for more information about the class, and to sign up:

EVENT : Aaron Kunin reading & Harry Dodge screening
Sunday, September 1st, 8pm

Poet Aaron Kunin will read some of his poems for us, possibly out of his most recent book Grace Period, a collection of aphorisms, sketches, and fragments. Following Aaron’s reading, we will host the Los Angeles premiere of Harry Dodge’s recent video, THE ASS AND THE LAP DOG (or Maladie du Pays), which focuses on problems of transposition, or of flawed translation —of being ill-equipped, untrained, displaced, not “passing” — proposed in part as a type of homesickness.

Two New Videos

ARCHIVE : Wash – ing
Ing presents “Wash” – an immersive underwater sound installation at the Maranatha High School swimming pool. The audience is encouraged to swim and explore an underwater viewing room, with sound channeled through speakers installed both above and below the surface. Starting with a single, loud, echoing note, ING slowly traverses the installation trailing fabric and adding layers of sound and feedback to the composition.

Wash – ing from machine project on Vimeo.

This event is part of Machine Project’s Field Guide to L.A. Architecture.

ARCHIVE : Odyssey Odyssey by Johanna Kozma
Odyssey Odyssey took place 22 times over two weeks, in a Honda Odyssey circling the Echo Park Neighborhood of Los Angeles. An audience of two joined Odysseus in his escape from Kalypso in this performance of Homer’s Odyssey. In case you couldn’t get tickets to this event, this is a close approximation of actually being there — get prepared for 19 minutes of an epic bro throwdown in a minivan.

Odyssey Odyssey by Johanna Kozma from machine project on Vimeo.

This event is part of Machine Project’s Field Guide to L.A. Architecture.

Machine this Weekend: August 23rd – 25th

EVENT : Bollywood’s Biggest Films and Voices
Friday, August 23rd, 8pm

Join us for a screening of film music videos from Bollywood’s golden era. Numbers by Kishore, RD Burman, Rafi, Mukesh and more will be projected on the big screen, and then supplemented with live song performances, analysis, and historical/political insight by Rajen Sukhadia and Robin Sukhadia. We promise gregarious song and dance, whimsical musical arrangements, gaudy colors, and extremely melodramatic love scenes… all of this, of course, without any kissing on screen. Bring the kids!

WORKSHOP : Indian Classical Tabla and Vocal Workshop
Saturday, August 24th, 2-5pm

Robin and Rajen Sukhadia will lead an in-depth three hour workshop focused on the raga and tala (melody and rhythm) of north Indian classical music. Through recitation and hands-on playing of tabla bols, students will learn about the structure of the drum, basic compositions, and posture. Singing exercises will expose students to the basics of the sargam (melodic scale), and how to adapt scales in basic ragas. Tabla pairs will be available for participants to use. This class is suitable for absolute beginners as well as intermediate students, and all ages are welcome!

Registration is $25 for members / $30 for non-members. Visit the following link for more information about the class, and to sign up:

EVENT : Member Services: cool stuff we saved for people who are willing to support us financially because we love all of you but seriously we have to pay the rent
Sunday, August 25th, 2-7pm

This Sunday, we’re holding a members-only platinum lounge version of the stuff we’re just too busy to do for the general public: Ben Benjamin will analyze your handwriting, Colin Dickey will analyze the bumps on your head, Fol Chen will provide personal and unique music just for you, Mark Allen will draw your spirit animal, and Paul Fraser will provide an improvised soundtrack to your tarot card reading by Malisa Humphrey. We’ll also have snacks, drinks, a photo booth, a sneak preview of Machine’s upcoming dramatic transformation into a haunted cavern, and lots of good vibes. If you’re a member, you can RSVP here by entering the super secret password we sent you.

But if you’re not a member, don’t despair — it’s not too late! You can become a member here and get access to Member Services (as well as advance tickets to performances, discounts on workshops, invites to special events like this one, and a tax deduction) for as little as $10 a month or $64 a year.

EVENT : A Report on an Expedition to the Arctic Archipelago of Svalbard
Sunday, August 25th, 8pm

Colin Dickey, recently having returned from a two-week sea voyage aboard the barkentine Antigua, sailing around the Arctic Archipelago of Svalbard, in the Polar Sea, in part on behalf of Machine Project in Los Angeles, will report on his findings, his discoveries, and his adventures; including an encounter with an abandoned Russian coal mine, a beach known only as Blubber Town, and numerous fjords, reindeers, beluga whales, and many other fantastical adventures.

Machine this Weekend: August 17th – 18th

Join us for a reverb- and delay-filled All-Echo Weekend, as part of the Echo Park Rising festival.

WORKSHOP : Build Your Own Cigar Box Spring/Slinky Reverb Unit
Saturday, August 17th, 2-6pm

This one day workshop will teach you how to build a small and portable spring reverb unit for use in your home studio, with your guitar amp, or with anything else you’d like to add more boing to. You’ll leave the class not just with your reverb unit, but with basic soldering skills and the know-how to make small amps and preamps. Sign up now — registration closes Wednesday!

Registration is $85 for members / $100 for non-members. Visit the following link for more information about the class, and to sign up:

EVENT : My Dinner with Ezra
Saturday, August 17th, 8pm

Join us for a screening of the classic 1981 Wallace Shawn film My Dinner with Andre, as filtered through Ezra Buchla’s brain and an echo machine through which he will feed the movie’s audio and then process in accordance to his reactions to the film. Come for some or all of the two-hour movie, and feel free to bring your own dinner to eat during the performance.

EVENT : Echo Panel
Sunday, August 18th, 4pm

An informal group discussion with Los Angeles-based artists Nate Page, Dawn Kasper, Luke Fischbeck, and three specially-invited guests, in which all speech is delayed three seconds — just long enough for every prompt to become an interruption, and for the speaker to be perpetually embarrassed by the sound of their own voice. You are invited to come prepared with questions for the panel, who will follow their own agenda of topics that don’t demand immediate attention.

EVENT : ‘Coolest Sound Ever’ and Other Search Terms
Sunday, August 18th, 6pm

Bennett Williamson will present and lightly host a short mix of found YouTube videos that documents humanity’s numerous and mildly successful attempts to capture auditory phenomena on consumer grade video equipment and cell phones. From the mountains to the valleys, from the gongs to the Disney cruise horns, from the air raid siren enthusiasts to the castle cistern free jazz, this mix brings us close listening for the short attention span.

EVENT : HaFoSaFo Chorus &
Sunday, August 18th, 7pm

Join us for a celebration of the duality of both existence and Los Angeles’ favorite anthropomorphic feet. We will meet at Machine Project then process together down Sunset Boulevard to the base of the Happy Foot Sad Foot sign, where Jessica Cowley will lead a public space singalong that will oscillate between happy and sad songs. Songbooks will be provided, and the tone-deaf and singing-phobic are welcome.

This event serves as the official launch of, Bennett Williamson’s website that presents a faithfully recreated 3-D animation of the local icon. This single-serving website provides fate-prediction services for users outside of the greater Echo Park / Silver Lake area, and serves as digital life insurance for the populist landmark.

This event is part of Machine Project’s Field Guide to L.A. Architecture.

All weekend

DeepSound is a high-bandwidth acoustic recording, free-falling system designed by David Barclay to profile ambient noise from the surface of the ocean to depths of 9 km. DeepSound has been to the bottom of the Tongan and Mariana Trenches, and has likely produced the deepest recordings ever made. A selection of these recordings will be playing on the brand new Machine Project bathroom speaker during all our events this weekend.

PLUG-IN : The Echoes of Machine Project
Available for download Saturday, August 17

On Sunday, August 11th, Josh Forbes and Jacqueline Gordon recorded the sound of a popping balloon in Machine Project. Using convolution reverb, this sound will be transformed into an acoustic model of our storefront gallery, then made into a plugin. Said plugin will be available for download on Saturday, August 17th so you, too, can impart the acoustics of Machine Project onto your own recordings.

RESEARCH : Call for Echo Locations

Echo Park, a landscape of heights, vistas and tunnels, is also a place of echoes. It is allegedly named after the natural phenomenon of voices bouncing back from the empty reservoir and hills that would become Echo Park Lake and Sunset Blvd. With over a century of development and landscaping, these first echoes are gone, but the name remains. Where are the echoes of yesterday and today? Want to go on an echo hunt? Contact Erin Schneider at with your thoughts. Research will culminate in a group sourced map and tour of the current echo locations of Echo Park with Machine Project.