Shot Calling: Telemarketing
- Words: Colin Strandberg
"I read the phonebook like a novel when I was a kid," says Alexi Morrissey, a conceptual artist based in Pittsburgh. While Morrissey, a former graffiti artist from Boston, was searching for a hotel-style wake-up call service, he discovered robotic dialing–suddenly, all his attention was turned back to the phone. Wake Up Call,, an online project created by Morrissey and Damien Miller, allows users to choose from over 70 audio artworks, and have that work delivered to any phone number. The recordings range from straight-up music (including acoustic bluegrass jams from Nashville's David Long and electronic music from Creation is Crucifixion's Nathan Martin) to poetry, sound art, and anti-Bush cheerleading. Even its crank-call side is artistic: In homage to John Giorno's Dial-a-Poem, the project's calls appear to come from Manhattan's Museum of Modern Art.
Wake Up Call is not just an art delivery system or a utilitarian service, but a repurposing of technology; it takes a modern inconvenience and turns it into something desirable. "People don't like the fact that their telephone allows others to take advantage of them," says Morrissey. "But people like cellos and poetry. This is the robotic call that you want to get."
- FeatureReal Talk: DVS1 on Respect, Photography on the Dancefloor, and the Battle Between Art and Entertainment
- GearDntel Shares Five Essential Pieces from His Home Studio
- NewsAphex Twin Talks 'Syro,' Gear, '90s Rave Culture, and More in Extensive New Interview
- PodcastSimian Mobile Disco
- NewsThe Lowdown: This Week's XLR8R Top 10 with DVS1, Aphex Twin, Dntel, and More
- September 18: New Forms Festival 2014 with Oneohtrix Point Never, Hieroglyphic Being, Helena Hauff, Madlib, and More
- September 24: Decibel Festival with Marcel Dettmann, KiNK, FaltyDL, John Roberts, Steffi, Simian Mobile Disco, and More
- October 15: Amsterdam Dance Event with Four Tet, DJ Koze, Jon Hopkins, Karenn, Ben UFO, Floating Points, MCDE, Talaboman, and More
XLR8R Downloads Player