DaDa spill

The title of this event refers to the term: ‘data spill’ – a security breach – the intentional or unintentional release of secure information to an un-trusted environment.

‘Dada’ is the name of an art/literary movement that originated in reaction to the horrors of World War 1.  Dada relies on intuition, nonsense and irrational thought in order to search for sense in a seemingly senseless universe.

We propose to blend the two ideas, to create a massive DaDa spill.

Collaboratively developed and produced by

Mau Schoettle and Kate Hamilton


Part 1: Intake and Identity Release and Protection

Part 2: The Enterprise Zone

Part 3: Wrench

Part 4: Banquet

Part 5:  The Whistle is Blown

Welcome to the cavern of bureaucracy!

Participants: Actors, Designers, and Support personnel

conet project sound piece designer: Jeff Mullan

data girl: Chelsea Culpepper

data boy: Aaron Lockhart

option: Joey Alessi       alt: Nate Schoettle-Greene

the phishing man: Peter Mitchell

the shredder: Shabbat Rusciolelli

docX (seamstress): Nancy Graham

data sifter (knitter): Jenny Lee Fowler

woman 1 (Wrench): Caroline Osborn

woman 2 (Wrench): Alissa Cordeiro

ghost soldier and singer (Wrench): Jessica Goldring

(Pont de C, song by Francis Poulenc, words by Louis Aragon)

playwright (Wrench): Elana Greenfield

director (Wrench): Charlotte Meehan (Sleeping Weazel)

sound designer (Wrench): Patrick Rashleigh

amazing, talented intern: Chelsea Culpepper

photographers: Eric Johnson, Cindy Furlong

videographer: Theo Cote

baker: Stacey Schaffer

icing word printer: Laura Johansen

inventor of ‘Unicorn’, 3-D icing printer: Richard Johansen, PhD.

fabricators of garments/props: Hamilton and Schoettle, with help from  Chelsea Culpepper

DaDa spill draws on the rich and crazy history of mines in the Hudson Valley.  The mines of Rosendale began as a geological layering of dolostone made of the compressed bones of billions of tiny sea creatures.  The mining industry was active from 1830 through the mid-1950’s.  Nineteenth century miners excavated many square miles of limestone to make cement to build cities.  In the 20th century, there was a widespread move to fill the voids of former mines with high-security vaults for government and corporate data storage.  During the cold war, many mines were also developed into luxury bomb shelter housing for corporate and government leaders.  Some mines were also used for mushroom and trout farming.

Part 1: Intake and Identity Protection

Crowd participants will create identity forms for secure storage in the mine.

Paper clerical worker garments and accessories:  Actual cloth uniforms were cut up and reduced to pulp. The pulp was formed into paper sheets, which were sewn back together to make paper facsimiles of the original garments.  Workers will wear original and facsimile garments.

Wearable paper helmets: Many crowd participants will wear paper helmets with lights to illuminate the meaning of document storage and security.  These helmets are made from a mix of recycled phone books, photocopies and hand-made paper (abaca, cotton, flax).  Straps: handmade paper printed with collages of mine related maps, plans and directions.

Furniture spill: The mine expels domestic artifacts of identity.

Sound piece: A layered, aural landscape of Conet project recordings.

Part 2: The Enterprise Zone

The Phishing Man: The deceitful fisherman trolls for personal information in the Internet Sea.

The Shredder: The itinerant timekeeper bears the burden of data excess.

The Shredder is inspired by a local 19th C. historical figure, ‘The Leather Man’.  For years, this itinerant person walked a regular circular route, spoke almost no words, and took shelter in caves on his route.  He was as regular as a clock.  The shingled costume was built using paper components created at WSW, consisting of pulp made from recycled phone books, letters, craft paper, cardboard, and a mix of abaca/cotton/flax fiber paper pulp.

Rolo-Dada poem (the shredded mine files): A crowd project DaDa poem will be made by handing rolodex texts to the Shredder for her to speak.

Re-docx: The identity seamstress converts and extracts multiple docx to save as new docx.  New identities are strung out to dry and saved for all eternity in the mine.  Her wig is a mix of historical Dada movement texts, mine research and corrugated-box dreads.

Data Sifter: The knitter stays safe and productive with secure EMF blocking hat, RDIF blocking booster bag and anti-static skirt as she works on a magnetic-tape craft project.  She knits cassette tape together into an aural word-shawl.

Part 3:  Wrench (a play)

Part 4: A Banquet to Delete Cookies

Part 5:  The Whistle is blown and the Shredder leaves the mine.

We are deeply grateful to the local businesses that helped sponsor this event with donations and publicity.  Please help us thank them by doing business with them!

R&F Handmade Paints, Codhill Press, Greene Realty, Artists Work Space, P&T Surplus, True Value of New Paltz, Inc, PDQ Printing, Home Depot, Catskill Art Supply, Women’s Studio Workshop and the Deep Listening Institute.

A huge thank-you to Anne Gorrick (president) and Gayle Grunwald of the Century House Historical Society, for their protection and stewardship of the mine and its historical archives.

This event could not happen without the productive residency period we were granted by the Women’s Studio Workshop (WSW) in Rosendale.  Thank you Women’s Studio Workshop!

Thanks to Lisa Alt, David Appelbaum, Scott Christianson, Matthew Greene, Mary Hark, Julie Hedrick, Karen Hendrickson, Drew Herman, the Libraries and Librarians of New Paltz, Rosendale, Kingston and NYC, Judy Mage, Larry Morton, Autumn Seguin, Rickie Solinger, St. Ann’s School, Tona Wilson, and many, many anonymous souls.

Thank You to the many volunteer participants, an amazing group of talented artists, actors, musicians, sound designers, writers, directors and artisans, who have made this event happen. Without them, the mine would be dark and quiet today. 

We hope this Dada spill sheds light on overlooked facts and reminds you to search for meaning beyond the assumed surface.

We invite you to contribute to this investigation, in your own way.  More to come………….

Support and comments are welcome!

Not responsible for direct, indirect, incidental or consequential damages resulting from any defect, error or failure of this DaDa spill.


The Century House Historical Society     Visit the facebook page.  Become a member.  Snyder Estate Museum, open on Sundays 1-4pm, until Sept 1.