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Category: [3]texts & Interviews

REVERSO: ARTES, TECNOLOGIA, PENSAMIENTO CRITICO, ACCION POLITICA

http://www.reverso.org

ANTICUERPOS DE VIGILANICA Y CONTROL
una tecno-guerrilla del cuerpo post-queer de

______REVERSO____Jaime del Val & Olinto

ahora online___documentación completa en:

www.reverso.org/Anticuerpos-microdanzas.htm

TEXTOS – IMÁGENES – VIDEOS…………

ANTIBODIES OF SURVEILLANCE & CONTROL
a tecno-guerrilla of the post-queer body

by

______REVERSO____Jaime del Val & Olinto

now online__full documentation in:

www.reverso.org/Antibodies-microdances.htm

>>>TEXTS – IMAGES – VIDEOS…………

www.reverso.org

TEXT: Review of Net Art in Colombia: It’s Ugly and Doesn’t like the Cursor, by Eduardo Navas

This text is published in collaboration with Latinart.com; originally published on March 5, 2008.

Curator: Juan Devis
Banco de la República – Museos de Arte y otras colecciones
September 5, 2007 to March 5, 2008
http://www.artenlared.org/

The exhibition Net Art in Colombia: It’s Ugly and Doesn’t Like the Cursor curated by Juan Devis consists of online projects developed by Colombian artists who approach the Internet as a medium worthy of aesthetic exploration, as well as a tool of dissemination. While some members of online new media communities in different parts of the world might consider the term “net art” historically and geographically specific, as it becomes obvious in this exhibition, the term is still at play in online culture with diverse interests, and it need not be considered part of the past. Devis contextualizes the exhibit as an expanding discourse driven by conceptual preoccupations closely tied to political interests.

Devis took two years to organize this exhibition for Colombia’s Bank of the Republic, being aware that he has not lived in Colombia for many years; he currently resides in Los Angeles. This reality provides him, simultaneously, with critical distance and cultural insiderism that he has utilized to choose critical work which at times is aesthetically pleasing; although, as the title of the exhibition implies, aesthetics is not the primary preoccupation of all the artists. The result is a carefully selected survey that reflects on the politics of Colombian culture.

The exhibition, which is inspired by an early net project titled Neme: It’s Ugly and Doesn’t Like the Cursor (2000) by Santiago Ortiz is divided into six categories: “software art”, “open source and copyleft”; “mapping, crawling and remixing”; “networks and cities”; “transmissions”; “uploading death” and “play with me”. The themes frame the critical practice of Colombian artists who use new media technology and established critical models to develop work that is relevant to their own reality.

For instance, Slow (2006) by Andrés Burbano, Camillo Martinez and Gabriel Zea is an online resource dedicated to support the development of projects with the use of open source software such as Pure Data, Processing, Open Office, and the well-known browser, Firefox. Upon entering the website, one of the most interesting areas for the online user may be the archive of e-mails that have been exchanged by people invested in learning how to use free software; here, one notices the tensions that develop in online communities. While this may be common in various areas of the world, the e-mail archive provides a specific window to a community of South America.

Other artists who are part of the exhibition use the Internet as a vehicle for dissemination, specific to national politics. Devis has dedicated the section “networks and cities” to Colombian networked practice. Popular de Lujo (2003) by Juan Esteban Duque, Roxana Martínez, and Esteban Ucrós is an online resource that publishes texts and organizes conferences for Colombian communities, designed to bring together diverse groups that would otherwise remain segregated; in similar fashion Bogowiki (2004) by Alejandro Forero Cuervo is a member driven resource where people living in Bogota can update and create articles relevant to their locality. Much like all other wikis, this one relies on the contribution of the community to develop interesting articles about places throughout the city.

The investment in political work is a link between the city and networked culture in the project Radio Fantasmas (2002) by Leonardo González, Alejandro Quintero, and Carlos Osuna. The project consists of scheduled radio broadcasts that the collective organizes in different parts of Colombia promoting the use of emerging technologies, aimed to spark an interest in diverse groups. Their ultimate goal is to travel to various parts of Colombia as well as other countries of South America to introduce radio broadcasting and other emerging media, and in this way be able to promote a critical approach to particular realities.

A critical approach is the pivotal element in Vanishing Point (2005) by Mauricio Arango and Tricolor v7 (2007) by Cynthia Lawson Jaramillo; both projects entertain the role of journalism in the everyday. In Vanishing Point, users can access news articles from different parts of the world, and in Tricolor v7, they encounter a newsfeed focused on the politics of Colombia that takes the shape of the Colombian flag; the feed is updated every six minutes. These projects are direct reflections on the ongoing influence of news media, in the politics of the country as well as the world.

Violence, which has been part of Colombia for decades due to drug trafficking as well as instabilities in the governmental and educational systems, is by no means absent in this exhibition. Devis has chosen polemical works that touch on the harsh reality that Colombia currently lives. Two projects that stand out for their audacity and blunt acknowledgment of ignorance and indifference as major cultural problems are Sida/ Aids (2005) by Santiago Echeverry, and Death 30 Times (Muerte en Treinta Tiempos) (2007) by Claudia Salamanca. Sida/Aids consists of an e-mail received by the artist in which he was told that he contracted Aids when he had sex with a man supposedly named George Tower. The e-mail informs Echeverry that he got what he deserves and that he should think twice before going to bed with others. The animation takes key terms from the e-mail message, which, when the user mouses-over, reveal other words that contradict or complement the content. The end result is a psychological play on the hate mail, which can be read as a commentary on the necessity to educate people about Aids. Death 30 Times remixes video footage of the Mayor of the City of Roble who made a plea to the President of Colombia, Álvaro Uribe. The Mayor was given 30 seconds to talk about education, but, instead, he chose to declare publicly that he had received a death threat. Apparently, nothing was done about this, and thirty days later the Mayor was killed. Salamanca takes a structural approach and remixes the thirty seconds into thirty sections in her two video remixes. As Devis notes, it is peculiar that it was also thirty days later that the Mayor was killed. This video is a direct commentary on the politics of Colombia—and the indifference that is at play in the government. One has to wonder why nothing was apparently done to protect the Mayor, based on the argument posed by Salamanca.

Perhaps the most striking realization of the exhibition is the fact that some of the participants are not necessarily artists. Projects like Bogowiki, and Radio Fantasmas do not depend on the art institution for validation. And as Devis himself acknowledges in his essay, artists such as Tupac Cruz, who developed, Vallenato Tántrico, which consists of a series of animations meant to be remixed live for an audience, did not expect to be included in an art exhibition at all.

Along these lines of crossing over to unexpected paradigms we encounter the last category “Play With Me,” in which the current aesthetics of gaming, mainly driven by consumer and entertainment culture, are active. Only in this case, the works are not actual video games. An example is Play With Me (2004) by Rafael Puyana. In his project the user can manipulate different parts of a male figure. One can change the color of the eyes, hair, as well as his sweater. Gaming is questioned here due to the simplicity of the interface: there is no point other than to explore how far one can manipulate the subject and because of the limitation of interactivity, one inevitably questions the point of the project, and of gaming, itself. Another example within these lines is Sounds and Energies (Sonidos y Energias) (2003) by Santiago Ortiz. Here, the same principle of playing with simple objects are in effect as well, only the objects no longer resemble a person, but platonic solids, or simple geometrical shapes, which are manipulated to create soundscapes. Some of the projects by Ortiz resemble mixing consoles, which the user can manipulate to create ephemeral music compositions. Overall, many of the interfaces developed by Ortiz feel like testing grounds for more complex interfaces. And this allows the user to become aware of the building blocks necessary to create gaming environments like Second Life.

Other gaming projects included in the exhibition are overtly political. Tactics of Irregular War (Tacticas de guerra irregular) (2004) by Juan Ospina González AKA Piter Wilson, for example, uses the language of gaming to comment critically on the violence in Colombia. Being aware of the abstraction provided by games like Backgammon, Checkers, Chess as well as card games, the artist decided to create an interface in which the users, if they are to play to win, must participate in scenarios simulating massacres, kidnappings and cold murders.

The concept of net art worth exploring solely as a medium striving for autonomy may not be the main subject of preoccupation of Colombian artists—at least, this is the premise one senses from Devis’s selections. Viewers are inclined to argue that the participants consider the Internet primarily a tool, which they realize will redefine the way their message is understood as part of online activity, and in this way Devis’s curatorial premise is reaffirmed, while also exposing a paradox that takes place in art practice recurrently: as emerging activities or aesthetics attain recognition in cultural institutions such as the arts, they also begin to lose their immediate effect in the community or locality where they started, and find refuge in a rhetorical space, where the privileged few can ponder upon aesthetics with specialized language. This has been a constant preoccupation of artists in the past, as can be argued following criticism of previous practices such as Conceptual Art, for instance, by art critics like Alexander Alberro and Blake Stimson in their book Conceptual Art: A Critical Anthology (1999). Stimson, in particular questions the actual relationship of conceptualism to the real world, as well as the real change that conceptual artists, specifically from the New York scene brought to the arts during its heyday in the seventies, because most of conceptual works were developed in or for the white cube. This preoccupation is relevant to the exhibition curated by Juan Devis mainly because he claims a connection to a conceptual paradigm in his approach to the online projects. However, the situation is quite different in the case of Devis. The participants, for the most part, are not in the white cube at all. And their work has already attained cultural value—prior to the exhibition—by the fact that communities participate in the ongoing development of their projects. In other words, unlike the preoccupation of artists who try to be part of the white cube because they consider doing so the only way to be recognized culturally (which is as Stimson explained was expected of art practices like conceptual art), participants in Devis’s net art exhibition, while certainly having no problem with being acknowledged by the artworld, appear to understand that the true validation of their work lies on whether the communities they are targeting actually contribute to the projects; to further complicate the matter, if the artist’s ultimate goal is to be part of the artworld, the only way that they can achieve this is if, and only if their projects are successful outside the artworld, to then crossover. This is true of works like Bogowiki as well as open source projects like Slow. But to be fair, while some participants may not be preoccupied to eventually be accepted in some form by the art institution, others do appear to be interested in assimilation; this is more of a personal issue. Only time will tell how effective these projects are now that they enter the discourse of art internationally thanks to their availability online. Furthermore, the projects demand respect for Colombian culture from those who are viewing the online exhibition from the outside, and exposes how preoccupations about art practice that have been at play in other areas of the world need not apply to Colombia, although it is evident that some interests do crossover.

What is most evident in the exhibition is the interest by artists to bring together art and new media as powerful partners to create a space where critical reflection can reach diverse people across classes. Indeed, I feel that I’ve learned a lot about Colombian culture by spending time with the selections featured in this exhibition, and I did not need to travel to Colombia to understand the interests and the messages that the participants are interested in communicating. I would certainly learn more if I were able to visit Colombia while contemplating the works, but the sensitivity with which the online exhibition is curated facilitates better understanding of the complexity of culture in Colombia, not only in terms of their own politics and history, but also in terms of global development. The exhibition aims to debunk myths and stereotypes; and Devis successfully contributes to online practice that is invested in appropriation of material in the name of critical reflection, as opposed to mindless consumerism supported by data mining and other forms of online activities where the user is constantly asked to contribute personal information in order to become a more efficient consumer.

NANOTECNOLOGIA, NUEVO ESPACIO PARA LA RESPONSABILIDAD, por Diego Cerda Seguel

(Spanish only)

This text is released in collaboration with Escaner Cultural, an online magazine based in Santiago de Chile. It was originally published on June, 23 2001.
diego.cerda.s@gmail.com

Fecha: 23/06/2001

Erik Drexler publicó en 1986, su libro Engines of Creation (Maquinas de creación), en el cual daba a conocer al mundo la más nueva revolución en ciencia y tecnología, la nanotecnología, no fue sino hasta 1993 que este fue traducido al castellano, dándonos acceso a su impactante revelación. Revelación puesto que lo que presenta está a la altura de una profecía, no obstante provenir del campo de la ciencia, pues plantea superar a la divinidad creadora y duplicar, si se quiere, la propia vida.

La nanotecnología es la ciencia encargada de desarrollar la factura de objetos a escala atómica y molecular. ¿Cómo? Mediante la frabicación en escala decreciente: Una máquina grande (un robot), fabrica una más chica, la cual a su vez fabrica una más pequeña, y así sucesivamente hasta llegar a máquinas del tamaño de moléculas, las cuales pueden replicarse o construir otras máquinas con otras funcionalidades. Y así como actualmente hay computadoras que dan instrucciones a robots para fabricar autos, nuevas computadoras más rápidas y más pequeñas (como prevé la ley de Moore), darán órdenes a nuevos robots más pequeños que una bacteria capaces de manipular átomos y moléculas para fabricar lo que la computadora les ordene, computadora-robot estarán al servicio de quiénes la posean. Con un desarrollo de al menos 20 años y presupuestos de investigación que bordean cifras superiores a los US$500 millones, se puede decir que ya hemos entrado a la era nanotecnológica. Esto a pesar de no darnos cuenta.

A partir de la capacidad de manipulación a escala nanométrica (mil millonésima de un metro), átomo por átomo y molécula por molécula, alcanzada hoy, es posible, por ejemplo, fabricar revestimientos para naves espaciales hechos de nanotubos de carbono, que son átomos de carbono enlazados sobre sí, que forman tubos de escala atómica, que mediante su acoplamiento pueden formar la estructura necesaria. El material así logrado equivale al diamante, en dureza y resistencia con la ventaja de que se le puede dar forma, así como controlar su elasticidad. Es decir se puede obtener de la nanotecnología lo que la naturaleza comprimió durante miles de milenios y mejorarlo.

Esta manipulación átomo por átomo y molécula por molécula es el resultado de la acumulación de conocimiento sobre la dimensión nanométrica, la que hasta hace poco tiempo era ignorada, el entender por ejemplo las cadenas de ADN de los billones de seres vivientes como un entrelazamiento molecular. O hacer una inversión semántica y decir que allí donde hay moléculas realizando una síntesis de desarrollo reproductivo en torno a cierta orden se encuentra la vida. Si ocupamos esta definición llegamos a estimar la acción de ciertas moléculas sintetizadoras como vida, es decir, se expande el rango de lo que debe ser considerado vida.

Puesto que las cadenas moleculares de ADN son finitas, aunque inmensas en sus detalles, aceptamos que el desarrollo de estas cadenas obedece a una orden propia a cada ser vivo, esta orden le permite extenderse en todas sus manifestaciones al ser específico, ojos de perro, garra de jaguar, respecto de su tipo; ser perro, ser jaguar en completitud, es decir tal como se le conoce hoy. Esas mismas cadenas de ADN son también las responsables de las mutaciones consecutivas que generación tras generación crean la deriva genética de las especies, como lo estableció el cura suizo Gregorio Mendel, la base de lo que hoy conocemos como evolución de las especies o darwinismo.

De la misma manera que las mismas encimas del perro y del jaguar sintetizan las proteínas de su alimentación y reducen agentes extraños, esas encimas también son entendidas como nanomáquinas hechas de ADN, es decir, están vivas, con funcionalidades específicas dentro de la otra máquina de ADN que son el perro o el jaguar. La eficacia del ADN para generar y autogenerar vida es sabida desde que reconocemos que de eso estamos compuestos, o como diría el padre de la nanotecnología, Eric Drexler: “si quieres ver una nanomáquina mirate al espejo”. Aunque ahora hemos visto que podemos duplicar esa eficacia alterando las reglas de la reproducción hembra / macho en la clonación, esto es: sobre una matriz viva.

La nanotecnología va más allá de la manipulación del ADN, de nuestros actuales genetistas, puesto que el trabajo de éstos se hace sobre matrices vivas, p. e.: la oveja. Más allá de la manipulación de partes de ADN vivo está la confección de simulaciones de vida, o de cualquier otra entidad funcional imaginable en cuatro dimensiones, a cualquier escala. En ese sentido se dice que las máquinas de ADN responden a un orden natural, las que estamos por ver serán artificiales.

NANOMÁQUINAS

El bacteriófago F4 (arriba en la imagen) es un virus que existe, es poco más grande que una molécula compuesta. Mide unos 500nm (nanometros), pero se comporta como una aguja hipodérmica autómata, que navega por el gigantesco nanoespacio de fluidos hasta que logra anclarse a la superficie de una bacteria, mucho más grande que el mismo (relación uno a mil), a la que le inyecta su información genética. La bacteria es el alimento de su progenie, que la consume por dentro, en un procedimiento que, para colmo, ha podido ser filmado en completitud. Semejante máquina, mediante la manipulación nanotécnica hoy en desarrollo puede ser copiada, o superada.

La simulación del clima para los pronósticos se realiza aplicando algoritmos fractales y en general recursos de software que simulan una realidad probable. Esto significa que con una cantidad mínima de órdenes computacionales se pueden desarrollar una cantidad finita, e infinita si se quiere, de operaciones que pueden simular, el comportamiento del clima. Si un fractal es una orden simple que desarrolla en la pantalla por ejemplo la simulación de un tornado, o del movimiento de las corrientes marinas, con la nanotecnología, de la misma manera que el fractal puede detallar el comportamiento de ese tornado a altas velocidades (suficientemente rápido para poder prever), se puede dar una orden a una serie de átomos o moléculas para que desarrollen cierto proceso, y al igual que como hacen las bacterias que corroen ciertas rocas y dejan tras de si oro sintetizado – bacterias que desde ahora deberíamos comprender como máquinas de minería de diseño natural – podremos ordenar a estos átomos que se entrelacen hasta formar cualquier cosa imaginable, con cualquier función imaginable.

Ya no es ciencia ficción, esa orden simulada en un ordenador puede ser el detalle de un plano en cuatro dimensiones para la factura de eso imaginable. Un dispositivo nanotecnológico podría ser una especie de semilla, digamos un cuesco de damasco, si uno planta ese cuesco en menos de un día tendrá un edificio nacido de él, este edificio, estará terminado y completo, podrá tener accesorios instalados, electrodomésticos y todo tipo de artículos para hacerlo habitable y cómodo.

Como se ve hemos superado la ciencia ficción.

NANOPOLÍTICAS

A pesar de ser bastante desconocido el hecho de la existencia de estos avances, las líneas de acción que usarán los administradores del mundo nanotecnológico ya están siendo establecidas, cientistas políticos, analistas de defensa, hombres de negocios, todos están atentos al próximo paso de la competencia. Las corporaciones privadas llevan años con inversiones en investigación y desarrollo y se mantienen en el máximo secreto respecto de sus objetivos y logros. Mantienen en secreto el mundo que nos espera, dado el tamaño de esta revolución tecnológica y el desconocimiento imperante es conveniente preocuparse.

Los potenciales económicos de la nueva tecnología son estremecedores si se considera que la producción de objetos a partir del ensamblado molecular será muy, muy barato. Las corporaciones que manejan hoy la economía mundial podrían ver amenazados sus privilegios y poder, si no fuera por que son ellos los que han administrado los fondos de la investigación. Lo que nos deja en una duda categórica sobre cómo se implementarán los avances tecnológicos.

Una nanotecnología desarrollada podría significar el fin de la miseria en el mundo, o una mayor concentración de poder en manos de quienes ya lo tienen. Dos alternativas opuestas, cuya resolución significará definir el mundo por venir.

Una perspectiva tercermundista no existe al respecto, la propia percepción de pobreza y dependencia impedirá desarrollos autónomos, la concentración del conocimiento en el primer mundo cierra el telón a esos avances y tan solo la curiosidad internauta, más un inglés básico podrán hacer pública la situación tecnológica que nos espera.

Quizás una buena manera de entender cómo ha de funcionar el mercado de esta nueva tecnología sea el poner la mirada en la situación de la industria químico- farmacéutica y su actitud respecto a la cura del SIDA: Precios tan altos que los que más los necesitan no pueden pagarlos, frente a lo cual países como Sudáfrica, Brasil o Tailandia han impulsado industrias farmacéuticas propias que pueden producir los mismos medicamentos (genéricos) a precios de fracción. La actitud de las corporaciones farmacéuticas es manifiestamente irresponsable, sin exagerar, al grado de la monstruosidad. ¿Tendremos que establecer laboratorios nanotecnológicos propios para evitar el deseo de lucro irresponsable? No sería extraño, la decisión de pasar por alto los derechos de patentes que han tomado estos países en el caso del SIDA, será posiblemente, o al menos debería serlo, una ley internacional, un derecho de los gobiernos que se tomen en serio que la actividad política es antes que nada responsabilidad, no para las corporaciones que los miman y chantajean, sino para los conciudadanos hoy por hoy a la deriva.

[1] Diego Cerda es Sociólogo.

INTERVIEW: Miya Masaoka, by Helen Thorington

This interview is republished in collaboration with Turbulence.org. It was released in Networked Music Review on 05/21/07. Only the text is reproduced here. To access audio and video as well as proper links related to this interview, please go to http://transition.turbulence.org/
networked_music_review/2007/05/21/
interview-miya-masaoka/

Miya Masaoka is a musician, composer and performance artist. She has created works for koto, laser interfaces, laptop and video and written scores for ensembles, chamber orchestras and mixed choirs. In her performance pieces she has investigated the sound and movement of insects, as well as the physiological responses of plants, the human brain, and her own body.

Helen Thorington: Miya, you were trained in Japanese court music as well as contemporary music and I understand have expanded on the playing techniques of the koto – first by using extended techniques, but more importantly, by building a Laser Koto. For those who don’t know, can you tell us about the koto and how you developed it? What is the Laser Koto and how does it work?

Miya Masaoka: Sometimes various events, thoughts and inspiration converge in particular ways, and evolve over a period of time, I would say this was the case for the Laser Koto. For many years I had been trying to develop ways of extending the koto electronically –and continue to do so— and along these lines I was an aritist in residence at STEIM in Amsterdam and worked with Matt Wright at CNMAT to develop ways of building an interface for real time processing and sampling using gestural controllers and other ways of capturing and modifying sound. We recorded and mapped 900 koto samples that could be accessed in various ways.

As for the array of light sensors on the Laser Koto, years before I had used an array of four infra red light beams across my body in insect performances, and also had used ultra sound beams across the length of the koto in Monster Koto to trigger and process sound. One direction this work turned, was recalling training in Gagaku, and the use of gestures in Gagaku, and how physical embodiment of sound was manifested in the movements of hands, arms and fingers, signaling the manner in which the music was to be perceived, the social class and regal nature that such gestures had the power of conveying. Eventually, the Laser Koto became the embodiment of the gestures alone. I coined the term “Japanese aural gesturalism” for the purpose of trying to describe this approach.

Donald Swearingen, a composer and instrument developer, built the array of light sensors, as well as custom faders. Oliver DiCicco built the laser mounting, both of which stand on tripods. The technology is very simple, and involves four light sensors and one infra-red sensor for continuous control. Then the hands break the beams, the samples are triggered, and the infra-red sensor, and process the samples in real time. I am currently building a new version of Laser Koto using the Arduino board, which is very inexpensive and relatively easy to use.

Helen: Your early performances like “What is the Difference between Stripping and Playing the Violin?” for electro-acoustic orchestra, erotic dancers and prerecorded tape from a symposium on the sex industry, were often controversial. What was your intent? Did the controversy help or hurt your career?

Miya: It’s hard for me to evaluate if some piece of work hurts or helps, but I must say that it isn’t something that I am concerned with, as my decisions to do a piece are not based on what helps or hurts. Perhaps I should pay attention to such things, but alas I have on blinders in that area. At the time, there was a serial killer of mostly prostitutes, and the killings were not receiving the kind of media press that there would have been if the women had been, say, middle-class women and in a different line of work. The piece strived to address these issues, and the commodification of music and sex, and to draw some parallels and trapezoids.

Helen: Your work for birds, planes and cello, where the cello plays “second fiddle” to the sound of airplanes and over 150 species of migratory and native birds makes me think that you really are interested in challenging and changing perceptions of what is, and isn’t, music. Is that your focus?

Miya: I think now there is a broader range of a listening experience, as sampling, Garage Band and YouTube, etc., are part of everyday experiences, and with the newly available technology, sound as a medium has become more accessible to everyone. In any case, there is a long history of the blurring of music and sound, from the Italian Futurists, musique concrete, to John Cage and the long tradition of walks listening to insects in Japanese culture. In “Birds, Planes and Cello“, there is a formal construct created by the flight schedule of the San Diego airport. As the planes increase their frequency from the early morning, they build up into a kind of crescendo and climax of air plane roar, which in turn the birds seem to respond to, with their bird roar as well. I would never have thought that the flight schedules would have such a compositional quality.

Helen: I have been impressed with your work with inter-species interactions. I wonder if you would tell us how you became interested in this and what made you think of other species as potential live performers?

cockroaches_legs.jpg Miya: Hmmm… I have always been interested in insects, the sounds of insects, and the hobby of having crickets as pets, and the way that social insects communicate and organize their societies in hierarchical structures. I was also thinking about the idea of the body, race and gender, and wanted to illustrate the body as a blank canvas upon which societal constructs are created and assigned. Cockroaches are social, not everyone’s favorite creature, and these from Madagascar make an incredible sound that sounds generated from a white noise filter. When I heard them, I immediately wanted to record their sounds and use them in a piece. Then I thought, why not use the actual bugs in the pieces, and have them create the composition with their movements? So when the roaches wander around on my body, while I’m lying on a table, their movements break the laser beams, and their amplified, pre-recorded sounds are heard in the space.

Helen: Sam Prestianni, writing in The New York Press, called you “The Queen of Bees”. How do you work in performance with a thousand honeybees? With Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches? With a Philodendron?

Miya: Wow, let me think about that. As for the bees, I collaborated with a bee keeper named Marc Mass who would bring his demonstration hive in an acrylic demonstration box that he brought to county fairs. We recorded the bees on my body in the studio, and had footage projected onto various walls in the space. The sound of the bees would be amplified from the acrylic hive. Occasionally, some bee would come right up to the microphone and solo really loud, and then there would be the hum of the hive. In some of these performances, I used software developed at the University of Montreal called B Software coincidentally, which was an early spatialization software. I was trying to create a hive environment where the audience was surrounded by the sounds of the bees moving around. Then I would play plucking sounds and buzzing sounds on the koto, and follow a score that included these various elements. There were many versions of the bee pieces, with many different and wonderful musicians participating as well.

Helen: Do you take a different approach with the Cockroaches than the honeybees? With the Philodendron than the Cockroaches? Tell us about the projects you’ve done with them?

pieces_for_plants.jpg Miya: Well, the Philodendron is a plant, and plant activity is more difficult to monitor, record, and make manifest to the the senses, eyes and ears than say, insect sounds and activity. But it can be done! With plants (see Pieces for Plants), and I also use many semi-tropical houseplants, the data sonification is trickier, as the plants in general tend to be more static, not as mobile, and seemingly to just be sitting there, when in fact, their physiological response to their environment is strong and immediate, approximating qualities of sentient beings. Compositionally, the challenge is to create interesting music from raw data. I tried to constantly and simultaneously alter the interactivity of the parameters of pitch, resonance, density rate of change so as to keep the sonified interactions with me and the plant dynamic and not predictable as the piece progresses. The question arises as to how much to mediate the data, and how much to keep the data close to the original output of the source, whether it’s plant, brain, or whatever else is getting monitored.

Helen:What is the audience’s reaction to your use of other species as performers?

Miya: It has varied widely. Everything from threats of a citizens’ arrest and picketing by an organized group that protested the use of “nudity and insects” at the University of Riverside, to total indifference, and everything in between.

Helen: On your website you mentioned your experience at Lincoln Center, when audience members returned again and again to be with the philodendron and talk about their experiences with plants. It made you realize that you “were brushing the surface of deeper questions — our complex role as humans in a diverse, inter-dependent biological environment, and the potential for communication with plants that has not yet been discovered.”

Do you think that your work with other species alters your audiences understanding of our relations with them? Is your interest primarily musical – in changing perceptions of what is, and isn’t, music — or are you hoping to suggest that the traditional practice of categorizing other species limits our understanding and our possible interaction with them?

Miya: Absolutely, my interest is musical first, or course, and in the course of events of pursing meaningful musical endeavors, trying to satisfy my curiosity related to sound, nature, societies, language and gesture. If there is a side effect that encourages a deeper way of thinking about ourselves as human beings and our inter-connectedness to our environment and planet, then that makes me very happy.

11masaoka_koto_below_sh.jpg

Helen: Do you plan to introduce another species into your music in the near future?

Miya: Not at the moment, but one never knows…

Helen: You’ve also composed works that use live and prerecorded brain waves, medical equipment including EKG, EEG, and fetal heart monitors. Tell us about the project, Naked Sounds, for instance, and how you used the body in it.

naked_asian_men.jpgMiya: I wanted the sounds of the human body to create a hidden orchestra of sounds… I contacted hospitals for donations of medical equipment, and I received an EKG machine, and two dopplers that amplified the sound of the blood coursing through the veins. I contacted David Rosenboom, the guru of bio-feedback in music for advice on brain monitoring equipment and methods. I also experimented with amplified stethoscopes, anything I could get my hands on. We had a “medical team” that consisted of Robi Kauker, Thomas Day, Gennifer Hirano, and I hope I’m not forgetting someone…t he patient whose body we harvested the sounds from was Saiman Li. I used various strategies with the brainwaves and sounds for the piece including: Superimposing the brainwaves over a Grand Staff, and having an ensemble, the SF Sound Ensemble, perform the score… also using a midi interpretation of the waves being generated by the patient, and finally, the raw sound from the micro-volts of the brain activity amplified and processed.

helen: What are your plans for the near future?

Miya: I’ve been fabricating surface mount LED’s (smaller than a grain of rice) and am designing an LED kimono with more than a thousand LED’s that can respond to the environment, almost like an organic being, and also like a soft, low resolution video display.

Helen: Where can our readers hear your music?

Miya: There are some downloads on my website, and also CD baby, and other places as well: www.miyamasaoka.com Thank you so much, Helen Thorington, for your interest in all this!

Helen: Thank you Miya!

TEXT: a minima:: feature, “Not-Art” by Antonio Cerveira Pinto

This PDF file is released in collaboration with a minima:: new media magazine, published in Spanish and English. It was previously republished in Net Art Review in August, 2005 For more information, please visit aminima.net.

Download text as PDF

I took the expression Not-Art from a Terry Atkinson essay on the possibility of a post-pictorialist, informational art practice that would have to be carried on by a new artist specimen, other than the one modeled upon the bleeding ear of Van Gogh. Significant parts of Terry’s essay were transcripted into this brief memo on the future of art in a world submitted to an expanding and pervasive cybernetic paradigm. […]

INTERVIEW & TEXT: Daniel Rozin, Mirror of the Soul, By Marco Mancuso

This text is republished in collaboration with Digicult.it. It was released in May 2005.

INTERVIEW: Mark Amerika, by Rick Silva


Image source: Realtime on Screen

This text is republished in collaboration with Rhizome.org. It was released in Rhizome Digest on 11/21/07 and appears here as it was originally posted.

+ [Rhizome] Editor’s Note: Rhizome originally planned a Summer of Books editorial project that would deliver a handful of reviews and interviews to your inbox, over the Summer of 2007. It turns out that people would rather play on the beach than review books in the warmer months, and the project evaporated like a summer dream. But this interview between new media artists Rick Silva (ricksilva.net) and Mark Amerika (markamerika.com) still cried out for publication.

Rick Silva: Where are you right now?

Mar Amerika: I’m in Falmouth, near Land’s End, Cornwall, UK. It’s the perfect location for my second feature-length “foreign film” as part of my Foreign Film Series. The first one, “My Autoerotic Muse” was shot in New York City on Central Park West. Muse was made with HDV technology, was seeded at Sundance two years ago, and is in the final stages of postproduction. This new one, “Immobilite,” is being shot entirely on mobile phone and is being seeded by the Tate Modern and the iRES research group at the University College Falmouth. Once you get on some of these country roads in Cornwall and start driving by these dramatic cliffs overlooking the vast sea, you realize why some say it feels like the absolute end of the Earth.

RS: Your new book META/DATA is a collection of your writings on the web over the last 15 years, why in book form and why now?

MA: Well, it’s only partly my web writings. META/DATA is a mix of writing that includes spontaneous artist theory, short fictions, scholarly investigations, and dialogues with other artists that I’ve been improvising over the last 15 years. Some of it has been previously published online, but a lot of it has also appeared in print. There are also collage-styled experimental essays pieced together from various keynote presentations and seminars I’ve delivered over the years.

One of the things I discussed with Joel Slayton who was then editor of the Leonardo Book Series, and Doug Sery at MIT Press, is that I felt like there was a lot of writing out there that was valuable for its techno-theoretical context and did a pretty good job of reporting on the emerging new media scene and the effects new media technology is having on the culture at large, but that it might also be valuable to publish a collection of writing by an artist who, while having a background in net art, is also a published novelist and experimental essayist, someone who could blur the difference between fiction, memoir, theory, conceptual art document, and scholarly writing. MIT has a reputation for publishing these kinds of collections with artists who come from other scenes like Carolee Schneeman, Robert Smithson, Vito Acconci, Martha Rosler, Mike Kelley, etc. Fortunately, they read my prospectus and early excerpts, and agreed to publish it. So I have been piecing together this!
book for the last few years. Because I’ve been moving around a lot and activating my “digital art personas” in many parts of the network art culture, the book is finding a diverse audience. For example, right now, the European VJ and live A/V scene seems to be attracted to it. I just heard from a colleague who will include it in their graduate course on World Literature. And of course, the net art world is likely to find it useful too.

RS: How does writing influence your artmaking and vice versa?

MA: Writing is where it all begins. Writing, for me, is like hacking into virtual space and shaping the world I live in. It can even be prophetic, as Burroughs says. Not in the sense of writing down “I will win the Lotto tomorrow” and then it happens (although that’s cool too — drinks are on me!). Rather, by intuitively tapping into the creative unconscious, one can oftentimes reveal an image of themselves in the world that they may have never visualized before. I can do this by writing. Others draw, or paint, or play sax.

Look at my character in GRAMMATRON, Abe Golam. GTRON turned ten years old this June. I wrote it as a multimedia hypertext in 1993-1997. The story of GTRON takes place way in the future and is partly about a cyborg-narrator (Golam) who was once part of a net art scene that collectively hacked itself into the mainstream art world and changed art history. But this was 1993, before anyone really had a clue that that would actually happen six or seven years later (I’m still waiting for the film “2000: The Year Net Art Broke”). Abe Golam, it ends up, was the first net artist, albeit a fictionalized version of one that precedes what we now know of as the early history of net art.

Of course, in my current Foreign Film Series, writing is still at the core of my project as the narrative is driven by the subtitles which reveal the disappearing persona (protagonist) who hovers over the scene. For example, in the first film, “My Autoerotic Muse,” this invisible protagonist obsesses over the web cam performance of a very well-to-do European writer who lives on Central Park West and uses her web cam performance as source material for her research. This is all revealed in the subtitles, even though we spend long moments throughout the film looking at her web cam image ourselves.

RS: You also have a background in filmmaking, could you talk about your use of (moving and still) image and text?

MA: As an undergraduate, I studied with Alain Robbe-Grillet, a major figure in the French Nouveau Roman literary movement and who also was then securing his reputation as an experimental filmmaker. He wrote very erotic books, was the principal collaborator on Resnais’ Last Year at Marienbad, touched off a wave of artist-generated theory, and his own films, like Glissements Progressifs du Plaisir, were very influential on my impressionable mind back then. At 19, I decided that I would leave the University of Florida, where I was studying creative writing and literature at the time, and move to L.A. to study film at UCLA so that I too could make my erotic art films. Very naive, yes? But I learned a lot while at UCLA and made some life-long friends including Nile Southern who has helped me direct the cinematography on the Muse film. It took me 25 years, but now I am making my foreign art films, although not as movies per se, rather, I see them as unique works of moving visual a!
rt that are adapting to the changes taking place in network culture. Most people who will be reading this interview know exactly what I am talking about, that is, what is the difference between cinema, digital narrative, net art, video art, VJing, and mobile blogging? Recognizing the differences while simultaneosuly blurring them into a hybridized art practice that I call “postproduction art” is where a lot of contemporary art and writing is shifting to these days. I have been working in all of these areas for the last 25 years and yes, there’s a difference in technology and even methodology between the genres and formats, but going back to your previous question, I am able to shift between these media and mediums quite fluidly because at root, I approach them as a writer, a hacker, a semiotic codeworker.

RS: Will Abe Golam be running for president in 2008?

MA: I have been consulting with him. I did a lot of his speechwriting and took on the press secretary duties for the 2004 election and found it gratifying work. I believed in his candidacy, thought he was the right avatar for the job, and felt deeply connected to the mission which was to oust the current administration and implant a virtual government. He’s in a position now where I think he can patiently wait and take his time deciding if he thinks his entry into the race would be best for the country. He could easily come in later, after all of the other announced candidates have essentially tired themselves out. He is well-positioned to take advantage of the netroots political environment to spread his memes and generate huge Facebook, Myspace, flash-mob, and meet-up support. It would be great if he did. But I also know that he’s enjoying his life outside of mainstream politics and may not want all of the attention that an active campaign would bring. That’s all I can say!
right now.

INTERVIEW: Virus / Body / Signal Transmissions. Interview with Jussi Parikka, by Ignacio Nieto

Jussi Parikka, author of Digital Contagions is interviewed by Ignacio Nieto.

Spanish text

[Ignacio Nieto]: I am very interested in the way virus is conceived as thought: as an abstract form that can auto-replicate itself on an environment, in an autonomous way, without considering the system of relations based on capitalism or in religion or in politics (usually as we are organized in the public and private sphere). Do you think that there is a possibility to translate those kinds of considerations for human relationships? Could you imagine or describe, a possible world, where bioelectronic devices attached to humans, or to other organic forms or to other generations of machines could exist with that kind of protocol?

[Jussi Parikka]: What interested me early on with this project (Digital Contagions) was how to think the virus in itself as a form of though, a vector, a mode of transmission and media. Instead of approaching it merely as a socially constructed metaphor that is fabricated in order to impose sense on the imperceptible events of the computer, it might be fruitful to approach the viral as carrier, a condensation point concerning much of the agenda concerning media in the age of networks. What is a perfect virus. An ideal medium, defined only by its abilities of infect, transmit and copy itself? This idea was of course picked up early on by the theories of the meme, which to my mind are more telling of the media technological changes of the late twentieth century than merely of the discussion relating to evolutionary cultural genes. So when Richard Dawkins suggested that perhaps culture works according to the idea of the selfish cultural gene, the meme, that is interested only in propagating itself, he proposed a very ahumanist vision of the media sphere, where later on for Susan Blackmore the Internet and the viral ecology are key examples of the copy machine mechanisms of the meme. In a way, they were of course giving a scientific version of William Burroughs’ notion of the Word Virus which uses us human beings as secondary vehicles. In this scenario, “copying” is not merely a human controlled activity as in the age of Melville’s Bartleby (the unreliable scribe from the 1853 novel) but an automated action more akin to the unconscious level of genes, or the as imperceptible layers of the computer systems. So what Burroughs and others were already proposing is that far earlier than coming up with bioelectronic devices that make us into cyborgs, were are being haunted by another kind of a virus in a more older media, language.

Concerning autonomy of the viral, I think I am more interested in the affinities the viral have than its identities. How the viral is continuously articulated through various such affinities, from software and networks, to philosophy and fiction. This might easily lead us to think of the viral as merely a pattern that spans beyond the material substance, but this dualism of pattern vs. substance is a mistaken one. Instead, I opted to think this through in terms of diagrammatics, of how the “viral” crosses through a whole social field and becomes a term that seems to be defining various practices and discourses of network society. In a certain Deleuze-Foucault vein, also adopted by Eugene Thacker, I wish to approach the viral as a diagrammatic social programming of the cultural field, a way of organizing concrete assemblages into more abstract modes of resonation. Here, the concept of diagrams can help us to understand how concrete machinations, such as in medicine or technology or network security, are intertwined on a level of abstract machines, diagrammatically and immanently linked on a social field. Here, human social relations are not removed from technical social relations, but both of them are approached in terms of a common folding. The crucial question of much of cultural studies of media and technology is to find approaches that do not reproduce the dualism ‘humans vs. machines’, but finds concepts and approaches that flow through the binaries, crisscross and move transversally. This is one of the reasons why I wanted to adopt the idea of a media ecology from Matthew Fuller and Félix Guattari. In its Guattarian sense, the term “ecology” can used to illustrate the transversal relations between various ecologies from environment to social relations and onto the technical ecologies not reducible to human signification.

[IN]: In your paper co-written with Jaakko Suominen: “Victorian Snakes? Toward a Cultural History on Mobile Games and the Experience of the Movement,” you make a call to the reader to adopt an analytic point of view, an anthropologic way of seeing this crossed referential notion that talks about space-time and entertainment. What do you think about the title of the workshop made in by the Nokia Research Center at Nokia Syracuse University, called: “Wireless Grids Research Group: Cognitive and Cooperative Social Networks vs. Home & Office Grids”? Are there, common places between the paper: “Victorian Snakes? Toward a Cultural History on Mobile Games” and the experience of the Movement and the workshop that took place at Nokia Syracuse University?
http://wirelessgrids.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=18&Itemid=56
Making a critical analysis: What is this wireless grid project about? An environment of control relations? The next phase of the ecology understand under the sense of Guattari? What?

[JP]: In our analysis of the cultural history, or perhaps the “media archaeology” of mobile entertainment, we did not want to focus so much on content, or in individual technologies or sociological characteristics of mobile media culture. Instead, we wanted to approach the question how mobile entertainment can be characterized as a modulation of space and time, of the crucial phenomenological coordinates that connect recent years of boom in mobile games and entertainment to the broader history of media and modern experience. Connected to such earlier “inter: faces” as the pocket book and such techniques of transportation like the train, contemporary enthusiasm of mobile entertainment on the move discloses a modulation of the psyche in movement.

I am not in a position to comment directly on the conference as I did not attend it, but we can see how it relates to the issue of capturing the body in movement. The very simple fact that human beings are moving, mobile entities, has been realized also by the capitalist media industry which tries to tap into those moments of movement, tapping into the moving, sensing body. One could see mobile entertainment related to Maurizio Lazzarato’s postfordist philosophy of immaterial labour and the capturing mechanisms of media capitalism. Contemporary capitalism is not merely about the production of consumer objects but more accurately defined by the way it modulates and creates worlds – a becoming Leibnizian of capitalism. Bodies are marked by media cultural signs, suggests Lazzarato, and it is analysing this Kafkaesque act introduced in Prison Colony that is of crucial interest, analyzing it through the singular ways different new technologies frame, grid bodies. And as we know, this creation of worlds is not restricted to the broadcasting media of e.g. television and radio, or cinema, but works now also through the small screen. Wireless grids are, then, beyond the technical invisible gridding of the globe also about gridding and framing the sensing moving body, channeling it into a world where the mobile entertainment content providers and other players are competing for the attention of the user.

In what sense does this relate to a Guattarian analysis of ecology? In The Three Ecologies, Guattari suggest that the overlapping ecologies of the environment, the social and the psyche are being polluted by the Integrated World Capitalism (IWC). The relation of the body to its exteriority is being captured by polluters like Donald Trump (and Bill Gates might one add) whose ways of structuring the ecologies of e.g. city planning and living, or computer architecture span much wider than the restricted area where they are working in. Here, subjectivities are consisted of groups, subjectivity being articulated on the ecological layers of the world, not detached from social relations but neither from the environment and technology we might add – affinities again. The important way we can use Guattarian ideas is to note the complex intertwining of the various ecologies, where technological solutions feedback to social relations but also for example ecologies of perception like in the capture of perception on the move in mobile entertainment. So in this, perhaps the designers of mobile media could be seen not merely creating technological products but also producing psyche, affects, the body in movement, or at least capturing the body in movement on a level that is prior to consciousness, or meanings. Where are then the possibilities for an “ecosophy”, experimentation in mobile media? There is a wide range of emerging work that connect mobile media, art and activism under the banner of new urban social relations, new modes of perception and ways of thinking for example “sociality”, or “community”.

[IN]: This wide range of emerging works that are under the banner of new protocols and architectures produced by the market of communication technologies, are different from the
other state(s) or the other generation of communication technologies in two general aspects that are relevant to notice:

– small and low cost technologies (bluetooth modems, mobile phones) versus more expensive and medium size technologies (computers stations)

– global networks versus piconets or micro networks.

How have these aspects been an influence to the re-thinking of the notion of activism, and how do these new ways of critical exercises challenge grid and sensor control technologies?

[JP]: The issue moves on various scales. Whereas e.g. mobile phones might be seen as low cost technologies that are easily acquired and put to experimental use, the same technology can be quite closed in the sense that the operation system manufacturers, network operators, etc. act as bottle necks for a distribution aimed at larger audience. How one is able to work around is to “rescale” the mobile phone and find the significant crack in its logic on some other level. How to incorporate the mobile as a catalyst of relations (human and other), how to open it up from the technological closedness so that it can become a tool of creativity. Even such a straightforward thing like the London transport oyster card can be “opened” up for artistic experimentations as with the project Arphield Recordings where a recording of the sounds of the cards and their readers was made into a “ready made” sound art piece.

I find in this sense Matthew Fuller’s use of Whitehead’s notion of “miscplaced concreteness” very helpful. By fabricating standard objects, elements of any assemblage are isolated and produced as clearly functionalized. However, every assemblage and object carries in itself a margin of indeterminacy, a potentiality to be switched on and connected alternatively, to be inserted into relations cut out from the objectification. Standardized technological culture needs modular components in order to work – the so everyday requirement of any technology – but this does not rule out other possible uses, connections. Naturally, technologies and protocols carry with them different kinds of potentials in any case. The qualities of temporal and adhoc connections have been discussed for a long time as needed organizational prerequisites for a dynamic activism (for example Hakim Bey’s Temporary Autonomous Zones being the obvious reference point) so it will interesting to see how these in itself simple and low cost technologies could be translated into networks that are because of the temporary nature of the connections between bodies and signals so effective. This is a curious kind of a relation, or interaction, between the temporary organisational forms that have been part of political guerrilla tactics for a long time and the network technologies that resonate strongly with this temporary duration.

I think that one of the crucial questions will be how to make the experiments with signals, protocols and frequencies resonate with social bodies on the streets and public spaces, and how to find the new forms of the political immanent to the potentials of the technologies. The radical meaning of politics, as underlined by various thinkers from Alain Badiou to Jacques Ranciere, is not the normal way of “policing” on a set agenda, but of summoning events, radical breaks. In this sense of the political or activism, we cannot know before hand what is the agenda, what the uses are, or what the results might be. Activism in this sense is a probing of a kind, not policing or doing politics, but finding what even might be political with no guaranteed results beforehand. In this, one crucial probing of the political happens through experimentations with technologies. Or actually, the political is precisely this probing, this zone of experimentation, where activism should keep tuned for the unexpected.

[IN]: I agree with you, referring to the third question, that we have to be aware about these new forms and possibilities. In this sense, could you give an example, maybe of an art piece you have studied and established some differences with the recent previous state of signal transmission and computers linked to the body and signal connections?

[JP]: Heath Bunting and Kayle Brandon’s Borderxing Guide is a fine example of the intertwining and tensions of the presumed friction free borderless state of networks, of the space of information, and the human materiality that are is bound by the gravity of national borders. The project maps the potential crossing points with maps and tools, and making them available on the Internet – to some authorized people. This is the way surveillance and the control of bodies in a technological society does not happen solely based on the spatial architecture of the Panopticon, but via access, passwords, and modulation of networks and signals, as Deleuze suggested in his Control Societies text. But still there is no less reality in this sphere of signals and networks, its not a boundary free space (if it even is a space, or a temporal modulation). I really like the Heath Bunting quote in this context as well: “The artist doesn’t just gaze. It’s not just the perception of reality that is up for grabs, it’s reality itself.”

I find myself interested similarly in the translations between those imperceptible spheres of signal transmission, wireless signals, and the phenomenological world of the human being. The Cell Phone Disco project visualized the electromagnetic fields of an active mobile phone into a light pattern, and Life: a user’s manual project was based on the frequency which surveillance camera’s use (2,4 Ghz) and which could be tapped in order to get a glimpse to the radio spectrum. Technical media is not reducible to the meanings, significations and perceptions of the human being, but still, there is a continuous translation between the non-human spheres of signal transmission and the human perception of those things. I think the same thing was underlined with the Biennale.py virus project some years back with virus code – in itself beyond the modality of human perception, at least when it comes to execution etc. –distributed via human bodies (virus code printed on t-shirts) and in other visual forms. The imperceptible and harmless nature of the code was continuously made perceptible and iconographic in a way that questioned the ontology of networks and code: where does code begin, where are its borders, where does the code encounter the body of the human?

Naturally, the danger in general is the blackboxing of the human being (instead of the blackboxing of the technological): to neglect the intensive qualities and potentials of the human body in movement, its continuous folding with its outside. Avoiding this danger, recent years of Deleuzian-inspired theory, e.g. Luciana Parisi and Brian Massumi, have been looking into the living architectures of Greg Lynn, Lars Spuybroek and other designers where the technological creations mix and intermingle with the human bodies involved in those evolving spaces. There is a dynamics of bodies and technologies and their crossing points that is under scrutiny, not just the points being connected (technology or human). The technological should not be left in the hands of the corporations or the engineers, but neither should theory be forgotten; similarly as activists and artists with technologies and media, theory should be bent and twisted for new realities, experimented, worked rigorously in laboratory fashion, created, probed and connected to the reconfigurations of technological spaces and temporalities.

———–

Jussi Parikka teaches and writes on the cultural theory and history of new media. He has a PhD in Cultural History from the university of Turku, Finland and is Senior Lecturer in Media Studies at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, UK. Parikka has published a book on “cultural theory in the age of digital machines” (Koneoppi, in Finnish) and his Digital Contagions: A Media Archaeology of Computer Viruses is published by Peter Lang, New York, Digital Formations-series (2007). Parikka is currently working on a book on “Insect Media”, which focuses on the media theoretical and historical interconnections of biology and technology. In addition, two co-edited books are forthcoming: The Spam Book: On Viruses, Spam, and Other Anomalies from the Dark Side of Digital Culture (Hampton Press) and Media Archaeologies. His articles have been published e.g. in CTheory, Postmodern Culture, Game Studies and Fibreculture, as well as in several Finnish journals and books.

Extended Bio: users.utu.fi/juspar/

INTERVIEW: Virus / Cuerpo / Transmisiones de Señal. Entrevista con Jussi Parikka, por Ignacio Nieto

English version

Jussi Parikka Autor de Digital Congations es entrevistado por Ignacio Nieto

[Ignacio Nieto]: Estoy muy interesado en la manera en que es pensado un virus: cómo una forma abstracta que puede auto-replicarse así misma en un medio ambiente autónomamente sin considerar el sistema de relaciones basados en el capital o en la religión, o en política (como usualmente nos organizamos en la esfera pública y privada). ¿Crees que exista una posibilidad de transladar ese tipo de consideraciones para las relaciones humanas? ¿Podrías imaginar o describir, un mundo posible, donde artefactos biolectrónicos adosados a seres humanos, o a otras formas orgánicas, o a otras generaciones de máquinas puedan existir con esa clase de protocolo?

[Jussi Parikka]: Lo que me ineterezó tempranamente en este proyecto (Digital Contagions) fue el cómo pensar al virus en sí mismo como una forma de pensamiento, un vector, un modo de transmisión y un medio. En vez de abarcarlo simplemente como una metáfora socialmente construida para imponer sentido a los imperceptibles eventos del computador, sería mucho más rico acercarse a lo viral como a un portador, un punto de condensación que tiene mucho que ver con la agenda concerniente a los medios en la era de las redes. ¿Qué es un virus perfecto sino un medio ideal, definido solo por sus habilidades para infectar, transmitir y copiarse así mimso? Esta idea fue, por supuesto, basada en las teorías del meme y recogidas tempranamente, que para mí hablan más sobre los cambios de los medios tecnológicos a fines del siglo XX, que sólo sobre la discusión relacionada a genes culturalmente evolucionados. Así que, cuando Richard Dawkins sugirió que tal vez la cultura funciona según a la idea del gen cultural egoísta, el meme, que sólo está interesado en propagarse así mismo, él propuso una visión muy humanista de la esfera de los medios, donde más tarde, para Susan Blackmore, la Internet y la ecología viral son ejemplos claves de mecanismos de la máquina de copiar del meme. De alguna forma, ellos estaban dando sin duda una una versión científica de la noción del Virus Mundial de William Burroughs, que nos usa a nosotros, seres humanos, como vehículos secundarios. En este escenario, “la copia” no es solamente una actividad controlada por el ser humano, como en la era de Bartleby (poco confiable autor de la novela de 1853), de Melville, sino que una acción autómata más emparentado con el nivel inconsciente de los genes, o las imperceptibles capas de los sistemas computacionales. Entonces, lo que Burroughs y otros más ya proponían es que lejos de aparecer con artefactos bioelectrónicos que nos conviertan en cyborgs, estamos siendo acechados por otro tipo de virus, de un medio mucho más antiguo, el lenguaje.

Con respecto a la autonomía de lo viral, creo que estoy interesado en las afinidades lo viral tiene más que en las identidades. En cómo el virus está continuamente siendo articulado a través de varias afinidades, desde softwares y redes, hasta la filosofía y la ficción. Esto nos llevaría fácilmente a pensar en el virus como un mero patrón que se expande más allá de la sustancia material, pero esta dualidad de patrón vs. sustancia, es una equivocación. En vez de eso, opté por pensar en esto en términos de diagramáticas, de cómo el “virus” cruza a través de todo un campo social y se convierte en un término que parece estar definiendo variadas prácticas y discursos sobre la sociedad interconectada. En una cierta corriente a la Deleuze-Foucault, también adoptada por Eugene Thacker, espero aproximarme al virus como una programación diagramática social del campo cultural, una manera de organizar ensamblajes concretos en modos más abstractos de resonancia. Aquí, el concepto de diagramas nos puede ayudar a comprender cómo maquinaciones concretas, como en la medicina o la tecnología, o la seguridad en telecomuunicaciones, están entrelazadas a un nivel de máquinas abstractas, diagramática e inherentemente vinculadas a un campo social. Aquí, las relaciones sociales humanas no son removidas de las relaciones sociales técnicas, pero ambas se aproximan en términos de un molde común. La pregunta crucial de muchos estudios culturales sobre los medios y la tecnología, es encontrar aproximaciones que no reproduzcan el dualismo ‘humanos vs. máquinas’, sino que encontrar conceptos y acercamientos que fluyan a través de los binarios, atraviesen y se muevan transversalmente. Esta es una de las razones de por qué quice adoptar la idea de una ecología de los medios, de Matthew Fuller y Félix Guattari. En un sentido de Guattariano, el término “ecología” puede ser usado para ilustrar las relaciones transversales entre varias ecologías, desde relaciones ambientales a sociales, por encima de las ecologías técnicas no reducibles a la significación humana.

[IN]: En tu ensayo co-escrito con Jaakko Suominen: “¿Serpientes Vicrorianas? Hacia una Historia Cultural de los Juegos Móviles y la Experiencia del Movimiento”, haces un llamado al lector a que adopte un punto de vista analítico, una manera antropológica de ver esta noción referencial cruzada que habla sobre el espacio-tiempo y el entretenimiento. ¿Qué piensas sobre el título del taller hecho por el Centro de Investigación de Nokia en la Univerdidad Nokia de Syracuse llamado: “Grupo de Investigación de Grillas Inalámbricas: ¿Redes Conginitivas y de Cooperación Social versus Grillas de Casa y Oficina?” ¿Existen lugares comunes entre el tu ensayo: “¿Serpientes Victorianas? Hacia una Historia Cultural de los Juegos Móviles y la Experiencia del Movimiento”, y el taller que tomó lugar en la Univerdidad Nokia de Syracuse?
http://wirelessgrids.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=18&Itemid=56
Haciendo un análisis crítico; ¿Qué es este proyecto de grilla inalámbrica? ¿Un medio ambiente de relaciones controladas? ¿La próxima fase de la ecología entendida bajo el sentido de Guattari? ¿Qué?

[JP]: En nuestro análisis de la historia cultural, o tal ves en la “arqueología de los medios” del entretenimiento móvil, no quisimos enfocarnos tanto en el contenido, en tecnologías individuales o en características sociológicas de la cultura de medios móviles. En vez de eso, quisimos aproximarnos a la pregunta de cómo el entretenimiento móvil puede estar caracterizado como una modulación de espacio y tiempo, de las coordenadas fenomenológicas cruciales que conectan a los años recientes del boom de los juegos móviles y del entretenimiento con la historia más extensa de los medios y la experiencia moderna. Conectados a tales tempranas “interfaces”, como el libro de bolsillo, y a tales técnicas de transportación, como el tren, el entusiasmo contemporáneo por el entretenimiento móvil descubre una modulación de la psique en movimiento.

Yo no estoy en posición de comentar directamente una conferencia que no asistí, pero podemos ver cómo se relaciona al tema de capturar al cuerpo en movimiento. El simple hecho de que los seres humanos son entidades móviles, ha sido también descubierto por los medios de la industria capitalista, que tratan de hacer una incisión dentro de todos esos momentos en movimiento, taladrando dentro del cuerpo sensado y movible. Uno podría ver al entretenimiento móvil relacionado con la filosofía post-fordista de Maurizio Lazzarato del trabajo inmaterial, y de los mecanismos de captura del capitalismo de los medios. El capitalismo contemporáneo no trata sólo sobre la producción de objeto de consumo, más acuciosamente define como la manera en que modula y crea mundos – un Leibnizianismo conveniente sobre el capitalismo. Los cuerpos están marcados por signos culturales de los medios, como sugirere Lazzarato, y al analizar este acto Kafkiano introducido en una Colonia Penal que es de interés crucial, analizarlo a través de formas puntuales diferentes y nuevos marcos tecnológicos, de cuerpos en grillas. Y como sabemos, esta creación de mundos no está restringida a los medios de transmisión, como por ejemplo la televisión o la radio, o el cine, sino que ahora también trabaja a través de pantallas pequeñas. Las grillas inalámbricas son, entonces, más allá de grillas invisibles en el globo, se trata de una cuadrícula que enmarca y sensa el movimiento del cuerpo, canalizándolo dentro de un mundo donde los proveedores de contenidos de los medios de entretención y otros jugadores compiten por la atención del usuario.

[IN]: ¿En qué sentido se relaciona esto con el análisis de Guattarian de la ecología? En Las Tres Ecologías, Guattari sugiere que las ecologías sobrepuestas del medio ambiente, lo social y lo psíquico, están siendo contaminadas por el Capitalismo Mundial Integrado (Integrated World Capitalism – IWC). La relación con el cuerpo en su exterioridad ha sido capturada por contaminantes como Donald Trump (y deberíamos añadir a Bill Gates), cuyas normas de estructurar las ecologías de como por ejemplo, la planificación urbana y vivir, o la arquitectuta computacional abarcan mucho que el área restringida en donde ellos trabajan. Aquí, las subjectividades consisten en grupos, la subjectividad está siendo articulada capas ecológicas del mundo, no separada de relaciones sociales pero tampoco del medioambiente y la tecnología que podamos añadir – afinidades, otra vez. La manera importante en que podemos usar las ideas de Guattarian es notar el complejo intrelazado de muchas ecologías, donde las soluciones tecnológicas retroalimentan las relaciones sociales, pero también por ejemplo a las ecologías de la percepción, como en la captura de la percepción del movimiento en la entretención móvil. Entonces en esto, tal vez los diseñadores de medios móviles pueden ser vistos no sólo creando productos tecnológicos, sino también produciendo psiquis, afectos, el cuerpo en movimiento, o al menos capturando al cuerpo en movimiento en un nivel que es prioritario a su consciencias, o a sus significados. ¿Dónde están las posibilidades para un “ecosofía”, experimentación en los medios móviles? Existe un amplio rango de trabajo emergente que conecta a los medios móviles, al arte y al activismo bajo la etiqueta de nuevas relaciones sociales urbanas, nuevos modos de percepción y maneras de pensamiento, por ejemplo “socialidad”, o “comunidad”.

[JP]: Este amplio rango de trabajos emerjentes bajo la etiqueta de nuevos protocolos y arquitecturas producidas por el mercado de las tecnologías de la comunicación, se diferencia de otro(s) estado(s) o de otra generación de tecnologías de comunicación en dos aspectos generales que son relevantes:

– pequeña tecnologías de bajo costo technologies (modems de bluetooth, teléfonos móviles) versus tecnologías mas caras y de tamaño mediano (estaciones de trabajo).

Рredes globales versus redes peque̱as (piconets).

¿Cómo estos aspectos han sido una influencia para este re-planteamiento de la noción de activismo y cómo esta nuevas formas de ejercicio crítico desafían a las tecnologías de enrejado y de control mediante sensores?

El tema se mueve en varias escalas. En donde, por ejemplo, los teléfonos móviles pueden ser vistos com tecnologías de bajo costo, de fácil adquisición y dispuestos para el uso experimental, esa misma tecnología puede ser muy cercana en el sentido de que los fabricantes de sistemas operacionales, operadores de redes, etc. actúen como cuello de botella para una distribución pensada para un público más grande. Cómo es uno capaz de funcionar para “redimensionar” el teléfono móvil y encontrar la grieta significativa en su lógica en algún otro nivel. Cómo incorporar el móvil como un catalizador de relaciones (humanas y otras), cómo abrirlo desde su hermetismo tecnológico para que pueda convertirse en una herramienta de creatividad. Incluso algo tan íntegro como la tarjeta ostra del transporte de Londres puede ser “abierta” para experimentaciones artísticas como con el proyecto de Grabaciones Arphield, donde una grabación de sonidos de las tarjetas y de sus lectores fue hecha mediante una pieza de “ready made” de arte sonoro.

Encuentro en este sentido que el uso de Matthew Fuller de la noción de Whitehead de “concretismo desplazado” muy provechosa. Al fabricar objetos estandarizados, los elementos de cualquier ensamblaje son aislados y producidos claramente funcionalizados. De todas formas, cada ensamblaje y objeto lleva en sí mismo un margen de indeterminancia, una potencialidad para ser encendido y conectado alternativamente, de ser insertado en relaciones sacadas fuera de la objetificación. La cultura tecnológica estandardizada necesita componentes modulares para trabajar – el requerimiento diario de cualquier tecnología – pero esto no excluye otros posibles usos o conecciones. Naturalmente, tecnologías y protocolos llevan consigo diferentes tipos de potenciales en cualquier caso. Las cualidades temporales y conecciones adhoc han sido discutidas por mucho tiempo como pre-requicitos organizacionales necesarios para un activismo dinámico (por ejemplo, Temporary Autonomous Zones de Hakim Bey, siendo el obvio punto de referencia), entones sería interesante ver cómo estas tecnologías simples y de bajo costo en sí mismas puedan ser interpretadas en las redes que existen por causa de la naturaleza temporal de las conecciones entre cuerpos y señales tan efectivas. Este es un curioso tipo de relación, o interacción, entre formas organizacionales temporales que han sido parte de las tácticas de guerrilla política por mucho tiempo y las tecnologías de redes que resuenan fuerte con esta duración temporal.

Creo que una de las preguntas cruciales será cómo hacer que los experimentos con señales, protocolos y frecuencias resuenen con cuerpos sociales en las calles y los espacios públicos, y cómo encontrar las nuevas formas en lo político inherentes a las potencialidades de las tecnologías. El significado radical de la política, como ha sido notado por muchos pensadores, desde Alain Badiou a Jacques Ranciere, no se trata de la forma normal de “reglamentar” en una agenda establecida, sino que de convocar eventos, quiebres radicales. En este sentido de lo político o de activismo, no podemos conocer de antemano cuál es la agenda, cuáles son los usos, o cuál podría ser el resultado. El activismo, en este sentido, es la prueba de una clase, no de reglamentar o de hacer política, sino de encontrar lo que incluso podría ser político sin ninguna garantía en el resultado de antemano. En esto, una prueba crucial de política sucede a través de experimentaciones con tecnologías. O en realidad, lo político es precisamente esta prueba, esta zona de experimentación, donde el activismo debería mantenerse sintonizado para lo inesperado.

[IN]: Estoy de acuerdo contigo, respecto a la tercera pregunta, que deberíamos estar atentos a estas nuevas formas y posibilidades. En este sentido; podrías darme un ejemplo, tal vez de una pieza de arte que hayas estudiado y establecer algunas diferencias con el recientemente pasado estado de la transmisión de la señal y la generación de computadores, en el sentido de las conecciones de cuerpo y señal?

[JP]: Borderxing Guide de Heath Bunting y Kayle Brandon, es un buen ejemplo del entrelazado y las tensiones del presunto estado libre de fricción y sin límites de las cadenas, del espacio de información, y de la materialidad humana sujeto por la gravedad de los bordes nacionales. El proyecto mapea los potenciales puntos de cruces fronterizos con mapas y herramientas, dejándolos disponibles en la Internet – para alguna gente autorizada. Esta es la manera en que la vigilancia y el control de los en una sociedad tecnológica no ocurre solamente basado en la arquitectura especial del Panóptico, sino que por accesos, claves, y modulación de canales y señales, como Deleuze sugirió en su texto Control Societies. Pero aún así no hay menos realidad en esta esfera de señales y canales, no es un espacio libre de fronteras (si es que al menos es un espacio, o una modulación temporal). Me encanta la frase de Heath Bunting en este contexto: “El atrista no sólo contempla. No es sólo la percepción de la realidad de lo que se agarra, es la realidad en sí misma.”

Me encuentro interesado similarmente en las traducciones entre aquellas esferas imperceptibles de transmission de señales, señales inalámbricas, y el mundo fenomenológico del ser humano. El proyecto The Cell Phone Disco visualizó los campos electromagnéticos de un telefono móvil en actividad a un patron de luz, y el proyecto Life: a user’s manual que estaba basado en la frecuencia con la que una cámara de vigilancia usa (2,4 Ghz) y la que podría ser intervenida para echarle una ojeada al espectro del radio. Los medios técnicos no son reducibles a sus significados y percepciones sobre el ser humano, pero aún así, existe una traducción contínua entre las esferas no-humanas de transmission de señal y la percepción humana de esas cosas. Creo que lo mismo fue subrayado con el proyecto Biennale.py virus hace algunos años con un código de virus – en sí mismo más allá de la modalidad de percepción humana, al menos cuando se trata de ejecución, etc. – distribuídos por cuerpos humanos (códigos de virus impresos en poleras) y en otras formas visuales. La naturaleza imperceptible e indefensa del código fue continuamente hecha perceptible e iconograficada de una manera que cuestionaba la ontología de los canales y los códigos: ¿en dónde comienza el código, dónde están sus límites, dónde encuentra el código del humano?

Naturalmente, el peligro en general es la caja negra del ser humano (en vez de la caja negra de la tecnología): para renegar las intesivas cualidades y potenciales del cuerpo humano en movimiento, su continuo repliegue con su exterior. Evitando este peligro, en la actualidad teorías inspiradas en Deleuze- como por ejemplo las de Luciana Parisi y Brian Massumi, han estado revisando las arquitecturas vivas de Greg Lynn, Lars Spuybroek y otros diseñadores, donde las creaciones tecnológicas se entremezclan con los cuerpos humanos involucrados en esos espacios envolventes. Existe una dinámica de cuerpos y tecnologías y sus puntos de contacto que está bajo el escrutinio, no sólo los puntos que están conectados (tecnológicos o humanos). Lo tecnológico no debería ser dejado en manos de las corporaciones o de los ingenieros, pero tampoco debería olvidarse la teoría; igualmente como a los activistas y a los artistas que ocupan tecnologías y medios, la teoría debería ser doblada y torcida para nuevas realidades, experimentadas, trabajadas rigurosamente en laboratorios de moda, creadas, probadas y conectadas a las reconfiguraciones de espacios y temporalidades tecnológicas.

———–

Jussi Parikka enseña y escribe sobre la teoría cultural y la historia de los nuevos medios. Tiene un Doctorado en Filosofía en Historia Cultural de la Universidad de Turku, Finlandia, y es Catedrático Senior en Estudios de los Medios en la Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, Inglaterra. Parikka ha publicado un libro sobre “teoría cultural en la era de las máquinas digitales” (Koneoppi, in Finnish) y su Contagios Digitales: Una Arqueología de los Medios de Virus Computacionales (Digital Contagions: A Media Archaeology of Computer Viruses) es publicado por Peter Lang, Nueva York, de la serie Digital Formations (2007). Parikka trabaja actualmente en un libro sobre “Insect Media”, enfocado en la interconecciones mediales teóricas e históricas de la biología y la tecnología. Además, dos libros co-editados vienen en camino: El Libro del Spam: Sobre Viruses, Spam, y Otras Anomalidades del Lado Oscuro de la Cultura Digital (Hampton Press) y Media Archaeologies. Sus articulos han sido publicados en CTheory, Postmodern Culture, Game Studies y Fibreculture, entre otros, así como en muchos diarios y libros finlandeses.

Biografía Extendida: users.utu.fi/juspar/

INTERVIEW: PIrandelo e il BOX Multimedialte by Bertram Niessen

(Italian only)

This text is republished in collaboration with Digicult.it. It was released in February 2005 (First Digimag Issue).

Pirandèlo è l’incontro tra Andrea Gabriele, Marita Cosma e Claudio Sinatti, impegnati nel curare la musica, le immagini e i video di questa nuova collaborazione. Loro stessi lo definiscono come “un contenitore di musica, fotografia, video e scrittura; il mezzo di un viaggio che parte da un’organica e tangibile astrazione fino ad una cinematica e sinestetica narrazione”. L’audio della performance live-media di Pirandélo (Andrea Gabriele aka MouLips) attraversa l’elettronica, l’ambient ed il pop in un viaggio onirico e spesso magmatico; gli elementi visivi sono diaproiezioni (Marita Cosma) e video (Claudio Sinatti) che si spostano tra gli schermi, suggerendo immersioni in mari caldi. L’inizio del 2005 segna la partenza del loro tour europeo dopo alcune preview italiane (come a lo Spazio Lima di Milano e il Netmage 05 di Bologna). Li abbiamo incontrati per parlare del loro live…

È esatto dire che siete Sinatti + Mou, Lips!? Ovvero, vedete questo progetto come un incontro tra le due realtà o come una costruzione ex-novo?

Claudio Sinatti: E’ stata la prima collaborazione tra Andrea e me. Dopodichè, assieme a Marita, abbiamo sentito il bisogno di iniziare un progetto nuovo che includesse tutti gli elementi che ci interessavano (il suono, le immagini, la narrazione…) e che ci permettesse di lavorare su materiale nuovo, di influenzarci direttamente e realizzare delle cose basate su di una struttura elaborata assieme.

Marita Cosma: Pirandèlo nasce dall’incontro delle nostre realtà e più che qualcosa di costruito, pensato, è una convergenza di vissuto, cercato, trovato.

Andrea Gabriele: E’ sicuramente un progetto ex-novo

Perchè il nome “Pirandélo”?

Marita Cosma: Tema di maturità: una partita a scacchi tra il verderosasperanzaspadatratta di un romantico Foscolo e i riflessi di buio nello specchio spaccato a terra da Pirandello in persona post-relatività einsteiniosa, come riflessi di luce di candela nell’ombra di un era. E Andrea che un giorno poi se ne esce con un raccontami-di-Pirandello e dal tema della
relatività all’insostenibile leggerezza dell’essere si è perduta una “l” e trovata una “è”.

Lo spettacolo che ho visto allo Spazio Lima aveva una interessante integrazione di audio, loop video e diapositive manipolate con la sfocatura del proiettore (correggetemi se sbaglio). Sono sempre questi gli strumenti che utilizzate?

Claudio Sinatti: diciamo che sono gli strumenti più naturali. C’è stato molto poco di pianificato nella preparazione di questo live. Ognuno di noi ha messo in Pirandèlo quel che sentiva individualmente, sapendo già di avere un forte feeling con gli altri due. C’è una sintonia molto forte tra noi e questo ci ha permesso di basare il lavoro su “dettagli” come le scelte cromatiche, mentre il resto è venuto da sè. Credo che uno degli elementi che ci unisce è il fatto che siamo tutti e tre innamorati : )

Andrea Gabirele: Innamorati, bhè, Claudio ha ragione. Parlando invece di “integrazione” tra audio, video e dia, solitamente il primo passo lo faccio io creando la musica, ma sempre più spesso la mia musica, nello stesso momento in cui viene suonata, è pensata per delle immagini, o più precisamente per delle ‘situazioni’.. caldo, freddo, umido, colore. Poi, nei live accade che l’empatia tra Claudio e Marita crei delle forti sfumature a me nuove, ed è lì che mi perdo con “dolcezza” nell’improvvisazione.

Marita Cosma: Io e il diaproiettore siamo in buona amicizia ma ancora non ci conosciamo a fondo e, ritrovandoci di volta in volta in un contesto diverso, manteniamo il nostro dialogo sugli assi “sfocatura” e “ombra” per spaziare poi, a volte, nell’uso di oggetti ad-hoc. Di dia in dia come di momento in momento: combinazioni, di volta in volta, tra un umore, un rumore, un dolore, un amore e l’altro.

Come gestite il rapporto tra audio e video? l’impressione è quella di un viaggio fluido e non necessariamente collegato. Non sembrano esserci degli eventi audiovisuali sincronici, è così?

Claudio Sinatti: c’è un flusso onirico nei nostri live che credo risentirebbe di elementi teatralmente sincronici. Dal vivo i suoni e le immagini di Pirandèlo si inseguono e creano i propri occasionali sincronismi naturali, ma lasciano soprattutto spazio allo spettatore di trovare il proprio ritmo, i propri sinc. Credo questo sia un elemento molto importante delle nostre performance.

Marita Cosma: E’ con mia meraviglia che il ritmo della pellicola si fa specchio sulla musica, superficie che ne condensa il vapore o calore, che ne distingue le gocce: come una sincronia mai esplicitata eppure desincronizzata e poi ridefinita su più livelli, asincroni in apparenza ma corali in presenza.

Si basa tutto sull’improvvisazione, avete un canovaccio o una vera e propria partitura?

Andrea Gabriele: C’è una scaletta di brani (che puntualmente sbaglio). Ci sono files sparsi qua e là, ed a volte il file che apri non è quello che volevi. Almeno per me, l’improvvisazione determina parametri come la velocità, l’intensità, la durezza, la dolcezza, la struttura della musica. Il canovaccio della sera prima è una scusa per sentirsi “preparati”…

Marita Cosma: ci sono gli storyboard di Claudio, le .jpg delle dia e le tabelle audio/dia/video/audio scarabocchiate e/o stampate qua e là, ma poi c’è il live che le reinterpreta e riorganizza e vanifica e sublima. Come su di un pentagramma fluido.

Nel vostro lavoro, l’interazione tra le diapositive e il video sembra essere l’elemento visuale più interessante ma anche più difficile. Come affrontate la cosa?

Claudio Sinatti: nel live attuale cerchiamo di utilizzare le due fonti come layer separati di un’unica immagine. Marita ha trovato un modo per rendere animate le diapositive proiettate, mentre molti miei loop si sono rallentati, sono diventati più statici. Questo crea un compromesso in cui foto e video si confondono e l’immagine diventa una sola. Un altro importante punto di fusione tra i media è il colore: sia nel video che nelle dia abbiamo alcuni elementi che sono quasi esclusivamente macchie di colore, altri che sono (o sembrano) più tangibili, delle forme. Marita ed io cerchiamo di sovrapporre elementi diversi, così una dia rossa tinge un volo di uccelli o un loop blu colora la foto di un albero…

Andrea Gabriele: Sono entrambi innamorati…

Marita Cosma: Senza paura. Quando mi tremano le dita per lo stupore so che i pixels stanno danzando la loro sinattica danza e mi commuovo. Che poi Claudio e io cerchiamo anche di capire le necessità delle note per incontrarle, seguirle, affiancarle o portarle fino ad un sorriso o allo sguardo che segna la chiave di violino, definendo e ridefinendo ogni stop&go over and into the sound as well as on and into the spaces, ma diamo anche, indefinitamente e con gioia, il fianco alle loro fuggevoli identità. Senza remora, come fossimo ancora e sempre alla ricerca e ogni caso valesse tanto quanto una coordinata (x, y, z)=eureka![cilck]altro frame, altro accordo, altro file, altra pix.

www.claudiosinatti.com

www.avatar41.org

www.grainproject.it

www.trukalone.com

www.fotolog.net/notmyself/