domingo, 14 de dezembro de 2014

Boomerangs fly by our hands

ROLIS descent image. Link

Toward a telescopic realism


Unless machines self-replicate by their own (or by some phylogenetic determination), that is, without any human interference, men and women still are at the steering wheel. “Post-human”, though a fashionable literary figure of speech, does not describe sufficiently well the complexity we are moving to. I prefer to call extended humans to the next human generations. Extended by ever growing sophisticated tools, variable media, logic, science, technology, computation, digital networking and pills.

Notwithstanding this reiteration of the anthropic drive, that basically means that we are God’s creatures with a limited time and potential to know, not gods, we need to put in place a strong critique of ‘nominalism’ excesses and of neurotic narcissism.

The digital self, born around the mid nineties of last century, shows that some real extended human accelerations are taking place. This new computable self, as it is, manifests through variable media and pop up in as many disguises as you want. The narcissistic angst is rapidly evolving in to a more demanding representational process — cognitive but also subjectively oriented.

I wrote this text as a reading note to “The revolution is back” by Reza Negarestani.

Here it is an extended quotation:

Unlike the Copernican Revolution, the Darwinian Revolution, the Newtonian Revolution, and the Einsteinian Revolution in which we witness the consequences of the radical theoretical reorientation immediately manifesting themselves in the present world view, the site of the Turingian Revolution is always in the future. In short, the Turingian Revolution does not happen here and now, and for this reason, the conception of revolution it exercises fundamentally deviates from the trajectory of the Copernican Revolution.

The Turingian Revolution suggests that the future won’t be a varied extension of the present condition. It won’t be continuous to the present. Whatever arrives back from the future—which is in this case, both the mind implemented in a machine and a machine equipped with the mind—will be discontinuous to our historical anticipations regarding what the mind is and what the machine looks like.

But why is the Turingian Revolution in cognitive sciences and artificial intelligence the only revolution that is instantly conceived in and takes place in the future? Because what Turing proposes is a schema or a general program for a thoroughgoing reconstruction and revision of what it means to be human and by extension, the humanity as a collective and historical constellation. The underlying assumption of Turing is that the significance of human can be functionally abstracted and realized. This significance is the mind as a set of activities spanning perception, thinking, reasoning and the ability to engage in purposive action.

—in Reza Negarestani, “The revolution is back (Turing, functional realization and computational description)”, 2014
Urbanomic/ Deracinating Effect — Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind with Reason

sábado, 13 de dezembro de 2014

Holly Herndon — Net-concrete and the sound of now

Holly Herndon is an artist currently based in San Francisco, California.

As well as touring the world to perform and exhibit new work, she is currently candidate for doctoral study in Computer Music at Stanford University.

She received her MFA in Electronic Music and Recording Media at Mills College under the guidance of John Bischoff, James Fei, Maggi Payne, and Fred Frith. While at Mills she won the Elizabeth Mills Crothers award for Best Composer in 2010 for her vocal generated piece ’195′. [Web]

Complexity is the rule of work, not the rule of reception


We are living in a curve in time where many things are spiralling down towards extinction. Certain economists call this implosion a creative destruction moment. These are hard times, not necessarily different, not necessarily new. It is a new visible contraction in time of life and death cycles. What's new here is the social visibility of it not the event.

After Winter a new Spring (or a new Renaissance) arrives. In a way we are entering an intense spiritual time.

Do what you have to do with all the honesty, energy and compassion you've got.

Some ideas spoken by Holly Herndon in an interview with Emma Warren in Tokyo are inspiring.

I memorized these ones: escaping from escapism, redirecting conversation through art and music, immersion in an economic post-Wikileaks uncertainty environment where atoms and bytes collide and justapose.

One possible direction: take the Net as Pierre Shaffer did with radio waves, electronics valves and street acoustics and jam the data and outputs you get to build new stuff.

Holly Herndon network

sexta-feira, 12 de dezembro de 2014

Chupa morangos

The best NSFW art in town 


I have removed the content of this post, exception made on the above illustration, as the author asked me for based on privacy concerns.

segunda-feira, 8 de dezembro de 2014

A long time ago: 1995

ANDRE SIER - Skate.Exe (2014)
Galeria Luís Serpa Projectos

Input to a conversation on Andre Sier's Skate.Exe


There is a cold war between post-conceptual authoritarian and bureaucratic conservatism of so-called contemporary art and the return of tekne and metis. Not that Plato and Hegel were right in condemning art to vanish in the ocean of knowledge and/or destiny. Art to my mind is a manifestation of concrete subjectivity that stays behind and also beyond knowledge, and that takes objects, history and cognition as constitutive parts of its inherently synthetic nature.

We live today, more than ever, in a multidimensional time-space framework where material objects and living beings co-exist with and relate to a variety of an ever-expanding galaxy of virtual worlds.

I call this a post-contemporary culture, and post-contemporary art the art forms within.

“ (...) we’ve spent a lot of time talking about ends, rather than means, we have a huge intellectual deficit there.” (1)

“I like to imagine the museum of the next century as a rich and interactive network of multimedia databases (...)” (2)

“On a spring evening in May 1995 hundreds of people huddled together in a lecture hall at the University of Warwick for a chance to witness the Australian performance artist, Stelarc, who believed that soon we could not only take out natural organs and install improved artificial ones but also add a third hand and an extra ear. The interest this audience had in the speaker went beyond freak-show voyeurism to an actual concern with the future of their human-form. Those who had gathered together were told how their body was soon to become obsolete and it was time to question whether, “a bipedal, breathing body with binocular vision and a 1400cc brain is an adequate biological form. It cannot cope with the quantity, complexity and quality of information it has accumulated; it is intimidated by the precision, speed and power of technology and it is biologically ill-equipped to cope with its new extraterrestrial environment.

This ‘extraterrestrial’ environment was ‘cyberspace,’ better known as ‘the internet.’” (3)

“Any escape from the contemporary requires an inhuman material lure, rather than an avant-gardist human hero to lead the way.” (4)

  1. In “Speculative Design” by Benedict Singleton, in Speculative Aesthetics, Ed. Robin Mackay, Luke Pendrell, James Trafford. Urbanomic, 2014.
  2. In “Virtual Museums” by António Cerveira Pinto (1995), in Ex-Mater, Ed. MEIAC, 1997.
  3. In “About Cybernetic Cultures Research Unit”, 1995-. CCRU Website (2014).
  4. In “The Cosmic Addresss” by Tom Trevatt, in Speculative Aesthetics, Ed. Robin Mackay, Luke Pendrell, James Trafford. Urbanomic, 2014.

sábado, 6 de dezembro de 2014

O regresso da estatuária bronzeada

Maqueta 3D para estátua a Mário Soares. Autor: Leonel Moura, 2014

A decadência é terrível


Exemplo de 'arte conceptual' degenerada até à estatuária mais conservadora. 

Quem diria!

Já o 'povere' Pedro Cabrita Reis andou no século passado a fazer estátuas a autarcas—curiosamente no mesmo ano em que era levado em braços até Veneza, um dos dossiês mais sórdidos do dirigismo cultural indígena.

Que se passa na arte oficial portuguesa? Nada.

O Mário Soares deve estar horrorizado. Qualquer criatura que mereça uma homenagem totémica gostaria de ser representado no tempo da pujançla que um dia foi sua, não na decrepitude. 

Que raio de deriva mórbida! 

Espero bem que o sargento Costa não chegue a PM, ou voltaremos a ter o país pejado de lixo estético neo-realista, perdão, neo-neo-neo-neo-conceptual-3D e dourado à brava. Ou não estivessemos cada vez mais enamorados do novo-riquismo angolano e chinês.

segunda-feira, 1 de dezembro de 2014

Arte aumentada — os universos de André Sier

Skate.Exe, Hero (Eu-Abstracto), 2014 [#A.S.09/14]
Galeria Luís Serpa Projectos

Arte generativa e pranchas de skate


“... how to transform a computational sublime, a data sublime, into forms that are amenable to our limited simian brains.” — Nick Srnicek (1)

Fala-se cada vez mais de uma geração Pós-Internet, ao mesmo tempo que as noções de ‘glitch’ e ‘bending’ são consagradas como modos banais de interferência e reciclagem das linguagens e dos hábitos de usabilidade das interfaces digitais. Em 20 anos (1994-2014) passámos das BBS monocromáticas, do ASCII, dos fax modems e do HTML para uma tecnosfera mediática imersiva e multimodal, de banda larga e wireless, onde a chamada arte experimental e tecnológica progrediu a grande velocidade, separando, por assim dizer, os usuários e os utilizadores de ferramentas cada vez mais intuitivas, dos escritores de código que criam e/ou modificam linguagens binárias, nomeadamente para desenvolverem aplicações generativas que por sua vez suportam eventos audiovisuais, interativos ou não, imagens. sons, esculturas, ou live code perfomances, cuja natureza é filha dileta de uma longa tradição: a tekné.

É certo que também os derivados ideológicos e burocráticos da arte conceptual proliferaram nas últimas duas décadas, nomeadamente sob a influência dos cultural studies e da noção sociológica e/ou antropológica de agency.

É também certo que o mais recente movimento filosófico, conhecido por Realismo Especulativo (2), começa a penetrar no campo especulativo da arte, i.e. da Estética, ao ser adotado por alguns descendentes da arte pós-duchampiana e pós-Dada —uma confluência de neo-zombies hegelianos, neo-neo-realistas marxistas, cadáveres infelizes da linguística a la Saussure e da psicanálise lacaniana, todos ainda em busca do tempo perdido e da salvação.

ANDRE SIER - Skate.Exe (2014)
Galeria Luís Serpa Projectos

Entre a angústia artística que sobrevive nas várias prisões da teleologia moderna e a reflexão crítica sobre a necessidade e definição da arte nas sociedades industriais e pós-industriais, existiu sempre e prossegue a invenção e produção de textos, desenhos e mapas cujo único propósito é conferir subjetividade ao que é objetivo.

Neste campo particular da arte, o da sua praxis ou tekné, os processos criativos e produtivos relevam de uma complexidade cognitiva crescente, irrefutável e porventura irreversível enquanto continuarmos na atual galáxia tecnológica e energética.

É esta complexidade não fortuita, não arbitrária, mas, por assim dizer, evolutiva em sentido biológico propriamente dito, que vale a pena analisar e discutir.

As obras de arte generativa tecnicamente complexas são escritas para viverem toda a sua vida no magma das linhas de código, bibliotecas digitais, automata e algoritmos, que cresce a uma velocidade exponencial e onde milhares de milhões de seres humanos mergulham cada vez mais fundo e por períodos cada vez mais prolongados. Esta circunstância conduz inexoravelmente a uma mudança de paradigma na definição, na ideologia e no consumo das manifestações estéticas que caracterizam os mundos multimodais onde vivemos.

É sobre isto que vamos conversar tomando a exposição Skate.Exe como ponto de partida.

9 dezembro 2014, 19:00-21:00

  1. Srnicek, Nick. “Accelarationism—Epistemic, Economic, Political”, in Speculative Aesthetics, Urbanomic, 2014.
  2. No teatro exangue do historicismo teleológico e do solipsismo narcisista que varreu a Filosofia europeia (continental, como lhe chamam os ingleses) ao longo dos últimos duzentos anos de anti-realismo (Hegel, Marx, Freud), uma nova luz de racionalismo fundado no reconhecimento da precedência da matéria (e da contingência) sobre o pensamento parece ter despertado em Paris, do teclado de um jovem filósofo chamado Quentin Meillassoux. Curiosa, ou mesmo fascinante, é a rapidez com que a comunidade de jovens pensadores de língua inglesa abraçou este vedadeiro tour de force na Teoria do Conhecimento, ainda nos seus primórdios. Recomendo vivamente o conhecimento destas deambulações filosóficas novas, nomeadamente através da revista Collapse, e dos quatro livros que estou a ler deste o verão: Quentin Meillassous—Après la Finitude. Seuil, 2006; Françõis Laruelle—From Decision to Heresy. Urbanomic, 2012; Coletânea organizada por Levy Bryant, Nick Srnicek e Graham Harman—The Speculative Turn, Continental Materialism and Realism., 2011; e Coletânea editada por Robin Mackay, Like Pendrell e James Trafford—Speculative Aesthetics. Urbanomic, 2014.