K.H.C.B. and Corejulio

by 5voltcore. Their website has more information and another good video about this piece, as well.

“The work is about the a fascinating paradox that results from this close relationship between humans and artifacts. A fascination that tries to run a risk and avoid it at the same time. Therefore we like games that, by playing them, put their rules to the test. “

-5voltcore, from their website.

In terms of both the space and rules, each unit of the dyad (knife/hand, mind/machine, etc) requires the other for meaning. The space of interaction is abstracted into binary – not just the 1’s and 0’s of the computer’s electronics, but the presence or absence of flesh under the projected point of knife impact. The human subject, a simple topology of yes and no, is more a part of the “machinic assembly” than the machine.

KHCB is not active, merely reactive. Reacting only to the human subject’s physiological stress response, it the human into the role of performer, wittingly or not.

Another 5voltcore construction of importance to the concepts of ritual and space is Shockbot “corejulio.”


found here.

It employs a set of rules to determine the interactions, which then are hoped to create disorder. It is a disorder created of Maturana and Varela’s concept that you can only disturb “living” systems, not attempt to control them. Via the rules, It rides a line between completely destroying the system and leaving it undisturbed. The goal here is to have results coherent enough to achieve an output, but that cause the system to recursively self-create higher levels of noise to signal. Which finally result in a total collapse after spewing out beautiful graphics for some period of time

This is the nature of any ritual system – violating the rules destroys the entire “rite.” The practitioner must stay within the rules of interaction, but they must be pushed to the limit of their definition, or else they are too “safe” to gain the power of ritual.

Imagine the Catholic Mass without transubstantiation. The power of the rite must be enough to make the wine “into” the blood of Christ to the believer, it can’t just be understood with a wink and a nod to be symbolic of it. But I don’t know of anyone who would take (Christian) mass if they were actually drinking blood. A ritual can be too successful.

Corejulio is attempting to resist being too successful at its aims, as well. The goal is not the ritual, but the product. The point is not the transubstantiation, but the salvation of the one taking the eucharist. The point is not the measured collapse of the system, but the unintentionally beautiful visual output of the process of collapse.

These become art not by simply functioning as machines, but rather by the process of transformation of the incoming information that they inact. They use ritual rule sets and heuristic means to achieve aesthetically interesting (and possibly beautiful) results.

Update 11:52 30/11/09: I was trying not to go overlong re: the beautiful chaos of Corejulio, but the one thing I was remiss in not mentioning is the relationship of the interval between Corejulio’s malfunction and its destruction. It’s precisely what was significant about the Bernard Cache quotes posted previously – especially these bits…

It is an indeterminate zone, in which action is no longer follwed by reaction, as in the peculiar behavior of a piece of rubber stretched beyond its normal usage but before it breaks. It is a field of experience outside of the ordinary, where things are no longer resolved in terms of a minimizing of tension.
Bernard Cache. Earth Moves. p. 38

Strictly speaking, the ungraspable is not the obscure or the informal but that which, in the full light of day, can be apprehended only as it is transformed.

ibid. p. 39

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these words are not premature . These words may be too late.

An interesting old piece about William Burroughs and his cut-up technique. My interest is in the idea that the “content” and significance of your message can emerge from the process of creation itself. The raw material with which to create is all around us.

Of course, this path has been trodden before by Burroughs and others, notably Genesis P-Orridge:

“COUM’s shamanic improvisations … were often not conceptualized until the very moment of the performances, if at all. Indeed, the point often escaped the performers themselves. For P-Orridge and Tutti it was about freeing themselves (and the spectators) of their own taboos by performing benign exorcisms of a sick society’s malignancies.”

much more information, including the SHOCKING DETAILS that were left out of the above passage from a very good interview here.

Leave your skepticism or any squeamishness aside, and remember as P-Orridge says in another interview*, that one’s own life and experiences are source material, and that through the process of editing and reconfiguring, new realities can emerge. It’s not from whence the ideas come, but what you do with them.

In the words of Robert Anton Wilson, “Reality is what you can get away with.”

————-
*footnote: I cannot locate this interview right now.

Smaller Scale Dramas

Studies of the micro-scaled lights for the mysterious ritual objects.

Various Colors

Study 1

With a Mysterious Ritual Object

Study 2

Ashes to Ashes, Funk to Funky

Storming the Citadels of Enlightenment

William Burroughs said of Brion Gysin’s Dreamachine, “We must storm the citadels of enlightenment. The means are at hand.”

I am spinning my wheels in the line of creation I am undertaking for Thursday, trying to create a wearable “instrument” that changes the user’s perception of space. I was getting nowhere connecting the mandalaesque nature of my previous project with my chosen “artifact” from my British Museum visit last week via the involved viewer/participant.

It’s time for a radical break. The means are at hand.

I have until Thursday to storm the citadels and pull off something almost miraculous. Wish me luck.

Hans Haacke and Ecologies

I don’t recall where I found this Hans Haacke quote, but it seems to be a great series of ideas for activating a design system. Basic in form, you could build a career as a conceptual artist on any one of them…

… make something which experiences, reacts to its environment, changes, is non-stable…
… make something indeterminate, which always looks different, the shape of which cannot be predicted precisely…
… make something which cannot ‘perform’ without the assistance of its environment…
… make something which reacts to light and temperature changes, is subject to air currents and whose function depends on the forces of gravity…
… make something which the ‘viewer’ handles, with which he plays and thus animates…
… make something which lives in time and makes the ‘viewer’ experience time…
… articulate something natural…

Hans Haacke, Cologne, 1965

Elasticity and Instantaneity

…orthogonal slippage must be seen as a process that specifies as precisely as possible, without vectorizing or emphasizing. This slippage must be read as a leap into another dimension, or rather, into another register of images. It would mark the access to a strange domain of the physics of matter, where the latter would offer no resistance to expansion. It is an indeterminate zone, in which action is no longer follwed by reaction, as in the peculiar behavior of a piece of rubber stretched beyond its normal usage but before it breaks. It is a field of experience outside of the ordinary, where things are no longer resolved in terms of a minimizing of tension.
Bernard Cache. Earth Moves. p. 38

He continues a moment later,

Hysteresis is a gap in time of the world through which we perceive pure instantaneity. It is the time of a universal lapping of waves that cannot be represented by a straight line or even a swirl, but only by a surface of variable curvature that is perpetually out of phase. It is the time that we perceive beneath the precariousness of things. It is that fragility of configurations in a state of hysteresis, while any expansion stretches out form and any return releases it; it is thus when any configuration escapes precariousness only in its transition toward a form that is always further expanded. Strictly speaking, the ungraspable is not the obscure or the informal but that which, in the full light of day, can be apprehended only as it is transformed.

Bernard Cache. Earth Moves. p. 39

All emphasis mine.