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  • Delicious Morsels

  • May


    Thoughts on the computational: an unfortunate list. Unfortunate because it has the potential to be more, because it is resting unfulfilled, and because it is beset by problems bought on by an unresolved essay on Douglas Bagnall’s Cloud Shaped Classifier http://cloudy.halo.gen.nz/about and Film-Making Robot http://halo.gen.nz/robot/ .

    – what counts as a thing?
    – what is a pattern?
    – how do we find patterns?
    – the problem of anthropomorphising.
    – how does a machine see the world?
    – can a computer see things?
    – can a computer see a pattern, and if it does (which I’m beginning to doubt) what does it see, and where is the pattern it sees?
    – enumeration
    – the seeing of things in the widest possible sense
    – mutability
    – how meaning is validated by meaning
    – can there be a non-differentiated pattern?
    – at what point do aesthetics translate experience?
    – speculative materiality

    “Machines [do not only] extend the organism, but [Samuel Butler] asserts that they are really limbs and organs lying on the body without organs of a society” Deleuze and Guattari – Anti-Oedipus, 1972.


    Digital Matters

    *Digital matters: keynote conversation at the 6th ADA symposium critical-digital-matter.*

    Matthew Fuller (London), talks with Su Ballard (Wellington) and Eric Kluitenburg at De Balie (Amsterdam).

    Time: 20:30 to 22:00 NZ.
    Date: Saturday June 27: Victoria University School of Design, 139 Vivian Street

    In “Media Ecologies”, Matthew Fuller called for an embedded approach to digital materials as they are encountered in different cultural and social contexts. When media systems interact with art unpredictable
    things happen. This remote conversation will test the materials of digital networks, hosts and remote relays to enable an open discussion of the materiality of the digital. Fuller and Ballard share a concern with digital matter, and the employment of things digital in concrete engagements with art. They will discuss the pervasiveness of digital matter, the engagement of art and the digital, and address the problem of artists in new media art finding their time taken up with attempts to make their work interesting to contemporary art, creative industries, humanities, etc., and forgetting to intensify the work that directly engages the crucial aspects of the field. This conversation is one attempt to rectify this. Through a direct focus on the materiality of the digital we will engage a discussion of the materiality of computational and networked digital media.

    The conversation will begin from the following short reading list:

    * Matthew Fuller, 2004/2006 “Softness: interrogability; general intellect;art methodologies in software,” ISEA Helsinki 2004 and Digital Research Unit at Huddersfield University, http://www.interfacekultur.au.dk/enhed/aktiviteter/fuller/fuller_softness

    * Su Ballard, 2005, “Entropy and digital installation,” Fibreculture issue 7. http://journal.fibreculture.org/issue7/issue7_ballard.html

    * Adrian Mackenzie, 2009, “Intensive movement in wireless digital signal processing: from calculation to envelopment” Environment and Planning A 41(6) 1294 – 1308. http://www.envplan.com/abstract.cgi?id=a40351

    * Anna Munster, 2001, “Digitality: Approximate aesthetics”
    ctheory.net Article a093, 3/14/2001. http://www.ctheory.net/articles.aspx?id=290

    * M. Beatrice Fazi 2009, “’The simple expression of a complex thought’: For a Media Theory of Expression.” Mute: culture and politics after the net, http://www.metamute.org/en/content/the_simple_expression_of_complex_thought_for_a_media_theory_of_expression

    All texts available via: http://delicious.com/sub.a/6thADAsymposium

    The conversation will be relayed as a regular live stream (watch and listen only) over the internet, and retransmitted in Second Life in a virtual theatre. This will enable second life ‘residents’ from around the globe to follow the discussion and respond via the in-built text-chat in Second Life. The conversation will also be viewable via two urban screens in Wellington: one in the Atrium of the School of Design at Victoria University, and the other at the corner of Courtenay Place and Tory Street. This screen content will be downloadable.


    Distraction and Feedback

    Su Ballard. “Distraction and Feedback: Sound, Noise and Movement in Aotearoa New Zealand.” Mesh vol. 19 (online) http://www.experimenta.org/mesh/mesh19/ballard.html ed. Maria Rizzo, Experimenta: Melbourne, September 2006.

    If sound is a material and digital media have lead images toward a realm where they engage materiality at a deeply coded level, then it is only logical that at some point sound and image will meet on similar ground. In Aotearoa New Zealand artists playing with and shifting the distinct materialities of sound and image enabled by, and in response to, digital technologies have generated significant bodies of work. Much of this work does not only cross the boundaries of sound and image but blurs their material distinctions. This short essay focuses on some recent installations by artists Nathan Thompson, Adam Willetts, and Aaron and Hannah Beehre. In examining a pair of works by each artist I map a trend away from a flat digital screen that was dominant throughout the 90s in New Zealand new media practice, towards the spaces and sounds of installation. In particular the works discussed examine the role of sonics (sound) in new media. In this way the works reflect the significant role that artists working across the platforms of sound and image have had in New Zealand.