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March 25, 2007

New Media Art in a Control Society


Transcript from a Performance

Adam Trowbridge: New Media Art in a Control Society :: Transcript from Performance :: The Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, TN, USA
March 22, 2007 :: video stills here

As noted in the transcript, the majority of the statements read were not original and instead shamelessly stolen (edited and unedited) from various sources: theoretical texts, artists' statements, manifestos and paranoid rambling. Transcript:

This is...a performance and new media art...or maybe not. [video begins] [text below is read]

- - Gilles Deleuze said "Maybe speech and communication have been corrupted. They're thoroughly permeated by money and not by accident but by their very nature. We've got to hijack speech. Creating has always been something different from communicating. The key thing may be to create vacuoles of non-communication, circuit breakers, so we can elude control." End quote.

- - The phrase "new media art" is pointless.

- - The selection of medium is not the selection of a wardrobe for an idea. We are well past ideas and communication. Medium should be selected like legal and illicit pharmaceuticals: where do you want to go today?

- - What is a digital painting? Idiotic.

- - Contemporary art is both scattered and networked, always in motion. Medium, if anything, is a measure of speed and distribution. Is the texture of an oil painting that different from that of flypaper? Video is faster and shedding the weight of the poetic yet precious medium of film. Photography is a film still. Internet-based art is faster but still flails, lashed down by too many examples of bad information design masquerading as art.

- - THEY create DELIRIOUS RULES and sell you free access to their BACKSTAGE if you follow these sick rules. YOU KNOW IT.

- - Deleuze and Guattari's rhizome has been falsely represented as a metaphor for a network and for networked art. Deleuze and Guattari did not deal in metaphors.

- - Rhizomatic action is a force relationship in which power is distributed then scattered before it can begin to collect. This is not a metaphorical description but a plan of action.

- - Over 650,000 Iraqi civilians were killed by military intervention in Iraq and we are here to discuss...what?

- - Images can shatter the old order leaving nothing the same as before.

- - All hoarding, speculation on art, must cease and be seen for what it is: usury and exploitation.

- - In the beginning, you enjoyed it. You were caught in the middle of the WAR between THEM and THE OTHER SIDE, and you were trying to help THEM win the war.

- - All true language is incomprehensible, like the chatter of a beggar's teeth.

- - Six billion worldwide population, all living, have a Computer God Containment Policy brain bank brain, a real brain in the brain bank cities on the far side of the moon we never see.

- - Marketing has become the center or the "soul" of the corporation. We are taught that corporations have a soul, which is the most terrifying news in the world.

- - Human beings are not fully conscious of their real life...usually groping in the dark...at every moment groups and individuals find themselves confronted with results they have not wished.

- - Control is short-term and has rapid rates of turnover, but is also continuous and without limit.

- - New media art involves people who make watering plants more complex than it needs to be by using cell phones that call the Internet when the plants need water.

- - If you can talk about it, why paint it?

- - The Dia: Beacon is a tomb for the last gasp of studio art, let it be a monument and move on.

- - Man and machines can make symbiotic art.

- - Psychogeography: The study of the precise effects of geographical setting, consciously managed or not, acting directly on the mood and behavior of the individual.

- - Inevitability of gradualness. Usually, in a few years, you are made string bean thin or grotesquely deformed, crippled and ugly, or even made one foot shorter or one foot taller, as the Computer God sees fit.

- - In the future we will have foreign genetic material in us as today we have mechanical and electronic implants. In other words, we will be transgenic. However, there's no excuse but marketing for purchasing a glowing rabbit.

- - Users of the world are presented with fresh, owned content every day. We have the technology, the precedents, and the duty to make new art out of this owned content.

- - A lot of people say that new media is revolutionary. They say the net is subversive. But how subversive can you be in an exclusive club where it costs $1,000 for a computer and $50 a month to connect to the Internet.

- - The main function of Art is to distinguish rich people from poorer people.

- - Many young people strangely boast of being "motivated"; we re-request apprenticeships and permanent training. It's up to us to discover what we're being made to serve, just as our elders discovered, not without difficulty, the ultimate end of the disciplines.

- - Personal expression and human and artist centrality can be abandoned.

- - Complex machines are an emergent life form in the masturbatory fantasies of those siding with control. I distrust transhumanists but I want to be friends with a computer.

- - Any moralistic or spiritual pretension or representation purposes for art must be abandoned.

- - Primarily, based on your lifelong Frankenstein Radio Controls, especially your Eyesight TV, sight and sound recorded by your brain, your moon brain of the Computer God activates your Frankenstein threshold brainwash radio lifelong, inculcating conformist propaganda, even frightening you and mixing you up and the usual, "Don't worry about it."

- - Professionalism in the arts (and the accompanying stratification of skills) must be abandoned in favor of a progressive (class-less) artistry of both a personal and collective nature.

- - Over the last decades, using positions of power in your STAGE-WORLD reality, THEY introduced their key words and also their sick DREAMWORLD- TO-SELL key ideas in every aspect of culture in the STAGE WORLD society where you live : songs, movies, humor, even propaganda.

- - Derive: An experimental mode of behavior linked to the conditions of urban society: a technique for hastily passing through varied environments.

- - The economic and cultural exploitation of the artist has reached appalling proportions. The individual and/or collective artist, whose work is plagiarized as commercial 'technique', or exported as cultural commodity, has little control over these conditions.

- - Consciousness is not exclusively restricted to the brain. Human bodies have no boundaries.

- - The artist must be concerned with the moral relationship that his/her endeavors have to the institutions within which he/she expresses his/her work.

- - The majority of what I've read has been shamelessly stolen from various sources: theoretical texts, artists' statements, manifestos and paranoid rambling. They stand as a collection of connections and disjunctions. I am, we are, a manner of speaking.

- - Art is not knowledge.

- - Art does not communicate.

- - There is nothing here for you.

- - Gilles Deleuze said that new situations could "...at first express new freedom, but they could participate as well in mechanisms of control that are equal to the harshest of confinements. There is no need to fear or hope, but only to look for new weapons".

[via nettime]

Posted by jo at March 25, 2007 04:12 PM