[NetBehaviour] Accelerationism

Rob Myers rob at robmyers.org
Thu Apr 28 07:51:43 CEST 2016

On 25/04/16 06:16 AM, Alan Sondheim wrote:
> A few pieces and others we did that might be germane -
> [...]
> Accessgrid pieces - in which we used a multi-channel linux conferencing
> system to bounce signals around the world creating video echos of
> speech/ sound/movement; the delays were on the order of 1/10th second.
> (around 2008)
> Early synthesizer work in which we used patchcords to overload video or
> audio synthesizers (including one we built) to create chaotic emergences
> (similar to 'animals' in turbulence) that we'd build on. (around 1970)
> Foofwa's dancerun work performing marathon movements/vectors through
> cities dancing all the way followed by television crews and people who'd
> join and drop out. (past decade or two)
> My own overloading work in virtual worlds creating anomalies and
> artifacts and zeroing in on them until the suicide crashes take place.
> (past few years)
> My audiotape piece involving a large stage, tape emerging from one
> machine at twice the speed the other's picking it up, with feedback
> loops - time gets drawn out, tape pools on the floor, things go out of
> control, performance stops. (1980 or so)
> Stelarc's wiring/writing himself into the Net, nodal-Stelarc. (twenty
> years ago)

Ping Body! I was part of Stelarc's tech support for the performance at
the ICA in London at the time. :-)

> Chris Burden's early performance work heading towards the bring of
> catastrophe. (1970s)
> Raves. Speedmetal. Current punk debris. Parkour.

That's a wonderful list of work. The elements of these that I feel speak
most to accelerationism are their embrace of complexity and their
intensification of knowing/transgressing of systems.

That knowledge/transgression as craft comes through in Benedict
Singleton's writing about traps and the cunning needed to escape them
(invoking the classical Greek Metis, to go with Prometheus who we've met
already ;-)).

"The intelligence at work in the construction of the trap is most aptly
described as cunning, and it extends to activities that we can broadly
describe as “technical” more generally. Many are the observers who have
seen in this the paradigm of craft more broadly writ, the ability to
coax effects from the world, rather than imposing effects on it by the
application of force alone. Following the grain of wood, knowing the
melting points of various ores, the toughening of metal through its
tempering: all these are not domineering strategies, exactly, but
situations “in which the intelligence attempts to make contact with an
object by confronting it in the guise of a rival, as it were, combining
connivance and opposition.”"


More information about the NetBehaviour mailing list