[NetBehaviour] Accelerationism

Alan Sondheim sondheim at panix.com
Thu Apr 28 08:12:28 CEST 2016

On Wed, 27 Apr 2016, Rob Myers wrote:

> 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. :-)
Amazing! really loved his work 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.?"
> http://www.e-flux.com/journal/maximum-jailbreak/

Yes! Exactly! I was thinking this even describes the viola pieces I put up 
tonight which rely on harmonics and octaves and the natural resonance of 
the instrument with and without mutes - the result is a kind of singing 
(for better or worse - I need comments here) which occupies spaces among 
instrument and room resonances, bow 'tremblings' of wrist/finger/arm, and 
harmonics in combination - when I analyze this stuff, I monitor the 
waveforms -

Then of course on some instruments there are wolf-notes to be avoided for 
the most part, a kind of negative wood-grain.

But I wouldn't use the word 'cunning,' so much as 'dwelling-knowledge,'
which indicates lived spaces, habitus, and habits to be pushed or broken - 
the same might apply to some of the pieces above -

Alan, thanks!
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