[NetBehaviour] aesthetics examples ... forked from : Re: Accelerationist aesthetics

Rob Myers rob at robmyers.org
Fri Apr 29 09:04:05 CEST 2016

On 24/04/16 03:22 AM, Annie Abrahams wrote:
> I just watched Ruth's work again, I like the reflexion it brings, how it
> articulates all these times.

Yes it increases our ability to reflect on and dare I say reason about
this. Which is Accelerationist-y. It's a very eloquent work however one
looks at it.

> What did I get out of the examples Rob gave in his article? They are
> almost all art, just art, as far as I can see. Objects, you can show and
> sell. They function mostly in the Artworld. Holly Herndon and probably
> also Morehshin Allahyari & Daniel Rourke seem to be a bit different in
> the sense that they also engage with other domains and feel "whole".
> They reach out.

This is an interesting contrast that I'd like to unpack a bit. :-)

The "After Us" magazine cover, "On The Necessity of Art's Exit From
Contemporary Art" book cover and Holly Herndon album cover are graphic
design there to illustrate products rather than be presented as art in

Of the images of artworks in the article...

"Acceleration" incorporates imagery from the computer simulation of a
solar neutrino event at Sudbury Neutrino Observatory. It was drawn in
pen and ink, to resist any accusations of techno-fetishism.

"Cybersyn Control Room" is the mock-up of an environment intended to
help respond to the needs of a transitioning socialist economy.

"Final Machine" contrasts Louis Althusser's work with a CIA
indoctrination lecture and the script of Miami Vice.

"Index: Incident In The Museum" is part of a Marxist critique of the
artworld as a site of class struggle.

"The Promise Of Total Automation" has been curated to provide different
perspectives on its subject.

The "Xenofeminism" GIF is a playful but conceptually dense detourned
image of feminine artificiality, power and order.

The "Additivism" image is again quite compact - art, Cthulhu, global
warming, 3D printing and oil in a single coherent image.

And careful web searches indicate that the entities named in O(rphan)
D(rift>)'s "Hybridized" video have long since escaped it.

So at the level of *content*, these all reach further to varying degrees.

That they contrast with more participatory or performative art
illustrates a paradox of political art - *form* can be more effectively
political than content.

I'd argue for the political role of form in these works as well. But the
fact that despite this they can all be contained by the contemporary
artworld (even Cybersyn's control room was the subject of an art show)
indicates just how difficult seeing beyond its confines will be. What
knowledge could be sufficient to achieve this?

> Please diversify examples ...

I don't think it's a good one, but... On the level of propagandising for
Left Accelerationism, I think something like these NASA posters might be
an example of how to make the idea of a specific better future seem
possible -


More information about the NetBehaviour mailing list