Search results for 'photography'

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INFOBAHN BLUES 

Since American Vice-President Al Gore made his famous speech in California a couple of years ago, it has become impossible to scan any news medium without finding at least one reference to the "Information Superhighway". The Information Superhighway metaphor - specially tailored for Mr. Gore's California audience - is so brilliantly simplistic it seems to have blown the mind of every media editor in the Western Hemisphere. With an Information Superhighway you just plug in your modem and roll your data out onto the ramp and into the dataflow where it zips along the freeway until it hits the appropriate off-ramp. Finding data is the same - it's all nice straight data-lanes with on and off ramps and well-banked curves.

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    CAE: Framing Tactical Media 


    Anyone involved with "tactical media" (TM) before its famed christening in 1996 at the Next Five Minutes had to know that naming this cultural/political tendency was going to have some very negative repercussions. The naming was the first step in doing what TM feared the most°Xclaiming cultural territory doomed to house haunting archives. Once given an official title, so many nasty processes could begin - most significantly, the construction of historical narratives. So many narratives already exist explaining this ephemeral, immediate, specific, and deterritorialized process of cultural production that seemed so urgent to so many radical subjects in the early 90s.

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    Data Trash: The Theory of the Virtual Class 

    Arthur Kroker, Canadian media theorist and is the author of 'ThePossessed Individual', 'Spasm' and 'Hacking the Future'. Over the pastyears he, together with Marilouise Kroker, were often in Europe andmade appearances at Virtual Futures, V-2, Eldorado/Antwerpen, etc.Recently, they have also been discovered in German-speaking countries.Both are noted for their somewhat compact jargon, which made theirmessage appear to drown somewhat in overcomplex code. But "DataTrash"`(1994) changed all that. The long treck through the squashydiscourses had not been in vain. Firmly rooted in European philosophy,yet not submerged, Arthur Kroker has found his topic: the virtual class.

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    Utopian Promises-Net Realities 

    The need for net criticism certainly is a matter of overwhelming urgency. While a number of critics have approached the new world of computerized communications with a healthy amount of skepticism, their message has been lost in the noise and spectacle of corporate hype-the unstoppable tidal wave of seduction has enveloped so many in its dynamic utopian beauty that little time for careful reflection is left. Indeed, a glimpse of a possibility for a better future may be contained in the new techno-apparatus, and perhaps it is best to acknowledge these possibilities here in the beginning, since Critical Art Ensemble (CAE) has no desire to take the position of the neoluddites who believe that the techno-apparatus should be rejected outright, if not destroyed. To be sure, computerized communications offer the possibility for the enhanced storage, retrieval, and exchange of information for those who have access to the necessary hardware, software, and technical skills. In turn, this increases the possibility for greater access to vital information, faster exchange of information, enhanced distribution of information, and cross cultural artistic and critical collaborations. The potential humanitarian benefits of electronic systems are undeniable; however, CAE questions whether the electronic apparatus is being used for these purposes in the representative case, much as we question the political policies which guide the net's development and accessibility.

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    Putting the Demo Back in Democracy: March Against the Moguls. 

    That guerrilla video is now the subject of historical reflection is probably a sign of its demise. There has been a recent flurry of archival and publishing activity centering on experiments made in the '70s. In 1997, the Chicago-based Video Data Bank released Surveying the First Decade, a compilation of work from the early days of video, and Oxford University Press published Deirdre Boyle's Subject to Change: Guerrilla Television Revisited, the definitive study of the video movements of the late 1960s and '70s. These reflections on the utopian impulse in early video provide an opportunity to think about the present state of media in this country, in particular those movements that have attempted to create electronic space for non-commercial views that run counter to the mainstream.

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    Electronic Civil Disobedience, Simulation, and the Public Sphere 

    What counts in the long run is the "use" one makes of a theory....We must start from existing practices in order to retrace the fundamental flaws.
    --Felix Guattari, "Why Marx and Freud No Longer Disturb Anyone"

    In 1994, when Critical Art Ensemble first introduced the idea and a possible model of electronic civil disobedience (ECD) as another option for digital resistance, the collective had no way of knowing what elements would be the most practical, nor did it know what elements would require additional explanation. After nearly five years of field testing of ECD by various groups and individuals, its information gaps have become a little more obvious and can finally be addressed.

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    Fuzzy Biological Sabotage 

    If the left has learned anything from resistance against capital driven technocracy, it is that the democratic process is only minimally useful for slowing the profit machine of pancapitalism. Since corporations and other capital-saturated institutions own the process, and tend to function outside national democratic imperatives, other methods of power appropriation have to be developed. In the case of biotechnology, the resistance is unfortunately in a position of reactivity. Corporations have already infiltrated most governments and markets at such a furious pace that all that can be done is attempt to slow them down, while cells and organizations regroup and decide on a way to address the many problems that have already arisen, and the many potential accidents that are in front of us.

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