Re: [-empyre-] modern/conceptul dialectic -> N state?

gh responds:

When I think of database I think of a bureaucrat filling out a of birth.. phone number etc.. The information is stored and it supposedly represents a person but we know better. It's reducing a person to statistics. So how do we make that person come alive?
We use various devices to sample information; cameras, microphones, seismographic sensors, moisture sensors, scanners etc..
What is interesting about sampling is that we can use the measuring instruments to grab portions, store the information, and then assemble the information in any order we see fit. The database allows us to do this. It allows us to create baroque, dense, non- linear layered art work. Where does the artist sit in all of this? The artist takes the data and finds ways to assemble new representations of reality that combines hard core data and emotive, visceral, kinetic sensation. It goes beyond the Post-Modernist notion of the collapse or de-centering of the subjective point of view.

I think of this as (us) being in reality but turning off the filters that we use to organize information in our mind and memory. So I would agree with Brett that there is a new epoch or N-state. This is where the fun starts. How to define the N-state? Some of my recent audio and performance work deals with dense overlayed immersive sounds. I describe this as memory having the structure of a spiky burr. The spikes that stick out are like sound bites that lead you into the denser areas of memory and sensation.
<>< artDirt>

A couple of questions for the respondents...

I have assumed that the modern and the postmodern (and previous epochs back to the archaic) interoperate in layers in our cultural system, but are in our contemporary state now stimulated by information technology... fundamentally the speed of database.

In your view, what role does IT and database play, if any, in catalyzing the contemporary situation? Could we say that it is in some sense that a new epoch or zeitgeist, an N-state, is emerging to supersede the pomo that is based on material differences that IT and database have catalyzed? (I think I read this drift Bruno's human browser... creating novel real performances out of a distributed database application that has its own ideas about the local context... great stuff.) Or is the present situation still best characterized as the lingering postmodern?

If the latter is the case, I do think it is very interesting to heed what Henry Warwick had to say in a previous post about energy. Any thoughts on what might stimulate a break in the epochal inertia?

Assuming that it is not broken already... I tend to think that all of the accomplishments of postmodernism are best characterized as the first phase of a new epoch which might be better named; and where the first phase of course persistently misunderstands what has happened to us. Misunderstanding is natural in times of massive technological and economic change... it took modernism a long time to successfully incorporate the industrial revolution... but in any case my view is that the postmodern is at least maturing out of the euphoric/dystopic dialectic of the 80's, which culminated nicely in the Matrix. We can see now that the sign does not replace the real, but materially interacts with it in new ways... like in the human browser... but oops... I'm asking a question here... I should not be answering my own... sorry...

Brett Stalbaum, Lecturer, PSOE
Coordinator, Interdisciplinary Computing and the Arts Major (ICAM)
Department of Visual Arts
9500 GILMAN DR. # 0084
La Jolla CA 92093-0084

Info for students, winter quarter 2K6:
-ICAM and Media (computing emphasis) faculty advising:
Tuesday 1-2PM, VAF 206, Contact via email
-Vis 40/ICAM 40 (Introduction/Computing in Arts) office hour:
Tuesday 2-3PM, VAF 206, Contact via WebCT
-Vis 141A (Computer Programming/Arts I) office hour:
Tuesday 3-4PM, VAF 206, Contact: via WebCT
- Notes:
Week 7 (Feb 21st) No office hours today
Finals Week (March 21st) Yes.
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