[-empyre-] Heat Death, Immolations and Affective Processes, and into Week Two

Patrick Lichty pl at voyd.com
Sun Jan 12 04:50:27 EST 2014

Hello, everyone.
Thanks so far for a great conversation, although amongst four.  I am on
break under a mound of paperwork, so I pop out when I can (and when I have

In regards to heat death and the wonderful account of the sculptures in
Texas, I found that he did them because he wanted to inspirational, and very
poetic.  Upon hitting 50 last year, divorcing, and losing my last parent,
ephemerality was an obsession for me.  There are different time scales for
this; Digitally, I feel most of what we are doing will not exist in 25
years, environmentally, I believe that humanity lacks the political will to
save itself, and the so-called "Second Great Dying" is immanent in 250
years.  All of these things notwithstanding, surely nothing of this
civilization will be else but ruin in 25-50,000 years, so why bother?

In essence, for ourselves, in the time we inhabit and the place where we
live.  It is almost Lovecraftian (and I could almost go into Thacker here),
that we could curl up into a ball, understanding the larger nature of
reality, or one can accept heat death, and walk through the park, feeding
the birds, knowing the quantum vacuum isn't today, and it is perhaps worth
trying to investigate ourselves, for sentience' sake.  This, for me why we
tinker, talk and dance.  I don't believe there is nothing there, our
projected affects remain, and very much in the massumian precognitive state
as in a good virtual performance, an avatar can create the precursive chain
of affect->Sense->Feel->Emote, as Second front has proven time and again.

Another point that I have totally missed, and perhaps a good point going
into Nathaniel, Sandy, and Katja's week (although I've been told Liz Solo
will be coming in, and Alan will continue), that one point of interactivity
and the body (a good transition) is my Leonardo paper "The Cybernetics of
Performance and New Media Art".  It was the cornerstone on what I hoped
might be a book, but began with Weiner and first order cybernetics,
Schechner, and the necessity for feedback in interaction and performance.


My main impetus for writing this in (2003?) was various practitioners such
as Rosalind Krauss claiming their ROM-based work as being "New Media
Performances", where I argued that there was a perrformative element to
interacting with a decision tree, performance has indeterminacy that a
multimedia work generally does not.  However, I realize that my argument
could be raised through Mead through fourth-order cybernetics, and even
translated into Process Oriented Ontologies, which are are explored by
people like Stern and Manning. 

Regarding Stelarc's immolation, there is one brief clip in a piece by Second
Front, called "Plan 10 from Outer Space", in which Stelarc is momentarily
visible, and on fire.
It appears to be offline.

So it is with great pleasure that I open the door to Sandy, Nathaniel,
Katja, and Liz as we move into our second week on bodies, space, and
historiography of interaction.

More information about the empyre mailing list