[-empyre-] Week 4 | Flow and Real Time in the Urban

pl at voyd.com pl at voyd.com
Sun May 30 11:06:03 AEST 2021



Thank you everyone for such a brisk discussion!
Two things: Negin and I expanded the conversation as part of the Institute for Networked Culture's Video Vortex 13, which Alan Sondheim was so kind to watch.
Also, my reflection on my time in the UAE pandemic (one of the starting points of this train of thought) is in the Electronic Literature Organization's current exhibition, and at Dubai's Nation 2.0 gallery.

Of course, I am not surprised that the Negin's time archives and my daily calligraphy project are in a dance, speaking about two sides of the same issue, the granularity of life, how series of entries reveal flows and patterns of being, as our lives are halves of the same coin. Where I think her time archives look differently is that they are more akin to Heraclitus, wondering if ontologically speaking, one is ever talking about the same river, and my project stakes out time.

For those who are not familiar, I have been taking my background in Japanese calligraphy and have done about a thousand or so automatic/asemic calligraphies using my iPad, originally referring to Hockney's daily iPad work. I have been entering this work into playform.io's machine learning systems and trying to understand my consciousness through determining the inner consistencies of the work,

Negin writes:

"Metaphorically, if every moment of life is a music note, we are the composer of daily music. We are the only ones who could hear our own music too. If we consider every thought we have during the day, as a code and symbol we actually add to our existence time, we would realize how important it is what we think of, or feel for in a daily basis; what we see or listen or experience."

I absolutely agree, but she looks at this from a musical perspective, I address from a literary one perhaps capturing a daily recording of the flows of time reveal their trajectories.  Hoever, this leads to Beeple's Everydays and how that relates.

Regarding Shama's thought - Dubai/Abu Dhabi is where this conversation began, as this was Negin and my home for a number of years until January. The collapsing of time into what I constructed as an electronic literature work, Confinement Spaces, that freezes time (see the link above) based on the UAE, and being constrained from our neighborhood, to the emirate/state, to having limited access to the whole country for two days from Abu Dhabi. Please enjoy exploring the existential moment from February to August captured there.  This work is all about the suspension of time we experienced during the lockdown, although Abu Dhabi is much less "hyper" than our cousin, Dubai. But in addition, time is frozen again, and we map the flows from Minnesota and Tehran as we await our reunion.

I think that it is interesting that in a way the conversation has moved from continuous "real" time to the freezing in time and space, which Virilio also speaks about in the Third Interval. Does this indicate the collapse of time into a singularity as virilio's idea of real-time locks us in the moment?

One other thing that Negin found for our conversation in Istanbul/Rome this week is the idea of hard/soft/firm real-time. When Negin suggested this, It almost reminds me of "absolute", time, "Insha'Allah" time (God willing, it'll happen, and it generally will), and firm, or, what could happen, did, and the rest is irrelevant.  I am processing this, and my Middle-Eastern reference is not meant as disrespectful, as anyone who lived/lives in the Middle East would know.

Thank you so much, and I look forward to your responses. 

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