POSTHUMAN CONTEMPORARY NOTES
The end of the subjective view, the thing that separates us from animals. Subject and object. It no longer exists or at least is on a rapid decline.
No one can dispute the multiplicities of sex, gender, identity and culture that have a human expression called the Internet.
All posthuman means is that what was an obsessive duality is now forever fractured into a web of endless feedback loops that taken as a singularity gives us our collective identity.
Net Art is net art and as formal as any before it. Post-Internet art is not removed from these trappings either. All it emphasizes is a recognition that there was art, life, culture, etc. before and after the Internet.
Isn't it more accurate to say posthuman? We do indeed still exist. But are in fact beyond the identity of human.
Our environment, our ecosystem arguably produced us with or without alien (only meaning off-planet including stardust, stray amino acids from comets, perhaps extraterrestrial life, etc) interference.
But the Internet is the only true ecosystem humans have created. We made it.
Think: if we know perhaps 10% about the ecosystem that gave us life, the ocean, then we may have only expressed less than 1% at best of what the Internet could be.
No matter what it is or where, people still want to see the real thing. The desire to see something in person, to experience it will always supercede it's manifestation on the web. Things that exist out here can never be in there and the reverse is true. Not yet.
It's like saying you don't believe in god. To say you don't just says there is one anyway since you don't believe in it. To fully disavow you have to break the circle. De-invent the words that named these concepts to begin with.
The same will be true when the analog and digital realities of the posthuman experience merge into something we can't yet conceive. Akin to walking out of an ocean and breathing an alien air.
"Today we do not think the virtual, the virtual thinks us. And this elusive transparency, which separates us definitively from the real, is as unintelligible as is the window pane to the fly which bangs against it without understanding what separates it from the outside world. The fly can not even imagine what is setting this limit on its space. Similarly, we can not even imagine how much the virtual-as though running ahead of us-has already transformed all the representations we have of the world."
- From the intro to the essay "The Double Extermination" on page 116 in Baudrillard's "Screened Out"
And it is with the abolition of objective time itself by the infinite now of the virtual, forever yielding simultaneity, that we shed the last vestiges of humanity and become something beyond. In itself a misnomer since it implies that historical time exists. There is only now, a consistent immortality of experience.
With the collapse of narrative it is only the stream that holds meaning. "Lost" was successful not because it gave us the conclusion, but because it kept going. More real that a reality show, adept at creating more possibilities than presenting ways to categorize outcomes; it is the infinite game with no end except to nullify the phenomenon of experiencing it.
- See: Brad Trommel's Jogging, Jennifer Chan's notes on Post-Internet, Rafael Rozendaal's websites.
Indeed it is the problem area we inhabit. Nothing to be construed as negative, yet a problem nonetheless: an endless series of equations deriving input from what it means to be real (whatever this means) and what it means to be virtual. We solve and are riddled by this in an explosive, simultaneous exchange of subject and object with nothing to lose or gain since all meanings of past, present and future are increasingly losing value to the now.
Only at the biological level are we left with a sense of passage. The determination of the cells to regenerate but also the deterioration of each in return. This is also being shattered as we propel further into the origins of this elemental expression as well.
So then, where are we? What are we? What does it mean to be posthuman? In the end, it will always be the self. Even in a sea of simultaneity, the self can be defined simply by defining itself. By expressing. A phenomenological affirmation.
So it is with this that we chill. Leave the philosophy and just chill. Revel in our time.
- It is indeed why I made this and more important, how I made it.
➡️ Go into JUST BE YOUR SELFIE process and use of iPhone to create it.
🔴 Need to include Civilization of Spectacle Bit.
But even in the face of this, we affirming ourselves not to each other, but to the virtual. It is not to the other but to the many.
And so it is not time or a timeline that we post to but a point. A featureless dot on a perpetual event horizon in infinite space.
➡️ Slides used in the campaign alternating between text and image to begin with MMXIV title and finish with black screen.
It is here that we find the silence of the virtual vacuum. Nothing shocking and nothing moves. Like the sensation of being in the Rothko Chapel. Truly infinite. It here we know what it means not to be human or posthuman but to simply be. The act of existing. Nothing is certain. You are what you intend. Keep it in motion.