Anti-Ageism : engaging in new media art

Recently I discovered that the act of looking back, reviewing a life, or reminiscing was seen by the medical profession as a pathological aspect of ageing, causing or exacerbating depression and disengagement from everyday life. This was right up until the early 1960s when a paper by Robert Butler, a research psychiatrist at the American National Institute of Mental Health, challenged prevailing views, he in fact coined the term ‘ageism’.

Similarly Apparitions art considers & explores the qualia new media art’s role has in augmenting heritage digitally, creating a hauntology, invoking a hyperreal nostalgia and prodding the Hypokeimenon in Heritage (in metaphysics which literally means the “underlying thing”). To search for the hypokeimenon is to search for that substance which persists in a thing going through change, its basic essence.

 
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Glitches & Ghosts, Lancaster April 17th

Just heard my proposal has been accepted for this really interesting interdisciplinary conference ‘Glitches and Ghosts‘ taking place at Lancaster University on 17th April 2019.
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Glitches are moments of disruption; they represent the exposure of technical process, moving away from the binaries of input and output to consider what comes in-between. The growing ubiquity of interconnected systems prompts a desire to understand such intangible networks around the user, an attempt to try and engage with these digital phenomena as alternate forms of ‘presence’ that cannot help but recourse to anthropocentric terms – virus, cloud, render ghost. The frequent ethereality of such language attempts to visualise, embody, and comprehend the profusion of technical systems that we share the atmosphere with, their very terming gesturing to their spectral protrusion into, ostensibly, ‘our’ reality. The eruption of pixels, voxels, and glitches haunts our peripheral vision, a deceptive representation of a far more intangible sphere.

‘Glitches and Ghosts’ seeks to diagnose and analyse contemporary cultural fascinations with the emergence of these digital artefacts, and how their spectral presence has come to define our current technological moment. This symposium aims to bring together researchers who are enticed by the prospect of re-conceptualising definitions of digital-based ontologies as a paradigm to engage with an era of technophobic anxieties and technophilic domination.

We are delighted to announce Dr. Will Slocombe as our keynote. Will’s research ranges between various aspects of twentieth and twenty-first century literature, focusing primarily on Science Fiction (particularly representations of Artificial Intelligence), Postmodernism, and metafictions of experimental literature. His upcoming book Emergent Patterns: Artificial Intelligence and the Structural Imagination is due out in 2019.

 

Abstract :
This is a self-selecting, inspirational, immersive art experience in three scenes involving my smart phone app that transcends a purely informational use, its presence is anchored to 3 surreal soundtracks, each travelling through time creating a nostalgia for a lost future. It is a significant exploration of the impact of cutting edge ‘augmented reality’ technologies on memory & experience. Influenced by local Victorian & Edwardian heritage the work raises ‘ghost’ buildings up from what artist Brion Gysin called the ‘derelict dead’.
Focussing on my hometown of Hastings & St Leonards I have recreated locations such as St Leonards Pier (destroyed in WWII) & the Albert Memorial (lost to fire in 1973) as virtual 3D models viewable using smartphones. All these places no longer exist.
‘Apparitions’ is a series of 3 digital artworks experienced through the app when viewing postcards with the camera in a smartphone that act as triggers. It uses augmented reality ‘AR’ and I designed and released for free in 2018. In Apparitions these augmented reality landmarks are like ghosts which Smartphones can allow us to see. The effect of AR brings to mind a form of modern-day conjuring or seancing of ghosts or phantasms  or alternatively a form of assisted imaginative time travel that enables you to peer through a portal and down the corridors of history.
In this sense Apparitions explores some similar and overlapping territory with Mark Fisher’s hauntological theories in its creation of spectral imagery and sound in relation to lost landmarks and futures. Accompanying which the use of the words ghosts and apparitions in the project is not dissimilar to the use of ghosts or spectres within some hauntological related work in the way that it infers a sense of the spectral after-images or echoes of items from previous eras.
#glitchesandghosts #glitchconference @GlitchGhosts

 

Suggested topics include:

• Digital art – glitch aesthetics, pixels, voxels, drone shadows, distortion etc.
• Détournement and system subversion – e.g. hacker ‘heroes’ and neoliberal dissent.
• Technophobia – network alienation and technological anxieties.
Glitch and/or ghosts in music – synthwave, sampling, remixes, etc.
• Cloud spectrality, unseen network presences and how we visualise them.
• Ghosts in the machine, electronic voice phenomenon, white noise etc.
• Render ghosts, digital advertising and the disruption of imagined ontologies.
• Doppelgangers, sample image databases and the ‘ownership’ of personal data.
• Unshackled virtual consciousness, e.g. A.I. and the breaking of constraints.
Disruption of the virtual – glitches, bugs, cheats and other subversions.
• Digital spectres – eternal or lingering existence within the network.
• Viral anxieties and data transmission; conceptualisations of network ‘presence’.
• Secular digitalities, virtual ‘gods’ or spirits and ontological transcendence.
• Permanence and/or ephemerality of data, system collapse and user anxiety.
• Creative practice and the deployment of glitches and/or ghosts within media.
• Remixed ontologies, disruption of identity boundaries and bricolage forms.
• Omnipresent networks, ‘invasive’ devices (i.e. Alexa) and disconnection.
• Machine learning and emergent behaviour from algorithmic structures.

http://wp.lancs.ac.uk/glitchesandghosts/

the real is no longer what it was, nostalgia assumes its full meaning

“The real no longer exists –

it has no relation to any reality whatsoever;
it is its own pure simulacrum…

 It plays at being an appearance – it is of the order of sorcery…

It is no longer of the order of appearances, but of simulation. “

‘when the map has come to precede the territory’

exploring mixed reality, hauntology & sonic anchors

I first used glass cloches for display in my work ‘SleepCycles‘ in Technology is Not Neutral in Brighton, 2016. Burning candles atop each dome for set numbers of hours expressed each one as a different stage of sleep. So the wax-dripped dome shown here is a particularly narrow and tall model that suits containment of the clocktower, if such a public landmark could be put into a protective bubble. Today I explored how to trigger the AR from outside the glass, with different strong natural lighting effects and with sound from the app and the immediate environment.

Apparitions : Hastings’ Victorian gothic clocktower & Sufi music in India / Augmented reality 2

(Turn sound on ) One more screen capture of Apparitions – mixing reality of Hastings’ lost landmarks taken to India – triggering on iPad screen capture through ‘Recordit’, turn sound on to hear the ensemble of Sufi music playing over the AR triggered soundscape. The sounds I chose when making the app are encompassing its lifetime and space in Hastings, East Sussex, UK from 1862-1973. In this moment seagulls fly over and a 1920’s motor car drives past, we experience the clocktower’s chime and sounds overlaid on the peaceful Sufi music playing in the hotel gardens of Faluknama Palace, Hyderabad in India from augmented reality – Get the app free here : https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/apparitions-ar/id1431496591?mt=8

Apparitions : Hastings’ Victorian gothic clocktower in India : Augmented reality

(turn sound on 😉 ) taking Hastings’ lost landmarks to India ! Realtime triggering of Apparitions AR (my free app) on an iPad – you are seeing the screen capture made through free software ‘Record it’ app, turn sound on to hear the ensemble of Sufi music playing over the AR triggered soundscape. The sounds I chose when making the app encompass its lifetime (1862-1973) & environmental space in Hastings, East Sussex, UK. In this moment during WWII a Messerschmitt Bf 110 plane flies over, we experience the clocktower and sounds overlaid on the peaceful Sufi music that is actually being played live in the hotel gardens of Taj Faluknama Palace, Hyderabad in India from augmented reality

make art free !

Hastings Memorial triggering from a postcard outside Mumbai’s legendary CSMT railway

 

‘Bombay Gothic’ backdrop for Apparitions

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Apparitions app, iPhone6 Plus

I recently visited India with a work permit for an arts assignment and was amazed and had to trigger some of my ‘AR’ art nearby in its stunning ‘Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensembles of Mumbai’ (as recommended by the World Heritage Committee.) The Gothic style is dramatic, with split facades and deep shadings, embellished with etchings and engravings. The Memorial Clocktower of Hastings (1862-1973) that I created as the first ‘Apparitions_Art‘ stood proud in front of the main railway station of Chhatrapati Shivaji, once known as the Victoria Terminus built around the same time.

Once fondly called Bombay, Mumbai is the largest city in India, home to over 18 million people. The city is filled with architectural gems influenced by styles that include Gothic, Victorian, Indo-Saracenic, Art Deco and contemporary. Gothic architecture originated in India under the British Raj or Crown Rule during the mid-19th century. It became popular in Britain and naturally crossed over to India, where British architects chose to practice their new art form on Indian soil.

Here will be a link to a page of Hastings Memorial Clocktower appearing in Hyderabad  & Mumbai, India in January 2019.

10.12.18 Artist’s talk on Augmented reality : lost landmarks of Hastings & St Leonards

IMG_0358.PNGI will be giving a public talk for the Bexhill Heritage group on 10.12.18, 7pm – 9pm
at Friends Meeting House, 15A Albert Road (four doors down from Rustico ) and its free to attend. The Apparitions postcards & app will be demonstrated and given to guests
I will show the development of my idea to bring back lost landmarks implementing a bespoke app I designed that runs on smart phones capable of ‘augmented reality’
It raises questions around gentrification and preserving heritage through digital art whilst also giving an enriched experience through surreal time travelling sound scapes for each site

Old History house talk and demonstration 10.11.18

I am  giving an Arts talk about my technologically assisted “Apparitions” at OHPS History house on 10th November at 5pm. I do hope you can come along.

OHPS – Old Hastings Preservation Society
21 Courthouse St, Hastings TN34 3AU

Telephone: 01424 424744.

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‘Apparitions‘ is a new augmented reality art project that reveals the
ghosts of historic Edwardian landmarks in Hastings (The Memorial
clocktower), St Leonards (The Pier) & Bexhill (beach huts) evoking a
nostalgia for lost futures.