frgmnt org

17 May 2010

DIY Networks

DIY Networks

(text for a lecture-performance by Sophie Gosselin, Jo Frgmnt Grys, Alejandra Perez Nunez, Julien Ottavi)

a hands on workshop on media ecologies

a lecture performance in critical ecosystems seminary

the problem we have before us is how to keep doing work with technology without involving ourselves in the process , how can we question the tools we use and the practices we realize with them without looking at our own maps, the diagrams of our desires, imaginaries, utopias, the maps of our own bodies, moving restless following the production flows next to other components of daily life in capitalistic cities. How to escape from control paradigm overlooking the biopolitic relations of control instances and apparatuses for the modulation of individuals. We want to keep these two factors together – body and technology, looking at science fiction for instance (Dune, Franck Herbert, Ubik Philip K Dick).
In the technological development of networks we may witness the prolongation of security and surveillance apparatuses that integrate over and over new elements , of production, psychological , behavioral, procedural, of the consumers, of the trading instances, of the global markets in such a centrifugal process that accelerates from the micro to the macro. Nevertheless…

control is just an illusion in our human heads (old thinking of almighty god etc)

in the physical world there is things with their properties, by mutual influence the “laws of nature” occur. control (which involves laws) is thus secondary or our interpretation of this interaction.

i.e. the sun does not “control” the earth´s orbit

our tricky digital machines, symbol-based what they are, inherited this

** midi is control!
************** keyboard,
*********************** cpu,
*************************** dvd,
******************************* digital
is control! etc etc

.. from the paradigm to the level of digital technology back to the social level

*many (social group)
** human
*** body
**** head
***** control paradigm
****** build control technology
***** controls
**** head
*** body
** human
* many

a violin doesn’t get controlled by the player
it is playing
it is love
it is feedback
it is oscillation

but there is also

influence versus control

In some systems like old synthesizers and instruments such as ANS synthesizer , the Theremin, Cahill and De Forrest synthesizers , Hohner electronium, Melochord, Bendix bel organ , all these technologies consider the relation between various systems, sharing and coupling on each other.
As well as radios and radio feedback techniques and oscillators as in the Rain Forest of David Tudor.

We want to bring inside our discussion the notion of influence in the sense of becoming devenir femme/animal/mineral…

Our realities are so complex since machine & human are in such a way implicated with each other… All our rhythms are coupled now with those of instruments and technological devices. If we want to think technologies outside the control paradigm we have to change ourselves, not just the technology we use. It is about micro-politics and molecular revolution (Felix Guattari) on how we are affected and coupled at microscales with other systems.

In order to reflect upon these ideas we will consider some examples of machines made of different components as assemblages of objects or other circuits found in images (un chien andalu, Buñuel and the man with the movie camera (Vertov)) and sound as David Tudor and Henri Chopin also Merzbau of Kurt Schwitters and La Mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même of Marcel Duchamp.

The idea would be to add to the device building aspect a dimension of sound and image diffusion, which will materialize the actions made on the controllers and digital automatons. Basically, the idea is that little by little, all the devices which are build by the participants (controllers, automation systems…) are interlinked, connected to create a kind of big eco-system of which we (as participants/producers) are part. We could “visualize” this construction process through sounds and images which would be the basic material on which the controllers would play.

We will do recordings of discussions that will be initiated with participants while building DIY devices (in the situation of action) on the issues of “sustainable” soft-hardware = the issues of creating parallel channels of exchanges, alternative to the channels imposed and controlled by the neoliberal market. Linking the idea of ecosophy to the one of control: the ecological approach as a critical position to control.

We propose to look at the networks rising from our conversations and technical setups and to understand the implications of our technologies, the network of relations in which each device is embedded, we sense that such a shift will have to come out of the reflection about becoming woman (le devenir femme) and the integration of machine/philo/sound/sex/art/politics…


  1. Miau…
    it is so interesting. i’d like to learn and understand more about it.

    i will read it again, so some more info gets stucked in my head. cause by now, some points are difficult for me to get.

    i love deleuze and guatari. and also the realtion you make to le devenir.

    hope to keep in touch with you and your ideas.

    Comment by julito — 18 February 2014 @ 15:27

  2. Hi Jo, nice input from you.

    Comment by Sven F. — 25 June 2015 @ 13:51

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