The Transparency of Aesthetics: Between Nonsense and Technology

2013-Mar-Hiebert

Ted Hiebert

Professor Ted Hiebert discusses the aesthetics of transparency in the context of his new book, In Praise of Nonsense: Aesthetics, Uncertainty and Postmodern Identity. His lecture explores the codes and aesthetics of transparency, engaging questions of nonsense, perception and technology as ways to re-imagine the possibilities of the posthuman.

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Werewolves, Magnetic Fields and Fingerprints of a Technological Imaginary

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Ted Hiebert

Ted Hiebert’s talk is an exploration of the technological imaginary, with a particular focus on the area of overlap between digital culture and artistic practice. Bringing together Roland Barthes’ theory of technology as an extension of theatre and Nicolas Bourriaud’s formulation of relational art, the talk examines spaces where technology might be understood as relational, deeply embedded in discourses of aesthetics and performance, but equally invested in maintaining the creative possibilities of social living. Situated amidst questions of theatre, technology and art, this talk is also as a series of reflections on the possibilities of posthuman living. Using three art projects as catalysts for the discussion, a theory born of photographic practice will be expanded, as a visualization of technology and of the aesthetics of posthuman possibility.

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Illuminated Darkness: Nightmares, Blind spots and Biofeedback

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Ted Hiebert

A darkness lurks in the blind spot of perception; an absence, a disappearance that can go unnoticed because it is always and immediately filled in – illuminated – by the neural processes of cognition. But such interpolation does not belong merely to realms of the cognitive or the visual. It also belongs to the imaginary – allowing for an image that is distinctly not present to nevertheless infiltrate the perceptual scene. The light of the blind spot is, in no uncertain terms, made up – an hallucinated presence that preserves a seamless vision of reality by masking the reality of vision. Nor is this dynamic limited to the questions of cognition or perception: this illumination of darkness is a trademark of digital culture in a larger sense – a technological extension of the imagination caught in perceptual relation. Digital culture is an extension of the blind spot – user-generated content, replete with imaginary complexities, uncertainties and paradoxes. Watch or download now »

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