When meanings are clothes –
encasing, capturing, offering an irrefusable protection, insurance against time. An assurance for life’s inevitable unpredictive relentlessly pulsating continuity, connecting unlinkable signals, communication attempts crawling through commonly supported ready-paved algorithmic calculations that, to live and continue their beat, require a culture whose dna is an infinite shades of violence –
I want to be naked
without that nudity
violating any of you.
When meanings are clothes –
The following post, I hope, is of a thinking/considering process that might reslove at the end. Still a question?
A few years ago, around 2012, there was an exhibition at Phoenix Arts in Brighton where they used raw boards for walls between spaces.
Somehow, I managed to get these boards after the show. The idea was/is a sort of question from Duchamp’s notion of painting as an ironing board, the reciprocal readymade. The boards were used as if for function only in the gallery. As if they were walls. However, by the fact they can be used without physical modification, as a floor – makes both activities “as if” operations. The boards are between however they happen to be operated, and as such, materials to wonder from and with – in my mind at least.
One of the things/elements that still stop me from doing stuff with the boards is the question of performance and performativity.
I distrust performances as these are in sequences of being – or seeming to be – developing various gaps between performing and operating.
That gap seem to cause mud flows in my mind.
When Duchamp made the urinal, I think he made a performance. The performance in that instance is fascinating in my mind because it questions the link between performativity and operativity.
By questioning the activity of taking an object, calling it something, signing it and placing in art context – to make it “art” – I think Duchamp was making a performance that mimicked that of sculpting and painting’s activities. By performing the signature, the name giving, the context alterations, etc., we seem to get an opportunity to question these operations percisely as to whether they are performative, or operative.
In this case, am making a distinction between operative and performative as different ontological entities. The performative represents – or has the capacity and intent – to represent stuff other than itself. The operative has to operate as it might do – just to be.
An wave Has to move in a given manner to be a wave. A crowd, or a person doing a wave is performing certain aspects of a wave’s operation.
I think one of the interesting thing with Urinal is that while performing an “artworld” kind of operation, the activity becomes its own operation. The activity can Be independent from its representational performative aspects, and have its own life.
Really? Why? How?
Well, in my mind the proof for the operational independence am talking about is the fact that from urinal we can trace a development of various contextual languages, developments of other ways to operate with context oriented representations while being linked to notions of art.
the fact that there are other ways to operate the qualities of context, not just as a performance of some art-world possible ritual, indicates that maybe indeed the Urinal can be both performative and an operation that is independent from that performance – at the same time.
However, we still get a gap between performance of one thing, and an actual being of something else. Or do we?
The Urinal performs a traditional art process, while doing an operation that is clearly different, no?
The performance initiates the operation of contextuality. Allows the context alteration to provoke possible new meanings. However, I think that that is exactly where gaps appear that cloud the clarity of wondering via the simplicity of context alterations.
Meanings, representations and performance. The Urinal, if it is to operate as a question, seems to need stuff other than its own activities to Be. The activities are oriented towards meaning gain and production.
True, that is the way meanings operate, beings that have to Be other than how they are. (eg the sound “sound” operates in a way different to meanings it performs, and so on..)
However, in my mind, that is precisely when art linked operations become least interesting. In the performance of meanings. Or rather in being forced to perform and represent stuff other than who and how they are.
Going back to the boards, I think am kind of stuck between boards, wood, walls, a gallery history, home and my floor.. There is something I sense, but it is yet to be clear? Perhaps I should begin doing something to get it cleared? Whatever that It might be?
Re-reading the blurb and its inner mix of performance with operation and fascination with the Urinal’s operation as a performance, I begin to think that there is a fundamental mistake in my approach.
Perhaps Performance is a type of Operation, a meaning and value added type. A confabulative process through which operations, cultural operations at any rate, are being given a chance to be on the scale between celebration (entertainment) and a question. (possibly art?)
If indeed this is the case, that there are operations, say how X turns out to Be art, then maybe the performance is a part that allows embodiment of meanings and values to be linked with.
In that case, if this is sort of correct, then the Urinal’s performance as an art linked operation, plays for the audience the need for value and meanings?
In other words, am still critical and feeling the process is unclear, however that critique is linked with a sense that performativity is a quality that plays in ones’ mind. Hence the observation of a performance entails participation and that participation – when being attempted to be channeled and controlled – can be robbed and become a performance of how a person/body-culture might fancy performing but is being denied..?
In a sense, performance by the art practice/object/process/project/etc. denies the freedom of others to perform by creating a certain specification which, if one fancies questioning and deviating from, one has to enter a conflict rather than a welcome.
Going back to the wave analogy:
When there is an ocean wave, that wave is an ocean operation. Would the ocean feel a need to both operate and perform its waves? Does it really need to?
The wave, by interacting with humans, rocks, wind, fish and others, performs something with them. When I watch a wave, the practice – of wave watching – includes waves performing if am attempting to perceive them into stuff Other than, for example, ocean waves.
Say am perceiving the waves as shaped surges. Polygons. Ocean sound makers. Links. the waves perform for the interpretation, for a certain value.
This value can then be abstracted, be stripped of performativity and gain its own independent operation as a part of, say a sequence. e.g. A sound instrument that considers the differentiation between people proximity and temperture as elements that make up the intyensity of its noises. A clear link here with ocean waves, I think, but clearly independent of them.
The ability to have the freedom to Be as an inspired Being, in my mind, is being channeled by performativity prescribed. When performativity is part of the operation.
Perhaps I want it too bare, too immanent, too free, too open, too on its own, too “natural”, too much as an energy and far less than a given power?
The washiongton post published an idea from France about calling “isis” by a different name. It seems like a sort of “trend” given that other people have some ideas of re-calling isis by some other terms. eg UnIslamicState (U IS??)..
It seems rather curious to interesting that the idea of name and re-naming the stuff seems so very important. As if the name conjours a reality into being.. While at 1st I was like:
wtf this is kind of lol.
It dawned on me that, for example, in the context of Palestine, in my terminology, Israel has not life.. (..or not much of it..) Hence, perhaps for me too the reality of terms and words makes up a sort of magick linguistic leap into a being. If the stuff formerly known as state of israel is the zionist occupied palestine, that whole being of israeliness might have a different sort of life, no?
Perhaps this is the same process in the minds of islamic people? Perhaps.. And if so, maybe my personal difficulties with re-calling the isis as uis, or da’ash, or what-ever is based on a perception that since islam/religion is a constant interpertations of beleifs mediated by brut powers of family/community/state/etc. – while the “isis” might be a minority in islam, and indeed offer a seeming interpretive oxymoron in islamic thought – the caliphate can be headed by a descendant of mohamed only, or something to that effect – the fact that isis people do interprate stuff from islamic rather than hindu or other religion’s culture, makes isis islamic. (..even if most muslims regard isis as utterly un-represtative, and indeed MisRepresentative..)
Moreover, isis, as much as I am against them, and people even remotely like them –
eg the iranian the current turkish religious regime, whabist saudy arabia, the hinduisic india, the gazan regime of fear & intimidation by poor excuses, the militaristic regime of egypt, the deadly authoritarian and pseudo fascistic regimes of china and russia, as well as the plutocratic-ally fascist regimes in the uk and usa –
isis is an organisation that, like other states, use brutality and financial power to establish itself onto a land and people in it. (eg the provision of social care for people who’s religious practices isis approves of, etc..). Also, like other state based/oriented organisations, isis fights others that seem to threaten its interests. Sure, there is a bit of a difference between isis and the uk or feance in the sense that the brutality in the latters is less arbitrary and rooted in a set of arguable and evolving laws. However, I think we should not confuse a sense of evolving or even “open” brutality – with a lack of imposition and intimidation by power over the powerless and the ultimate abuse of power to keep itself in, err, powerful mode..
The other strange thing about the calls for re-naming references to isis is that such calls carry within them a sense of power and brutality which, in some way – i think – reminiscent of precisely the organisation who’s activities are “un islamic”. ie, if i am to use name calling as a way to re-assert my power as, for example, a religious authority, then am foregoing peaceful means for the sake of violent authority. (if 1 was to call on a dialogue with the people who call isis “isis”, to question, for example, the religious authenticity of the organisation, then perhaps their way would be civil?)
However, perhaps my interpretations of these occurrences is limited by a view that emphasises operations. ie if i call isis a cat while it actually Operates as a dog, am not going to make it do many miauuws – even if everyone in the world will call it a cat.
Or perhaps the example is wrong. Perhaps the materiality and operations of a dog are too limited to allow it being a cat as much as we might scream and shout. However, what about a gallery? or a restaurant? say there is a restaurant that cooks and serves its food and another that doesn’t cook, but still serves food. What of a restaurant that doesn’t cook, but sells food Not to be eaten in the premises, can we call it a shop? What might be the differences between such a restaurant and a place to buy food? Is there? Perhaps then we get into magic of naming?
A magic that allows conjuring realities via verbal utterances? Just sounds?
Assuming that since an operation like a religion requires language to Be, not just as a singular category – eg category plants, category chemicals, etc. – but a distinct kind of animal/being/set, then perhaps language is an element of reasonable focus from a religious point of view.
Indeed, if we keep the lingo focus, then it seems strange to suspect and peculiar, that despite the fact religions are based on interpretations, the scholars who bash isis, regard isis’s violence to be a “wrong interpretation” – hence not of that religion. This is kind of strange because the very perceptions that there is a correct interpretation and that indeed there might even be a correct “islami” or other religion – viable violence – is in itself a part of of cultural violent process. If my culture is made of violence, or that I cultivate violence in my culture, then surely, I should expect people to cultivate it in various ways – some of which, differenct to my own interpretation.
Also, the peculiarity arises since we are talking about language, and linguistic meanings – unlike signals – are of ranges and evolving as such – rather than particulars. eg “red” might reffer to a feeling, a sensation, a colour, a state, and so on – in a language. In a sign system such as traffic signs, red is very particular and singular.
Are religions parts of languages or sign systems?
OK.. Here’s something else about language’s creative magic that isn’t religion: schools.
The british public school – is it public or, err, private school system?
How about the “free schools”? Do we have Free schools in england? Free schools in brooklyn? (Notice the end note where it indicates an initial confusion to do with the english “free schools”.)
Are these examples of the interpertative range of “free schools”? Of “freedom”? Of a conflation between “freedom” and “independence”? (eg, can it be argued that the english version has more to do with the independence of the schools from central authorities, than the schools being free? (though that independence is dependent upon generous financial support, no?)
Perhaps the range of freedom’s sequences when they hook up with the ones of independence?
On a personal note, I think its interesting to realise that it was easier to critique religious figures insistence upon their interpretations until I bumped into the educative elements which hit more home chords for me… I had to teach myself that perhaps the interpretations I did not “like”, are still within the sequence range of the terms I use.. And indeed, if they weren’t initially, I have to agree that other people should be able to play with the ranges as they see fit – else am going into a power politics range. (eg, who’s interpretation should rule..) Which is by its nature counter productive because if I care for a certain interpretation, I should strengthen – mistake, not strengthen but ENERGISE – it from within, to perhaps realise its own non interpretative range.
(ie a distinct category, its own radical self – if indeed it has one.. eg red as a term that stems from a colour that has certain properties and can be interpreted in various ways is distinct from road that has other, similar qualities, but none of them is the colour based..)
So perhaps calling a dog a cat will not turn it into a miauew uttering creature, however, it can depict a certain dog’s personality, or someone’s idea of a certain dog’s personality. But as many people as they might come, will not utter enough a “cat” calling unto that dog that will turn the woof into a miauew..
Yet, if these people turned and called the marriage process “doggy” – then it might well catch on and in a few years time many more people might propose to one another to get a bit doggy for a while – before they break into a miauew..
While this might sound very similar to John Searle’s ideas of social construction of reality, I think it might be worth while to indicate that in my mind the implications/trajectories are probably different.
* I do not think these element construct reality, but are simply parts/elements of various sequences and rhythms. In that sense, am considering here the sequences of language usage rather than focusing on using it for gaining power and creating social realities.
* I think the materiality of language allows for questions that can be addressed and directed to specificity of its operations. Hence the focus on kind of utterances.
* Indeed, I doubt the creation by a word requires Social. It can be an individual calling X “blue”. For them, the X might be blue regardless of the social acceptance or otherwise of the usage of blue.
In this book about semantics: “semantics” by F. R. Palmer, the text goes on to talk about the definition of language, at list from semantic studies context.
Am probably about to generalise, however at times general extrapolations do work… If there is indeed a different between languages and communication systems..
The sequence red in english is a red that can be applicable for various systems which will provide it with specific local meanings. eg red in traffic lights, red of apples, etc..
Like science providing elements for technology to do its worst, like art providing any person exposed to its processes to be inspired, like philosophy offering questions for theorists to elaborate, and as organic materials offer ranges of possibilities for organisms to form – so do languages to communication systems.
This DOES noT try to imply One is more important than another, but to simply describe a sequential link – not even a relationship.. Perhaps a sequential connection even.. I am interested in the language, in the art, however only because am not very comfortable with the communicative bit. There are some people who can do both.. Perhaps one day I could, at the moment, am not.
or an imagination?
When I was a child, there were no death camps made by Nazi germany. No. There were stories, recollections, memories, lives saved, bitterness harnessed, culture elaborated and evolved of extermination camps. However, the only element as far as people around me were concerned that bore similarity to death camps – is the word “camp”. And perhaps, as a child, in my mind, the idea of camps as a sort of summer fun activity places. Perhaps as a slightly older person, the camp/s is still a link, of a geographic-imagination nature.
The deadly activities that were practised so dedicatedly by Nazis and co, that congregated in Auschwitz, Treblinka, Maidanek, and the likes, could be called and linked to via various terms that could be said perhaps to have their own language.
This, in my view, is a language that attempts a description by humans.
Such a language, that’s focused on human perception, is not my current interest in the search of death/extermination camp’s own language.
My interest is in fact to have the search, the IF and its sequence, the makes the being of, for example, Treblinka.
Treblinka in and of itself. Its sequences, its rhythms, its sensuality. How is it to search life – to be – Treblinka.
Or to live as Majdanek..
Perhaps not the best of headline for this post..
Have began Semantics by FR Palmer and intriguingly in my view, he elaborates about the difference between communication systems, eg red traffic light is to stop, and languages – where red, for example, can and does mean more than just stop..
Hence when I noticed a bit of blurb re 2040 exhibition in jaus art gallery that contains:
“..Artists take a central role in how communication content is delivered..”
Have began to question whether there isn’t here a bit of a conflation regarding artists being manifested. If artists communicate, can they really develop a language – or perhaps a sign system?
ok.. a bit of a predatoiry questiojn, however, it refers to the langugae of imagining computing as a practice..
How do we imagine computing as a searching and creative processes rather than some sort of task completion tool control process.
In that sense, perhaps the understanding of computing is still harking back to uncomputable objects. Therefore perhaps, we are not computing with materials as they are used but adding circuits onto them.. The phone, the pc, etc, are made with materials that are independent of the phone/pc function. The fridge that might be programmed to let me know I need to clean it, or get some more bananas, has a computer addon.. Imagine that its computability was by temperatures, or that of the phone, by the movements, or that the water was a liquid computer.. Perhaps we could, for example, have sound vibrations as a music computer, rather than some tool/object that makes sounds?
Or maybe it can be actually different.. Maybe we have done computing and require a step out of the paradigme?
Maybe we could have bio, or bio-chemichal entities that will Be how they are? A bio-vibrational entity to evolve music/sounds/noises..?
Recordings of the 2nd itteration of:
how do you imagine the language-conversation between skateboard wheels and surfaces?
Just had a read of X minister not worried AT all about her marginal high poverty high “immigrant” constituency, speaking against government plans to shut off Britain by attacking immigration further.
Well, I think she might have a point regarding the question of language. Is a bond a bit like a bail? Is this a message that potentially immigrants might be criminals? Is reporting to police with the “alien card” – as I was to do when I 1st came to Britain, check this, “came”, no migration here – was that not a little bit sort of criminal potential signal? Or was it fine because not many people actually knew about that?
now there.. @hypodotio, # language! #language! !language#