TPDR

New Website part 2

Posted in (non)sense by tpdr on August 23, 2010

Since I am spending more time working on projects than on my own promotional website, it will take much longer than foreseen…while waiting people can get in touch with me mailing to: info(at)thatrenaissanceman.eu as proposed also on my one-page-website www.thatrenaissanceman.eu

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Space-in-between

Posted in (non)sense by tpdr on April 19, 2010

There is this joke about a couple looking at a city map with a large sticker saying YOU ARE HERE. It ends with the woman asking her husband: But how do they know this? Well that’s simple and obvious, because here is where their focus is. Focus can take you anywhere and nowhere, but most of the time it might feel like being-in-between.

Quit smoking

Posted in (non)sense by tpdr on April 16, 2010

Some years ago I quit smoking. I didn’t smoke for about 4 years. Soon I smoked about a pack a day again and now, from time to time I stop smoking for a day. Not more, I just can’t. Why? Even not after this night when my chest was hurting really bad, not after a night of coughing and the near-suffocation-experience that came along with it? No. Not since I started realizing that when you quit smoking, reality changes. It’s maybe not a really hallucinating type of drug, but it is a drug. Just quit smoking for some time and you will notice how your experience of time changes.

Somebody recently said that we are actually hallucinating all the time. This goes well together with what I have been reading about and a remark by Thomas Metzinger, that we (can) have different states of consciousness and we just need to find out which is a good state. For me now, whenever I stop smoking for a short time, just to get into this non-smoker-state-of-mind, I realise for the moment the one in which I do smoke fits me more.

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The One and Three Chairs – Joseph Kosuth – 1965 (but still contemporary)

Posted in (non)sense, Society and Technology, Theory, Transmedia Research by tpdr on March 28, 2010

Never thought I would write a post about a conceptual work of art. Then again, only fools never change their mind, right? So what interests me when talking about Joseph Kosuth’s One and Three Chairs?

First of all what doesn’t interest me as much is what he was trying to say about understanding art, the linguistic nature of an artwork etc. What I like about this work is, what makes it contemporary and still valuable to me, is the multiplication of the chair. Being presented as an object, in a photograph and as a word, it made me think about how we are multiplied and distributed throughout dataspace today. The main question is also, what happens to the Self, when undergoing this phenomenon. To me a similar question is triggered here by the title, ‘One and Three Charis’, suggests that there should be 4, while you only see 3 (object, picture, word). So what is this fourth chair? It is the concept of the chair, the mental image of the chair, … .

Thinking about this, and when applying it to the multiplied and distributed Self, I would say it is not the Self that is distributed, but it is just our image that is distributed. All these distributed images together all lead to imagining (part of) the Self. So how much is the Self then affected by the multiplicationand distribution we are confronted with? Are we creating a problem where there is non, misleaded by ‘reason’? Do we just have to focus on that mental image and use that as our reference, our vantage point? … As usual more questions than answers arise (hopefully some (possible) answers, will be posted on this blog in the future).

Another aspect that interests me is, when thinking about having the feeling we are evolving more towards the tactile (as a reaction to too much focus on the visual)(inspired for example by the thinking of Derrick De Kerckhove, a man I do respect), this work by Kosuth also interests me on this level. There is a difference on the level of tangibility here, that’s clear. But instead of going on believing we do need a more tangible world, I started doubting this again. For example one could ask the question if a return to the tangible is really necessary? Or maybe it is necessary, if only to conclude that we were wrong? Hard to answer at this moment, sure. All also depends on how you define ‘tangibility’. So instead of getting lost in this complicated subject, I will go on posting about this (as it is in some sense my main subject anyway) and try to elaborate this theme step by step. So I will end this one with saying sorry to all those of you adjusted to our ‘instant society’.

I would like to steal Jan De Cock’s Denkmal

Posted in (non)sense, Theory, Transmedia Research by tpdr on March 19, 2010

Am I a fan of Jan De Cock’s work…mmm I would say I am undecided…which should say enough…there are aspects I like about his work…but on the other hand there are things, events, people, … that leave a more significant impression on me. On the other hand I have to admit I don’t feel very inspired by contemporary art in general, so mr. De Cock doesn’t have to take this all too negative, or serious.

Contrary to what the title of this post might suggest, I am not planning any art robbery. What I would like to steal is actually the word ‘Denkmal’, a title that Jan De Cock has been putting on quiet some works of his. … I really love this word ‘Denkmal’… not that I am particulary fond of the german language but personally I find that this word evokes a few interesting thoughts.

First there is the word in its german meaning ‘monument’, ‘memorial’, even ‘creation’. If you would split the word up into ‘Denk mal’…it means something like ‘please think’. Again if split up in dutch it could be interpreted as ‘think-mould'(something close to think tank maybe, but still it has a different ring to it in some way). At this point I have the feeling that the theoretical part of my research is going quiet well. When it comes to my works, they are not bad, there is still something missing because it is not yet clear enough what their precise subject should be. I mean I have not yet been able to pinpoint my subjects well enough at this point. In other words I still need to narrow things down when it comes to making finished works. The reason however why I don’t feel comfortable narrowing down is actually also because of (again) the fact that they help me think further and further on a theoretical level. It is as if my works have become secondary to my theory. In this sense they have become ‘think-moulds’.

Nevertheless, I will need to continue on this path until the balance becomes leveled again. SO I have to reach the point where my output (my works) become more ‘monuments’ or even better ‘memorials’ for my theory (without being mere illustrations) and a bit less ‘thinking-moulds'(which would be more as if they were illustrations). Even though the works help me think, help me with my theory, I think they need to become even more important. I will have to try and reach the point at which the theory really flows out of the works, while now it does feel like it goes maybe a bit more from theory to works (which is also somehow not so abnormal).

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Presence and/or Telepresence (A summary of what I am working on)

Posted in (non)sense, Transmedia Research by tpdr on March 5, 2010

The last few years I have been interested in what Roy Ascott would call our Variable Reality. This reality is composed of physic space (apparitional presence), ecospace (physical presence), nanospace (vibrational presence) and cyberspace (telepresence).[i] As a consequence, our sense of place becomes very complex. Our so-called unified self doesn’t feel so unified as we tought but instead seems distributed or at least transpored from one (part of) reality to another in a very fast way imposing a disorientated feeling upon us.

One of the main questions therefore became: What happens to the self under the influence of this new reality, or as Ascott calls it this variable reality?

I think what I have been doing with my mapping project when graduating from Graphic Design, was trying to create a tool to be able to keep track of myself. However I don’t feel like I understand what is actually happening or where this feeling of being taken somewhere else originates from. During a discussion last year with Frans Evers, I talked with him about the difference between when being in a (video)chat with somebody or calling somebody on a phone. Our conclusion was that when chatting online, you seem to be going over there, as when talking on the phone, you have more the impression that the other person comes to you. Therefore I think it would be usefull, for my future work to try and understand how different media as image and sound affect our feeling of presence and/or telepresence. In the future it might even be appropriate to understand the same sort of effects when talking about smell and touch.

A final question is maybe, how can the boundaries between presence and telepresence be blured (when talking about difference in space/location but also in time, past versus present)? Or how can Variable Reality become just reality again?


[i] Roy Ascott The Ambiguity of Self: living in a variable reality, in New Realities: Being Syncretic, Ascott/Bast/Fiel/Jahrmann/Schnell (eds.), SpringerWien, New York, 2009. P. 22-25.

(non)sense 1.0

Posted in (non)sense by tpdr on December 9, 2008

AVANTI LA VIE

                         universal exhibition

Een lied/A song              vol(t)age vol(t)age

un paradis

OUAIS!…OUAIS!…