Nancy Mauro-Flude

DEAF 04: Affective Systems seminar featuring LF:TK

Dutch Eletronic Art Festival * Affective Systems (seminar) featuring LiveForm: Telekinetics

At DEAF 04 the LiveForm:Telekinetics project co-founded by Jeff Mann and Michelle Teran was launched. By animating inanimate objects via the internet, they frame this kinetic display around the social ritual of eating. They are doing a series of events in Amsterdam in collaboration with Montreal, in which these spaces are mediated via objects that act as an interface of presence via the other non local space. This is a profoundly more imaginative and three dimentional way of communicating human complesity than a computer or mobile phone screen using the potential of the internet.

The biennial Dutch Electronic Art Festival (DEAF) was a 12 day festival focused around the Van Nelle Ontwerpfabriek in Rotterdam that includes an art exhibition as well as performances, lectures, persentations and discussions focusing upon the theme of human machine interaction as it relates to feeling. Via works of art, lectures and presentations the event DEAF aims to question, inform and develop electronic and digital media awareness and potential.

DEAF's main theme in 2004 was Affective Turbulence, or how human feelings can influence systems and machines. Regarding the various modalities we make make a connection.


DEAF 04: Telekinetic Forks - LF:TK playing with networked kitchen utensils

Jo’s cafe, Melkweg LF: TK Event.
It’s dusk, that ominous time when light slowly leaks to dark, everyone in Amsterdam has disappeared off the streets and time seems to take on a new form.

I enter Jo’s diner, it’s mostly empty, however, there is a table near the window full of disorder, sound and movement, a chaotic cacophony of moving forks, spinning cards from salt and pepper shakers, chomping scissors. LF:TK have set up a fictional dining world. I attempt to give sense to a senseless experience, to be open to this world and slowly attune myself with the noise and movement.

At a more closer look I notice some of the objects are moving, somehow with a different flow, gracefullness and fluidity, as if they were in a sort of trance, it was something i could not quite put my finger on. I find out that these in fact are the objects that moving translocally from Montreal Canada, it makes complete sense, without someone warm and breathing on the other side, the objects movement would seem worthless - empty. Gradually the restaurant beings to fill and people peer into the window at the small dining sideshow display.

The cacophony of even the noise itself of the objects in motion is an audio-visual experience, these grinding aesthetics fusing with the perversity of social dining by re-purposing and re-appropriating everyday objects. This array is only obliquely a political and social activity, but its nevertheless contributes in a tiny way to a meaningful model of communication which takes its lead from art. These patterns of behaviour are consonant with the ethics, aesthetics and kinesthetics.

Desjarlais wrote of his experiences of trance ceremonies and everyday life over a period of 18 months. He claims that it is through living in the everyday manner of a people that one can come to understand their social and spiritual sensibilities, for the domain of cultural sensibility is to be found in everyday life:
“…everyday actions are rooted in local sensibilities; this rootedness forces us to rethink how we talk of moralities, bodies, pain, healing and politics. For Yolmo wa, the aesthetic values that govern how a person dresses in the morning or talks with a neighbour constitute a tacit moral code, such that ethics and aesthetics are one