Matthew Plummer-Fernandez: The Art of Bots: A Practice-based Study of the Multiplicity, Entanglements and Figuration of Sociocomputational Assemblages (2018)

11 July 2019, dusan

“This thesis examines and analyses an emerging art practice known as artbots. Artbots are internet-based software applications that are imbued with character and configured to engage and entertain online audiences. This form of practice, and the community of practice leading it, was found to be underrepresented and misunderstood. I argue that this artform is original and warrants a more thorough understanding. This thesis develops a conceptual framework for understanding artbots that focuses on and enables questioning around pertinent aspects of the practice.

A wide range of literature was reviewed to provide theoretical underpinnings towards this framework, including literature on algorithm studies, science and technology studies, and software architecture. The devised framework examines artbot case studies through the notions of multiplicity, entanglement, and figuration, having understood artbots as heterogenous sociocomputational assemblages comprised of software components and human intraactivity.

The research followed a varied methodology that encompassed participant observation and my own practice-based experiments in producing artbots. The study resulted in several original works. In addition, a showcase titled Art of Bots brought together key proponents and artbots, further providing material that is analysed in this thesis. The study helped identify and discuss artbots with attention to how they utilise modular software components in novel arrangements, how normative human and nonhuman relations of interaction are being eschewed in favour of entangled interrelations, and how artbots challenge common narratives dictating technological constructs by inventing unique characters and figurations.”

Doctoral thesis
Publisher Goldsmiths, University of London, 2018
Creative Commons BY-NC-ND License
218 pages

Publisher

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ZIP (Supplemental material, 20 GB)

Franz Roh, Jan Tschichold (eds.), Foto-Auge: 76 Fotos der Zeit / Œil et photo: 76 photographies de notre temps / Photo-Eye: 76 Photos of the Period (1929) [DE/FR/EN]

9 July 2019, dusan

“Two books were published to accompany the 1929 Film und Foto exhibition in Stuttgart organised by the Deutscher Werkbund: Foto-Auge, edited by Franz Roh and Jan Tschichold, and Es kommt der neue Fotograf!, edited by Werner Gräff. With its cover of El Lissitzky‘s now famous Self Portrait of the artist as a hand in service to the eye celebrating the monocular medium (photography), Foto-Auge served both as an catalogue of the work exhibited as well as a visual polemic detailing László Moholy-Nagy‘s New Vision. Featuring work from the world’s leading modernist photographers, as well as anonymous news and bureau photos, Roh’s and Tschichold’s editing and sequencing energetically riff on the Bauhausian notion of enlightened objectivity.”

With photographs by Piet Zwart, John Heartfield, El Lissitzky, Eugène Atget, Andreas Feininger, Max Ernst, Herbert Bayer, Willi Baumeister, George Grosz, Gutschow, Florence Henri, Hannah Höch, Hans Leistikow, Max Burchartz, László Moholy-Nagy, Walter Peterhans, Man Ray, Albert Renger-Patzsch, Geert Paul, Hendrikus Schuitema, Maurice Tabard, Karel Teige, Grete Vester, Dsiga Wertoff, Edward Weston, Umbo, a.o. Introduction by Franz Roh (“Mechanismus und Ausdruck. Wesen und Wert der Fotographie”).

Publisher Akademischer Verlag Dr. Fritz Wedekind, Stuttgart, 1929
Designer Jan Tschichold
Printer Heinrich Fink
18+[76] pages, 30 x 21 cm
via Thebaus

Commentary: Inka Graeve Ingelmann (MoMA, 2014), Object:Photo exhibition (MoMA, 2014), Felix (Wiedler.ch, n.d.).

WorldCat

PDF (166 MB)

Architectural Design, 89(1): Machine Landscapes: Architectures of the Post‐Anthropocene (2019)

8 July 2019, dusan

“This issue of Architectural Design (AD) discusses how the most significant architectural spaces in the world are now entirely empty of people. The data centers, telecommunications networks, distribution warehouses, unmanned ports, and industrialized agriculture that define the very nature of who we are today are at the same time places we can never visit. Instead, they are occupied by server stacks and hard drives, logistics bots and mobile shelving units, autonomous cranes and container ships, robot vacuum cleaners and internet-connected toasters, driverless tractors and taxis.

This issue is an atlas of sites, architectures, and infrastructures that are not built for us, but whose form, materiality, and purpose are configured to anticipate the patterns of machine vision and habitation rather than our own. We are said to be living in a new geological epoch, the Anthropocene, in which humans are the dominant force shaping the planet. This collection of spaces, however, more accurately constitutes an era of the Post-Anthropocene, a period where technology and artificial intelligence now compute, condition, and construct our world. Marking the end of human-centred design, the issue turns its attention to the new typologies of the post-human, architecture without people, and our endless expanse of Machine Landscapes.”

Contributors: Liam Young, Benjamin H. Bratton, Trevor Paglen, Adam Harvey, Jenny Odell, Geoff Manaugh, Ben Roberts, Jesse LeCavalier, John Gerrard, Rem Koolhaas, Ingrid Burrington, Xingzhe Liu, Merve Bedir, Jason Hilgefort, Simone C. Niquille, Tim Maughan, Clare Lyster, Alice Gorman, Ian Cheng, Cathryn Dwyre, Chris Perry, David Salomon, and Kathy Velikov.

Edited by Liam Young
Publisher Wiley, January/February 2019
Open access
ISSN 0003-8504
ISBN 9781119453017
144 pages

PDF (22 MB)
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