15 Feb 2002 iBOT-1   » (Observer)

i'm completely overwhelmed and scattered but am feeling good with the progress of ideas. i've just completed my proposal and have joined forces with compatriots and will have things moving ...

things to think about in my quest for world (de)domination:

what space will i infiltrate and how will i treat it? does it matter? what type of signs will i play with? ummmm....

i can't think of any more right now ... though kathleen really helped to bring my ideas into form, a few hours ago, but they are now lost....damn....i should have been taking notes.

here's my proposal .... will be revised soon enough with more tactile explanation.

:'': ____________________________________________________________ iBOt an iconoclast

"An Icon is not a person. An Icon is just waiting for an Iconoclast to come along. In fact, an Icon doesn't even deserve a capital letter. From now on, you will be referred to as an icon. Icons are those who fuel the machine. icons are the cannon fodder that keeps wars going. icons are numbers. icons are faceless. icons struggle every day to make enough money to pay for rent and food so that they can survive for one more day to start the whole process over again. icons are trapped. All icons have is hope."

The above quote is taken from a multi-user dungeon at www.iconoclast.com; where players represent her/his own character, object, idea, place ... clicking from one to another, building the network reality - destroying the conventions that enslave them.

EMANCIPATION from Ignorance and servitude Exploitation and alienation Poverty through technical and industrial development DEATH

These stories are of the first kind. Myths that bring us closer to god, be like god, attempt to transcend god, create god ... all mirror a reflection of the moral sensibilities of the time. However, in a technocratic age, a new set of rules form in wake of the old. A sort of virtual morality that is based on the premise that you should do what makes you stronger. A cyberpunk's manifesto: be moral for yourself.

``Life's a bitch/and then you die/that's why we get high/cause you never know when you're gonna go'' --Nas feat. AZ the Visualiza ``Life's a Bitch''

Strongly resonating in Hip Hop culture which takes directly from our instinctual sensibility to fight against the unnamed Enemy, the making of morality is an essential part of coping with the confusion-the scarcity. That everyday is one more day until we die, ``you do what you got to do'', `by any means necessary'. This invokes the making up of our own rules, our own myths. Joseph Campbell understands the new mythology as:

...The old, everlasting, perennial mythology, in its "subjective sense," poetically renewed in terms neither of a remembered past nor of a projected future, but of now: addressed, that is to say, not to the flattery of "peoples," but to the waking of individuals in the knowledge of themselves...each in his own way at one with all, and with no horizons. (Myths to Live By pg.266)

By erasing objective moralities for individualized subjected ones we transcend borders that limit humanity. And instead, opt for a world in constant flux, set adrift along a course mapped out by the topographical tools of our imagination. Where there is no meaning but what we mean.

`It's the dream that is real' Those International Situationits were really onto something...

Graffiti is a significant practice amongst those who are not given a voice. Instead, they mark messages on the street, on buildings, billboards - anywhere public...to communicate messages between themselves and to the rest of the suspected populace. If taken to metaphor, it could be understood that the post is in the tradition of graffiti. The back alleys of Queen St. as message boards for crews like DOH, LNC or old school cats like REN, FLEX, TCM; each requesting for comment within their network. Joseph Campbell realizes the making of myth amongst youths in today's society during his Power of Myth interview.

They make them up for themselves. This is why we have graffiti all over the city. These kids have their own gangs and their own initiations and their own morality, and they're doing the best they can. But they're dangerous because their own laws are not those of the city.

``When you see another person write over your graffiti, what do you do?'' ``I kill him, man'' --Interview with NYC graffiti artist DONDE

Graffiti and other subversive methods of communication, have disruptive agendas. An anti-thesis/dote to the Socratic method which reinforces social obedience by alluding to a false sense of security in the questions that we think we ask, when in fact, we subconsciously de-rail ourselves from imagination EXPRESSion as we opt for non- punitive forms of control which hide benevolently behind the masks of mice, keeping the awareness of control dormant. This breeds confusion and apathy. We don't know what is going on and we don't care to change it. Keeping faith in the `immune systems' that govern our ideas and behaviors, we will be ready to ignore control than take it for ourselves. ``To think that we can escape control is a delusion that prevents us from attending to the task of making a better world.''(B.F Skinner)

``There is a myth system waiting to become a political language to ground one way of looking at science and technology and challenging the informatics of domination-- in order to act potently.'' --Donna Hathaway `A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century'

STRATEGY: semiurgy

PANIC - symptomizing a schizophrenic tendency common with the postmodern moment. It describes a breakdown of the interdependent relationship between signifiers leading to the loss of identity over time. As Frederic Jameson writes: 'schizophrenic experience is an experience of isolated, disconnected, discontinuous material signifiers which fail to link up in a coherent sequence'. Within our consumptive system that actively manipulates and plays with signs until they have no meaning, a fetishizing process occurs with these objects. They no longer have a referent, but a relationship between other referents to make meaning. Charles Levin understands this as `the death of experience in terms of the loss of personal significance resulting from an advanced kind of fetishism in which 'objects have become increasingly closed off from human interaction in their systematic self-referential play'. This disassociation from our objects around us allow for differentiation to occur; a tactic that has been successfully used to create affiliations with abstract models, like fashion (urban outfitters' skull & crossbones) or masculinity (Barthes' Citeroen).

Now with the Citeroen, there is also the flight to represent the fluidity speed and travel. Not only asserting one's manhood, but also, one's escape to `an ecology of driving'. This expansion of meaning embodies no gender, but in fact, a vision to transcend the physical limitations of travel. The Citeroen transforms the imagery of speed into a world that we control ... that we are able to own. Something to stand on. However, in this sort of work - the work of semiurgy - it's always got to move. There is no place to stand, as Istvan Csicsery-Ronay cries,'' So one must move, always move.''

``I'll hit up blocks and blocks ... sometimes a whole neighborhood, all in one night...Tag up that shit so everyone knows ... me and my crew go all city.'' --KD crew CopeOne Bronx, NY

The semiurgical practice of circulating an icon will prescribe the remedy to `the death of experience' and will instead, regenerate meaningful social communication through the mediating systems of signs.

In this project, the sign will be a series of robot icons. With one myth propelling their authorship through a series of works converging into a point that will then rupture... creating an iconoclastic motion toward the implosion of its creation.

A repetition of symbol and the manipulation of meaning within contextualized settings that affirm an unapologetic stance on the climate of our technocracy today. Such meanings set forth will assert ideas of the `superego' mechanized as manifest in a robot-body. That the `servomechanic' (McLuhan) tendencies of our society need to be questioned in terms of its functionality within various levels of communication command and control. That the cyborg will emancipate, as Hathaway alludes, is part of it. What will it free us from? And how is it changing us?

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