Evolution Haute Couture. Part 2: Theory

EVOLUTION HAUTE COUTURE: ART AND SCIENCE IN THE POST-BIOLOGICAL AGE
Part 2: Theory. Edited and curated by Dmitry Bulatov

560 pp. with 293 b/w ill., Kaliningrad: BB NCCA, 2013

How can the radicalization and redundancy of science and technology progress be defined? What is the evolutionary potential of 21st Century technology trends such as robotics, IT, biomedicine, and nanotechnology? Each of these trends actualizes traditionally formed boundaries of the beginning and end of human existence, the demarcation of norm and pathology, and the distinction of the non (or semi) organic model or entity. These, and other issues, cannot be taken into consideration without the experience of contemporary techno-biological arts – the representatives of which do not so much confirm the technological versions of contemporaneity, as determine these versions’ boundaries. Art created under new conditions of postbiology – that is, under conditions of an artificially fashioned lifespan – cannot help but take this artificiality as its explicit theme. In questioning the causes and consequences of technological progress and its central role in today’s society, renowned representatives of contemporary art, science and philosophy are attempting to elucidate the foundation that gives rise to “artificial,” “technological” reality, as well as to explain how this reality impacts us. Is it possible to reinvent a language that can simultaneously construct and describe the world of technology? The aim of this book is to show how artists are creating new forms and new identities – not as the protagonists of a historically-determined technological narrative, but as its creators.

This volume contains essays by artists, philosophers, scientists, and art historians, including Stephen Wilson (US), Roy Ascott (UK), Pier Luigi Capucci (IT), Paul Brown (UK/AU), Jon McCormack (AU), Simon Penny (US), Ana Viseu (CA), Susan E. Ryan (US), Laura Beloff (FI), Jana Horakova (CH), Dmitry Galkin (RU), Louis-Philippe Demers (SG), Chris Hables Gray (US), Erkki Huhtamo (US), Stelarc (AU), Andrew Pickering (UK), Steve M. Potter (US), Thomas S. Ray (US), Jens Hauser (GER/FR), Robert Mitchell (US), Konstantin Bokhorov (RU), Oron Catts (AU), Ionat Zurr (AU), Melinda Cooper (AU), Luciana Parisi (UK), Colin Milburn (US), Dmitry Bulatov (RU), Joanna Zylinska (UK), Eugene Thacker (US), and Boris Groys (US)

Additional info: postbiology@gmail.com
Website of the Part 1: http://videodoc.ncca-kaliningrad.ru/eng/

Contents

INTRODUCTION
Dmitry Bulatov  Art and Science as the Conjectured Possible

I. PATENT FOR LIFE:
Doorway to the Post-Biological Culture
Stephen Wilson  Issues in the Integration of Art, Science and Technology
Roy Ascott  The Tao of Variability: The Multiple Self in a Multiple Reality
Pier Luigi Capucci  Declinations of the Living: Toward the Third Life

II. ARTIFICIAL BUT ACTUAL:
Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Life
Paul Brown  Notes Towards a History of Art, Code and Autonomy
Jon McCormack  Evolutionary and A-life Art: Cosmic Pyramids and the Origination of Novelty in Machines
Simon Penny  Art after Computing

III. LIMITS OF MODELING:
Evolutionary Design and WearComp

Ana Viseu  WearComps and the Informed Informational Body
Susan Elizabeth Ryan  Emotional Exchange: Wearable Technology as Embodied Practice
Laura Beloff  The Body in Posse: Viewpoints on Wearable Technology

IV. SHINING PROSTHESES:
Robotics

Jana Horakova  Robot and Kitsch: From the Myth of Technological Progress Towards the Medium of Subversive Strategies of Posthumanism
Dmitry Galkin  Cybernetic Art in the 1950s-60s: Robotic Sculptures
Louis-Philippe Demers  Machine Performers: Neither Agentic nor Automatic

V. BODY AS TECHNOLOGY:
Techno-body Modification and Cyborgization

Chris Hables Gray  The Uncanny Evolution of Homo Cyborg
Erkki Huhtamo  Cyborg is a Topos
Stelarc  Fractal Flesh / Liminal Desires: The Cadaver, the Comatose and the Chimera

VI. MODULATING A SIGNAL:
From Cybernetics to Neuroengineering

Andrew Pickering  Brains, Selves and Spirituality in the History of Cybernetics
Steve M. Potter  Better Minds: Cognitive Enhancement in the 21st Century
Thomas S. Ray  Future Minds, Mental Organs, and Ways of Knowing

VII. MORE THAN A COPY, LESS THAN NOTHINGNESS:
Bio and Genetic Engineering

Jens Hauser  Toward a Phenomenological Approach to Art Involving Biotechnology
Robert Mitchell  Bioart: Media, Evolution, Culture
Konstantin Bokhorov  The Painful Supremacy of the Ethical

VIII. SEMI-LIVING:
Synthetic Biology and Tissue Engineering

Oron Catts  Synthetic Control – (Un)limited Life
Ionat Zurr  In Continuous State of Semi-Living: A Partial Survey of Contemporary Artists Working with Living Tissue
Melinda Cooper  Topological Architecture – Tissue Engineering and the Permanent Embryogenesis of Form

IX. POST-SODOM AND POST-GOMORRAH:
From Nano to the Technological Unconscious

Luciana Parisi  Nanoarchitectures: The Arrival of Synthetic Extensions and Thoughts
Colin Milburn  Postmortem: The Necrosis of Nanotechnology
Dmitry Bulatov  A New State of the Living

X. RE-CODING: Differing from the Future
Joanna Zylinska  ‘Inventing Well’: Creativity, Biology and Life
Eugene Thacker  Exobiologies
Boris Groys  Immortal Bodies: Communist Resurrection

XI. APPENDIX
BIOGRAPHIES
INDEX OF ILLUSTRATIONS

Curator of the project
Dmitry Bulatov (b. 1968) is an artist, curator and art theorist. His research focuses on different aspects of interdisciplinary art media, as well as on submediality aesthetics. His artworks have been presented internationally, including 49th and 50th Venice Biennale (2001, 2003), Ars Electronica Festival (ORF, 2002) and many others. Bulatov has taken part in numerous international contemporary art conferences and given lectures in Russia, USA, Canada, Germany, Mexico, Singapore and Hong Kong. In 2007 his artwork has been selected by Wired magazine as the world’s 10 top innovations. He has curated about more than twenty major exhibitions in Russia and abroad, including “SOFT CONTROL: Art, Science and the Technological Unconscious” as part of the Maribor – European Capital of Culture 2012. Since 1998 Bulatov is the curator at the Baltic Branch of the National Centre for Contemporary Arts and the leading expert at the Innovation Park of the Baltic Federal University (Kaliningrad, Russia).

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