net art, video, performance

Annie Abrahams

An organic acceptance of silence?

liminal space – pure motion – an intimate regard – a field of light – dissolved, destabilized – an altered state – a telematic embrace – a silent small reprieve – hanging out with friends – machines conversing across the network only when the noisy humans finally shut up

This was the first time we (Daniel Pinheiro, Lisa Parra and Annie Abrahams) invited people to join us in our online performance experiment Distant Feeling(s) #3. The performance was projected as part of the festival Visions in the Nunnery gallery (London).
After the performance the surprise was great when, in the video, I saw the silent faces of others joining us for a shorter or longer time.

How does it feel to share an interface with eyes closed and no talking?

How did it feel?

When you participated, when you took the time to connect and join, you tried to feel the others and became more and more concentrated on being in a liminal space.

When you watched the projection or the video, you could see this concentration, these faces who more and more descended into “pure motion”, these faces that abandonned real space and got elsewhere – you were allowed an intimate “regard”.

Here is my reaction (e-mail to Daniel and Lisa) just after the performance : “Felt “lost” – disturbed by the idea that there were “sneekers, peekers – disturbed also by my own curiosity, by my wish to see who was there and how they looked with closed eyes.
I felt light, as if I were in a field of light, changing, living light, not with human beings, and probably because that frightened me I tried to visualize you both, to imagine, how, where you were, I tried to make something I could understand of what I felt – as if you were familiar to me – I never met you – but still, apparently you became reassuring, close.
When I opened my eyes, everything became normal, just people, nice people around me on a screen. They have become more familiar now too. Looking at the screenshots of this session I feel grateful for their presence (they made the light).

Disolved I felt.
Maybe even empty. Certainly destabilised.
This may sound mystic, but in fact it might have been a very concrete experience – just the light flickering of the in- and out-going participants shimmering through my eyelids provoking an altered state?”

This is Randall Packer‘s reaction to it in a facebook discussion afterwards : “It was wonderfull – Like your work The Kiss, or Paul Sermon’s telematic pieces, the sensation of intimacy is never “real,” it is based on the willingness to believe and to allow closeness to become “real” despite separation. For those who participated in this experiment, it was exactly that: the willingness to suspend one’s belief in the knowledge of the virtual proximity and connectiveness of the others. It is that knowledge that can can be convincing enough to suspend disbelief and thus be silently wrapped in the telematic embrace. This work is a great model for how we might conduct ourselves on the Internet.”

Johannes Birringer on the same occasion. “I was waiting for silence to fall, after the chatter. when it occured, there was no embrace. but a faint sensation of sharing a silent small reprieve, over the constant noise and anger of the world, but an alonesilence as one could not see the others. it is the strangest experience, to be alonesilentblind with assumed others somewhere out there.”

And Nicolaas Schmidt called it “hanging out with friends…”.

Ruth Catlow, who was among the public at the Nunnery remarked : “Was it machine feedback… that mechanical clicking and beeping? The machines conversing across the network only when the noisy humans finally shut up! Like the toys that come alive in the magic toyshop when the children are asleep. I wanted it to get louder and louder till the whole world rang out- WE MACHINES ARE HERE AND WE ARE COMMUNICATING!
To what Randall reacted : “I love your observation that once the network is silenced of human conversation, all that is left is the hum of networked devices, the “nervous system” of the Net.”

Daniel Pinheiro compiled more reactions on Landproject.

On January 16th 2017, Muriel Piqué watched the video and wrote :

Silence / Silence
Je fouille l’image du silence / I explore the image of silence
Des têtes se tournent lentement / Heads turn slowly
8’44 un chien aboie au loin / 8’44 a dog barks far off
Je lis la résistance des corps à l’immobilité / I read the resistance of bodies to immobility
Je ressens l’acceptation organique du silence / I feel the organic acceptance of silence

And all the time the machines kept talking, exchanging data, making noise …

Some time ago I watched an interview by Gretta Louw with Sandra Danilovic in Second Life. They talk, among others, about our readiness to relate to an avatar in a bodily and emotional way. Why? Is there an evolutionary base for that? Sandra states, that, in our subconcious, we don’t percieve the self as an atomised individual identity, that precognitively we percieve the environment as a part of ourselves. Would such a thought be helpfull to understand better what happens? And is it true?

Filed under: networked performance, Performance, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Distant Feelings #3 – VisionS.

Thursday 24 Nov.
6.30 pm London time, 19h30 Paris time.
Duration 15 min.
Timeconvertor for other places.

To participate Download the zoom.us application https://zoom.us/download – desktop or other devices – and “Join meeting” ID = 630407193: https://zoom.us/j/630407193 .

VisionS in the Nunnery Programme 2 Launch.
Curated by Tessa Garland and Cinzia Cremona.
The Nunnery, 181 Bow Road, London E3 2SJ.
Visions full programme. (5/10 – 18/12 2016)

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Lisa Parra in New York, USA,
Daniel Pinheiro in Porto, Portugal and
Annie Abrahams in Montpellier, France
will gather in an online séance trying to experience each other’s presence.

How does it feel to share an interface with eyes closed and no talking?

You can participate in this digital mindfulness experiment.
Download the zoom.us application – desktop or other devices – and “Join meeting” ID = 630407193: https://zoom.us/j/630407193 at the right time.

Some members of the public at the Nunnery will also be able to join in.

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The piece presented by Annie Abrahams (Distant Feeling(s) #1) continues the research of an artist who challenges the relational utopias attributed to the internet by creating performances which reveal empty yet precious moments, and the banality of interpersonal relations. The performance links Abrahams to two other artists (Daniel Pinheiro & Lisa Parra); from three different locations the three seek to communicate sensations and emotions. Cinzia Cremona (one of the curators) in ARSHAKE  Oct. 3 2016.

Filed under: Event, networked performance, Performance, , , , , , , ,

Distant Feeling(s) #2

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Testing the interface July 24 2016

On the 26 of July 2016
Lisa Parra in Los Angeles USA,
Daniel Pinheiro in Lisabon Portugal and
Annie Abrahams in Montpellier France
gathered in an online séance trying to experience each other’s presence with closed eyes.

Distant Feeling(s) #2
Online
: 21h45
Duration 30 min.
Livestreamed directly to reSense #1
Thanks to Olivia Jack (artist and webrtc developer)

Berlin :  20h30 (after BadaboomBerlin BadaBodypaint)
reSense [movement, performance, technology, art] Festival
SPEKTRUM – art science community
Bürknerstraße 1
12047 Berlin

What are we? When are we? Where are we?
We, we we we is what?

When meeting online we face a lack of references that usually define the perception of ‘being’ somewhere at a given time. This object aims at discussing, within the possibilities of networked performance, the mediation itself by removing the fundamental sense that allows connectedness to happen. In a mainly visual rationalized culture we question the following: what are we then left with?

With a sense of proximity ? Intentions of provoking a telematic coordination of movements diluted into a journey of each individual approach on experiencing a shared moment in time? What time?!

Rules for a Distant feeling(s) encounter:
– put the timer on 30 min
– close your eyes
– try feeling the others presence, try provoking their presence, find out what is present
– when timer goes off we open our eyes and just watch for a minute.

Overview : videos, photos, notes on the Distant Feeling(s) project.

 

Filed under: networked performance, , , , ,

Distant Feeling(s) – séance #1

Distant Feeling(s) 17min35 Edited video available for projection, installation, exhibition. Contact landv0dotproject@gmail.com or bramdotorg@gmail.com

March, 4 2016.
Daniel Pinheiro in Porto, Annie Abrahams in Montpellier and Lisa Parra in New York  tried to experience the others presence online with eyes closed and no talking.

Meeting Lisa and Daniel.
Yes we met. In space. Where? In my body maybe?
I was trying to much. Maybe. Why did I look more up than down? Was there, where we were, more up in the sky than here down? I was imagining I might be able to provoke an action, a telematic coordination of movement. It didn’t happen. Slowly I went from the outside to the inside. I was with them on the floor of Lisa’s dance studio. I could feel them. Bullshit of course. There was nothing to say when we opened our eyes.
I would like to do it again, I would like to see what would happen a second time.
Was Lisa crying near the end?”
Annie Abrahams

“I did cry.
I too was imaging myself lying on the floor. it was an inner journey of images, desires, dreams, feelings of sadness and happiness
it was special, it was a special moment in time.” – Lisa Parra

“It made me think of meeting strangers inside an elevator that gets stucked. Where my mind traveled many places trying to understand where was I in relation to these other two persons. Were they there still?! The urge to open my eyes was suddenly erased by the warmth of the sun in my face… here… and back to them … there.
it constantly made me feel that I was there because they were also there, suddenly instead of facing them it was about these three silent bodies “looking” at something else.
the intimate space of silence is awkward. the absence of time and space is endless and infinite”
 – Daniel Pinheiro

More reflections, a video screencapture – raw and score here.

Lisa Parra is a choreographer, performer and video artist.
Daniel Pinheiro is a media artist and performer.
Annie Abrahams is a net artist and performer.

Filed under: networked performance, Video, , , ,

placelessness

Invited by Lisa Parra for the preparation of Land Project: Placelessness,  I participated in an online performance experiment on the  30th of October 2015.

Placelessness is the result of a residency of Lisa and Daniel Pinheiro at CAAA – Centre for Art and Architecture Affairs, in Guimarães (Portugal).

Are you here? Yes, I think so.

We had a very moving 6 minutes of “distanced feeling” :

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Follow-up : Distant Feeling(s) with Lisa Parra and Daniel Pinheiro.

Filed under: networked performance, Performance, , , ,

empathy and intimacy in networked performances

propinquity, cross-reality, tele-presence, synaesthesia, ideasthesia

After reading Frans de Waal’s book on The Bonobo and the Athesist, I wondered if it would help me to better understand what is happening in networked webcam performance thinking about it in terms of empathy. So I wrote a status :

Would “empathy” be a word to describe what is needed (put at stake) in networked webcam performances?
The discussion this triggered made me realise a lot had happened since we organised the CyPosium in 2012. There seems to be a very lively bunch of people, with new approaches and ways of thinking, working in this field.

Participants :
Suzon FuksWaterwheel platform
Daniel Pinhero and Lisa Parra of LAND project
Helen Varley JamiesonUpstage platform
Ienke Kastelein artist – performer
Martina Ruhsam performer – choreographer
Michael Baird musician
Roger Mills director of ethernet orchestra
Randall Packer of postREALITY.tv
Sara Malinarich from the Intact project
Jason Crouch of Contact Manchester
Jesse Ricke of CultureHub New York.

I screencaptured the whole thread and post it here as 12 .jpg’s. (interesting links to videos, discussions, academic approaches and practice)

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After the discussion we started a closed facebook group. If you are interested, please ask to join us, you are very welcome.

The propinquity effect is the tendency for people to form friendships or romantic relationships with those whom they encounter often, forming a bond between subject and friend. Feeling close in networked performance might depend on “the percieved feedback”.

The public can’t be an object/subject for empathy, there are too many different people inside it – empathic skills projected on a public easily become manipulative, become something else.

Physical distance between the persons performing and also between them and the persons watching does allow for intimacy in a very special way. Maybe the intimacy is even connected to a shared sense of awkwardness that the situation implies.

Empathy is a quality, a capacity of one person (as is intelligence, sensibility), not something between persons / it is the capacity “a receptiveness to the rhythms, energy, utterances of the other person” – it is a prerequisite for intimacy.

Rather than empathy it’s about a process of increasing synaesthesia.

What telepresents CAN NOT be present, but we cling stubbornly to this utopia. (Jorge Ruiz Abanades)

Maybe one day there will be another CyPosium …

Filed under: performance, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Upcoming

* 19/03 2017 Presentation in Avant-garde, theatre and everything else, Łódź, Poland. Invitation Ryszard W. Kluszczynski.
* 21-24/03 2017 Workshops Performance en réseau.
23/03 18h30. Conférence Performances dé-matérialisées? CNAC, Châlons-en-Champagne.
* 18/06 2017 11h. Talk Networked performance art and engagement, Internet, Arte y Compromiso, Centre Culturel Puertas de Castilla (Murcia).
* 19/06 2017 19h. Une pratique du texte numérique qui dévoile. Invitation Yan Rucar, Centre culturel international de Cerisy-la-Salle.
* 18-22/07 Performance Ours Lingages, ELO 2017, University Fernando Pessoa, Porto.

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