net art, video, performance

Annie Abrahams

distributed intelligence on the fly?

It felt as closely observing a test tube in an internet ecology experiment.

I finally watched the video of our performance Online En-semble – Entanglement Training. It was so nice and touching to hear the voices, to listen to the the different soundqualities and latencies, to see the changing pixelations and environments. It was interesting to observe how the performers act, react, respond, with objects, sounds and words and find ways to co-create with each other and the machines.

Screenshot-2018-5-12 Online-Ensemble - Entanglement Training

Near the end we had 5 minutes of silently being together online. Helen didn’t get the sign for the end and continued alone.

It was also very engaging to see the audience chatting life during the performance. Randal Packer called this a non-stop flow of online viewer commentary: a simultaneous litany of questions, responses, digressions, and interjections in Power to the Viewer, the article he wrote after his Art of the Networked Practice symposium, where this performance was a part of.

Here are some citations of the chat log that particularly stroke me today:

Alan Sondheim: There’s an odd calmness here, as if they’re dream images or freud’s magic slate at work

Jessica Laraine Williams: I almost feel as if we are neural nets being trained with various iterants of standard objects, as a reference library. The repetitive verbal cues sound like training signals

Martina Ruhsam: as if they would imagine this performance that just happened in their mind

ximena: what are they listening to?
Maria Chatzichristodoulou: silence?
Jessica Laraine Williams: the space in between
Jessica Laraine Williams: white noise
Randall Packer: silence
Jan R 2: they are listening to us
…..
Ng Wen Lei: 4’33
Johannes Birringer: lovely, a telematic re-performance

Maria Chatzichristodoulou: it is interesting that Kit Galloway and Sherrie Rabinowitz were also talking about experiments rather than performances as such, and considered training, rehearsal and performance to be the same

I would love to do a follow-up, to continue this entanglement training. I propose to keep this messy never ending unperfect strange conversation going …. it would be an example, a test tube for developping our empathy muscles over distance, to exercice in distributed intelligence.

Entanglement Training Online performance by Annie Abrahams with Antye Greie, Helen Varley Jamieson, Soyung Lee, Huong Ngô, Daniel Pinheiro, Igor Stromajer. Thursday 29 of March 2018 in the frame of Art of the Networked Practice symposium.
All project info (photos, protocol, collected phrases, reactions etc.)  bram.org/en-semble/

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

… building an empathy muscle …

Online-en-semble – Entanglement Training.

Huong Ngô: I really liked how the score was based on everyday movements, so close to those incidental images we make everyday when we are on Skype etc, but having us do it together really made it into something poetic and more like dance. I thought of Yvonne Rainer’s work. Also, I was thinking a lot about this promise of internationalist utopia that Maria talked about, and where we are in the world today – people becoming more extreme despite or because of technology. The distance that technology affords is something that we now must train our bodies against. I felt like the act of listening, patience, and trying to be present was a way to build that empathy muscle.

Rob Wittig : a wonderful performance today — tactile and musical and spooky and friendly and distant and close!

entanglement training
Images and photos on flickr
Performance protocol.pdf
Video :

From the chatlog (Complete Chat log 64 pages):
-Johannes Birringer: Karina, i learnt much from Corpos Informaticos, they used a whole different set of simple tools that i began to appreciate in many ways
-Daniel Perseguim: yes, Beatriz Medeiros from corpos informáticos are changing the ways of performing, learning expressing… the tools are the simple language, the failures, the “gambiarras”
-Alan Sondheim: there’s an odd calmness here, as if they’re dream images or freud’s magic slate at work
-Maria Chatzichristodoulou: yes Alan, i was thinking it’s a calming experience watching this
-Alan Sondheim: Calming in the midst of potential revolution, disturbance –
-Jessica Laraine Williams: I almost feel as if we are neural nets being trained with various iterants of standard objects, as a reference library. The repetitive verbal cues sound like training signals
-Alan Sondheim: there’s an economics at work
-Marc Garrett: It’s DIWO in realtime!
-Maria Chatzichristodoulou: it is interesting that Kit Galloway and Sherrie Rabinowitz were also talking about experiments rather than performances as such, and considered training, rehearsal and performance to be the same

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

Training Entanglement with whom?

With amazing artists and machines, cables and you.

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With Igor Stromajer, the pseudo-artist, who inspired me when in 2001 he started his famous Ballettikka Internettikka online performance series. We met in 2006, when he came to Montpellier to perform an Oppera Internettikka with me and a mezzo-soprano in the Opéra National de Montpellier Languedoc Roussillon. Over time we continued to collaborate actively in projects as The Big Kiss, Angry Women, HuisClos/No Exit and Beyond (spectacle) among others.

With Antye Greie (also known as AGF), a renowned composer, music producer, sound artist & curator, poet, feminist and activist, that I respect deeply. I performed 13 short performative conversational meetings online with her. We talked about html, wind, pixels, law, mothers, key frame, snow, philosophies, fruits, thinking and islands, humans and words, nuts, recording quality, law, shopping, wind, patriotism, love, ocean space, sound rate, communism, dancing, languages and salad, family and future. She also was a very active participant in the Angry Women project. We never met for real.

With Soyung Lee from South Korea who I never met for real neither, and with whom I never performed before. In 2016 I discovered her enchanting work Displaced when researching language practices and art. I tried to write about this hybrid performance and asked her some questions that are published here. Now she participates. Yes!

With Huong Ngô, an American artist, who I first met when I was in New York in 2010 for a Rhizome event and The Big Kiss performance with Mark River in OTO. Accidentally we met again some years later in Paris at an opening. We share an interest in the entanglement of language, identity and power relations and I admire the way she connects personal and political histories using a conceptual, interdisciplinary, and often collaborative approach. See for instance The Voice is an Archive or The Silent Period. Now we collaborate for the first time. Yes!

With Daniel Pinheiro, a Portugese video artist interested in telematics performance, who I met last summer in Porto where he participated in my ELO keynote performance Ours Lingages as singer, dancer and computer operator.  We had been collaborating before in the Distant Feeling(s), a tele-shared experience project (with also Lisa Parra), after I once participated in their LAND project. I especially appreciate the always very interesting observations and analyses he writes down. We will continue collaborating for sure.

With Helen Varley Jamieson, who coined the word cyberformance. I share a project called unaussprechbarlich and a book called Cyposium – the book with her. We had numerous online encounters in different online venues as for instance the Upstage platform, that she co-initiated. Helen is a feminist and a very fierce defender of the use of open-source software.

Many thanks to Randall Packer the symposium chair who made this possible!

Online En-semble – Entanglement Training
Live Online Performance Thursday, 29 March 2018, 7am-10am CDT / 8am-11am EDT / 2pm-5pm CEDT / 8pm-11pm SGT
In the frame of Art of the Networked Practice | Online Symposium – Social Broadcasting: an Unfinished Communications Revolution, School of Art, Design & Media, Nanyang University, Singapore (29 – 31 March 2018, a collaboration between the School of Art, Design & Media, Singapore; LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore; and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Department of Performance, USA).

Filed under: Conference / lecture, Event, Performance, , , , , , ,

Online En-semble – Entanglement Training

Online En-semble – Entanglement Training.
Online performance with Annie Abrahams (NL/FR), Antye Greie (DE/FI), Helen Varley Jamieson (NZ/DE), Soyung Lee (KR), Huong Ngô (HK/USA), Daniel Pinheiro (VE/PT) and Igor Stromajer (SLO/DE)
In the frame of Art of the Networked Practice symposium, School of Art, Design & Media, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Chair by Randall Packer.

Training2Training1

In this new work we investigate how to be together in a connected world, where machines and humans have to communicate accepting partial overviews, glitches, time-lags, disrupting audience participation and ensuing disorientations. Abrahams considers the intra-active webcam performance situation a good apparatus to train and demonstrate entanglement. She wrote a script for seven performers with different cultural backgrounds. They will defy their own and the others’ ideas on performance and online politics in a conversational performance. In order to avoid chit-chat and to get rid of the distracting images of the faces she proposes to converse using objects, prepared phrases and voices. During the performance they create together a changing composition with the objects and improvise a sound environment with their voices and phrases. Because they share the responsibility for the performances’ acoustic and visual appearance it will be interesting to see how they negotiate their individuality and personal thoughts in this environment where they all have equal power. Contradictions, maybe even oppositions, as well as poetry can emerge in this collectively created complexity, where machines facilitate but also prevent. The performers research the limits and possibilities of their own agency in an attempt to be “with” while being separated.

Program of the day:
8 pm SGT Introduction by Randall Packer.
8.15 pm SGT Maria Chatzichristodoulou keynote Live Art and Telematics: The Promise of Internationalism
9.30 pm SGT Online En-semble – Entanglement Training Live networked performance
10 pm SGT Post performance roundtable
This is Singapore time. Find your own time here.

How to connect for the performance (you will need 5 min to prepare).

Disentangling the Entanglements article on our preparations by Randall Packer

Web page with information about preparations, protocols, text, video, images and later the archives.


Latency Training.

Filed under: Performance, , , , , , , , , ,

A promise of Internationalism?

Screenshot-2018-3-19 Live Art and Telematics The Promise of Internationalism - Art of the Networked PracticeRandall Packer invited Maria Chatzichristodoulou (AKA Maria X) to be the opening keynote speaker for the Art of the Networked Practice Online Symposium because as a performance scholar she is uniquely committed to chronicling, critiquing and contextualizing live Internet art.

In an article called Live Art and Telematics: The Promise of Internationalism Randall writes that Chatzichristodoulou is bringing to our attention the “challenging restrictions placed upon the free circulation of people and ideas” that questions the utopic prediction of the “global village” more than fifty years ago by Marshall McLuhan.

He expects Maria’s probing analysis will stir up an interesting debate during the international symposium. ( March 29  – 31. Free to attend online or in Singapore. )

A promise of Internationalism? I don’t remember – Very curious to hear, and discuss with, Maria on the 29th, when we ( me and  Antye Greie, Helen Varley Jamieson, Soyung Lee, Hương Ngô, Daniel Pinheiro, and Igor Stromajer) will also do a performance called Online En-semble – Entanglement Training.

Filed under: Articles / Texts, , , ,

Entanglements and glitches.

Disentangling the Entanglements is an article by Randall Packer, Associate Professor of Networked Art at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), School of Art, Design and Media in Singapore, about my upcoming performance with  Antye Greie, Helen Varley Jamieson, Soyung Lee, Hương Ngô, Daniel Pinheiro and Igor Stromajer on the first day of the symposium The Art of the Networked Practice Online Symposium 29-31 March 2018, that he organises.

screenshot-2018-01-27-22-41-24_cropped
Technical tests  Jan. 2018

negotiate ideas together in order to achieve a result that’s not just one person’s problem, one person’s effort, but it’s the effort of a group of people solving a problem collectively.

Please visit the Symposium Website for more information and to register online.

On the 29th of March, Randall Packer will open the symposium and introduce the theme of the day: Being & Connectedness in Telematic Spaces. Then there is a keynote by Maria Chatzichristodoulou, who is associate professor in Performance and New Media at the London South Bank University. We follow with our performance called Online En-semble – Entanglement Training. And at the end there will be a discussion between all the participants and the online and on-site public.

On March 30, with the theme Networking the Real and the Fictional, Steve Dixon, President of LASALLE College of the Arts in Singapore will do an introduction and Blast Theory Co-founder Matt Adams will do a keynote. At the end there will again be a roundtable.

On Saturday March 31, centered around igaies (intimate glitches across internet errors), Jon Cates, Associate Professor Film, Video, and New Media, School of the Art Institute of Chicago will present an introduction, and will direct and perform a live networked performance with Roberto Sifuentes (US), Arcángel Constantini (MX), Shawné Michaelain Holloway (US), 愛真 Janet Lin (US) & Paula Pinho Martins Nacif (UK) (XXXtraPrincess).

Filed under: Articles / Texts, Conference / lecture, Net art, Of interest, Performance, , ,

The Laboratory of Networked Behavior

thirdSpaceInterview

After my Networked Conversations interview with Randall Packer on the 13th of Mai, Randall wrote an interesting article called The Laboratory of Networked Behavior.

“Only through questioning, probing, getting dirty, and embracing the messiness of online behavior, can we even come close to any kind of understanding of what lies ahead of us in our mediated lives. That is why the work of Annie Abrahams, along with the other intrepid artist-investigators of the Net, is so crucial to our survival amidst the encroachment of the telematic embrace.”

And here is the recording of the interview : performance as reality – performance is reality.

And a preparation for the talk .pdf (very elaborate overview of my online performance history – not complete though)

Filed under: Articles / Texts, Interview, networked performance, , , , , , , ,

Another precursor of The Big Kiss

image001

A few days ago Kit Galloway after his Networked Conversation with Randall Packer in the Third Space Network send Randall what might be the very first attempted transcontinental split-screen kiss – live via terrestrial microwave linked TV.

Jerry Lewis in Los Angeles and Celeste Holm in New York (She was an actress and the mother of Ted Nelson, the inventor of hypertext)  opened the 29th Academy Awards – the Oscars in 1957 with an “akward”, prude kiss.

HalleckKiss

The other precursor was 17 years later in 1974 and was by Nam June Paik and Shirley Clarke. More about the discovery of this last version by the Videofreex here.

Filed under: Of interest, , , , , , , ,

Networked Conversations

unnamedImage courtesy of the Third Space Network

After Videofreex and Kit Galloway and before Gene Youngblood I’ll be Randall Packer‘s third guest in the Networked Conversations series.

Saturday May 13th 6pm – 7pm Paris time. (Find your local time here.)

To participate you should go to the Third Space Network.
https://connect.ntu.edu.sg/thirdspacenetwork/
Select “Guest,” type your name, and “Enter Room.”

Networked Conversations is a series of live, online interviews and discussions hosted by Randall Packer. The series features media artists, curators, writers, and activists exploring a broad range of social, political and aesthetic topics at the intersection of net culture. Networked Conversations collapses geographical and cultural boundaries via participatory Internet chat: free & open & accessible from anywhere in the world.
For more information visit:
http://www.thirdspacenetwork.com/

mutant

labise

07_collapsing_abrahams_kiss_2931646074_crop

Filed under: Interview, Of interest, , , , , ,

An organic acceptance of silence?

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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.

Watching 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, , , , , , , , , , , ,

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  • 29/10-3/11 Résidence laboNRVC’était avant la glace et les montagnes … avec Ariane Cassimiro. Suite de Qu(o)i agence Quand .
  • 2/12-8/12 Alchorisma, Z33, House for Contemporary Art, Hasselt. Session de travail avec Constant.

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Annie Abrahams
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