theme 4: Alt Realities –> Perspectives on gender(nonconformity), queer, fantasy

 

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This topic contains 15 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by jenninat0r jenninat0r 1 year, 11 months ago.

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  • #154

    theme 4: Alt Realities –> Perspectives on gender (nonconformity), queer, fantasy  in glitch worlds / theory practice –> considers other ways of participating in glitch cultures. It also might consider physical disability as a perspective on glitch concepts.  Image/screening/reading/references repository forthcoming.

    #239

    plichty
    Participant

    My question regards what constitutes a bio-glitch, and does it constitute disability or perhaps afunctional augmentation.  Why I ask this is that I have a cataract lens implant that has become unmoored/cable has slipped and it slides around behind my iris in the capsule, creating an actual “googly eye”.  So until I get it fixed, as I move my head, I get a glitchy double image that resolves, or blurring in and out.  I consider this a bio-glitch, and while it probably disables me, it also gives me a live, real-time glitch image directly through my retinas.  What I see is a cyborg glitch image that I largely do not have control over.  Is this a disability, augmentation, or afunctional position of alterity?

     

    #450
    missholloway
    missholloway
    Moderator

    I don’t feel like being a gender non-conformist or being physically (or emotionally) transgendered  has anything to do with participating in glitch art and cultures, especially alongside the word “fantasy.” By calling these communities “glitched” communities, we are referring back to derogatory conversations about gender dysphoria.

    On the other hand, we could have conversations about what happens when we encounter people of alternative sexualities and gender performances insofar as it makes those who engage in gender normative practices instantly aware of their own gender performance; e.g .is it self-ascribed or socially ascribed? What is feminity/masculinity?

    This type of glitch is similar to what happens conceptually when we encounter a computer glitch, we instantly detach from our “natural workflow” and become aware that we are working within a synthesized, unstable, environment. — When one encounters alternative gender performance, we are similarly reminded that gender is malleable. We grasp at the notion that gender is a “synthesized” environment for the development of the social signifiers we use to help others define us.  — Some just choose to exploit that synthesized environment for their benefit, i.e. changing genders, performing as another gender, choosing to be gender nutural. These exploitations are not, in themselves, glitches.

    The type of glitch I’m proposing lies in the moment when our realization becomes self-awareness, critical thinking, and then reaction– despite how instantaneous and shallow or intellectualized and understood those stages may be.

    #580

    BC
    Participant

    “I don’t feel like being a gender non-conformist or being physically (or emotionally) transgendered  has anything to do with participating in glitch art and cultures, especially alongside the word “fantasy.” By calling these communities “glitched” communities, we are referring back to derogatory conversations about gender dysphoria.”
     >>> I don’t think that’s the intention — gender non-conformity or transgender or gender queer is not being conflated as “glitched,” though separating “fantasy” out from this thread would be a good idea. I think there are productive conversations to be had about queerness and failure though, particularly with Judith Jack Halberstam’s recent book The Queer Art of Failure about failure in a broader sense and queerness, as well as in relation to some of Halberstam’s other writings about people who “fail” to pass as either gender and artworks that map such failures, which goes to your other comments. Fantasy, though, could designate queer versus heteronormative fantasies and the ways in which participating in a culture predicated on failure in the broader sense could be a productive space to explore queerer fantasies. I don’t think this thread (or any) are about saying how someone identifies has anything to do with participating in glitch art/cultures. We are interested in how the articulated frameworks of an art community such as glitch includes/ excludes based on the kind of culture that is created and celebrated. This, for me, goes to questions about definitions of what glitch culture/ practice is understood to be// ways of interfacing with technologies (which can be gendered)// ideas of breaking & failure as productive (is failure productive? Is “productivity” the right word? Perhaps, a better question might be, is failure “reparative”?) The idea is not to assemble a group of “diverse” glitchers, but to ask, if gli.tc/h (or glitch art) IS community (how it is framed, at least by the organizers) — what does that mean? for who? are some voices silenced? (genuine questions, posed with no answers in mind).

    #582

    fantasy as in fantastic or hopeful otherness, as in what if the control group/point of ref wasn’t so consistently limited. 100 years from now? 1000 years from now? Imagine the occurrence of; fantasize about.

    #583
    #584

    i get called a guy almost everyday and sometimes i startle people in bathrooms if i have a lot of winter clothes on. then i say something and the person turns bright red and apologizes profusely. the thing is i dont care and i’m looking forward to the time – 100 years from now or 1000 – when no one cares. i had this same conversation with a student who gets the opposite gendered response. both of us have been separated out in airport security and put in “the wrong line”

    #585

    @patrick –> re: Is this a disability, augmentation, or afunctional position of alterity? i would say it is whatever joyful otherness you can attribute to it. disability is a stressful burden so if there is a way to find beauty in a mortal glitch/broken wetware — do it. adam and i did a presentation on glitched bodies and brains 3 years ago… entirely relevant as the boundaries tween systems (tech art social medias and processes) are impossible to separate/determine –e.g. your eye, your capture, how this scenario informs the artifacts/ideas you produce

    #586
    missholloway
    missholloway
    Moderator

    @BC

    Whoops, perhaps I failed to elaborate enough.

    I think talking about failures, even via the Halberstam, sounds a big trap- for lack of a better phrase. (That sounds harsh somehow.) It’s like talking glitch in relation to Nella Larson’s various “failures” in Passing. These conversations *about* gender/racial failures in society (or art about them– i think they are inseparable) do not move the discourse foreword towards anything but rather, continue highlight the unrealized goals/hopes/dreams/”FANTASIES” of navigating smoothly outside their communities and solidifying their place, for the billionth time, back in the fringe. Even if it is within a fringe community like glitch art. I think it’s been seen in other forums on the working group that even though we can make fringe type art, we are not particularly inclined to think progressively / freely / openly about artworks that concern fringe-like activities.

    Because of this^, why don’t we move foreward by invoking artworks that use the fringe communities  and/or “artistic failures” in ways that don’t talk about them being failures but rather normal / functioning / moving parts of society. That’s some real transgression. I think there are a handful of artworks that do this successfully and succeed initiating a new kind of “artful” glitch insofar as they normalize an “othered” state of being. Besides, isn’t that what a lot of glitch art does / glitch artists do? Take “glitched” instances (or create them,) appropriate them and proceeds to use the results to interface with the rest of the art / world in efforts to provoke certain thoughts or feelings of some kind of realization?

    Again, I go back to my original statement– I think “…we could have conversations about what happens when we encounter people of  (*or artworks talking about/displaying*) alternative sexualities and gender performances (/ racial performances) insofar as it tends to prompt those who ( / *artworks that*) engage in gender (/ racial) normative practices instantly aware of their own [...] performance(s).”

    #598
    atrowbri
    atrowbri
    Moderator

    Why?
    Because it feels good.
    Because it gives me an erection.
    Because it makes me come.
    Because I’m sick.
    Because there was so much sickness.
    Because I say FUCK THE SICKNESS.

    - Bob Flanagan

    Flanagan, especially the documentary SICK is a necessary reference in any discussion of “bio-glitch”.  I don’t have much to say about it, anyone who hasn’t seen it should do so and listen to Flanagan speak for himslelf

     

    #599

    BC
    Participant

    Hi Shawne!

    I think we’re in agreement and perhaps I could have been more articulate also — late/tired etc. In your first post, you suggest:

    “On the other hand, we could have conversations about what happens when we encounter people of alternative sexualities and gender performances insofar as it makes those who engage in gender normative practices instantly aware of their own gender performance; e.g .is it self-ascribed or socially ascribed? What is feminity/masculinity?”

    and then in your most recent post you write: “why don’t we move foreward by invoking artworks that use the fringe communities  and/or “artistic failures” in ways that don’t talk about them being failures but rather normal / functioning / moving parts of society. That’s some real transgression. I think there are a handful of artworks that do this successfully and succeed initiating a new kind of “artful” glitch insofar as they normalize an “othered” state of being. Besides, isn’t that what a lot of glitch art does / glitch artists do? Take “glitched” instances (or create them,) appropriate them and proceeds to use the results to interface with the rest of the art / world in efforts to provoke certain thoughts or feelings of some kind of realization?”

    My point about Halberstam (and how I understand them) is that they are articulating exactly what you suggest in both of these passages. That instances of failure remind us of our own performativity and that embracing failure is a call not to keep the fringe at the fringe, but to become the fringe (if we’re not there already, and I’d argue that most of us are anyways — that we never live gender and sexuality along smooth binary oppositions and that things that are considered “non-normative” are actually fundamental to how most of us navigate our own lives. In short, who are these mythic people living out these perfect “norms” of sexuality and gender?) and reject the normalizing tendencies of “success”. The artworks Halberstam likes, I think, do often do as you suggest in some ways. They embrace/ celebrate/ love/desire failure. Though I hesitate to “normalize” the “fringe”. There’s a danger there, I think, which results in many more instances of new “fringes” being created (for example, “homonationalisms /pinkwashing”). I guess it’s a difference between stepping into the fringe and/or asking the fringe to step over to the “norm” (again, I don’t think the boundaries are as tidy as this either — it’s not norm vs. fringe).  I don’t think this is about saying some people and communities aren’t “productive” or as you put it, “normal, functioning, moving parts” in society, but more about asking why we value productivity in the first place. Also, I want to make clear, again, this isn’t about designating some communities as “glitched” but recognizing the ways in which failure is read onto certain bodies and asking why// taking the ascribed social negativity of glitch as a computer error and embracing that negativity. Also, and this is important: failure is not passive. It’s not an falling short or an acquiescence but a refusal. It is a practice — eg. glitch art. Halberstam’s book is also about knowledge production, asking what kinds of knowledge do we value. It proposes failure (and one could propose glitching) as a kind of knowledge.

    On the flip side of all this, I am not here to champion Halberstam completely. There are criticisms to be made and there is a kind of privilege to celebrating failure. This gets raised about glitch music in a different context in a conversation between Le Tigre’s Kathleen Hanna and Joanna Fatemen:

    Fateman: It really strucks us that, when men make mistakes, it’s fetishized as a glitch. . .
    Hanna: Something beautiful.
    Fateman: And when women do it, it’s like. . .
    Hanna: . . . a hideous mistake.
    Fateman: Right, it’s not considered an artistic innovation or a statement or an intentional thing.

    Though I don’t think it’s as cut and dried as all this, I think there’s something to it.

    I’d also be curious to hear you elaborate on this: “Even if it is within a fringe community like glitch art. I think it’s been seen in other forums on the working group that even though we can make fringe type art, we are not particularly inclined to think progressively / freely / openly about artworks that concern fringe-like activities.”

    By no means am I suggesting that a community of glitchers is going to be a bastion of progressiveness, but that conceptual ideas like failure, error and glitch as well as material glitches, errors and bugs offers a potentially generative framework for rethinking normative ideas of the human.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by  BC.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by  BC.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by  BC.
    #616
    patlichty
    patlichty
    Participant

    Excellent conversation.
    J – I like your position on saying to take joy from ot and make something from it. I say this because it beats the alternatives. A: Fuck the sickness. Exactly.  I have just gotten my surgery date and this means that my “glitch” has a time-window.  I find this unbelievably interesting.  This is a piece that also deals with my having to scan and the fact that the image changes every time I move.  Done with my dancer friend, Eleonora Diamanti.

    #731
    jonCates
    jonCates
    Moderator
    #732
    jonCates
    jonCates
    Moderator
    #733

    BC
    Participant

    Thx jC! Do you know the person who made this? I am trying to put together a screening of worx around the themes of our thread.

    #773
    jenninat0r
    jenninat0r
    Participant

    Big tangent but I thought I’d like to introduce this work of mine…(NSFW, turn up speakers)

    http://www.totalrelease.org

    In terms of queer-or-not fantasy, this is not quite glitch art, and not with the glitch aesthetic per se-it’s almost like a satire of satire if I queer spam about spam… many viewers (particularly male) couldn’t tell the difference between this and any other spam page, which is either a win for looking vernacular or a failure to deviate enough within a system of meanings.

    I’m always amused by the rhetoric of viagra/sex performance campaigns which are always targeted at men. I kind of even love the hyperbole. So I made this hoaky spam site for a fake DVD program on erotic self-hypnosis for achieving endless orgasms, which is kind of a fetish/fad/spam of its own on the web.  I copied http://www.malemultiorgasm.com/ and changed the language so that it was gender neutral.

    I noticed how sexual enhancement ads and spam on the web seem to valuate orgasm and orgasm-giving as the highest form of pleasure, or sexual activity then as the greatest kind of personal liberation, the greatest self-improvement.  (While I don’t condemn sex or promiscuity, I contest these for being reasons to seek sexual pleasure as much as possible)

    Maybe a big problem (as it always is) is showing a woman in the throws of orgasm and having her be a fetish object. I don’t agree with removing sexuality from anyone either and I liked that she was enjoying herself without any kind of apparent sexual action.

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