Andreas Broeckmann on Tue, 13 Jul 1999 14:53:40 +0100

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Syndicate: Wiretap 5.07: Tekkie Therapy

Wiretap 5.07: Tekkie Therapy

Date: Sunday 18 July 1999
Time: 14.00 hrs (doors open 13.00 hrs)
Location: V2_, Eendrachtsstr. 10, Rotterdam
Entrance: fl. 7,50

Guests: Erik Hobijn (NL), Henk Oosterling (NL), Erik Davis (US)
Moderator: Alex Adriaansens, V2_

The 1999 Wiretap series focuses on the possibilities of acting, interacting
and intervening in media environments like the Internet and Virtual
Reality. The series investigates the effects of these actions through
digital media on our social and cultural environments. (where we live,
work, learn, communicate and amuse ourselves).
Artists and scientists present projects and concepts about a special theme.
The Wiretap of the 18th of July has the theme 'Tekkie Therapy'


The programme Tekkie Therapy presents radical projects and concepts in
which (media) technologies are used to level emotional blockages, to recall
and work through repressed dreams and fears, and general therapeutical
applications. Tekkie Therapy deals with the physical and psychological
mobilisation of body and soul in the arts, science and techno-utopianism.

Technology and therapy are closely connected. Therapies have always been
specific techniques of care and treatment with or without technical
apparatuses, based on herbs, acupuncture, massages, language, technology
and media in the wider sense of the word. The technological age has not
kept its old utopian promise of an existence in permanent happiness. On the
contrary: every technology that is invented as a remedy appears to be
accompanied by new physiological or psychological problems.

Especially in different psycho-therapies, media and technical apparatuses
are used to stimulate the mind, to re-animate repressed thoughts and to
break through mental blockages. Even in the nineteenth century, psychiatric
patients were reminded of their own past and their 'real' existence by
showing them their own portrait photographs. Another example of a medial
therapy is the test of Rohrschach, where abstract drawings are used as an
inspirational source for free association. Nowadays, we find a growing use
of new technologies, like computergames, Internet and robotics in such

Wiretap 5.07 deals with three extreme positions in the domain of Tekkie
Therapies. The artist Erik Hobijn introduces several of his installations,
like his potential 'suicide machine', through which user and audience are
offered a physically and psychologically transgressive experience. The
philosopher Henk Oosterling talks about the
unstable triangle of body, psyche and machine, by way of an analysis of
notions of technology in modern psycho-therapy. Using examples from
Hobijn's work, but also by referencing phenomena like the Tamagotchi,
Oosterling deals with the relationship between, and the psychological
consequences of, medial interactivity and interpassivity. The cultural
critic Erik Davis speaks about the Extropians, an American sect of
techno-utopians who search for a release from all earthly inconveniences by
completely technologising their lives. As special guests we expect a number
of Shadow Buddies, therapeutical dolls with disabilities, protheses, and
beaten faces.


Erik Hobijn studied at the Rietveld Akademie and, after a few years in
Berlin, now again works and lives in Amsterdam. His work moves between
performance, theatre, pyro-arts and digital media. He examines the friction
and the cathartic collision of the human body with the machine and natural
materials like metal, water, fire and sound. The art project Delusions of
Self Immolation from 1991 offers a user the opportunity of a journey to the
limits of existence. The Dante Orgel is an installation-performance with 15
flame-throwers for a big audience: a
machine-choreography of light and heat, beauty and destructive energy.
Furthermore, Hobijn is developing concepts for Techno-Parasites, little
machines which tap into big machines and eventually use their energy for
their own disruption and destruction.

Erik Davis is an author, journalist and cultural critic who lives in San
Francisco. He writes for Gnosis, Wired, Details, The Rolling Stone and
especially for The Village Voice. His subjects range from television and
music to philosophy. At the beginning of the nineties he first became
interested in digital technology. He wrote an essay under the title
TechGnosis which later resulted in a book with the same title in which
Davis examines relations between technology, religion and techno-utopianism.

Henk Oosterling is the co-ordinator of the Centre of Philosophy and Art at
the Faculty of Philosophy of the Erasmus University Rotterdam. He did
linguistic didactics and political work with guest workers and immigrant
working youths in the 1970s, and lived in Japan and studied sword-fighting
(kendo) in the 80s. Since 1985 Oosterling has been practising dialectics at
the Faculty of Philosophy of the EUR, then also French theories of
difference and, since 1992, aesthetics, a trajectory that is documented in
three philosophical books about the relationships between philosophy,
politics and art. Together with Siebe Thissen, Oosterling recently
organised a publication and a conference about the French philosopher and
psychiatrist Felix Guattari.

The Wiretap series is supported by the Rotterdam Art Foundation and the
Dutch Ministery of Education, Culture and Science.

V2_Organisation is financially supported by Cultural Affairs of the City of
Rotterdam and the Dutch Ministery of Education, Culture and Science.


Erik Davis -
Erik Davis: TechGnosis (1998) -

Henk Oosterling / Centrum voor Filosofie en Kunst -
Erik Hobijn: Dante Orgel -
Erik Hobijn: Techo-Parasieten -
Adaptive Technology Resource Centre -
Shadow Buddies -
Alexei Shulgin - [???]
Stahl Stenslie -
Tamagotchi -
Sex-Drugs-Rock and Roll Tamagotchis -

Various therapeutic online chats:
Sterrekind -

V2_Organisation: Marjolein Berger
Eendrachtsstraat 10 - 3012 XL Rotterdam
tel: 31.(0)10.206.7272
fax: 31.(0)10.206.7271

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