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FleshFactor: Duchampian Alchemy

A E C  F O R U M - "F L E S H F A C T O R"

The role of mind, body and spirit in interactive art --
Contextualising a theoretical debate as Interactive Art mirrors Margaret
Boden's view on putting AI theories to test via programming (anything is
theoretically possible in language) - where the focus between perceiver
(5 senses in the flesh) and the perceived (multimedia in the etheric
reality) is established as an interactive discourse (manifested as
programmed process).
The fleshfactor debate intellectualises whereas a strong Interactive Art
(IA) piece puts theory into practice.  Via IA, I seek to question the
conventions of virtual reality by challenging theoretical definitions of
virtuality, mathematical and philosophical speculations on reality and
in turn our uncertainty principle like relationship to a perceptual
reality. (http://www-crd.rca.ac.uk/~richardb)

The body hosts the mind - Western thought has abolished the spirit it
seems, yet art struggles to re-establish a moment of non-rational "being
there" and experiencing that "something else" - surely rekindling a
humanistic awareness of our context and place in the holistic Natural
world has far greater import than an escapist obsession with unhappy
body in city via cybernetic mechanisms justified by rational and
analytical rhetoric?. 

Duchamp laid down foundations for Art that embodied intellect and
spirit, exploring the unreality of the fourth dimension, gave vent to
his feminine alterego as Rrose Selavy (C'est la vie), whilst "Given: 1st
The Waterfall, 2nd: The Illuminated Gas" could be seen as an early VR

Post-millenium IA should empower and enlighten (holistic spirit nature)
rather than the late 21stC examples of technomagic (cerebral machine
appeal). I advocate a Duchampian Alchemy - the synthesis of dualities -
where East meets West, Art meets Science, Mind accepts Body and Spirit
resonates with Nature.

Richard Brown

Research Fellow,
Royal College of Art,
Kensington Gore,
London SW7 2EU.

Tel: 0171 590 4296 (direct line)
Fax: 0171 590 4290


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