Downtime: post-domestic fiction
An installation interrogating the functionality of various found appliances which are interconnected into a complex nexus of interactions between computer-generated audio and human input.
‘Downtime: post-domestic fiction’ pivots on a number of hacked/tinkered with found appliances that are interconnected into a complex nexus of interactions between computer-generated audio and human input. It was the collaborative outcome of the ‘DamnLab: Creative Coding and New Media’ workshop, coordinated by Marinos Koutsomichalis and curated by Maria Varela. The workshop lasted several months and has been attended by a diverse group of creative individuals, several of which with no prior experience in the technologies under question. The eventual form of the installation has surface the numerous ideation sessions and extensive experimentation with materials and ideas.
‘Downtime: post-domestic fiction)’ refers to the representation of a system comprising of obsolete electric appliances. Through hacking methodology, the redefinition of their original identity is investigated, thus giving them new uses. The objects have been removed from the original frame of reference becoming rich in functionality. The post-use of existing objects – tools, deliberately questions existing hierarchies. These capabilities extend beyond the system’s practical everyday life applications and become part of a new system. The new system created, a hybrid of analog and digital technologies, faces the depreciation of units not as a conclusion but rather as an opportunity to review their functional capabilities.
In this way, the conditions are being created to maintain the content of the objects active. Through the new use which is assigned to them, the objects become accessible to their reuse and manipulation, while they stand as a potential long-term archival resource. While the electric appliances are the composers which produce live audio and video, the viewer’s subjective presence is crucial for the development of the project. Through his/her interaction with the objects, his/her personal intervention to the narrative produced, provides a constant influx of new material. Thus the experience evolves rather as a perceptual than a conceptual one.
The project served as a collaborative platform, through which the multilevel reading of the dynamic new system is ensured. Starting from DIY methodologies the project is completed into a DIWO (Do It With Others) ethics.
Acclaimed media theorist Jussi Parikka, suggests that ‘Downtime: post-domestic fiction’ “is a switch concept for notions of time – functional and dysfunctional, and as such tries to act as an anthropological operator for cultural techniques of temporality“. Read his full review here.