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4.1.2014

Reza Negarestani

Frontiers of Manipulation

Symposium Speculations on Anonymous Materials
17:30FridericianumFriedrichsplatz 1834117 Kassel
 
What are the limits and conditions of material manipulability? But more importantly, is there a connection between the concept of the material and the function of manipulation in the sense that the latter decides the former? Drawing on some of the recent discussions in the field of engineering with regard to models, cross-level causal intervention, renormalization groups, morphogenetic analysis (the science of forms) and non-extendable explanatory and functional levels, this presentation aims at providing a concept of material organization beyond but reconcilable with the level of appearances. Whilst claiming that (1) material descriptions – to which art has access to – are blind to explanations and (2) only causal and functional explanations are capable of rendering the material intelligible and making material intervention possible, a robust concept of construction and manipulation cannot dispense with descriptive resources of appearances. Once approached through local possibility spaces opened up by deep explanatory levels or the scientific image, the powers of abductive inference implicit in the manipulation conditionals at level of ordinary descriptions enable a mode of construction that expands its frontiers from the top and from the bottom. This marks an encounter with the material that is neither quite speculative nor quite empirical while it is both abductive and under real constraints.