Chance and the Machine

When we become inextricable from our machines – when they are fully integrated into our consciousness as prosthetics – what does it mean to be human?
This session will explore how intentional ways of telling the self, and telling what will be, grant insight into this question during a time of great uncertainty. In doing so, they provide diagrams of ways of being that avoid the dystopian narrative of technological totalitarianism.


DADA TO DATA: Andrew Wenaus and Christina Willatt demonstrate a method of musical composition that seeks out the poetic potential of unpredictability, this presentation proposes an artistic praxis that nests mechanically-produced randomness at the heart of possibility, using the idea of self as automated to seize back agency from the algorithms now determine our behavior in ways that we cannot seemingly control.

THE ADVENTURES: Lynne Heller uses comix to explore the increasingly evident hybridity of digitally augmented experiences in the spaces where the dichotomy between subject and object, material and virtual, can’t be presumed. The resulting narratives experiment with how one tells of the self when the boundaries between the body and representation are thought of as fluid.

IF YOU ARE LOST YOU ARE HERE: THE FUTURES PRESENT IN LOWER RESOLUTIONS: Stirling Prentice explores how his recent installation, Lower Resolutions, which allowed participants to choose their own adventures, opens up ethical questions about how we make sense of the present in terms of the future, and how a narrative conceit that seems chosen at random can have powerful implications for the shape meaning takes down the road.


OCAD University acknowledges the ancestral and traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the New Credit, the Haudenosaunee, the Anishnabe and the Huron-Wendat, who are the original owners and custodians of the land on which we stand.