Unpacking Contra-Internet: Metric Mysticism

Unpacking Contra-Internet: Metric Mysticism

Date: 
03.02.2018 20:00
Festival edition: 
2018
Format: 
Artist Presentation
Location: 
Exhibition Hall 1

Zach Blas’ lecture performance Metric Mysticism, which elaborates on some of the issues raised in his installation Contra-Internet, highlights the connection between mysticism and private silicon valley data analytics companies like Palantir Technologies. The expression “palantir” is borrowed from Tolkien’s novel Lord of the Rings and refers to an all-seeing crystal ball used by wizards. In his performance, Blas gazes into the crystal balls of Silicon Valley and charts the transmutation of big data into a magical substance that can predict—and police—the future. At the same time, he asks whether it may in fact be more productive to read from silicon, the material that provides the basis for data mining, in order to meditate and consider the crisis of the present.

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