[ISEA97] Panel: Artur Matuck – Panel Statement

Panel Statement

Panel: Literature, Journalism, and the Telematic Society 3: Electrified Language

De-scripting utilizes the computer as co-author in the process of recreating words. A software configured to work as a “broken typewriter” produces a series of alternatives to letter sequences. The complete language transformation process follows two steps. A disorganizing computational procedure entitled De-script is followed by a re-organizing procedure entitled Re-script, performed by an human agency. The objective is to renew language codes, creating new terms for poetical, political, linguistic, theoretical, or scientific purposes.

De-script can be thought of as a means to de-scribe written languages. In this experiment, English is the language being de-scripted through a process of computerized semi-random letter substitutions causing purported mispellings. De-script is a computer generated anti-language. It undermines the idea that languages must be protected by insti-tutions from possible changes. In De-script, language is seen, otherwise, as a living entity, in transformation, absorbing influences and reflecting social forces and technologies. The process utilizes English in a generative mode, to surpass it, to enlarge it, to open it up to new technologies and modes of thought. The most immediate effect De-script has in a language is to enlarge it, to actually infinitize the paradigmatic level of the word unit, opening up a field of unheard-of, unthoughtable possibilities of letter re-combinations. However, if one wants to construct meaning or neo-meaning, De-script has to be followed by Re-script, dis-sociation by re-association. The purpose is to constantly learn from a de- scripted level, so that one can break free from paradigmatic limitations in order to re-script a new text.

  • Artur Matuck (Brazil), UNIVERSITY OF SAO PAULO.  I have been working as a teacher, a researcher, a writer, a visual artist, a video producer, a digital photographer, and as a designer of telecommunication art events in Brazil and in the United States. At the Department of Fine Arts at ECA-USP, I am responsible for the disciplines of Multimedia and Intermedia. As a writer involved with art, I have been producing fictional and non-fictional writing. Besides scripting my own videos, I have written science fiction nar­ratives, reviews, articles, and essays that have been pub­lished in Brazil, United States, Canada, France, and Spain. As a visual artist, I have been working with a variety of media, including graphic arts, fictional and documentary video, performance, computer graphics, and telecommunication. I have exhibited my electronic art work in several Sao Paulo Biennials, in 1983, 1987, 1989, and 1991.1 completed a comprehensive study on the history of video and television art, which resulted in my doctoral thesis entitled The Dialogical Potential of Television. In 1990, I was granted a doctorate on Media Arts at the University of Sao Paulo. From 1976 to 1978 I attended the University of Iowa, com­pleting a Master of Arts in Communications. From 1976 to 1978 I attended the University of California at San Diego, where I was granted a Master of Fine Arts degree in Visual Arts. From 1990 to early 1992, I was a Research Fellow at the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, where I produced Reflux, a world­wide Telecommunication Arts project. At Carnegie Mellon University, I was committed to an extensive new research on the theory, history, and techniques of Telecommunication Arts. A recent endeavor included plan­ning and coordination of a telecommunication art event, entitled Telematic Prom Art. The event celebrated the open­ing of the new site of the Museum of Contemporary Arts of the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, in October 1992. The essay, entitled information and Intellectual Property, was published in late 1993 in a special Art and Social Consciousness issue of Leonardo.