Ghost in the Machine- Graduate Seminar


If anyone here is prone to epileptic seizures it would advisable for you to leave while DVD is being presented.

by Angelique L. Jenkins

Written Script- For Project and Exegesis

‘Ghost in the Machine’

–Ghost in the Machine equation –

Ghost ‘The human element’ (or its trace)

+ Machine ‘Existence’

(or anything that equates to this)

= The spaces, or gaps in between!!

Reading of Philosophical piece.

Request for audience to close their eyes…

Roger-Pol Droit 101 Experiments in the Philosophy of Everyday Life

83 Fix the ephemeral

Duration stopped

Props a recording system

Effect contemplative

In the past, the fleeting detail was lost forever. A movement of the hand, a furtive look, the shadow of a smile, an inflection of the voice, a certain light- everything sank without a trace, along with a thousand other such tiny realities- into an ocean from which nothing could be recovered by anyone.

We have invented detail-machines, that can capture such instants. Fix the tiniest spot. Preserve sounds and profiles. They made their appearance not so long ago, but we have got used to them so quickly that now we take their power for granted. Or nearly.

The experiment consists in rediscovering the power of these techniques. In fact we do so everyday without thinking about it: by listening to the radio or to discs, watching television or videos, photographing, recording voices, faces, in their very special way, can snatch ephemeral moments from the march of time.

A piano key lightly caressed by Scott Joplin in 1902, a single flutter of Louise Brook’s eyelids in 1934, a jack-boot hitting a paving stone on the Champs- Elysees in 1940, the chaotic arrival of a train in Calcutta yesterday

…We are surrounded by tens of thousands of captures living instants, of movements seized in photos or on film, of every type of music recorded on film, of every type of music recorded on disc. Try and remember this when you next look at a photograph or listen to a CD. And the next time you yourself record a snatch of life, remind yourself that you yourself are a tiny sliver of existence from time. Think of a paradoxical hourglass that sieves the dust of hours into a kind of eternity. Instant after instant, what would have disappeared forever is now available and can be replayed any number of times. The fugitive and the ephemeral are flowing permanently towards the eternal.

Ask yourself how all this will end. The answer doesn’t matter.

Tonite I will share with you in a philosophical way my visions, and approaches. You will see what video art work I have made so far, and some theoretical ideas…

This is the beginning of ‘Time Code’ this is the model I would like to use. Using four frames…

Show intro Time Code.

My work is an experiment!!

And perhaps in the true spirit of Bricolage…

It is inside that experiment that my work is made. I have an idea, and I just play with it. It sometimes comes in the form of glitch and relies on the feelings provoked, the moods and emotions aroused in that zone. These can seem surreal and ambient, threatening and meditative all at once. Some have noticed a sexual/ sensual nature in that space as my femininity prevails…

Present to audience ‘Ghost in the Machine’

The theory that will inform my work usually comes after, when after my own, and others observation and/or reflection of it I am informed, and therefore become further informed, and hopefully encouraged about what it is I am trying to discover, or share in that space…

At this point one may discover ‘true’ and ‘false’, ‘objective’ and ‘subjective’ views and create debate, zones of ‘reality’ and the ‘absolute’ knowledge’s will be provoked.

Present to audience ‘Glitch’

You the receiver will make that choice?

I can say that my path of knowledge comes from that of the rhizome a Delueze and Guattari methodology. As understandings branch off, and take on new nodes I discover new meanings. This is what I hope will take flight in the thought processors of those who experience my work. Maybe linking misunderstandings, and understandings, and launching nodes that bridge horizons not yet opened…

Present to audience ‘Cyberia’ a collaborated work with Aaron Burton and Mark Mendez- Cortez.

In the beginning my work came out of a necessity to express inner feelings, thoughts about things I could not explain in basic conversation. Perhaps it is inside me, in the silent manifestations of my inner self/soul?

Finding a voice, or a platform to vent these emotions are ever present. The need to project those understandings in other forms came about in creative expression at first for me in the medium of painting, and of installation. Paintings were mainly of impressionist and expressionist styles; and early installations were more of the political, and about environmental issues.

Here in this space, now, in the university walls, and therefore academic sphere I have discovered new ways of understanding, sharing and informing my art. In Creative Writing and Video Art- those ‘other’ zones that dwell inside me are explored and finally seen/felt. This could be considered self-centred, as my work largely revolves around me ‘my’ ways of seeing … Often my work is performative, using myself as ‘subject’, and in that way I also become the ‘object’. I am the tool that is behind the work I am creating and in that way the seed of the Cyborg is evident as I see myself as a machine.

A creating machine…

Thinking ‘operationally’ has become a sort of absolute artificialism, such as we see in the ideology of cybernetics, where human creations are derived from a natural information process, it self conceived on the model of human. If this kind of thinking were to extend its reign to man and history; if, pretending to ignore what we know of them through our own situations, it were to set out to construct man and history on the basis of a few abstract indices…then, since man really becomes the manipulandum he takes himself to be, we enter into a cultural regimen where there is neither truth nor falsity concerning man and history, into a sleep, or a night mare, from which there is no awakening. (Bowring, Finn, 2003, p.277)

As a ‘mother’ of ideas, visions and perceptions…you could say?

As an emerging mature female artist it is without doubt I will be often seen at the margins. At the periphery, conceptually in social spatiality of this, in that ‘other’ space…

Spatio-temporal transitions acquire value by virtue of being unordered, ‘marking-free’ zones beyond spatiotemporally fixed orders. This is where new things can take shape. In the In-Between- In the Already-Left-Behind and the Not-Yet-Arrived- much is possible. (Hofmeister, 2002, p. 114)

I am instinctual, and find that my work comes naturally, yet it may seem mechanical in the structural sense, needing boundaries, so I use repetition and looping. Creating a never-ending story or scene…

But inside each one of those frames/chapters contains one existence, one zone surrounded by the walls of time…these could be traces of Enlightenment principal.

My work has elements of ascending and descending, transcending, places of slippage will occur as a collision of traditional, socio-political theories, and texts and paradigms will be made.

I guess I mean in the post-structural sense where meaning can never be fixed, and in the ephemeral where fleeting thoughts are observed.

Issues of freedom and order, places of liminal, places of Heterotopia that display an easily identifiable space at the edge are concerns for me. Alternate spaces like the beach, a shopping mall, markets, the carnival, places of pleasure and consumption, architecture etc.

These are places that can be surveilled not only by the observer but also captured in the form of video surveillance. This is the style in which I will present my video work as a split screen. Divided by four viewing perspectives. Viewing if you will places of freedom not of imprisonment as Bentham’s Panopticon.

Bentham’s Panopticon



Hand out picture Sourced from Course Resources, Arts in Perspective 1, 1001ART, Griffith School of Arts (Wise, Patricia, 2002, p.12)

I would hope you the audience to think about us now as we sit here in this academic forum, surveilling each other, and take a glance in the corner yeah over there wave to the camera, give to it your better view, and think about this private utopia as we comrades of the academia, try to discover our freedoms of thought there…is it possible?

Present to audience ‘HH’.

I have interest in the political paradigms that discover a socialist anarchy. My works may reflect this upon close examination.

For most of the part, my project will that of the qualitative, from what I observe. That could be in turn considered quantitative on a philosophical level. In the scientific sense… Because I value that what I see will from that of the blurred genres. My disposition is that I am a child/ teenager of the 70’s and my world view/ perspectives are always influenced with the exploration into the non-linear, and open-ended…

A post-modern subject, living in a post-post modern world…

Present ‘Timecode’ -Split!!


Fix the ephemeral – Using this experiment I am able to share the idea of capturing the moments in my video that could be fleeting, and non-fixed. By using a recording system such as the video I can capture or fix these living instants, and record to view any number of times as described. This can then become contemplative, and in this way, I too wish for the receiver to left considering what it was they might have experienced in my work without finding an answer.

My work is an experiment- Dictionary definition-

A test under controlled conditions that is made to demonstrate a known truth, examine the validity of a hypothesis or determine the efficacy of something previously untried.

The process of conducting such a test; experimentation.

# An innovative act or procedure: “Democracy is only an experiment in government” (William Ralph Inge).

# The result of experimentation: “We are not [nature’s] only experiment” (R. Buckminster Fuller).

Bricolage- My theoretical approach is that of a bricoleur, as I am in a convergence of discovering new meanings, selecting and deselecting, choosing different qualities of the idea. Therefore I find certain aspects I am always adding, or weaving in the new information to support the structure of my work. For example in making of films/video, this could be described as montage, this is the style that I am interested in sharing.

Something made or put together using whatever materials happen to be available: “Even the decor is a bricolage, a mix of this and that”

Femininity- Anything in Post-Modernism can be defined as feminist, so therefore my femininity will prevail, and support the origins of Goddess. When the woman was dominant. This is not a stand against the man just a fact of ‘being’ female.

Cyborgs- This could be more about a feminist theory, and the post –human concepts that will experiment with, in how we see or perceive things, and also see a kind of post humanism, where the structural aspects of current thought process will be provoked producing new meanings that we as human subjects have not yet made.

Creating Machines- Therefore the idea of the machine, will allow creativity to reach its most absolute boundary. In the M‘other’- discourse that relays an alien relationship between human and non-human. And in the birth of Ideas- of science fictional Visions- that may see characters from Blade Runner etc…merge or blur into a conceptual thought that transferred to vision. As a technological illusion that can be neither, good nor bad, but a place for the Perceptions- we have that are dispelling, and at the same time are creating a contemporary arts of the ‘now’. Possibly moving into at subatomic level, aesthetically speaking. Really this is about scaring, lulling and making mock of any theory. But challenging moods and emotions aroused in those zones not yet felt…

When I suggest a subatomic thought I am drawing on the notion of Schrodinger’s Cat- thought experiment made in 1935 and it was a ‘thought’ experiment (he was the founder of quantum mechanics by the way!). It was an experiment that illustrated a ‘limbo’ state in which matter exists hovering between expression as waves or particles. Hence a ‘Subatomic level’ well I am no so concerned with steps of the experiment rather that it helps me in understanding that measurements that coexist with observation, and collapsing both probabilities of macroscopic analogy. Between states of ‘on’ and ‘off’, if you will…

‘Other’ spaces- like a Heterotopia- where Instinctual – concepts or other modes are discovered.

Enlightenment Principal- This may well describes the cultural/visual perspective that I mean when mentioning Enlightenment principal…

‘ Classicism, Enlightenment, and the ‘Other’: thoughts on decoding eighteenth century visual culture’

Umbach, Maiken (2002) stated:

Cultural historians have been slow to respond to the pictorial turn. They often find images too ambiguous to use as sources in their own right. This problem is aggravated by two characteristics shared by early modern and post-modern visual culture: both transgress boundaries of genre (such as the text/image divide), and both tend to be notoriously fluid and plural in terms of their ‘message’. The nineteenth century Idealist notion of ‘art’, by contrast, celebrates unity of style and content, and tolerates multiple meanings only where they can be resolved in dialectical synthesis. This legacy continues to prevent us from understanding visual evidence which conforms to neither requirement. Drawing on readings of the contemporary landscape art of Ian Hamilton Finlay and Cy Twombly, this article proposes a new approach to visual culture of pre-Idealist periods, for which ambiguous allusive fields and transgressions of genre were constitutive. The eighteenth century’s use of classical culture is a case in point, here exemplified by a close reading of the multi-layered trope of Arcadia . The conclusions that emerge from this reading call into question negative assumptions about the Enlightenment’s dogmatic rationalism which have dominated historiography from Romanticism to postmodernism. The ‘image texts’ of the eighteenth century destabilized hegemonic rationality without promoting its opposite, instead integrating the ‘other’ into a self reflexive and self-critical Enlightenment ideology.

Ascending and Descending- with the ebb and flow of Transcendence- and with influences of theTraditional- and

Socio-political- in how society formed out of modernity in a dominant discourse based upon hierarchy and patriarchy. I may try to create awareness of an historical development of political parties, and the impact that feminism, socialism, and conservatism might refect on the production of contemporary art. And finally our environment. Therefore creating a Slippage- into which Post Structural- thought processes allow a Freedom- inside and outside language where meaning can never be fixed. When thinking about the Liminal- I am exploring the a platform that I may use with-in the video framework.

Victor Turner did a great deal of studying liminal states, as a critical tool for understanding parts of social drama.

[Van Gennep] saw society as a house with rooms and corridors in which passage from one to another is dangerous. Danger lies in transitional states; simply because transition is neither one state nor the next, it is undefinable. The person who must pass from one to another is himself in danger and emanates danger to others. The danger is controlled by ritual which precisely separates him from his old status, segregates him for a time and then publicly declares his entry to his new status.

Video Surveillance/Bentham’s Panopticon- I am interested in the way we as humans observe, our obsession with looking perhaps? And the constant use surveillance in our society. Using video surveillance, watch houses in prisons, two-way mirrors etc. This kind of glasshouse prison gives way to an idea I am interested in exploring by using the video camera as a tool. To capture a space in between when we are neither concerned for our ‘status’ of being watched, and slip into an altered presence, and absence of a scene. The moment of slippage… This what I am trying achieve…

We are in such a time period now with respect to new information technologies. This goes far beyond particular laws to what it means to be human and to how we think about society.

Socialist Anarchy- In this I am making a connection to Anarchism and Marxism. Not in the misperceptions society may acquire about ‘anarchy’. Not about chaos and disorder. Although that could be fun! Rather in the ‘socialism’ aspect, I’m more interested in the common nurture element of a collective co-operative that denies boundaries of race, class and sex. Both of these stress the capacity for human beings to order their affairs without the need for a political authority. In considering anarchists it seems that they have turned away from politics, concentrating on writing or on experiments in communal, or co-operative living. Could this not be applied to the minds, and thought processes of those who live in a liberal democracy? I am simply trying to form a link.

Non-linear-Open ended- In considering new models of truth these approaches as research methods I am able simply open to up emerging ideals and the blurring of genres. An exchange outside those meanings of that were silenced and quashed from the past as a freedom of expression evolved out of 1970’s, and late 80’s. Well, it seems only natural since I am product of that time… when I make suggestion about a post-post modern subject I am opening up the beliefs based from past concepts living inside current ones…

Post- Modernity- Can we really describe what modernity, or post-modernity is? I am still not so sure but I like this description. In thinking about change, at least, in new horizons?? Should I take a LOOK AT THE NOW ??

Jean-Francis Lyotard stated:

Is this the sense in which we are not modern? Incommensurable, heterogeneity… the absence of a supreme tribunal? Or, on the other hand, is the continuation of romanticism, the nostalgia that accompanies the retreat of… etc? Nihilism?

A well executed work of mourning of Being? And the hope that is born with it? Which is still the hope of redemption? With all of this still remaining inscribed within the thought of a redemptive future? Could it be that ‘we’ are no longer telling ourselves anything? Are ‘we’ not telling, whether bitterly or gladly, the grand narrative of the end of grand narratives? For thought to remain modern, doesn’t it suffice that I think in terms of the end of some history? Or, is post-modernity that pastime of an old man who scrounges in the garbage-heap of finality looking for leftovers, who brandishes unconsciousness, lapses, limits, confines, goulags, parataxis, non-senses, or paradoxes, and who turns this into the glory of his novelty, into his promise of change.




Bowring, Finn (2003) Science, Seeds and Cyborgs Biotechnology and the Appropriation of Life , London : Finn Bowring. 277

Bottom, Alain De (2000) The Consolations of Philosophy, London : Hamish Hamilton. 167

Deleuze, Gilles (1985) Cinema 2 the Time-Image, USA : University of Minnesota Press.

Hetherington, Kevin (1997) The Badlands of Modernity- Heterotopia and Social Ordering, New York : Routledge.

Heywood, Andrew (1992) Political Ideologies an Introduction , Hong Kong: Macmillan

Hovenden Fiona, Janes Linda, Kirkup Gill, Woodward Kath (2000) The Gendered Cyborg: A Reader,London : Routledge

McNay, Lois (1992) Foucault and Feminism: Power, Gender and the Self, UK : Polity Press

Silver, Lee M. (1998) Remaking Eden Cloning, Genetic Engineering and the Future of Humankind?USA : Pheonix Giant.

Smart, Barry (1993) Postmodernity , USA : Routledge

Umbach, Maiken (2002) Classicism, Enlightenment and the ‘Other’: thoughts on decoding eighteenth century visual culture. Art History 25 (3), 319-340.doi: 10.1111/1467-8365.00324

Magazine Article-

Hofmeister, Sabine (2002) Intermediate ‘Time-spaces’ The rediscovery of transition in spatial planning and environmental planning . Time and Society. Vol.11 No.1, 114.

Course Readers-

Griffith University, Gold Coast School Of Arts (2005) Research Methods and Processes- Course Reader, Gold Coast Queensland: School of Arts- Griffith University.

Wise, Patricia (2002) The Arts In Perspective 1- Course Resource , Gold Coast Queensland : School of Arts- Griffith University . 12


Timecode (2000) Columbia Pictures: Mike Figgis.

WEBSITES-  Published on Jan 27, 2014 Blade Runner (1982) Official Trailer – Ridley Scott, Harrison Ford Movie (22/9/2005) Michel Foucault (24/9/2005) The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. (25/9/2005) Van Gennep Timecode (2000) Columbia Pictures: Mike Figgis. (27/9/2005) Gary T. Marx

(Droit, Roger-Pol, p.167) ( Los Angeles Times).

Heywood, Andrew (1992) Political Ideologies an Introduction, Hong Kong: Macmillan

Smart, Barry (1993) Postmodernity, USA : Routledge

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