CYBORGS AND OTHER NEW MACHINES
Exhibition at WHITE COLUMNS' WHITE ROOM
New York, September 22 to October 05, 1984
Actual and artificial intelligence animates the nine devices in Alexander Hahn's CYBORGS AND OTHER NEW MACHINES, opening tomorrow night, September 22, from 6 - 8, at White Columns, 325 Spring Street, and remaining on view through October 5th.
Each object is styrofoam, stocked with a battery of auditory and visual effects, issuing mock data, grim instruction, or monitoring bogus functions. Each machine has mimicked and mastered a complex bellwether vocabulary, but remains hopelessly autistic, daydreaming repetitively, narcissistically. The pieces aren't actually cyborgs, replicating and substituting for expired human functions, but precisely and often hilariously attempt to explain the nature of the human brain. Stop, look, and listen. At first they're funny, but then they start to get scary. The trouble starts when you try to explain more than people are willing to hear. The vocal tracks on certain pieces turn information into ambiance. Slogans or catchwords relating to an individual's experience occasionally pass through the din. "The Earth is a source of noise." asserts the artist...
... SIMULATING DEVICE FOR MISSILE DEFENCE incorporates two pulse functions in a steel blue styrofoam armature, one being random, referring to actual thought, and one standard five pulse rate sequence resembling routine task fulfillment. The routine pulse circuit is constant, dominating, interfering with, or halting the random game sequence...
excerpt from RADIO TRANSCRIPT WBAI 99.5 FM FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 1984 by Steve Whitesell