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Understanding the Telematic Apparatus

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Under the conditions of its geographic distribution, the “telematic performance” can be regarded as a remediation of traditional concert, theater or dance formats. Conversely, and as this paper argues, the telematic performance can also be understood as an artistic format of its own right, one which then can serve as a trope for social interaction under the conditions of critical posthumanism. To gain a wider perspective, this paper analyzes Alan Turing’s “Imitation Game” from his seminal article Computing Machinery and Intelligence, 1950, proposing it as an early conceptualization of a telematic performance. This against-the-grain reading of Turing’s text reveals certain attributes that are distinctive to this type of performance. Following a descriptive and analytic critique of the “Turing Test,” Vilém Flusser’s theoretical considerations of digitization and technical apparatuses comes into play. In the second and main part of the paper, these findings are applied to a series of artistic practices with telematic performances developed by a research team at Zurich University of the Arts. The section details the construction of telematic apparatuses and demonstrates the multilayered interaction between human and nonhuman agents.

Muller, Patrick, Benjamin Burger, Joel De Giovanni, and Matthias Ziegler. “Understanding the Telematic Apparatus.” Journal of Network Music and Arts 1, 1 (2019)

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