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Re: <eyebeam><blast> Vertical Invasion

At 11:04 AM -0400 2/17/98, Alan Myouka Sondheim wrote:
"Hi Robbin - I'm not sure what you mean by 'true hackers' but I suspect
that the phrase is already troublesome."

I hesitated to use the term but decided I like the abiguity of the term
"hacker" because it can mean both an activity that is very personal but
can also become very public. Its very troublesomeness makes it useful
and, well, troublesome. My use of it was more in reference to Picasso
metaphorically 'writing code' in Les Demoiselles. Some say he was
"hacking the code" of his rival, Matisse, others that he was expressing
his rage at contractig VD. Whatever his reasons the result was an
agressive vertical invasion that he either could not or didn't want to
repeat. Instead he developed cubism with Braque (a sort of browser
application for modernism).

The analogies are strained, I know. While I don't approve of doing
damage to networks for the fun of it I can see the value in the impulse
to do damage to the system out of some personal need, intentionally or
not. The internet, being "pre-smashed", can accomodate this kind of
action in the same way a forest needs the forest fire in order to stay

For me this has to do with the recent discussions about localization and
the concept of a national art form as well as the possible "posthuman"
relationship between humans and technology. But I'm also seeing the
impulse to reconstruct or do "cultural hacking" in the work of artists
like Robert Gober and groups like rtmark that is different from the
Duchampian strategies or deconstruction of the past.

Robbin Murphy

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