Monday, May 4, 2009

uncontrollable faces

In a posthuman world little patterns will probably be recognizable that we used to call human, even the face will profoundly change and we might collectively need to learn to deal with getting little social reinforcement anymore through facial expressions, but learn to intuitively see what is good and what is not, probably based on a dream or vision we collectively come to share.

As we are now more and more rapidly exploring the technological liquification of the body, including the brain, it becomes clear that a vast new area lies open in front of us once we realize that we are not bound to the social patterns we are conditioned to call 'human'. In fact, I would even say that we are mostly clueless about what to do. This cluelessness can be incredibly amusing when it is consciously put as free artistic expression, such as in the experiment of Daito Manabe.

Manabe has wired the facial muscles up to a computer that generates music and produces electrical signals in line with this music that are transferred to the human face through electrodes, subsequently making the face contract, twitch and tremble. In the movie above, pay attention to the guy on the top right as he sometimes tries to laugh but these socially ingrained patterns are then quickly overruled by the machine. It is clear that we are losing control, and we have to accept this in order to become transcendentally more than we have ever been.

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