A User’s Guide to Hyperstition

Marc Couroux : A User’s Guide to Hyperstition (Phonoccultural Studies)
Co-presented with London Ontario Media Arts Association
Sunday, March 22 2-4 PM @ VibraFusionLab – 355 Clarence Street

Hyperstition, a term coined by the Ccru (Cybernetic Culture Research Unit) is a useful tactical intervention within a cybernetic, capitalist system that suppresses contingency and futurity in the name of pursuing more efficiently predatory maneuvers. According to philosophical heresiarch Nick Land, “hyperstitions by their very existence as ideas function causally to bring about their own reality…transmuting fictions into truths.” This informal user’s guide to an occult concept seeks to constellate an array of techno-magical operations, behaving both as analytical probes tasked with identifying circuits of algorithmic entrapment (as employed in neuromarketing) as well as parasitic agents hijacking blind spots in contemporary technologies in order to restructure perceptual dispositions and catalyze emancipatory action. Riffing off ideas developed in the Preemptive Glossary for a Techno Sonic Control Society, which drew linkages between audio technologies, the military-entertainment-complex and neurological entrainment, the talk will speculate (audio-visually) on potential exploits made possible by refiguring auditory pathologies; activist apps for the 21st century phononaut. Psychedelic adjacencies, primers, earworms, templexing, vodun egregors, möbius loops and cybernetic subjectivities will abound in an attempt to conjure escape vectors in a world of ubiquitous sound.

Marc Couroux is an inframedial artist, pianistic heresiarch, schizophonic magician, teacher (York University, Visual Arts) and author of speculative theory-fictions. His xenopraxis burroughs into uncharted perceptual aporias, transliminal zones in which objects become processes, surfaces yield to sediment, and extended duration pressures conventions beyond intended function. His work has been exhibited and performed internationally (Amsterdam, Berlin, Chicago, Glasgow, London) and published by Manchester University Press. With Asounder, a sonic tactic collective, he coordinated the (un)sound occupation workshop (collapsing sound and politics) in Toronto in 2013. He is a founding member of The Occulture (with eldritch Priest and David Cecchetto), a Toronto collective investigating the esoteric imbrications of sound, affect and hyperstition through (among other constellating ventures) Tuning Speculation: Experimental Aesthetics and the Sonic Imaginary, an ongoing workshop with yearly iterations, and the Sounding the Counterfactual stream at the 2014 London Conference in Critical Thought (a blog at theocculture.net documents their evolving thought-forms). Recent talks occurred at the Signal Path workshop (New York, Center for Transformative Media, Parsons), Kingston University (London), Goldsmiths, University of London and the Aesthetics After Finitude conference in Sydney, Australia. His hyperstitional doppelgänger was famously conjured in Priest’s Boring Formless Nonsense (Bloomsbury, 2013). He tweets as@xenopraxis.

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