"Neocybernetics and New Materialisms in Contemporary Kinetic Sculptural Practice"

Published in the Studio Research Journal, Issue 2, June/July 2014. Full text available here.

This paper focuses on connections between neocybernetic discourse and new materialism in the arts using work developed in my PhD project “The Introverted Kinetic Sculpture”. I propose that drawing these discourses together informs and enforces particular contemporary approaches to kinetic sculptural practice that involve an active engagement between artist, material, and emergent systems as each work develops in the studio and exhibition space. Using two works from my PhD project,Underwing and Web, as case studies, I argue that this engagement functions within and contributes to a new materialist approach to sculptural practice. The language and descriptions provided by particular strands of neocybernetic discourse (exampled in this paper by Niklas Luhmann’s “The Medium of Art”, 1987) allow one to understand and articulate the complex interactions enacted as each work develops through these contemporary approaches to sculptural practice. The approaches used in the two introverted kinetic sculptures reveal these works as sites in which to explore posthumanist considerations of agency, medium, and systems (all of which will be defined) in the kinetic work of art.

Full text available here.