Thursday, 2003 May 22
Deconism Gallery/Museum/Arts Complex,
330 Dundas Street West, Toronto, Ontario
Entrance directly across the street from the main entrance to Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) 7pm Panel discussion is $10 admission at the door.
Attendees may optionally choose to bring a social insurance card with 3 pieces of magnetic stripe picture identification for Expediated Safe and Free Admission, together with VIP treatment as Registered non-terrorists, if their SIN is not ODD. Those who can prove that the last digit of their SIN is not {1,3,5, or 7} will get free admission to the evening's events, as well as be allowed to attend a special exhibit reserved only for those who can prove that they are not carriers of Obedience Deficit Disorder (ODD).

All attendees must undergo scan by a thermal SARS camera computer vision system prior to entry.

8:30pm reception is free.

Cyborg DECONtact

Opening Keynote, Panel Discussion

Derrick de Kerckhove, Arthur Kroker, Steve Mann, and Simon Penny

It was once said that we've already become cyborgs, whether through clothing, jewellery, and personal effects, or through the convergence of cellphones, digital cameras, and computers (or pocket organizers) into a single device. The cyborg ("glog"), with free-running personal stream-of-deconsciousness videographic weblog is now mainstream, whether by Rogers CamPhone, or EyeTap eyeglasses. But the cyborg age has come and gone.

McLuhan argued that that which is obsolete becomes art(ifact), so when the cyborg (and with it, postmodernism -- 1926-2001) becomes art(ifact) --- i.e. the cyborg becomes obsolete --- we have entered the post-cyborg (and postpostmodern/postpoststructuralist) age.

In the postcorporeal age, we enter the era of art-of-the-mind (the mind is both art and artifact, and therefore obsolete), and thus we might say that saying that "the body is obsolete" is obsolete.

This panel will try to construct a roadmap for what's next beyond the postcyborg (postposthuman) age, and thus define a neutral ground for subtle technologies, with a special emphasis on the Legal, Ethical, and Policy issues associated with wearable computers, virtual environments, and computer mediated reality.


Derrick de Kerckhove is the Director of the McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology at the University of Toronto, Canada. Among his publications, The Alphabet and the Brain (1988), Brainframes, Technology, Mind and Business (1991), Les transinteractifs (1990), some such as The Skin of Culture (1995) have appeared on best-seller lists and translated in a dozen languages, e.g. Connected Intelligence (1997), and The Architecture of Intelligence (2001). His next book, McLuhan for Managers (Pearson Canada, October 2003) is co-authored with Mark Federman.

Arthur and Marilouise Kroker are two of the world's leading media intellectuals. The CBC has placed them among the world's most influential futurists, and the British magazine ID has editorialized: 'Their work says more about the New Flesh of the data sphere than all of David Cronenberg's films combined.'

The Krokers have co-authored many books. In collaboration with multimedia musicians, they have produced three music CDs with stories from their books. The Krokers have made a unique contribution to thinking about media by using the internet, compact discs, videos and fiction to supplement their ground breaking intellectual work.

Steve Mann is currently a faculty member at University of Toronto. He has written over a hundred research publications and is frequently the keynote speaker at scholarly and industry conferences, lecture series and colloquia. His work has been exhibited in numerous museums around the world, including MoMA, Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam), Science Museum (U.K.), Triennale di Milano, Oklahoma City Art Museum, Austin Museum of Art, and San Francisco Art Institute. He received his PhD degree from M.I.T. in 1997 for work including the introduction of Humanistic Intelligence. He is also inventor of the Chirplet Transform, a new mathematical framework for signal processing, and of Comparametric Equations, a new mathematical framework for computer mediated reality, and is author of Intelligent Image Processing (Wiley, 2001), and CYBORG (Randomhouse Doubleday 2001), which, together with his documentary ShootingBack, inspired the 35mm feature length motion picture film Cyberman.

Simon Penny is an Australian artist, theorist and teacher in the field of Interactive Media Art. His art practice consists of interactive and robotic installations, which have been exhibited in the US, Australia and Europe. His current project "Traces" is a telematic interactive environment using networked CAVEs with machine vision sensing in each CAVE. This project is a development on directions pursued the machine vision driven interactive digital video installation "Fugitive", first shown at ZKM Multimediale5, Oct97 and again at EMAF98 (European Media Art Festival, Osnabruck). Other recent projects include the emergent complexity sound installation Sympathetic Sentience (I, II and III, with Jameison Schulte) and the autonomous robotic artwork Petit Mal.

Other upcoming events at Deconism Gallery/Museum/Arts Complex: