The Sense of Neoism?! An Infinite Manifesto

3 October 2018, 19:00 - 22:00

7240 Clark, 2nd Floor, Montreal

  • WED TO FRI [ 4PM - 7PM ]: 4 - 26 October 2018
  • Opening hours: [ WED TO FRI ] 16:00-19:00 -- [ SAT & SUN ] 13:00-17:00
  • Sofian Audry
  • Monty Cantsin?

“The Sense of Neoism?! An Infinite Manifesto” is an attempt to transfer the spirit of Neoism?! into a machine that can indefinitely generate blurbs, reflexions, motos, and nonsense.

Underlying the system is an artificial neural network machine learning algorithm with hundreds of thousands of synapses that was fed thousands of pages of neoist propaganda, including The Book of Neoism?!, The Poetical Plunderground of Neoism?!, and Reclaiming the Bodymachine, allowing it to build its own understandings of Neoism?!

- Sofian Audry was inspired by the pioneer canadian artist : Monty Cantsin? - 

A collaboration between Sofian Audry and Monty Cantsin? aka Istvan Kantor Amen, the work re-embodies the collective brain of Monty Cantsin? into a technological substrate with a life of its own. The machine resembles an audio gear box with dozens of jack plugs that reproduce the inner workings of the artificial neural network. At the top of the machine, an LED panel is used by the system to endlessly regurgitates its own new Neoism?! verses. Anyone can meddle directly with the artificial neural synapses by unplugging, replugging, and criss-crossing jack cables directly on the machine, thus deconstructing, reconstructing, and even destroying the generative capabilities of the system in real-time.

Neoism emerged in Montreal in 1979 as part of the local new wave/punk rebellion and almost overnight erupted into an international conspiracy. The idea was conceived by Istvan Kantor, a Hungarian refugee, freshly arrived to Montreal from Budapest via Paris. Kantor was joined by a bunch of young subversives and together they kicked out a series of street events and apartment festivals. Neoism spread like fire, and, throughout the 80s and 90s, from a minor local art movement it progressed into one of the largest anti-authoritarian communication networks around the world. 

Credits

  • Hardware Design: Grégory Perrin
  • Research Assistance: Eliza Bennett
  • Technical Assistance: Matthew Loewen

BIO / Sofian Audry creates computational artistic works through different forms such as robotics, electronics interventions, interactive installations, and internet art. He holds a bachelor's degree in Computer Sciences and Mathematics (2001), a M. Sc. in Computer Science from the University of Montreal (machine learning and language modeling, 2003), an M.A. in Communications from UQAM (interactive media, 2010), and a Ph. D. in Humanities from Concordia University (2016). Sofian is an Assistant Professor of New Media in the School of Computing and Information Science at the University of Maine. Prior to this, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He is actively involved in his community as part the of artist-run center Perte de Signal which he led as president of the board in 2009-2017, and as lead developer of open source video mapping software MapMap. His work has been presented in Canada, Europe, Asia and Africa throughout many festivals and exhibitions.

Istvan Kantor became interested in rebellion and radical artistic experiments at a young age, staging underground happenings, performances, and exhibitions under an Eastern Block dictatorship. Multidisciplinary artist, his practice includes media art, performance, installation, sound art, robotics, writing, and music. His video works have been recognized throughout the world, and have been presented at numerous festivals, including Documenta 8 (1987), the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen (1992), Transmedial, Berlin (2001), and Osnabruck European Media Arts Festival (2009). In 1998, Kantor received the Telefilm Canada award for best Canadian video; in 2004, he won the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts—the highest accolade attributed in Canada to an artist in recognition of their contribution to the visual and media arts (biography written by Etienne Desrosiers). 

3 October 2018, 19:00 - 22:00

7240 Clark, 2nd Floor, Montreal

  • WED TO FRI [ 4PM - 7PM ]: 4 - 26 October 2018
  • Opening hours: [ WED TO FRI ] 16:00-19:00 -- [ SAT & SUN ] 13:00-17:00