Re: "take a look at this web site"

Scott deLahunta (
Sat, 19 Jul 1997 10:49:56 +0200

I just today received an email as follows:

FUTURE PHYSICAL register your interrest now

live and on-line
active from January 1998 - June 1999

.... this site asks for people to come in and 'register' interest so that
they can apply for funding for future projects. There is a strong contrast
between this 'site' and Stephan's Bryant Park project -- a contrast which
resonates with my reflections on the web today. As more time passes and the
phenomenon that is the web continues to develop, I find myself increasingly
concerned with a consolidation instead of a dispersal of my energies. While
I do sympathize with what the creators of the FUTURE PHYSICAL site are
seeking (support for a funding application), I find myself reluctant to
engage with something which offers no feedback -- which takes my
'sub-mission' without providing a reflection of myself which is symbolically
concrete. In comparison, I have to say that Stephan's site offers,
importantly, a variety of ways in which I can construct and recognize
myself. Invitation to submit artistic material and then 'witness' its
registration in a couple of different ways. The 'knowledge' that the
material will be available to and used by a couple of dozen interpretters
for the 'live' event. The 'appearance' (the single quote marks do not
signify a detraction) of Stephan's one-to-one participation -- he seems
available to anyone needing direct contact (you can also 'hear' his voice if
you have real-audio).

A number of us are and have been involved in web-based projects, Lisa's
courses and Cassandra Projects, Amanda's Motherboard, etc. We know how hard
everyone works to keep up with the demands on their energies which come, not
only from local powerbases, but also from the post-geographical never-ending
drain of the web. These were/ are sites of energy consolidation, nodal
points of activity which punctuate the time-line of the web's history. Now
Bryant Park has emerged to add its impact to this historical development,
and it does so with commitment and conviction.

I also like the idea of a 'webbed feasts' event. Simultaneous meals -- would
have to be brunch in L.A., lunch in NYC and dinner in Amsterdam. To have as
a goal such sensuousness of experience, eating and drinking, while engaged
in cyber-activity would seem to be the fulfillment of certain special needs
in these times which threaten bodily-disengagements. I wonder if the massive
increase in cooking programs, publications, projects has anything to do with
the birth and growth of cyberspace? If anyone is serious about persuing this
idea -- they should think about checking out Ars Electronica's theme for
this year (


Scott deLahunta and Susan Rethorst
Writing Research Associates, NL
Sarphatipark 26-3, 1072 PB Amsterdam, NL
tel: +31 (0)20 662 1736
fax: +31 (0)20 470 1558