Hybrid live performance/online
“Improvising Consciousness” is a creative work of speculative evolution which imagines an affirmative bio-political future. Its alternative world view exists at live events and at IMPCON.ORG. A major component is a performance lecture that purports to be a scholarly account of human cognition from 2.5M BCE to 3,000 CE. Performed by Josephine Anstey, the IMPCON lecture is given by Jennifer Årnstay, Professor of Material and Analogical Eco-Cognition, visiting from an “unspecified time and place.” Årnstay rewrites standard evolutionary accounts of human consciousness: fore-fronting embodied, situated & visually-based cognitive processes; arguing that environmental catastrophes have served and will serve as catalysts for radically different mind/body/society configurations. She introduces the audience to her website and urges them to experience her phenomenological and sensory cognitive exercises which include a sono-tactile experience designed to give the player a taste of a pre-historic life, and play sessions with an alien intelligence.
Josephine Anstey’s career has been concept and project driven, engaging with a wide variety of media practices and using technology as necessary. Experiments with narrative & dramatic forms and questions of identity & consciousness have been constant themes. Her projects include, performance lecture, intermedia performance, interactive computer-mediated experiences, virtual reality, experimental video and prose fiction. Her projects have shown widely in the US, in Europe, South America and Asia, and she has work in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Ars Electronica Center, Austria.