Error and the World

In Barker’s “Aesthetics of the Error”, there is discussion over what constitutes and makes up an error. When discussing error it is imperative that we discuss change. Manual DeLanda describes the degree of freedom or the ways in which an object may change and the limits in which a system unfolds. This degree of freedom has the potential to create error because in this degree of freedom there is also the unknown. Barker describes the art of error as a type of art that is articulated by unforeseen processes.

This unforeseen process is much better described by Deluze’s philosophy of the virtual. Deluze describes the virtual as a force that drives a becoming. It is a conditioning that allows the production of something new or novel. In order to change into something new the machine must enter into the field of the potential, the potential that is inscribed in the virtual.

If, in order for an error to happen and the aesthetics of the error to come about, change must occur, then are we living in a world of error? Technological changes in today’s day and age are occurring by the second, with new technology and new digital entities that are better than the last. Not only are there technological but cultural changes too, for as the years go on new cultural norms and ways of life evolve. The world happens and evolves because of this change. If error happens because of change then is the world just one big error?

While many people might take the notion of the world as being one big error from a negative standpoint, seeing the world in this way actually generates a new perspective and appreciation for life. Last week readings and class discussion described error as being closely related to that of culture jamming and remixing, a tactic used to expose the corruption and control of the world by conglomerates. If we think of error as something of resistance or rebellion, then error has the potential to make a statement and voice and opinion to the public and provoke and promote change. If we think of the world as one big error, then maybe it is the changes that come with the world that expose it’s wrong doings, provoking movements and change for the better. The world enters into this field of potential, where people have the ability to change the events and experiences. DeLuze’s virtuality describes the virtual as being the set of ideal events embedded in the condition of the problem. It is the error of the world that allows people to see this virtual and it is the movements and the people themselves who have the potential to change this error.

While error is mostly constituted as a bad thing, we are slowly approaching and understanding the benefits of error. We can see the potential it has to create change and expose the wrong doings of the world. It generates a new perspective and, in doing so, a new way of life.


2 thoughts on “Error and the World

  1. Love your point about glitching being used as a tool. A tool to expose and make change in our modern world. Error and the manipulation and exposing of these errors, as you explain, has potentials. It can provoke movements just as any art installation, article, speech can. I think recognizing the potential of this art form can help illuminate broader implications of art as a tool in modern social and political change and movements.


  2. Your last point really hit home for me. I think that you are spot on in saying that, “We are slowly approaching and understanding the benefits of error.” I feel as though society has started to give up on the idea that we should all be perfect mannequins of human beings. From the countless numbers of sport stars’ quotes about imperfection (such as Wayne Gretzky’s: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”) to Hannah Montana’s (hit?) “Nobody’s Perfect,” our cultural perception of error seems to be changing to view it in a positive light. Perhaps glitch art is just the latest piece in that perceptual puzzle.


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