INFLeXions No. 6 – Arakawa + Gins special issue of Inflexions
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The scope and impact of AG3 can be indicated, in a blunt way, by a few statistics. There were 4000 users (separate IP address) logged into the website over the 14 days of the online conference equating to 2000 and 3000 people if some logged in from home and work. The number of hits (accessing pages and movement from page to page was in the millions), but more interestingly the number of sessions for the conference, defined as a user logged in for at least an hour, was almost 500 per day and on the first weekend of the conference when between 800 and 1000 sessions were logged. 
The conference continued with a face-to-face meeting in New York from April 30 to May 2nd, 2010.
On the first day, a group of scholars and practitioners convened at Barnard College, Madeline Gins' alma mater. The occasion was presided over by Serge Gavronsky, with Martin Rosenberg and Jondi Keane as masters of ceremonies introducing the scholarly papers by Trish Glazebrook, Reuben and Joan Baron and Gordon Bearn followed by numerous performative pieces by George Quasha, Charles Bernstein, Ilse Pfiefer, Daria Fain and Melissa Smedley.
The next day, a symposium at the multimedia theater in the Solomon Guggenheim Museum, NY, continued the festivities with a distinguished dais that included Alexandra Munroe, Gregg Lambert, Don Byrd, Pia Ednie-Brown, Russell Hughes, Erin Manning and Brian Massumi, Mackenzie Wark, Mary Ann Caws, David Kolb, Martin E. Rosenberg, Jondi Keane and, of course, Madeline Gins.
On the final day, a group of 40 participants visited Bioscleave House on Long Island. These NY events coincided with two major exhibitions in Japan.
These events were planned to coincide with two events in Japan: an exhibition of Arakawa's early "coffin" works at the National Museum of Art in Osaka, (April to June 2010) and an exhibition of Arakawa and Gins work at the Kyoto Institute of Technology (May until June 2010).
How to proceed after a conference is done? Dine, reflect, expand; share findings. AG3 produced a hothouse for cross-pollination. Like the previous Arakawa and Gins conferences in Paris and Philadelphia, AG3 re-evaluates and focuses our understandings of and solutions to the intersection of scientific findings, social inquiry, and organizational structures. The present collection testifies to the scope and impact of a procedural approach that lay in the links explored through the perspectives and practices of the contributing authors. The papers selected for this special issue of Inflexions reflect the wide range of research that Arakawa and Gins' work draws upon and influences across the arts, sciences and humanities.
Throughout this collection, readers will find that ethical concerns raised by the authors point to ways in which otherness emerges and dissolves through the fluctuations in the organism-person-environment. All that emerges, whether foreseen or unanticipated, must be given room to operate. By exploring the extent of 'person' through the work of Arakawa and Gins, new dimensions to inter-subjectivity may allow our most basic efforts to think, feel, say and act in the world to reconfigure.
The papers collected here assist us in refocusing interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary approaches to the observation, study and transformation of embodied approaches for collective concerns. Arakawa and Gins' project, in this regard, is the most advanced and inclusive, addressing the human question in both practical and theoretical ways while resisting the tendency to separate out certain ideas or methods for special consideration. Each aspect of their practice tests our seriousness, challenges our commitment and implicates us in a history of acquiescence.
Fig. 1: Arakawa and Gins, photograph by Dimitris Yeros, 2008.
In what is often the very first moment of meeting Arakawa and Gins through their writings, exhibitions, installations, built environments, houses, villages or city plans they stake their position. In the awkward moment that follows an initial encounter, a cascade of questions follows; questions that would take a lifetime to ask and to answer; questions that in a world without time must be asked before you say hello.
Arakawa and Gins make their position known by building the procedures that become new environments as well as constructing approaches by which the environment may be occupied, individually and collectively. Once acquainted with their reversible destiny project, it is possible to observe how Arakawa and Gins continually modulate, restate and re-think their position, connecting the dots differently each time. This is what they mean by bioscleave: the constant joining and separating of segments of awareness (cleaving). Architectural procedures cleave segments of awareness while infusing tentativeness through the process in order to hold open as many opportunities for cleaving as possible. The two aspects of reversible destiny must operate together: the cleaving of awareness alongside the imperative to carry this out with tentativeness. In this way persons may participate in the world-forming capacity that Arakawa and Gins once called the blank  to indicate the unformed potential through which forms to emerge, and now call architectural body, to indicate the inseparability of the organism-person-environment.
The making of the world is a twofold process in constant flux. To engage with its potential no one segment, process or modality takes precedence over another. The task of a daily research approaching meaning and value procedurally would be to devise and revise "the types and combinations of bodily movements most conducive to an optimal tentative constructing towards a holding in place and which constructed discursive sequences best constrain them."  Observe, learn, study, reconfigure, transform then re-enter observation, learning, what counts as knowledge and continue to reconfigure to not to die. Decide for yourself how impossible tasks enhance perception and action. Don't judge too quickly, remain purposeful and have a supply of tentativeness. Parlay indirectness. Ask all your intelligence to speak. Don't be so damned sure of yourself. Build the question. Write what the question invites you to do. When confronted with the challenges that Arakawa and Gins pose, join the "dance of attention" (Manning). Ask: How serious are we about our commitment to closure?
A little more than two weeks after the closing events at Barnard College and the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Arakawa died on May 18, 2010. In retrospect, from around November 2009, Arakawa had become more reclusive. Always generous with their time and energy, the couple was not receiving visitors with the frequency with which they were accustomed and the openness for which they were renowned. They would often call scholars or practitioners out of the blue after having read an essay or book and, without much ceremony, launch into intense discussion. They received and cultivated friendships with people from all walks of life and would talk to anyone interested in moving the collective discussion forward.
Arakawa's generosity took the form of a more impersonal largess, often playing the role of trickster and provocateur, speaking indirectly and enigmatically or pointedly and conclusively. He was given to giving examples that were both extremely grounded and accessible while being offered in the form of a Zen koan. His personal strength, evident in the physicality of his movements as well as in the uncompromising agility of his intellectual maneuvers, perhaps led him to take up his battle inwardly. Perhaps, during the quick progression of his illness, he could hear the snipes of those who would only see his illness and death as the come-uppance of a man who had 'decided not to die' rather than recognize the intense liveliness of a person who had been constantly deciding how to live, re-inventing himself at every moment, even when dying.
This collection of essays is not a bouquet of flowers for Arakawa, it is a continuation of the vitality that Arakawa brought to all aspects of his life and his collaboration with Madeline Gins. While celebrating their work, the aim of this collection is to rigorously engage and continue the line of enquiry that his work with Madeline Gins has set in motion. This aim is best served by wrestling with the prompts, prods and puzzles initiated by Arakawa and Gins that sustain us most. The aim of this introduction is to provide a sense of the rich context from which the online conference arose in March 2010 as well as implications and the applications towards which Arakawa and Gins' procedural architecture point.
Madeline Gins lives in New York and continues the reversible destiny project.
Structure of the AG issue of Inflexions:
This special issue of Inflexions on Arakawa and Gins is not a linear, static construction of texts that presents itself to each reader in the same way. Readers are themselves an unruly bunch, who plunder and reassemble texts by jumping straight to the last page, dipping in here and there, beginning in the middle, never finishing Even before the multi-stable ambiguities of horizon-fusing hermeneutics, in which each reader is their own interpretive context, texts fragment and unify against the plan of authors and publishers and with the freedom of movement readers engage or let slip. We invite you to take full advantage of a procedural approach and construct the collection for yourself on new terms each time. This introduction does not accept that readers are free to rebuild the text it demands it. Like the collection of essays it introduces, this necessary contingency embraces archi-textual multiplexity by providing nothing more or less than an aggregation of places to land on, in, from and through so that each reader can hyper-tect their own dwelling with Arakawa and Gins.
In the NODE section readers will find both the selected contributors, whose essays have been expanded and developed for publication and the texts of the video keynote presentations from AG3 Online.
In the Contributors section of the NODE, the essayists include emerging scholars and established authors that have each been attracted to the project of Arakawa and Gins from their unique personal, academic or practical experiences. Several aspects link the essays. First, a concern for the way Arakawa and Gins inform an ethical practice that begins at the most rudimentary engagements and movements with others and the environment. Second, is the way in which the collective, always present in the individual, operates in a practice of procedural architecture and informs the urban, social and cultural production of meaning and value. Lastly, the papers point to two modalities of engagement with the work of Arakawa and Gins. On one hand several papers present an analytical approach drawing upon sources in the sciences namely biology, neuroscience, cognitive science, biophysics, consciousness studies, experimental psychology, ecological psychology, autopoiesis and dynamic systems theory to engage with Arakawa and Gins. On the other hand, several papers align with an approach that is more enactive, affective, practice-based and performative, which stem from enquiries within art theory, feminist discourse on subjectivity, vision and visuality, spatiality and aesthetic experience.  All of the authors find Arakawa and Gins to be provocateurs and guides to life on new terms. We encourage you to browse the abstracts to make other threads and networks of relations (Trish Glazebrook and Sarah Conrad; David Kolb; Jean-Jacques Lecercle; Russell Hughes; Hideo Kawamoto; Helene Frichot; Troy Rhoades; Blair Solovy; James Cunningham; Stephen Read; Stanley Shostak; Eugene Gendlin; Jondi Keane).
Within the Keynotes section of the NODE, texts from keynotes video presenters (at AG3 Online) have been compiled, which represent an extraordinary collection of scholars and practitioners from art, architecture, philosophy of language, philosophy of science, comparative literature, poetry and poetics, life sciences, medicine and education. Themes that emerge from the keynotes involve the importance of play and the role of enjoyment and elation that Arakawa and Gins' procedural architecture incites. These authors join an impressive list of distinguished authors to have discussed Arakawa and Gins' work.  Three keynote texts have not been included in this collection: Takashi Ikegami's interview with Mia Kukamara and Don Byrd and Makenzie Warks' improvised conversation (both found through http://ag3.griffith.edu.au/) and Shaun Gallagher's essay, which has previously been published: "Aesthetics and Kinaesthetics" can be found in Sehen und Handeln. Eds. Horst Bredekamp and John Michael Krois. Berlin: Oldenbourg Verlag, 2011: 99-113.
You will also find a TRIBUTES section that consists of reflective evaluations and personal accounts of Arakawa. The TANGENTS section offers works that use Arakawa and Gins as a starting point or a springboard to further thought. Two texts began life at the Guggenheim event in May 2010: Erin Manning and Brian Massumi's text mixes Arakawa and Gins, Deleuze, Whitehead and others in a series of voiced riffs while Ken Wark distills from Arakawa and Gins' procedural approach a numbered set of reworked propositions. There are also several evocative video works included in the TANGENTS section that have emerged from wrestling with the poetic proposition of Arakawa and Gins' work (George Quasha) and the spatial characteristics of Bioscleave House (Bob Bowen).
Arakawa and Gins play a crucial role in the alterative history of art and art-science. As thinkers who have tried to make connections across materialism, speculation and abstraction, their unique approach to making distinctions and emphasizing continuity is always aimed at producing new knowledge, finding new modalities of meaning and examining the way value is assigned. Their work demonstrates the seriousness required to bring everything to bear on the present moment. Deciding not to die tests us in each moment and allows us to witness the ongoing experiment of perceiving, thinking, feeling and talking endlessly about everything as an art of not dying.
Madeline Gins is continuing the work that she and Arakawa started 40 years ago. In the near future we may see The Mechanism of Meaning housed in a permanent collection and major exhibitions of Arakawa's work. Madeline is currently producing work for new architectural commissions and is activating Bioscleave House for diverse new communities. Organisms that person today, architectural bodies not if but when.
Arakawa and Madeline Gins
Special thanks to Erin Manning and Brian Massumi, the founders of Inflexions journal, Inflexions staff especially Leslie Plumb the interface and issue designer, Toni Pape and the rest of the editorial committee.
AG3 Online conference committee:
Co-organisers: Jondi Keane and Martin E. Rosenberg and committee members: Trish Glazebrook, Russell Hughes, Bobby George. Curators of the Creative Responses for AG3 Online: Bill Lavendar, Alan Prohm and Jason Nelson.
The Architectural Body Research Foundation:
Special thanks to Joke Post and staff, NY, NY and to the staff of Reversible Destiny Lofts Mitaka, Tokyo with special thanks to Momoyo Homma.
Special thanks to Matt Story for his editorial assistance.
Special thanks to Prof. Andy Bennett, director of the CCR at Griffith University and the Centre Manager, Sarah Gornall as well as the Information Services Technical team of Sarah Vardy, Heidi Perrett and Jeroen van den Muyzenberg.
At the Barnard event:
The organization and teamwork of Martin E. Rosenberg, Joke Post, Serge Gavronsky.
At the Guggenheim event:
Martin E. Rosenberg, Alexandra Monroe and the Guggenheim staff.
Philanthropists: Virginia Dwan, Francis Naumann, Amailia Dayan.
 For a comprehensive understanding of the conference structure, the keynotes presentations, the conference stream video presenters and the 50 contributors' papers, please see the AG3 conference site at the Centre for Cultural Research website of Griffith University, Australia. The site is now a permanent archive, intended as an interdisciplinary platform for ongoing research.
 Arakawa and Gins 1987.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: 59.
 We could add to this Jean-Michel Rabatι's description of the engagement of Arakawa and Gins' project with an array of discourses from "Deleuzian and Heideggeraian philosophy and linguistic analysis to art criticism, phenomenology, urban studies, poetry, design, sociology, Buddhist logic, embryology, evolution theory, ecology and, of course, architecture [all of which] attest to the immense vitality of a procedural thinking that traverses and coordinates all categories" (Arakawa and Gins 2003: 17-27, 6).
 Scholars who have written on Arakawa and Gins include Hans-Geog Gadamer, Jean-Francois Lyotard, Andrew Benjamin, Italo Calvino, Arthur Danto, George Lakoff, Mark Taylor, Donald Kuspit, Carter Ratcliff, Lawrence Alloway, Mary Ann Caws, Ed Keller, Charles Bernstein, Robert Creeley and Nicholas Piombino among many others.
 Kagan 2012.
 Long and Sedley 1987: 150.
 Klerkx 2005.
 Kurzweil and Grossman 2004.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: xiv.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: xviii.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: xx.
 Heidegger 1962: §§46-53.
 Plato 1989: 210D.
 Cf. Glazebrook 2005.
 Irigaray 1985.
 Whitbeck 1973-74.
 Arakawa and Gins 2003: 21.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: xviii.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: 1.
 Gins and Arakawa 2002: 55, 56.
 Arakawa and Gins 2003: 25.
Arakawa, Shusaku and Gins, Madeline. To Not To Die. Paris: Editions de la Diffιrence, 1987.
Arakawa, Shusaku and Gins, Madeline. "Vital Contextualiszing Information for Directions for Architectural Procedure Invention and Assembly." INTERFACES 1.21-22 [Double Issue: "Architecture Against Death/Architecture Contre la Mort"] (2003): 17-27.
Gins, Madeline and Arakawa, Shusaku. Architectural Body. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press: 2002.
Glazebrook, Trish. "Gynocentric Eco-logics." Ethics and the Environment 10.2 (2005): 75-99.
Heidegger, Martin. Being and Time. Trans. John Macquarrie and Edward Robinson. New York: Harper & Row 1962.
Irigaray, Luce. Speculum of the Other Woman. Trans. Gillian C. Gill. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1985.
Kagan, Shelley. "Don't Fear the Reaper." New Scientist 2887 (2012): 42-43.
Klerkx, Greg. "Welcome to the Immortals' Club." New Scientist 2494 (2005): 38-41.
Kurzweil, Ray, and Terry Grossman. Fantastic Voyage: Live Long Enough to Live Forever. New York: Rodale Books, 2004.
Long, A. A. and D. N. Sedley. The Hellenistic Philosophers. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987.
Plato. Symposium. Trans. Alexander Nehamas and Paul Woodruff. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett, 1989.
Whitbeck, Caroline. "Theories of Sex Difference." Philosophical Forum 5.1-2 (1973-74): 54-80.
|INFLeXions No. 6
Arakawa + Gins
Edited by Jondi Keane & Trish Glazebrook
Madeline Gins i-viii
Here Where it Lives...Biocleave
Jondi Keane and Trish Glazebrook 1-21
Mapping Reversible Destiny
Trish Glazebrook and Sarah Conrad 22-40
Escaping the Museum
David Kolb 41-71
Jean-Jacques Lecercle 72-79
The Reversible Eschatology of Arakawa and Gins
Russell Hughes 80-102
Chaos, Autopoiesis and/or Leonardo da Vinci/Arakawa
Hideo Kawamoto 103–111
Daddy, Why do Thing have Outlines?: Constructing the Architectural Body
Helene Frichot 112–124
Tentatively Constructing Images: The Dynamism of Piet Mondrian's Paintings
Troy Rhoades 125–153
Evidence: Architectural Body by Accident, Destiny Reversed by Design
Blair Solovy 154-168
Breathing the Walls
James Cunningham 169–188
Technology and the Body Public
Stephen Read 189-213
Bioscleave: Shaping our Biological Niches
Stanley Shostak 214-224
Arakawa and Gins: The Organism-Person-Environment Process
Eugene Gendlin 225-236
An Arakawa and Gins Experimental Teaching Space – A Feasibility Study
Jondi Keane 237–252
KEYNOTES AND CONFERENCE STREAMS:
The Mechanism of Meaning: A Pedagogical Skecthbook
Gordon Bearn 253–269
Wayfinding through Landing Sites and Architectural Bodies: Exploring the Roles of Trajectoriness, Affectivatoriness, and Imaging Along
Reuben Baron 270-285
Trajectory of ARAKAWA Shusaku: from Kan-Oké (Coffin) to the Reversible Destiny Lofts
Fumi Tsukahara 286-297
Tom Conley 298–316
Made/line Gins or Arakawa in
Marie Dominique Garnier 317–339
The Dance of Attention
Erin Manning 340–367
What Counts as Language in a Closely Argued Built-Discourse?
Gregg Lambert 368-380
Constructing Poiesis: Storyboards for an immersive diagramming
Alan Prohm 381–415
Open Wide, Come Inside: Laughter, Composure and Architectural Play
What Arakawa Did
Don Byrd 428–441
Don Ihde 442-445
For Arakawa, Nin More Lives
Jean-Michel Rabaté 446–448
Approximately Arakawa and Gins
Ken Wark 448-449
A Perspective of the Universe
Erin Manning and Brian Massumi
Axial Lecture on Self-Organisation