Live AV

About the Intimacy of Machines

+ Xabier Erkizia

Two artists and researchers, Martin Etxauri Sainz de Murieta aka Txo! (audiovisual and new media) and Xabier Erkizia (sound art and listening culture), will meet at the Mirador of the Museum to create a live work. The field they have chosen for their intervention is the secret life of machines. The simile between machines and human bodies may be inevitable in order to understand the functioning and imagine the autonomy of the former. The artists point out: "we have even come to accept that these mechanical bodies also sweat, even if it is electromagnetically". They will seek to "make that inner life of the machines audible and visible, and turn the intimacy of their whispers and cries into light and shadows.

If when Roland Barthes talks about the discreet happiness of machines he inevitably bases himself on our way of listening to them and not so much on their own sound logic, it should not be unreasonable for us to think of a possible intimacy that is proper and exclusive to machines. Although giving an apparatus an entity may even be absurd (even if in our domestic life we reach similar or greater levels of confidence), since the invention of the first machines and in record times of coexistence, we have accepted, even provoked, certain parallels in relation to their and our organisms.

We understand that each one of them, even if they are inanimate, has organs, viscera, articulations that are activated and deactivated depending on the function they are going to develop. We understand the codes of their constant pulses almost better than the irregular beats of our own bodies. We have even come to accept that these mechanical bodies also sweat, even if it is electromagnetically. However, what we could call the sweat of the machines manifests itself in a spectrum that we, faithful observers of them, cannot even perceive. This work aims precisely to make that internal life of the machines audible and visible, and to convert the intimacy of their whispers and laments into light and shadows.

Txo!? and Xabier Erkizia met 25 years ago. Since then they have coincided on several occasions, they have listened to each other, seen each other, greeted each other, talked to each other, but they have never collaborated together.