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Themesicon: navigation pathAesthetics of the Digitalicon: navigation pathAesthetics/Communication
Autopoiesis (Rinaldo, Ken), 2000

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basis of its physiological and functional constitution. As Maturana surmises: we create the world by perceiving it.

p>Accordingly, three basic conclusions can be formulated from the systemtheoretic perspective. First, it is not permissible to allocate the cognitive phenomena, including language and communication, to any connotative or denotative function of reality which is independent of the observer; second, that which is produced by cultures is the result of interactions between living systems, as well as between living systems and their specific environment (or «niche,» as Maturana calls it); and, third, neither cultures nor the results, such as art, of creative operations emerge as ‹independent› attributes or objective and autonomous realities, but are always dependent on the observer, i.e. on the cognitive system. Therefore they are attributes of the consensual domain in which living systems operate. Only over context- and observer-dependency is it even possible to explain to human perception and cognition the operationality of cognition. [9] If this finding is transferred to art, then one could join Werner Heisenberg in saying that what


one views is not the work itself, but the work while being exposed to a particular mode of observation.

Ken Rinaldo’s A-life installation «Autopoiesis» (2000) is an example of the application of organization parameters to interactive art. It assigns an important role to the environment and to the observers, since both intervene in the individual or collective behavior of the robots, as if the latter were biological beings. Rinaldo creates two organizational levels in the interactive installation: an internal process of organization generated by the communicative reciprocal relationship among the robots and independent of the environment; and a system of organization that is based on the intelligent sensors employed and heightens the data-processing capacity by registering the presence of foreign elements and immediately generating feedback. Thus, by means of the technological simulation of artificial life, his work experiments with ‹organic› autopoietic mechanisms, and underscores the interdependence of the machines, the function of the viewer, and the close relationship to the environment.

Maturana and Varela’s model of autopoeisis roused

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