Abstract

This article argues that Blur Building, Diller & Scofidio's architectural project for the Swiss Expo 2002, demonstrated performatively and interactively how contemporary worldmaking involves cultural and technological invention and construction both, implying our cultural co-evolution with ubiquitous computing and media such that "worlding" must today be approached and approximated as a question of realities that mix virtuality and actuality. This article not only touches upon the actual inventions produced in this project--with its atmospheric architecture of tensegrity structures, its vast artifactual mist-cloud, its bio-genetic pumping system, its smart weather system, and its complex systems for ubicomp surveillance and wearable computing--but also goes on to problematize the implications of mixed realities for existing notions of practical contextuality or the "life world." Specifically, it is argued that mixed worlding in an epoch of calm ubiquitous computing necessarily confronts us with a lived experience (Erlebnis) of embodiment whose irreducible vagueness stems from a transduction of the imperceptible and the unimaginable, i.e., from a being-among in originary tactility as that which affects and animates us and remains structurally earlier than or ahead of any commonsensical hermeneutic horizon of conscious, linguistic, or discursive meaning.

Additional Information

ISSN
1053-1920
Launched on MUSE
2009-12-08
Open Access
No
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