"It's a Trap... A Soul Trap": An Artist's Reaction to Transhumanism

Thu Jun 06 2024 at 07:00 pm to 08:30 pm UTC-07:00

Philosophical Research Society | Los Angeles

The Philosophical Research Society
Publisher/HostThe Philosophical Research Society
"It's a Trap... A Soul Trap": An Artist's Reaction to Transhumanism
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Benjamin Lowder will draw on various works to reveal the "technological trap" that is being built to contain the incorpororeal part of us.
About this Event


"It's a Trap... A Soul Trap": An Artist's Reaction to Transhumanism

by Benjamin Lowder in the PRS Library!


The spiritual concept of the human body as a container for spirit is being made analogous with the notion that A.I. powered technology can also be a container for spirit. There is an emerging world view among some of our brightest minds that silica-based intelligence will be the meeting point for human and nonhuman intelligence to unite in a shared evolutionary destiny. Like the mythic Golem, who became animate by being fed language, our current Large Language computing models have convinced their creators that they too are alive.


In this talk, Benjamin Lowder will draw on language, the writings of Phillip K. Dick and Ray Kurzweil, technology, semiotics, Gnosticism, the work of Carl Jung, and an artist's experiences to reveal the "technological trap" that is being built to contain the incorporeal part of us.


ARTIST BIO

Benjamin Lowder is an artist based in rural Illinois and works as Director of the geodesic dome that Buckminster Fuller built on the Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville campus. Lowder also serves as a Board Member for Buckminster Fuller’s historic dome home in Carbondale, Illinois. Lowder is an alumnus of SIU, which is the University where Fuller was employed as professor from 1959 to 1975.


“Myth, Math & Magic” is Lowder’s ongoing series of artwork. It is comprised of two- and three-dimensional assemblages created from reclaimed lumber and vintage signage.


“It’s like looking at an old country store through a kaleidoscope. And yet, references to religious icons and celestial phenomena suggest a sort of spiritual geometry, taking Lowder’s compositions beyond remixed Americana. They’re more reminiscent of the diagrams in illuminated medieval manuscripts.”

- Ariela Gittlen • Artsy Magazine


The advertising tropes of the vintage signs are deconstructed and reassembled into geometric patterns that break the magic spell cast by the advertising’s messages. These patterns are drawn from the geodesic geometry of Buckminster Fuller as well as the sacred geometry of phi ratios. The resulting works are magical wayfinding totems made to guide our collective journey. This work uses the shared familiarity of our cultural artifacts and makes them strange by transforming them into objects that recall a mystic lineage.


Benjamin explains that “in working with this medium of material artifacts, I see them as place holders for the culture at large, and through their remaking, they undergo an alchemical metamorphosis. This material is transmuted into new objects that signify the dreams of our ancestors and place them as signposts at the crossroads of the present moment.”


“These emotional and tactile works combine a direct expression of organic mathematics with the visual magic of the artist and humanity's penchant for telling its own mythology into graphically bold tableaux of abstract rural poetry.”

- Shana Nys Dambrot • Art Critic / LA Weekly Arts Editor


Please email [email protected] or phone 323-663-2167 with any questions.


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ACCESSIBILITY

PRS wants all guests to be able to enjoy our events safely and comfortably. If you require any accessibility accommodation, please reach out to [email protected] before showtime and we will be happy to assist you.


REFUND POLICIES

All sales are final. There are no refunds or exchanges for PRS events, except in the event of a medical emergency, including but not limited to a positive COVID-19 test.

In the event that PRS is forced to cancel an event entirely, tickets will be refunded or vouchers offered for a rescheduled event.


PARKING

Limited parking is available onsite at PRS in both the front lot (entry from Los Feliz Blvd. when heading east) and back lot (entry from first alley way, off Griffith Park Blvd. from intersection with Los Feliz Blvd.), as well as street parking on Griffith Park Blvd. and on Los Feliz Blvd. (after 7pm). We encourage attendees to consider carpooling, walking or biking to events if possible, and please be considerate of our Los Feliz neighbors when parking.


PRS EVENT POLICIES


  • We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.
  • Events are subject to change without notice, including guest speakers and/or performers.
  • We encourage you to arrive at least 30 min. before the scheduled event start time to find parking, enjoy the Bookstore and take your seats.
  • Please turn off all mobile devices before the show. Talking and texting are not allowed during the events.
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  • There is no smoking permitted on PRS grounds.
  • We strongly encourage guests to wear masks to PRS events to prevent the spread of infectious diseases.
  • PRS allows Service Animals into the facility under ADA and state guidelines. For further details please visit www.ADA.gov. No animals permitted whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support, under ADA guidelines and CA Health Code.
  • Please do not bring outside food or drink into PRS events.
  • Weapons are strictly prohibited at PRS events.

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Event Venue & Nearby Stays

Philosophical Research Society, 3910 Los Feliz Boulevard, Los Angeles, United States

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