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Somnambulist Alarm Clock: If You Must Stare Into the Screen

David Cronenberg

From bronze to digital, Tyler Kline’s art spans the ages, melding ideas of time, space, metaphysics, and humanity into packages of cast metal that last forever, or into Vine videos that live for seconds in a Twitter feed. Tyler is fearless in his use of materials, generous in his treatment of others in the art community, and one of the smartest artists working in Philadelphia today. He’s a member of the Little Berlin collective and by day he manages the Sculpture shop and the bronze forge at University of the Arts and curates several art spaces at that university.

-Roberta Fallon, past curator

Regarding phenomenology and the sensate, one of the greatest functions of art is to open new ways of feeling, thus eliciting new modes of thought. The following is an abbreviated list of media that attempt to map the landscape of the heart, with a network I created to explore artistic and intellectual connections in Philadelphia and throughout history.

Videodrome, Shivers, The Brood, and eXistenZ, films by David Cronenberg. Using horror as a language to speak as a prophet, these films weave a caustic poetry narrating a tale of a visceral existence mediated by an artificial cognizance.

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, novel by Carson McCullers. Whispered gospel from the haunted, secret South.

Audition, a film by Takashi Miike. Tight steel tension lurking and staggering toward a transgressive resolution.

Endgame, a play by Samuel Beckett. One of the most hilarious situations ever wrestled into existence, pointing a fierce klieg light toward the more absurd aspects of the human condition.

Auch Zwerge Haben Klein Angefangen, a film by Werner Herzog. Holy fools and anarchist clowns define authority through pandemonium.

Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle, a book by Carl Jung. A noble attempt to plot one of the most elusive yet inescapable forces of the universe.

Delta of Venus, a novel by Anaïs Nin. Prose as lucid and phantasmagoric as it is subversive.

Rigadoon, a novel by Louis-Ferdinand Céline . . . problematic . . stylish . . . assaulting . . . compassionate . . . doomed . . . jovial . . . beastly . . . ravaging . . .

The Impossible, a book by George Bataille. Disorientation as stasis and clarity.

Welcome to the Desert of the Real, a book by Slavoj Žižek. Draws much needed connections in our post Sept 11th psychosocial labyrinth.

Kikujiro, a film by Takeshi Kitano. Bizarre take on the father-son road movie that is so much more.

Being and Time by Martin Heidegger. Extremely important work, dense; I suggest the uninitiated first watch Being in the World and allow Hubert Dreyfus act as a lens into the concept of Dasein.

The Blood of Others, a novel by Simone de Beauvoir. Meditation on what it means to be free.

Nausea by Jean Paul Sartre. This novel meant a lot to me as a young man when I read it during my breaks as a graveyard dishwasher in Athens, GA; it contains a great passage regarding the autodidactic.

F♯ A♯ ∞, album by Godspeed You! Black Emperor. “The car is on fire and there is no driver at the wheel.” This statement helped usher in the 21st Century.

2666 by Roberto Bolaño. A novel as an infernal biological mechanism, an animated corpse that bears witness.

Defixiones Will and Testament, a live performance album by Diamanda Galas. Art as psychic warfare against the forces of despair.

Hard to be a God, a film by Aleksei German. A spectral madhouse of what might have been, a horror, a vacuous portrait of a society spectacularly in disarray. “…it began with the destruction of the University.” Truer words were never burned into celluloid.

Negative Horizon, a book by Paul Virilio. Tackles issues of speed, scale, late capital, globalization, the military industrial complex, and the role of the urban metropole orchestrating this chaotic dance.

Kurt Gödel’s incompleteness theorems, the life of Paul Erdős, and As If Summoned from the Void: The Life of Alexandre Grothendieck. All elucidate a much deeper relationship with the universe that what we merely observe.

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