language, flows, synergy

On August 12 sportsBabel visited the HomeShop series one: GAMES 2008 critical art space for an interview with project creator and host Elaine Ho. An artist and designer living in Beijing and working throughout the network, Elaine is theoretically interested in public and private space as it intersects with issues of bodies and human subjects, identities, communities, politics and a changing China. These interests continually inform her aesthetic practices in art and design, which in turn flow back and provide her new opportunities for critical engagement at the level of the lived everyday.

Courtesy of iwishicoulddescribeittoyoubetter

Given our varied cultural histories and fragmented identities, our mutual theoretical interests, and our different backgrounds in sport and aesthetics, a very nice synergy developed between the two of us during the interview that allowed me to articulate and clarify in language many ideas which have been gestating for some time at the level of affect and thought and which will prove fruitful as they flow back into my own critical engagements. Our conversation was challenging yet rewarding and only scratched the surface of possibility for any future encounter.

The interview in its entirety — 13?: sports, panhapticism, geopolitics — may be found at Elaine's HomeShop project web site.

track listing

introduction, sport and media | 7'49

sport and media, aesthetics, politics, militarization of sport, temporality and sport, human body, affect, coming to china, the most significant sporting event in human history, trying a blog

blogging | 16'30

on blogging, mediatized environment, "how fucking arrogant was that", teaching a class on olympics history, deleuze & guattari, uneven writing, noise to signal, experience to output

singularity | 10'02

the last olympics, chad scoville, refuting a media singularity, citius altius fortius, pure body, "concomitant rise of a new china", opening ceremonies

semiotic | 9'17

9/11, virilio's "information bomb", framing the event, weapons, semiotic warfare

panoptic and panhaptic | 21'13

panoptic surveillance, panhaptic computer networks, striated and smooth spaces, models of human behaviour, control society, "one world, one dream", spectacle of a new beijing, foucault's panopticon, open flows, "the population is just too big", broken protocol, spatial scalability, disciplinary space challenged by the speed of a flow, deleuze & guattari, navigation of an intelligent nomad, never a revolution, people like the system, the "communism of capitalism" (virno), "i think china's pretty comfortable where it is right now"

control, gaps, noises, cracks | 8'04

kòngzhì, manuel delanda's "a thousand years of non-linear history", molecular to macro, hierarchies and meshworks, gaps and noises and cracks

homeshop | 18'11

public space and private space, permeable membrane, blurring the boundaries, the binary, the third space, the interloper, "what are you trying to say with this?"


The HomeShop Games 2008 project is the first in a series of community-based investigations of art practices, Beijing, networked spaces and the home. The space is open daily by appointment throughout the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.


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