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18 - JF Martel (Art, Magic, & The Terrifying Zone of Uncanny Awesomeness)

Ep. 18

This week's guest is the loquacious, thoughtful, and profound JF Martel, film-maker and author of Reclaiming Art in the Age of Artifice and the three-part essay Reality is Analog, about the philosophical themes lurking behind Netflix's series Stranger Things.

http://reclaimingart.com

https://www.metapsychosis.com/reality-is-analog-philosophizing-with-stranger-things-part-one/

We discuss what can and cannot be captured and communicated digitally…

The Primordial, Deep, Subrational Forms of Poetry, Madness, Excess…

“Ultimately, art does have a function: it’s to help us better navigate the infinite chaos that is reality.”

The problem of overusing or misusing Occam’s Razor

“We understand the nature of reality the moment we admit that we don’t know it…the moment we admit we CAN’T know it.”

“Every concept kind of contains its own opposite, or casts its own shadow.”

The difference between a Sign and a Symbol

Faith or Rebellion? (Patriotism or Treason?)

Azazel the Peacock Angel vs. Lucifer the Rebel Angel

Is there an ultimate reality?

“It’s really, really tough to make great art. It’s tough to make GOOD art.”

About Hollywood: “I don’t think collaboration has ever been a great friend of art.”

“The equipment is changing so fast that no one gets GOOD at anything anymore…it’s hard to MASTER anything, today. But I think we’re moving toward something better than what we’ve had.”

The old and new paradigms of film and TV production

“[Netflix is] using the digital culture we’ve developed to make great films in the way that maybe they should always be made, which is: you identify the people with vision, and you put them in charge.”

Technology: Inevitable? How Japan said no to guns for hundreds of years…

“A society that presumes that it knows the real and can dictate its course…it is doomed to failure.”

“We are finite and live in the infinite. You can’t accrue more of the infinite.”

Staying in touch with the nonhuman.

“We’re made out of forces we can’t control. But at the same time we have a certain amount of control over how conscious we are of that. And we need to become more conscious of that. And Art helps us become more conscious of that in an objective sense, and Art helps us become more conscious of that in an empirical sense…it points out areas of the Known that need to be reconnected to the Unknown.”

How to be an esoteric workaday dad mystic artist weirdo

“I think we need to become more religious…I mean in tune with that transcendent, imminent Thing.”

“Once your roots go down infinitely, you have LICENSE to love iPhones.”

“We’d buy stuff, we’d put it in the movie, and then we’d return it intact. I felt like we were doing real alchemy…”

Michael tells one of his most bizarre and curious accounts, of a haunted camera acquired by pranking a corporation…

“Infinite meaning is tantamount to meaninglessness.”

“Artistic creation is fundamentally dangerous, in the sense that you’re moving out of the Terra Firma of the known into areas that are unknown, or you’re looking at things from an angle that’s alien to the perspective you inherited from your tribe or your culture. So there’s a REASON why so many artists end up fucked up or dying horrible deaths…I think there’s a fundamental danger that we need to recognize, especially as we enter into projects or creations that are actually visionary, that are actually pushing into something.”

“I think you can allow for quite a bit of synchronicity to enter your life, as long as you can handle it.”

“All you have to do is read Van Gogh’s biography, and you can ask…was it worth it? I think it was worth it. Maybe there’s a notion here of sacrifice. Maybe certain people are so willing to go out there and produce these visions that they’re willing to sacrifice themselves. That sounds crazy today, because we don’t have the vaguest inkling of what sacrifice means in this culture.”

“Maybe you need the tragic. Maybe the tragic is indelible…and that’s what makes creation so beautiful.”

WWDT: “What Would Dostoyevsky Think?” (Ask yourself about the opinions of your revered artist heroes when you’re working on a piece…)

“The responsibility is on each individual person to use these tools in the best way possible in an environment that discourages it on every level.”

“Mainstream American culture since the end of the second World War has been predicated on the need to distract ourselves from The Bomb.”

“All in all it seems like the dirty secrets are coming out, and that can only be good.”

Analog vs. Digital Epistemologies…Reality is Analog/Reality is Digital

“I couldn’t believe that reality was analog if I didn’t believe it was also digital.”

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10/8/2020

154 - Stephanie Lepp on Pro-Social Deepfakes, Post-Normal Science, and The Future of "Reality"

Ep. 154
This week I chat with artist Stephanie Lepp, producer of Infinite Lunchbox, the Reckonings podcast, and — most excitingly, for me —Deep Reckonings, a stunning new project exploring the “pro-social” uses of AI-generated “deepfakes” and other synthetic media for education, therapy, and other beneficial outcomes.While I’ve been speculating on the ominous (albeit numinous) social and psychological consequences of deepfakes since my 2017 sci-fi short “An Oral History of The End of ‘Reality’”, it never really occurred to me that these tools aren’t just dangerous but potentially healing and transformative. Stephanie, however, has made it very clear in her new videos, and in her extensive statement for the project, that sometimes all we need to imagine a better world is to see it faked convincingly.In this discussion, we explore how deepfakes can expand and enrich the potent benefits of earlier media like theater and the novel; why it’s so controversial to portray wrongdoers finally accepting accountability and moral leadership, even when it’s an explicit fiction; and how science itself is going to have to change to accommodate a more nuanced and multi-dimensional understanding of truth.Stephanie at IFTF | LinkedIn | TwitterPlease rate and review Future Fossils on Apple Podcasts! And if you believe in the value of this show and want to see it thrive, support Future Fossils on Patreon. Patrons gain access to over twenty secret episodes, unreleased music, our book club, and many other great things as they spill out of my overactive imagination.We’d also love to have you in our thriving little Discord server, if you’re interested in meeting other members of our awesome scene. (And if you’re up for helping edit Future Fossils Podcast transcripts, please drop me a line at futurefossilspodcast@gmail.com.)Intro and outro music is from Skytree’s new LP of spacey downtempo electronica, Infraplanetary, which I highly encourage you to purchase.Enjoy, and thanks for listening!
9/24/2020

153 - Burning Man VR x IRL with Caveat Magister, Naomi Most, and Raven Mitch Mignano

Ep. 153
This week we bring together Burning Man’s resident philosopher Caveat Magister (the author of The Scene That Became Cities, from Penguin Random House) together with anarchist community organizer Naomi Most of Noisebridge and Playa trickster historian Mitch Mignano for a conversation about the festival’s uneasy but remarkable transition into virtuality —and how holdouts worldwide persisted in “IRL” celebrations that preserved the face-to-face community and presence Burning Man cannot yet replicate online.This discussion was a total treat, and covered everything from complex systems and the evolution of the city to the new and strange ontologies emerging in the blue light of our screen-bound era.•Was Burning Man always just a physicalized version of the World Wide Web?Or is its power and uniqueness in precisely how it ISN’T?•Is Burning Man a kind of virtual reality already, or —like VR —just a not-entirely-successful effort to screen out the world that creates it?•What is the value of culture for culture’s sake, and why should we protect the efforts for it?•Is Black Rock City pointless, or is it an engine for teaching Applied Existentialism…or both, and more?•What happened at the in-person Burning Man(s) this year, when people still decided they would gather during a pandemic?This episode is dedicated to the memory of James Oroc.Writing and videos we mention in this episode:*** The Case of the Missing Man by Caveat Magister (Read the whole series!) ***Sand Talk by Tyson YunkaportaThe Garden of Forking Memes by Aaron Z. LewisWilliam Irwin Thompson in 1975 x Burning Man 2013 Through Google Glass [video]Transformational Festivals are a Symptom of Dissociation by MGGiving Into Astonishment: Scenes from Burning Man’s American Dream by MGIf you believe in the value of this show and want to see it thrive, please send your friends to this page and encourage them to support Future Fossils on Patreon. Patrons gain access to over twenty secret episodes, unreleased music, our book club, and whatever else spills out of my overactive imagination. We’d love to have you in our thriving little Discord server, if you’re interested in meeting other members of our awesome scene. And if you’re up for helping edit Future Fossils Podcast transcripts, you’re my hero! Please drop me a line at futurefossilspodcast@gmail.com.Intro music in this episode is “Valles Marineris” from my Martian Arts EP. Outro music is an early mix of “You Don’t Have To Move,” from my forthcoming/in-progress album The Age of Reunion.Dig deeper into these related Future Fossils episodes:25 –DADARA on Art, Virtual Realities, and Flow States31 –Mitch Altman of Noisebridge on Hacking Life for Fun & Profit41 – Hannah Faith Yata on Art, Wilderness, and Rebellion55 – “Creativity and Catastrophe” at Palenque Norte, Burning Man 201761 –Jamaica Stevens on Crisis, Rebirth, and Transformation71 –JF Martel on Sequels & Simulacra76 –“Technology as Psychedelic Parenting” at Palenque Norte, Burning Man 201796 –Malena Grosz on Community-Led Party Culture vs. Corporate “Nightlife”100 –The Teafaerie on DMT, Transhumanism, and What To Do With All of God’s AttentionEnjoy and thanks for listening!
9/17/2020

152 - Weird Artist Medicine Storytelling Hour with Colin Frangicetto

Ep. 152
“I know now that the rules of reality change by zip code.”In a conversation recorded nearly a year ago on September 27, 2019 (and now hilariously strange in light of months of pandemic quarantine), I speak with the ultra-talented, delightful, immediately relatable and immensely likable Colin Frangicetto —guitarist for the excellent band Circa Survive and solo project Psychic Babble, painter, writer, and podcaster —about what we’ve learned from our high-dose psychedelic experiences, from our extended and potentially crazy periods of constant synchronicity, and from traveling the world playing music and making art.This episode is a dual-show crossover in which we interview each other, and which also appears on Colin’s wonderful podcast, The Cosmic Nod. Pop over there if you want to read all the nice things he said about me in his show notes. I agree with him that on this call you hear our friendship being born...Be sure to follow Colin’s Instagram & Twitter accounts, and support him on Patreon, and support Circa Survive on Patreon.And of course, please consider supporting Future Fossils and all of the other creative work I do (which is A LOT) on Patreon also. With three jobs and a kid, it’s a miracle this show still exists, entirely by the graces of listeners like (and deliciously unlike) you.It’s even more of a miracle that we have such an excellent community flourishing around it…here’s an invite to our Discord server, if you’d like to be a part of that.SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT! Colin and I are going to be speaking together at this weekend’s Psilocybin Summit —along with folks like Paul Stamets, Shane Mauss, Dennis McKenna, Bett Williams, Bia Labate, Simon Yugler, and about 50 other amazing brilliant people. Go here to grab your tickets and I’ll get a tiny slice of the pie.Also, the entire back catalog of Future Fossils will soon have searchable transcriptions courtesy of podscribe.ai. If you’re a podcaster, I cannot recommend or even imagine a better service for your transcripts. Go tell Pete Birsinger I sent you and make your life a little easier.TOPICS COLIN AND I DISCUSS IN THIS EPISODE:His recent maiden voyage with ayahuasca and his integration at home.The indoor trip versus the outdoor trip and life at home versus life on the road, and the experience of time on tour versus at home.How life in the early 21st Century is like The Book of Exodus and the nonlinear path of the Wandering Jew, faith-tested in the wilderness.What relatively rare artist-and-musicians have in common…and why “everybody hates Bo Jackson.”What it means to be an obligate social organism, totally dependent on society, trending evolutionarily in the direction of both gods and babies, and what that means for finding ourselves in collaboration, generally.The post-career world, and in what ways we have to be a different state of matter than our parents’ generation.When magic becomes commonplace and matter-of-fact.Psychedelics and time: telepathy, or precognition?Transcendental cephalopods: WHY IS THAT A THING?Time loops and Chapel Perilous synchroncity vortices.Taking (or not taking) ayahuasca literally.How to learn how to love yourself.Big Mind Process and Internal Family Systems.Why is the self plural, in the first place?How to deal with the weird and sometimes scary things you accidentally create, responsibly.Cancer treatment vs. crime and punishment.Relationships as covenants between complementary strengths and weaknesses in partner organisms that do not share the same worldspace, and how that results in hilarious disagreements about UFOs.Breaking the tentacles of co-dependency with psychedelic solo work.Multiple-timescale creative project bouquets.Aaaand snapping turtles.LIST OF AMAZING (AND AMAZINGLY WHITE) PEOPLE WE MENTION:The Ungoogleable MichaelangeloSean-Paul Von AnckenShane MaussErik DavisPapadosioWilliam Irwin ThompsonDuncan TrussellErick GodseyMichael PhillipCory AllenJohn KaagRobin ArnottTopher SipesWeird Studies PodcastMark PesceMitch Mignano

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