Occupation, Resistance and the Land of the Transhorizon

Panel: Conflict of Practice

Friday 27th March 3pm

Bailey Allen Hall, NUI Galway

Contemporary audio-visual culture, of which the internet is the culmination, may be
seen as a form of continuous assault. An onslaught of imagery and constant
connection dissolves borders as ubiquitous screens create new horizons. Territories
are breached and annexed, in both geographical and human terms.
This is an assault not “only” on our senses, but an assault on our very senses. In
what Paul Virilio has defined as an age of optics, sight is taxed. Meanwhile we are
deprived of touch, taste and smell. Our personal spaces, our physicalities are
simultaneously eroded and extended, as our sense of space and time is transformed.
What is happening to the body?
The gruesome image of dismemberment is often evoked in talk of fragmentation and
disembodiment in relation to audio-visual culture. I propose that positing resistance in
terms of a mythic “return” to the body is both unattainable and naïve.
How to move in this landscape?
I attempt to chart a tentative reconnaissance, engaging with Paul Virilio’s apocalyptic
visions of technology, Jacques Derrida and Bernard Stiegler’s concept of the
pharmakon, among others. I propose that to navigate this territory, we must dance
with evolved bodies.


Visual artist Jessica Kelly defines her work simply as "moving images". Her practice
extends from video to dance, and she often collaborates with other artists and
performers, relishing the connections and clashes between different creative
philosophies. Her present work is informed by the visual paradigms and implications
of the internet. She sees it as the apex of audio-visual culture and the screen as the
new transhorizon. Time and space contract and expand. Hyper short video loops
open up time warps. Her images do not seek to tell stories, but rather open windows,
portals to sensation and contemplation.
Kelly graduated from the National College of Design, Dublin in 2007, and from 2009-
10 was a resident artist of Daghdha Dance Company, Limerick. She moved to
Belgium in 2011, and completed her Masters in Multimedia in KASK, Ghent in 2014.
Aside from her art practice in Ormond Studios, Dublin, she is also a member of the
Digital Studies seminar group in GradCAM.
Jessica Kelly: https://jessicakelly.wordpress.com

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