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Lexico Lexicon

Shell Games Bootstrapping Triennials Avatar Derivatives Nodes Primitives Goldsink


Virtual Chechnya Peace Station Through Teleport Hiroshima memorial untitled Burning Sauna


Ryokan Kanto Rahak Inani Pupu Pau Pasqual Sobczak Yayasan Zunimoor


Annexe Gallery GRETA JA WILLIAM KUVATA IDEAKATEMIA The Substation iTrain Tampereen cacsa.org labdna




This lexicon is an on-going project of KLT6. Every few days it is expanded with more terms elucidated here.

Shell Games

KLT6 is a shell game or a meta-shell game in the form of a triennial, in that it looks at the game environment not for its normal use (players, goals, survival, risks) but so as to deploy it as epistemology. KLT6 relies on the paradox of the macro within the micro to an abysmal infinite regress of the sign: the economic network within one of its nodes, the set in the subset. Macroeconomic determiners act within the micro-economics of nations and individuals. The mosque is in the Triennial space in the Central Market Annexe, in the city of Kuala Lumpur (the space of art commodities), which is in the mosque which is in the Annexe...ad infinitum.


Bootstrapping is the fundamental performance underlying the appearances and spectacles of KLT6, derived from the image of a person picking herself up by her own bootstraps or bootlaces. The spectacle of KLT6 is its own invention. In finance the term refers on the one hand to “a collection of methods used to minimize the amount of outside debt and equity financing needed from banks and investors” (Ebben, J., & Johnson, A., (2006). Bootstrapping in small firms: An empirical analysis of change over time. Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 21, issue 6: 851-865), and on the other to the development of a collaborative or open source information technology in which a fuzzy border distinguishes inside from outside (or maintains the ambiguity of the distinction).


KLT6: Artifice explores new areas of knowledge creation, finding a hybrid position between game environments and high art rituals of exhibitions, biennials and triennials. KLT6 will be relevant to the theorization of all such exhibitions and performance events. The shell in this shell-game is the ‘biennial’ or ‘triennial‘ form. We use the generic terms ‘biennial/triennial’ for any of a genre of meta-exhibitions, held every two to five years, usually with contracted ‘curators‘ and often, but not always, acting on behalf of a cultural institution, or a polity, such as a, city or nation. The ‘biennial‘ as ‘incorporation’ signs onto the economy as an “artificial person”, with the rights of personhood but without the mortal liabilities of carbon-based embodiment.

Avatar Aesthetics: incorporated ‘artificial persons’

The Second Life avatar falls into an aesthetic tradition of Cartesian cognitive theatre the demiurge, homunculus, and the rückenfigur, all associated with the Romantic-Idealist school of continental art and ‘philosophy of mind’/cognitive science. KLT6 offers an inquiry into avataric aesthetics. An uncanny blot, the ‘artificial person’ –the (in)corporation– substitutes for and occludes our vision, and we look over its shoulder as it were, hoping to catch a glimpse of what it sees. A Romantic/Idealist invention, this over-the-shoulder-shot, like the Triennial itself, promises (but never delivers) the awesome spectacle of the sublime. It goes hand in hand with desire for erotic possession of the object-of-desire on the one hand, and Dostoevskian murder of the fetish on the other. Like David Caspar Friedrich's Wanderer Above the Nebelmeer (1818) we want to see the visual array of the one who stands between us and the image of the sublime, while at the same moment we want to rid our vision of this uncanny blot that occludes the centre of our array. The episodic, cinematographic nature of the Triennial (a ‘frame‘ repeating 33.3 times per century) is the Debordian spectacle (the accumulation of capital that produces an image) laid out as a scape (Bergson’s space as past-time). What is the romance that remains just below the phenomenological surface of the Triennial?. Manifesting the underlying grammars and syntax of binary code, we find homunculi reappearing these days in the form of avatars moving around in virtual ‘Potemkin villages’. They force us to interrogate the relationship between avatar, performance, site, economy and code.


"Asset(s), such as future(s) or option(s), the value of which depends on the price of other, “underlying” asset(s).” –MacKenzie, D. and Millo, Y. “Constructing a Market, Performing Theory: the Historical Sociology of a Financial Derivatives Exchange”, AJS Volume 109 Number 1 (July 2003): 107–145, University of Chicago– But in the case of the GEC, derivatives have recently been released, based on the false values of mortgages in the United States, derby producing a economy of debts. In linguistic theory, the derivative can be related to Derrida’s theory of differance, which combines the presence of significant difference on the one hand, and deferment down a theoretically infinite regress or abyss of signifiers on the other producing an aporia of signification. The differance between these two notions however is precisely the derivative’s actualised (although not assumed) economy of absence, against the presumed economy of presence in the equations of the sign.


Markers of exchange (corresponding with the markers in a DNA sequence), nodes function as a syntax of primitives, but also as the intersections of social networks and Actant or Actor Networks, at the human-machine interface of global finance. Each nation state is a ‘readymade’ node in a network of global asset flow. Nodes appear in KLT6 as prims or ‘primitives’ formal units in the architectonic construct, as the units of measurement in the Annexe Gallery, and as points in the social network of persons and avatars who migrate through the Triennial spaces.

Primitives (prims)

‘Primitives’ are irreducible and unscalable elements of a representational language that rests on ‘top’ of a program which itself sits on top of a generative binary code.


Goldsink refers to methodologies to reduce inflation in an environment where goldfarms and differential accumulation of capital exists (such as between rich and poor citizens). One such method of goldsink or moneysink (based on the notion of a timesink or heatsink...which suck up time or heat respectively) is trickle-down, or the tactical leaving of debris to to "decay" or be picked up presumably by others less capitalised, and transformed into art commodites as a kind of 'garbage' or found objects. The entire triennial is a goldsink in this sense as it is an inflation-hedge: a way of reactivating bourgeois debris left in the public sphere.