Machinic Propositions

Henrik Frisk, Anders Elberling

conference: DARE 2017: aberrant nuptials
date: November 20, 2017
venue: Orpheus Institute, Auditorium
format: performed
practice: music and sound
keywords: de/re-territorialisation, improvisation

abstract about the author(s)


Machinic Propositions is an artistic project and an attempt to critically examine Deleuze and Guattari’s theorems of deterritorialisation as found in chapters seven and ten of their seminal book A Thousand Plateaus (Deleuze and Guattari 1980). The output will be an audio-visual expression with the same over-arching goal to attempt to counteract the predominance of one medium over the other. Our objective is not to integrate them, but to approach what is described as “a confidence with no possible interlocutor” (Deleuze and Parnet, Dialogues II).

Our artistic method is one where conceptual deduction and improvisation play central roles. It has grown out of our thinking about contemporary media and our attempts to critically examine both our own pro-technical approach and the hyper media landscape we live in. This method was developed on the basis of our artistic ideas, the needs of the projects we engage in, and the conditions of our respective practices. At the core of our work lies the attempt to deconstruct the relationship between sound and image. Our work process is slow and meticulous. The work on the present project began over a year ago and is likely to continue past the premiere at the DARE conference in November 2017. In other words, the actual work only materialises at the very end of a relatively long process of interaction.

There are interesting parallels between the way we work and the idea of a style as the ability to “stammer in one’s own language” (Dialogues II). In this sense our working process is situated in our personal conditions giving us concrete access to both the attempt to stutter in “language” and the attempt to avoid it in “speech.” Although the work here proposed does not yet exist in its final form, it started a year ago with reading, discussions, and conceptual experiments.

The modes of synchronisation that have become central to our works will be further explored in the modes of thinking relating to the theorems introduced by Deleuze and Guattari (in particular the second theorem is of interest to the notion of synchronisation). There are, however, many points of entry. First, the systems of de/reterritorialisation in this context we interpret as the attempt to detach both sound and image from their highly defined modes of engagement. Second, we will continue to examine what the actual relations are within our system of working, ranging from a historical view of audio/visual art to our specific conditions of working. One mode through which we will experiment with these topics, related to all theorems but particularly the first, is to change roles in the work process.

Through the theorems loosely described in chapters seven and ten of AThousand Plateaus we will work out an abstract audio/visual work. As artists there is nothing to suggest that we are able to provide a philosophical output with scholarly relevance. The potential interest of this project for this context is instead the way our process informs our and others’ readings of Deleuze and Guattari. More specifically, the way the senses see and hear in our work may be seen to create a “zone of indeterminacy,” which may provide possibilities for understanding what we do as artists and researchers, but may also provide openings into understanding what the significance of a “generalised chromatisism” (as mentioned in the call) may develop into in other contexts as well. The conflict between the video and the audio in our work is never one that we attempt to overcome but one we strive to see precisely as the “opposite of a couple.”

about the author(s)

Henrik Frisk

Henrik Frisk (Docent/Reader) is an active performer (saxophones and laptop) of improvised and contemporary music and a composer of acoustic and computer music. With a special interest in interactivity, most of the projects he engages in explore interactivity in one way or another. Interaction was also the main topic for his artistic PhD dissertation, “Improvisation, Computers, and Interaction,” which was presented at the Malmö Academy of Music, Lund University, in October 2008. Frisk is Associate Professor at the Royal Academy of Music. He has performed in many countries in Europe, North America, and Asia, has received commissions from many institutions, ensembles, and musicians, and has made numerous recordings.

info & contact


Royal college of music, Stockholm, SE


mail [AT]


Anders Elberling

Anders Elberling, born 1965, Copenhagen, is a visual artist and photographer who teaches workshops in visuality. Elberling is a collaborative and processual crossmedia artist who due to dyslexia has developed an imaginative access to communication through the creation of narratives using picture and sound. Originally educated as a photographer, Elberling works with moving images and the interlink between images and sound to create installations, live performances, and scenography for theatre. His workshops in visuality inspire participants into thinking across media and genres, generating a hands-on collaborative environment. Elberling’s work has been presented at numerous exhibitions and performances, concerts, and theatre productions in broadcasts, publications, and installations in Europe.

info & contact


Independent visual artist, photographer, innovator, instructor, and art director


bureau [AT]