By Jacob Sheffet
“The cyborg would not recognize the Garden of Eden; it is not made of mud and cannot dream of returning to dust.” – Donna Haraway, “Cyborg Manifesto”
“Do Cyborgs Dream of Becoming Dust” is an interactive sculpture that activates the user’s sense of touch and vision. Taking inspiration from two seminal cyberpunk texts, “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep” and “The Cyborg Manifesto”, this project explores the implicit tensions inherent in a world wherein human beings exist between and within two parallel realities: one physical, and one digital.
Within this framework, what does it mean to be human? Are our physical lives any more real than the digital spaces that we frequent or the protocols, algorithms, and other digital technologies that allow us to live our physical lives the way we do?
It is these questions which “Do Cyborgs Dream of Becoming Dust” seeks to prompt users into exploring by allowing them to experience alternative ways of interfacing with digital technology.
Jake Sheffet is an artist who works in coding, installation, video, language, and sculpture. At the forefront of his practice is the examination of human connection: he is focused on cultivating a participatory art practice that employs interactive installations to create links between artists and art viewers. The goal of this practice is to dissect the tension between individual subjectivity and collective universality that is inherent within the human condition. Furthermore, he is interested in examining rhizomatic systems to explore the ways that humans navigate this dialectical relationship as subjects implicated within the complex web of connective tissue composing the fabric of postmodern society.