Exploring the Chaotic Neutral: For such a broad conceptualisation, how does one go about approaching such a buck wild concept?
The Answer? I’m glad you asked;
You approach it with a knife attached to a drill.
For my Digital artefact, I chose to explore the concept of the Chaotic Neutral mindset and its affects towards branch off innovation using the technology of today that would eventually go on to power the new technology of tomorrow. I approached this as an exercise of utilising the technology we have currently and misusing its intended purpose; to see if it could then not only carry out the operation I had assigned whilst using a component that was used for its original designated purpose, but also perform the task I had assigned to it better than that of another technology that have been created for the same use. In doing so, we apply the Chaotic Neutral innovation that is needed to further technology- testing it to its limits and branching off its components to become viable for other uses within separate fields. By exploring all the ways you can misuse a piece of technology outside of its intended use whilst still applying its main/or a major function, I intended to illustrate the fact that we need chaotic innovation to power the next generation of technology and avoid toxic stagnation.
Warren Ellis and his book ‘Cunning Plans’, was the artist who inspired the instigating idea for me on how I was going to approach this assessment. ‘Cunning Plans’ and Ellis’ main life morals in general are a great example for the type of approach I’ve taken when experimenting in my digital artefact- That experimentation is key, failure is success when there wasn’t a genuine purpose going in, simply curiosity.
I also took inspiration from the work of both Michael Reeves and Simone Giertz; Besides being incredible innovators and engineers, the element of chaotic invention that is applied to each of their creations inspired a sense of innovation within the viewers themselves (me included). The robots/codes they create are designed not to function, or fulfil a meaningful purpose that would be employed by the mainstream population- but rather to flex the muscles of innovation and to CREATE. As such they are just as much a force of Chaotic Neutral innovation as the machines they make- as well as inspiring others to also take on the same imaginative mindset. They are initiators: prompting others to create not because there is a need, but because we want to see if it CAN work, if it COULD do that, not if it should. Michael Reeves videos in particular inspired my editing choices- the smash cut frames and simple text insertions were a fast paced method of fleshing out my videos that I found fit the general aura that my work had and also add a bit of a comedic edge to it.
The process of filming this series was an exercise of both conceptual planning and free-form innovation; the method I had been using in approaching this project at the beginning was too limiting, I would start a shoot and try to follow a set of step by step instructions to achieve the goal I had going in- this was quickly proven to be an ineffective and ultimately failed proceeding. However, once I loosened up and simply tried to work around/with the technology I was playing around with I found that although I didn’t achieve the goal I was trying to accomplish completely to my first blueprints, I still managed to get it to WORK. I just needed some good old fashioned W. Ellis. Whimsical thoughts and shifty morals on health and safety.
I chose YouTube to post my videos to because It is a social media platform that is fuelled by the chaotic; wherein a user can post experimental conceptual or contemporary media to be viewed in a public space without a fee, (as long as the video isn’t copyrighted or has anything that violates the terms and conditions/avoids bot attention.)
So without further ado- I present The Chaotic Neutral Trilogy;
EPISODE 1: Pilot
EPISODE 2: Hand Drill Home Security
EPISODE 3: Hair Curler Pan
- Ellis, 2016, ‘Cunning Plans: Talks by Warren Ellis’, Ed Zitron, Summon Books.
- Michael Reeves, YouTube Channel,
- Simone Giertz, YouTube Channel, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3KEoMzNz8eYnwBC34RaKCQ