Ghost in the Machine

Elective course



There are machines that have a ghost within them. It makes them clever, sympathetic, or stubborn.

In a world in which everyday technology has become so complex that internal states and entanglements with the physical world and the world of the spirit cannot be understood by individuals, it is necessary to find new ways to engage with it. We must understand by sensing that which we cannot break down intellectually. We must shake and scratch at what can’t be explained until it makes a noise, until it releases something in us or gives up its ghost.

In a compact theoretical segment of this course, we will discuss selected texts about ghosts (Jacques Derrida), feminist, Marxist cyborg theory (Donna Haraway) or the prosthetic God (Sigmund Freud), and investigate relevant artistic approaches in contemporary art (e.g. Jean Tinguely, Rebecca Horn, ORLAN, and Anna Riedler).

The project’s focus is on experimenting with and developing simple mechanical constructs, electric components, or programs, and investigating the interactions between bodies and space they cause. Students will be supported by the instructor in acquiring the necessary technical skills—which may range from woodworking to welding to working with artificial intelligence. The result of every individual research process will be an artistic work in the form of a spatial installation, a (kinetic) sculpture, a performance, or a video/multimedia installation.


Jan Neukirchen

Thursdays, 10 am - 1 pm

weekly as of 20/10/2022, room B-139 (sculpture studio), B-144 (workshop)

5 CP

BA_Module Skulptur – Objekt - Rauminstallation
MA_Module Themenspezifische künstlerische Projekte