Eldritch Technology

The Coniunctio of Cybernetics & Sorcery

What is magic, that a machine may do it, and a machine, that it may do magic?

ELDRITECH blends art, magic, and technology to innovate experiments in speculative sorcery. It is inspired by fictional technologies that interface between physical and metaphysical ontologies, such as the Krell mind amplifiers in Forbidden Planet, Tillinghast’s resonator in Lovecraft’s “From Beyond,” and the Lemarchand Configuration in Clive Barker’s Hellraiser. Proceeding in a manner akin to Heron’s mechanics and Ian Bogost’s carpentry, Eldritech performs occult philosophy by way of ontological theater.

If a physician is someone who practices medicine, perhaps a metaphysician ought to be someone who practices ontology.

—Ian Bogost, Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing

Eldritech is the research art enterprise of Joshua Madara a.k.a. tchnmncr. I am an occult technologist and techno-occultist interested in technologies both “high” and “low” that mediate experiences of the ordinarily hidden or invisible worlds that occultism is about. I studied industrial electronics and robotics in order to understand how arcane language animates matter and commands spooky action at a distance. I work in mixed and multimedia, and although my works feature electronics and computers, I consider them part of the Great Work of all magical Arts and Crafts (ars magica), being especially the reification of spirit via technē. My basic conceit is that anything, including computers and robots, can be a spiritual as well as creative medium, and a locus of encounters with the bizarre, eerie, grotesque, macabre, numinous, sublime, uncanny, and weird.

Someone once told me that machines will not be capable of magic until they can dream. Eldritech is part of my continuing investigation and critique of that idea and its underlying assumptions.

Philosophically, my work is informed by postphenomenology, posthumanism, object-oriented ontology, and new materialism, and especially the ways those philosophies corroborate or challenge occultism and are challenged or corroborated by it. Aesthetically, my work inherits chiefly from tech noir including elements of brutalist, cyberpunk, gothic, industrial, military, and technoscientific design, often combined with sacred art of diverse provenance; also avant-garde and experimental music, theater, and film; and assemblage and altered objects.

Krell’s Last Dreaming is the Eldritech blog.

Inspirational Music: Anterior Research / TAGC, Eighth Tower / Sonologyst / Unexplained Sounds Group, Cryo Chamber, MTHRBORD, SomaFM

Shout Outs: Daniel Martin Diaz, Dunne & Raby, Near Future Laboratory, Paul Laffoley, Simon Stålenhag, Survival Research Labs, Weird Studies, Liam Wong, Zachtronics

Instead of deducing that we are ‘nothing but’ machines, let us increase the mechanical world to embrace mystery.

—Ramsey Dukes (Lionel Snell), Words Made Flesh: Information in Formation