Histories & mythologies of computing examines how certain ideas, beliefs and fantasies have structured the development of computer technologies and continue to guide it today.

The origins of Louis Frehring’s project can be found in Marshall McLuhan’s 1964 statement in Understanding the Media: “The medium is the message”. With this statement, and the part of the book devoted to it, the author and new media theorist means that the media are not merely technical vectors of messages, but that they influence these messages and become one with them, through their technical specificities. By media, McLuhan refers to a fairly broad category of objects that convey a message between several individuals, and which can unequivocally include a multitude of objects grouped under the term information technology (software, interfaces, screens, the Internet, social networks, etc.).

For Louis Frehring, this reading of computing and its history within McLuhan’s media paradigm seems necessary, as this field takes on ever greater importance in our lives, and becomes ever more opaque and complex to interrogate.

The artist’s project focuses on technology at all its levels. He observes the different layers that make up its complexity and seeks to make visible the mechanisms that constitute it. He opens mysterious black boxes and reveals their innards. He looks at how more or less mythological or predictive elements have been important in the history of computing, and considers their possible deployment in the future. Several questions lie at the heart of Louis Frehring’s project:
How do media contain and structure themselves as messages? And how do they convey a history of their own?
What are the implicit rules that govern social networks, and how do they favor the appearance and emergence of messages?
What kind of space can a screen create, and how does it limit what can emerge from it?

Visit Louis Frehring’s website here