February 9, 2022
Welcome to the School for Poetic Computation. We are softly launching this website as a work in progress. Over the next year, we will be migrating content from our old website and re-building our archive(1) of programs, projects, publications and community members. Our URL change from sfpc.io to sfpc.study is an embrace of the vision for our school to be "a place where we explore computation, but computation isn't the point."(2) Our old website will live at legacy.sfpc.study.Xerox Alto computer, photo by Maksym Kozlenko.
We'd like to bring your attention to this website's two modes. By default, you are entered into cathode-ray mode, inspired by the displays of early CRT computers. You can switch into liquid crystal (LCD) mode at any time by selecting your choice at the bottom left. The default cathode-ray or dark mode is a refusal of "the positioning of white as neutral within interfaces," (3) a positioning which this website turns in on itself.Our former space at the Westbeth Artists Community.
If you've ever visited SFPC's former space, at the Westbeth Artists Community located in New York City's West Village, you'll remember four large windows in front of the courtyard. This is where you might have peeked into before an event, or stood in front of to take a group picture at the end of your session. Now that the school is operating online, the four column grid of this website is inspired by those four prominent floor to ceiling windows to memorialize our poetics of relation through a similar black frame which we now peek into through digital screens.Hand lettering and hand drawn sketches of various iterations of “SFPC” and “Poetic Computation.”
Something tender about those windows is how participants and visitors would graffiti "School for Poetic Computation" on them over the years, refiguring the identity of the school through post-its, hand lettering and hand drawn sketches. Poetic computation is something everyone can participate in,(4) and in a similar vein, the header of this website cycles through various definitions of poetic computation as contributed by people in our community.Lia Coleman, Fall 2019 cohort.Fran Rojo and Zainab Aliyu, Fall 2019 cohort.Mark Anthony Hernandez Motaghy and Gia Castello, Fall 2019 cohort.Participants of Code Paper Scissors, Winter 2019.
"Poetic computation begins with the interfacing between two or more beings" is a definition that resonates. This website holds within itself that particular yearning for connection, as we continue into our third round of online classes this spring. Visit us online from 9am to 9pm from Monday to Friday! While we rest, the website will be closed, except when applications are open.
In collective study,
- (1) re-building our archive: This website was designed by Zainab Aliyu and built with Todd Anderson. It is fully keyboard accessibile for non-mouse users, and is typeset in Hershey Naoille and Courier.
- (2) a place where we explore computation, but computation isn't the point: A quote from a letter SFPC Stewards authored in April 2021, which was originally posted in SFPC's Slack under the username "sfpcstudy."
- (3) the positioning of white as neutral within interfaces: A framing from Black Gooey Universe by American Artist.
- (4) poetic computation is something everyone can participate in: Poetic computation is an ever blooming definition. We invite you in to study in pursuit of both defining and resisting reductive definitions of poetic computation. You can submit your own definition here.