Sunday, May 19, 2024

Tom Jennings

tom jennings cleaning roadster

“I make things, mostly technological, but don’t hold me to that, consistency is not a human virtue. Electronics and software, cast iron, plastic, software, faux historical machinery that could (not) have been; finely crafted, rigorously rugged, reliable. A lot of what I make now gets called “art” though that’s not always how I think of it, but saying so ends a lot of questioning. i am currently obsessed with the road.”

– Tom Jennings

For further reading, here is his essay on material philosophy: wabi tek sabi.

The books mentioned in the interview are: PHILOSOPHY IN THE FLESH, George Lakoff and Mark Johnson, 1999 and DHALGREN, Samuel Delaney.


tom jennings roadster panamint the roadster project on the road, 2015
tom jennings ISEA 2012 my installation, with Eve Andree Laramee, ROCKS AND CODE; mining and mathematics at ISEA 2012.
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  1. […] Tom Jennings explores the automobile as a prosthetic extension of the self. Jennings’ car is an extensively modified 1961 Rambler. Jennings removed the features of the car that he didn’t like ending up with something of a roadster. There is no roof, there are no doors, there are modern engine and transmission and a number of other homemade components from the wheels up. Jennings has created a one-of-a-kind vehicle that he drives in the 24 Hours of Lemons rally. This endurance drive tests the limits of unusual cars like Jennings’ not to mention the limits of their drivers. Past rallies have covered the route from Moscow, PA to Paris, MA in February and through Death Valley in August. The upcoming rally runs from Monterey to Oregon and back for a total of five days solid driving, around 3,000 miles. A lifelong computer programmer, Jennings is interested in embodied cognition. He points to a dearth of understanding about how the brain works as well as widespread ideology rooted in the Cartesian theory of mind/body when it comes to historical miscalculations of the capabilities of artificial intelligence. Jennings discusses the social and cultural implications of machines replacing humans and our evolving understanding of this relationship between our own minds and the minds of machines. […]


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