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    BDSMR: Velcro as a Sensory Material and Erotic Interface

    EVA Copenhagen 2018 - Politics of the Machines - Art and After

    Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark, 15 - 17 May 2018


    Nolan Lem



    This paper examines the sensory mechanics of the Velcro hook-and-loop fastener and its use as a sound object in contemporary sound-based art and the autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) community. With the neologism, BDSMR, I attempt to unpack the notion of velcro as a sound-fetish object by situating it within an emerging audio-visual culture, one that engages in cyborgian practices of sensory stimulation and optimizable arousal.

    Exploring these new modes of “listening in on” materials-oftentimes with disembodied binaural ears-we reveal the ways in which the dynamics of the sound object reorientate our understanding of the sensate body and its relationship to the eroticism of aurality. In doing so, I present my own Velcro-based sound sculptures in an attempt to form a dialogue with the velcro material as an artistic medium.


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