e-flux presents True Fake: Troubling the Real in Artists’ Films
Manu Luksch, Algo-Rhythm | Part Three — Tracking the Coded Real
Repeat screening on April 20, 2021

Manu Luksch, Algo-Rhythm (still), 2019

Join us on e-flux Video & Film for an online screening of Manu Luksch’s Algo-Rhythm (2019), on view from Tuesday, March 9 through Monday, March 22, 2021.

Convenience, not choice. Efficiency, not freedom. Frictionless experience. In marketing and the retail sector, data analytics is widely used to profile and micro-target consumers and thus predict behavior. The ultimate goal, it seems, is for humans to be able to outsource all decision-making to machine intelligence (make Google do it!). But what is at stake within the political realm? Shot in Dakar with the participation of leading Senegalese musicians, poets, and graffiti artists, Algo-Rhythm probes the insidious but comprehensive threats to human rights and agency posed by the rise of the quantification and algorithmic management of daily life. Using hip-hop, drama, street art, and data-driven filmmaking, the work explores how our embrace of the convenience of machine intelligence—refracted through the slick interface of a smartphone—makes us vulnerable to manipulation by political actors. Recognizing the urgent need for a new visual language to illuminate this concern, Luksch collaborated closely with researcher Jack Wolf and mathematician-composer Mukul Patel to develop a hybrid narrative form that unites photogrammetry and volumetric filmmaking with traditional approaches. Through its auratic and poetic use of computational imaging technologies, this hip-hop musical short delves into issues around voter micro-targeting and automated propaganda,scrutinizing the limitations, errors, and abuses of algorithmic representations.

Algo-Rhythm is presented here as one of four films in Part Three | Tracking the Coded Real, the third of five programs in the online series True Fake: Troubling the Real in Artists‘ Films programmed by Lukas Brasiskis for e-flux Video & Film.  

True Fake: Troubling the Real in Artists‘ Films runs from February 9 through April 19, 2021. The films in each part will screen for two weeks. Subsequent parts will follow bi-weekly, with new films screened every other Tuesday.

Manu Luksch is an artist, activist, and researcher whose practice interrogates conceptions of progress with a strong emphasis on participation and new forms of engagement. Through her films and artworks, Luksch researches the effects of emerging technologies on daily life, social relations, urban space, and political structures. Her current focus is on corporate-governmental relationships and the social effects of predictive analytics in the algorithmic city. Her work is included in the Collection of Centre Pompidou, the BFI National Archive, and the Core Collection at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. She is a recipient of the Globale Perspektiven Award 2020; ZONTA Award – 65th Kurzfilmfest Oberhausen 2019; Open Media Award 2019; Best Feature – Moscow International Documentary Film Festival 2016, Elevate Artivism Award 2015, and the Willemer Prize 2015 by Ars Electronica Centre and City of Linz, among others.

For more information, contact program [​at​] e-flux.com.

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