1001++ (Magical Technologies)

Osman Khan (Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design)

Collaborators: Tom Bray, Converging Technologies Consultant – Duderstadt Center; Benjamin Winans, MFA Grad Student; Satinder Singh Baveja, Professor, Computer Science and Engineering; Shai Revzen, Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; Anouck Girard, Associate Professor, Aerospace Engineering; Su’ad Abdul Khabeer, Associate Professor, Arab and Muslim American Studies; Khaled Mattawa, Associate Professor, English

1001++ (Magical Technologies) revisits the magical and fantastical found in folktales from South Asia, the Middle East, and other Muslim and immigrant traditions as inspiration for the development of a new body of video, performative sculptures, and interactive installations. Not only do these tales provide an insight into the pre-colonial imaginings of these communities, but when refracted through Arthur C. Clarke’s 3rd law, “[a]ny sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic” allows one to re-examine the fantastical in these folk narratives not as superstitious and fanciful but to read the ‘magic’ as culturally aspirational desires of applied technologies.