TOUCHPAD with Alyza Delpan-Monley
Wednesdays / 6:30 – 8:30PM PST

TOUCHPAD with Alyza Delpan-Monley
Wednesdays / 6:30 – 8:30PM PST

TOUCHPAD is a gathering space for embodiment practices as a way to explore the digital space. the digital reality. There is a divide between the material world – what’s possible in our bodies and around our bodies in time and space guided by laws of physics – and between the digital world. What happens if we believe both worlds to be real? The digital world still has laws and rules that guide, it is still made of tangible elements of the material world (servers, cables, software… did you know that even the internet itself is about the weight of a strawberry!?), invisible rules and boundaries that oppress and limit the extent of expansion within the mainstream internet. But the digital world also has potential for types of play and connectivity and becomings that are not currently or not yet possible when we are bound to our corporeal form. So how do we believe in this space of possibility and can we co-create our beliefs in the digital? How do we discover what’s possible and how can we find wonderment and potential? How do we learn to navigate this space and how do we continue to stay connected in our physical bodies as we dive into these digital spaces?

We will meet once a week for the next 5 months. This course is designed to be a cumulative course, where all the information builds off of each other, but it is also available for drop-ins as we will be exploring new ideas in each class. Equal parts movement and discussion, this space will be collaborative. I (Alyza) will be facilitating and guiding us through the topics and the activities, but this will not be a class about teaching or answers. I am not an expert in any of this, rather am continuously curious about exploring these ideas. So come with your curiosity and your knowledge. Let’s explore in our bodies the digital reality. Let’s learn about this complex technology together. Let’s discover what’s possible in this space and find ways to connect through the virtual.

Here are some of the topics we will be exploring in movement and discussion

Obstacle as Obstacle Courses: Revitalizing Possibility within Constructs
Movement Practices for Combatting Zoom Fatigue
Emojis, Memes, Viral Content
Filters, Editing, Aesthetics as Values
Search Engines, finding and adventuring beyond the rote pathways and trodden trails
Conceptualizing the 2D Image: Frame, Screen as Portal, Screen as Mirror
Constructing a Shared Virtual Space, Imagine into being, and what if we stopped assuming?
The touchpad translation, User Interface from the Corporeal world to the digital world
Video Games, an evolution of digital space and how a body moves through it
The Avatar: Fabricating a Sense of Self, simulating reality, manifesting surreality, being witnessed/being constructed
The Value of our Attention in the Corporate Attention Economy
Be the Glitch: Glitch as Refusal (Glitch Feminism)
Google Maps: Maps as Curation
Dimensional Space and How We Perceive It
Hyperlinks, Lateral Thinking, and Everything is Curation (or only everything is everything, and anything else falls short)
Memory, Place Cells, The Right to Be Forgotten
Haptic Explorations, Proprioception
Body Mapping, Neural Network: How do we connect sensation of touch between body and brain
Illusion: How does our brain construct logic to believe what we perceive

Reference list

This is a working reference list of media that can contextualize, inform, and spark inquiry and conversation. Throughout the classes, we will read excerpts, watch clips and begin with these materials as ideas to be inspired by and play with in our movement explorations and discussions. 

Duty Free Art: Art in the Age of Planetary Civil War, Hito Steyerl 

How to Do Nothing, Jenny Odell

Glitch Feminism, Legacy Rusell

Algorithms of Oppression, Safiya Noble

Abstract, Season 2, Episode 5: Ian Spalter: Digital Product Design (Netflix)

High Score (Netflix)

The Mind, Explained (Netflix)

The Social Dilemma (Netflix)

Memory Games (Netflix)

Connected, Season 1, Episode 5: Clouds (Netflix)

Adventure Time, Islands Part 4: Imaginary Resources

Rick and Morty, Season 1, Episode 4: Simulation within a Simulation

How Does the Internet Work?

Into the Zone (Podcast)

When We Cyber

The Ghost in the Code

How I Built This (Podcast) 

ReCAPTCHA and DuoLingo: Luis von Ahn 

99 Percent Invisible (Podcast)

Map Quests: Political, Physical and Digital

Ways of Hearing

Lost Cities of Geo

Alyza Delpan-Monley image

Alyza Delpan-Monley

Alyza DelPan-Monley (she/they) believes in the expressive power accessed in the body through movement. They believe that goofiness and whimsy can crack open imaginative possibilities. Creating in the overlap between theater and dance, they are drawn to poetic abstraction and contextualized specificity. They strive to participate in processes where everyone can exist in their fullest selves by honoring every body’s unique form of expression.

Alyza’s Instagram

Alyza’s website