Justin Katko’s poem, Up against the Screen Mother Fuckers was a very interesting piece of literature. Katko’s own description states that all the graphics were made from CAVE and then the audio portion was manually inserted after. Using quicktime as the method to play his art. Another thing that is note worthy, is the title. He says that it is inspired by an anarchist group in the 60’s and I think that the title of the poem and the anarchist group has great synergy together, that really symbolizes the experience a reader has after viewing his work.
The video was just under three minutes yet despite it being quick it certainly demands for your attention from the moment it starts. It is almost hard to establish reality within this poem. It distorts your own perception, with perfectly synchronizing eerie music. The music sounds like what the title suggests, “Up against the screen” it sounds like constant malfunction. There are abstract colors that are constantly shifting. It looks like psychedelic art. It feels like I am inside a broken computer. There is one constant absolute image. It is a solider holding a gun. Continuing with my analogy, perhaps this is the screensaver, for said broken computer, I am not sure.
Eventually, the speaker begins reading his poetry, just like the atmosphere associated with the beginning, his voice almost echoing, is loud and demands attention. His tone embodies a movement, one for change. “We Demand in a language, gaining clicks in a feedback tube, operated by us on a spine of ambivalent protocol not that it matters. What matters is the fact we demand” Just saying what he has said himself here does not do it the slightest justice. If one listens to it, they understand how passionate he is how expressive he is, how he demands change. He offers an angry critique about screens, and uses visuals to support his message. Overall it was enjoyable and unlike something I experienced before.