Black Hole

From time to time we revisit our black hole archives. Although Lost Signals catalogues all received signals–no matter how tenuous, obscure, or doubtful–in truth we only pay attention to candidates for the Real. In other words: we are not interested in “alternative” or “parallel” truths. It was J. Baudrillard who wrote, in Impossible Exchange, that “it seems that reality, indifferent to any truth, cares not one jot for the knowledge to be derived from observing and analyzing it.”

So it is with a bit of fanfare that we present a deep-space image captured eight years ago, scrutinized and over-scrutinized to the brink of annihilation. There is no threat from this black hole (if you discount [and at what cost?] the existential threat) of the very existence of a light-eating entity. For without light, what dark . . . and without dark????

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Tidal Resonances

Tagger Julio Stevens discovered from a paper published by the University of Oxford that the ‘complex tidal dynamics of the Bristol Channel are not yet fully understood’, in particular ‘the sensitivity of the quarter wavelength resonance to changes such as those caused by energy extraction.’ For years, Stevens, in deep meditation, has watched the tides of the Channel rise and fall: a difference of twelve point two metres from low to high. Close by his observation seat is the site of the receiving station to which Marconi first transmitted radio waves across open sea from Holm Island to Lavernock Point in South Wales.

Stevens is convinced that the natural resonances of the sea tides, and the manmade resonances of the telegraph have combined to open a vortex in space/time so that signals from parallel dimensions, postulated in the quantum theories of Anthony Aguirre and Max Tegmark, are received and recorded in the molecular structure of the concrete of the abandoned Lavernock bunkers. By attuning himself to the resonances of sea, air and light, Stevens claims to record in his wall art fragmentary transmissions from an island (or islands) in one (or more) of our parallel multiverses, that are not limited to any fixed moment in malleable Time. —David Enrique Spellman

Something Wrong

Most of the signals we receive or recover are partial: fragments from a larger whole, glimpses into stories that may never fully be uncovered. We are familiar with the line “Fragments are the only form I trust,” from Donald Barthelme’s story “See the Moon.” And yet that story was first published in 1966, well before analog and then digital media cemented fragments as an untrustworthy form and way of thinking. That line’s electric future-telling has long since lost its charm. The Lost Signals Collection aims to demystify such fragments by bringing them out into the open, making them available for speculation, investigation, interrogation. Through the rituals of narrative we hope to coax them back into the stories they were meant to tell.

Below is one such audio fragment referring to a familiar yet unknown person here at the archives, a person who is has “done something wrong.” It’s becoming clear that what we first thought were many different people are/is, in fact, likely the same person. Over tens of thousands of archived audio recordings at least 7,000, so far, refer to this wrongful person.

Black House Rising

The Black House reconstitutes itself perpetually, never fully succumbing to chaos, never fully succumbing to order. It manifests a desire for something, but what? And at what cost, per chance that desire be met? Black House is always supposedly “rising,” about to seize power, and yet year after year, decade after decade, it sits there, reconstituting itself, perpetuating its own architecture. If only Black House would shift beyond the banality of its form and express itself, even if that expression wiped out the mechanisms of that expression. Those who hope for and actively labor in secret to bring about the rise of Black House are, inevitably, as disappointed as those who work for its demise.

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On the fifth sub-basement level of the northeast regional archives compound (NERAC) are around 6,000 photographs and sketches depicting subjects whose faces are covered, either by their own hand or some other hand. There are versions of what’s known as “the woman with the gun” photograph (below) dating from circa 1948. It’s difficult to say which image is the original, the primary image, and in fact more than one archivist has suggested–after careful inspection of the details–that they are two separate photographs taken at precisely the same moment. This theory has gained traction of late, as digital encoding and sourcing technologies have improved to the point that we can say that the two images are, in fact, in perfect keeping with each other, apart from the two obvious differences (left-facing/right-facing and exposure). As improbable as it seems, we know now what quantum physics knows: that two incompatible states can exist simultaneously, that A and B can equal B and A, or BA/AB. The doubled, doppelgänged world is the natural world, made unnatural by its division. At NERAC the archivists are working to collapse that division and restore the balance.


The Skull Cult

Since the discovery of a hidden trench dwelling dug into the hillside behind an electronic appliance dump in a small town in Massachusetts, reports are emerging of the discovery of more underground chambers connected with the disappearance of Gerardo Fischer. It is thought that Fischer ran one, or more, archaeological projects in conjunction with the productions of his theatre company. The latest hidden chamber to be discovered lies close to the remains recently unearthed at Göbekli Tepi, in southern Turkey, that indicate the presence of a Neolithic skull cult.

There is no apparent indication of any connection between the Fischer chamber and the Göbekli Tepi archaeologists; other than coincidence, and Fischer’s known fascination with etched glass skulls. Amira Hamade, founder of the Iranian theatre group Gulmohar, is known to have worked with Gerardo Fischer on a production called The Flame Trees in a cave complex near Göbekli Tepi after she chose exile in Turkey following the Khomeini revolution in Iran.

Amira Hamade is convinced that these recently discovered skull remains are evidence of a force that resides in a deeper plane of being that links up author-nodes across continents via a spiderlike network in the collective unconscious. It was her daughter who discovered the cave chamber where Gerardo Fischer appears to have conducted his own archaeological research in this zone in southern Turkey.


So many of the signals we capture are in code, the code coded so well that there appears to be no code at all. Such is the case with this snatch of conversation retrieved from over a dozen a tape recordings labeled “Mr. Thompson.” Honestly, the conversation seems to last forever, and it’s all misdirection. The heart of the matter comes at around in tape #9, who Thompson’s name is finally spoken. He had been the subtext all along, and the makers of the tape assumed (incorrectly, thanks to LS archivists) that no one could slog through over 19 hours of audio to get to the point where the code finally revealed itself in the name of Thompson.