Janusware 1st Cycle

Janusware 1st Cycle

Thursday 21 September 7-9pm 
Performance by Uma Breakdown 8pm
Installation open 22 September – 15 October, Thu-Sun 12-6pm


sybrntckmystx hack the sacred technologies of their progenitors, fantasizing within the recursive systems they constructed. Sci-fi pagan rituals graft the cybernetic to magickal, lithic to virtual and in this mangle the ancient diagrammatic technologies are rewritten to execute newly patched operations in altered states of collective mystk consciousness.

The deterritorialized magick systems upon and within which these mystx operate – sigils, automatic drawing, tarot, stone assemblages – undergo an attritional breakdown of their received functioning to form a chaotic magick of patchwork identity.

Janusware 1st Cycle presents Uma Breakdown’s new performance and installation TFW: The Formless Wastes, ‘a peregrination through the fecund mucus of Slaanesh: Ecstasy is the becoming inhuman and d20, all caps DOOM, Praise!’. In the role-playing wargame Warhammer 40,000, Slaanesh is the genderqueer Chaos God dedicated to pursuits of earthly gratification and hedonism – gluttony, self-indulgence, pride, lust, megalomania.

TFW exists in the unclaimed territory of the Warhammer 40,000 warp – a chaotic and magickal dimension of this table-top RPG (role-playing game). Within the warp, TFW experiments with abstractions of the diagrammatic language and overlaid esoteric and symbolic systems of the tarot deck and their utilisation within RPG fantasy world building.

A mutable assemblage of works and workings, Janusware experiments with the contamination and redeployment of occult and affective diagrammatic systems. It forms part of Lucy A Sames’ PhD research Cybernetic Mystics (sybrntckmystx) examining the intersection of cybernetics and altered states through the technology of mystical diagramming.

Janusware consists of a 1st and 2nd Cycle. Janusware 1st Cycle (21 Sep) presents TFW: The Formless Wastes by Uma Breakdown. Janusware 2nd Cycle (29 Sep) presents new performances by Dean Kenning, Rachel McRae and Nicola Woodham and overlays each of these on the remnants of the 1st Cycle.

Janusware takes its name from British cybernetician Stafford Beer’s ‘Janus’ runtime environment and diagram of cybernetics – a diagram that in 1992 was elaborately iced onto his 66th birthday cake.

For further information on Janusware 2nd Cycle, see here.


Uma Breakdown is a researcher and practitioner concerned with the ways in which waste allows a playspace for queer becomings. Their current research interests include Nemesis the Warlock, political refusal, and dog-technology. Their solo exhibition Creature of Havoc runs 15-24th September 2017 at Serf, Leeds, and their digital work is featured in the forthcoming online interactive issue of Worm (wormwork.org). Their Buffyverse-fishkin-swim-team erotica is due to be published later this year as part of “The Body That Remains”, Punctum, New York.


Janusware 1st Cycle is part of Deptford X.

Supported by Northumbria University and Deptford X.

Image: Uma Breakdown, The Formless Wastes 1, 2017