Dutch artist Rosa Menkman wins Collide International Barcelona Award

Dutch artist Rosa Menkman has been selected as the winner of the first Collide International award in Barcelona alongside four Honorary Mentions

“The primary objective of Arts at CERN is to create extraordinary opportunities for dialogue and exchange between artists and scientists, and to encourage significant connections between creative minds in a fundamental research environment. I am particularly proud to announce the winners of the first Collide International prize in collaboration with the city of Barcelona,” says Monica Bello, head of Arts at CERN. 

“Here at CERN, we value diversity and exchange, across communities and countries. It is an inherent part of our laboratory’s culture and essential to the success of our research. We appreciate the strong partnerships that now allow us to welcome new artists to connect with our community. I am excited to see what they will achieve together with our scientists,” says Charlotte Lindberg Warakaulle, CERN’s Director for International Relations. 

According to the jury, comprised of Monica Bello, Arts at CERN, Oriol Gual, director of La Capella in Barcelona, Joana Hurtado, director of Fabra i Coats and Helga Timko, CERN physicist, the winning artist demonstrated a sophistication of concept and approach. Menkman’s topic focused on the idea of resolution, which resonates with CERN’s quest to perform research from the smallest to the largest scale. 

They found Menkman’s argument about the significance and purpose of scientific measurement and how information is filtered in and out of an experiment inspiring. The artist will be invited to CERN in Geneva for two months to explore these topics, after which she will work for a month on a 3D video production at Fabra i Coats.

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Creating Critical Environments - slides from Gray Area Festival

I gave a talk at Gray Area about immersive spaces and the requirements for immersivity. You can find all the slides here.


Pique Nique pour les Inconnues

For L’Unique Caen Menkman revisited a few of her key works and remade them especially for the square window of the gallery.  Pique Nique pour les Inconnues showcases a prepared desktop, hosting a party of ‘unknowns’ - digital and analogue objects that are usually not seen, unknown or ignored. Within the space of the desktop, one by one they obtain a voice and introduce themselves. 


Summer Semester Beyond Resolution 2019 @ KHK - now online!!

 Alternative formats: Manifestos 
From the extinvion rebellion to Xenofeminism, Occupy Wallstreet to Black Lives Matter or Glitch to #Additivism - all these movements have used manifestos to announce themselves to the world. The manifesto genre is by definition timely and politically focused. It criticizes a present state of affairs but also announces its passing, proclaiming the advent of a new movement or even of a new era. Manifestos are often a call for a new vision, approach, program, or genre: they are the site of political, cultural and social experimentation in our contemporary world.
Manifestos exist to challenge and provoke - to enhance conscious self-expression and empowerment. But how to write a contemporary manifesto in 2019?
How to combine a call for action with ciritical digital design to fundamentally expand the character and scope of the genre itself?

 Tokyo Threading. A presentation given at the Sony Centre, Tokyo for Media Festival Japan. 
It matters what threads are used to construct a garment: using a thread that is stronger than the material that is sewn (the fabric) can end up causing rips in the material. During my time in Japan I had many  encounters with Japanese digital artists who taught me about the importance of how to thread message and material together in very considerate, new ways of presenting.

 AR, VR and ‘empathy’. A presentation for Impakt, Utrecht, Netherlands. 
Impakt asked me to give a short presentation on AR, VR and empathy. VR - or ‘the empathy machine’ - has often been used to tell the story of young refugee girls. Can VR also provoke empathy without the exploitation of minor immigrant girls? And what is so good about empathy - what do we win with empathy if we do not practice compassion, sympathy, morality or other forms of ethical consideration? How easily do we cross the line from emphaty to commiserate disaster tourism?
And what is the relation between AR and VR?
Maybe the use of the world ‘reality’ a misnomer for what better could be understood as chimera or virtual imagination?

Emojis - one day workshop The earliest known mobile phone in Japan to include a set of emoji was released by J-Phone on November 1, 1997. The set of 90 emoji included many that would later be added to the Unicode Standard, such as Pile of Poo 💩, but as the phone was very expensive they were not widely used at the time. In 1999, Shigetaka Kurita created the first widely-used set of emoji which was implemented on NTT DoCoMo's i-mode mobile Internet platform.
Today, anyone can submit a proposal for an emoji character, but the implementation of new emoji is regulated by the Unicode Consortium. Yet every year 70 new emojis are chosen and implemented. How?: the voting members of the Unicode Constortium (Silicon Valley _ White Male Conservatives _ ) pay good �💵💴💶💰💷$ to have a vote.
As a result, certain emojis are missing, while other emojis are the linchpin of controversy.

Timetravelling - one day workshop With the advent of the digital, time is no longer what it used to be. Instances can be jumped, repeated or stamped: the digital has introduced a new experience of time. But before making such a statement, we first need to discuss the dimension of time.
According to Hillel Schwartz, first there was Aeon time. Aeon time is universally ongoing and impersonal time. As an eternal flux and flow it is always ‘just there’. Schwartz connects aeon time to background noise, the noise that has been there since the Big Bang, the noise that will always exist and is usually suppressed but remains part of any system.
Secondly, Schwartz explains, there is Kronos, from which the term ‘chronology’ stems. Kronos refers to linear, one directional time, business time or incremental, daily routine time. Schwartz connects Kronos to repetitive noise, such as the noise of a dripping faucet. It is sickeningly rhythmic and does not move backwards.
Finally there is Kairos, which is best described as the time of opportunity. This time is dangerous and thrilling, however it can also present itself subtly. Schwarz connects Kairos to the noise of revolution. It is the shriek of invention. The time when someone urges you to seize the moment.
But Schwartz is of course not the only one outlining a general definition of time. Many men have attempted to describe time before him, and many have after... Here Schwartz is merely a starting point to discuss and travel time. 
What can be images of time? And what other radical ideas of time are there? 

Posthuman Glossary - one day workshop
Posthuman Critical theory is a convergence of posthumanism and post anthropocentrism.
In humanism the 'man' from the West sets the standards to measure all things. PCT rejects any nostalgia for humanism or the 'enlightened man of reason'.
PCT also rejects to see the world as a hierarchy of species and human exceptionalism - as is celebrated in anthropocentrism. As a result, PCT pratices a ‘dis-identification of the familiar’.
Posthuman Critical Theory believes that:

  • subjectivity does not make an ‘anthropos’. 
  • we need to create a sustainable notion of vitalist materialism - the belief that matter itself has vitality and is alive, no matter how lifeless it may appear to be. In doing so, objects and things are described as having agency (Jane Bennett / D&G). 
  • we need to enlarge the scope of ethical accountability.
In short: Posthuman Critical Theory creates assemblages of human and non-human actors by combining feminist theory and Deleuze and Guattari's new materialist philosophy. Urgency is found in the Anthroposcene condition, which changes environmental, social economical, affective and psychical conditions and the violent and inhumane power relations that result from technological advances and a growing economic and social inequalities.
Critical (in Crtitical theory) refers to both being critical and creative. Critical is as a way to create cartographies of power, to account for and learn to relinquish unearned privileges and implicit power privileges. The creative side enlists the resources of the imagination and a new alliance of critique. Politically speaking, posthuman critical theory is a practical philospohy that aims at composing a 'missing people', to refashion and reshape the human to include all kinds of bodies (immigrant, of color, female, crip)


Monopolized services (Included an Amazon Fullfilment centre visit with class)
Monopolies and patents shape the (media) industry by strategies such as standardization, undercutting and prohibition. We talk about a few of these stories and about recent strategies of for instance Amazon, that by means of vertical and horizontal intergration has managed to cut out and bypass whole tiers in the chains of production and distribution. In doing so, the concept of ‘carriage’ - to carry over a particular product, service or provide a platform for a certain producer, has gotten renewed importance. 

Lets talk about money!
Money is nothing. Even so, it can move everything. But how can nothing move everything? ...Its because the concept of money is made of agreements, of solidarity, of trust. Not just moral or political trust, but agreements that resonate in a sort of ‘condition’. (- paraphased from the K foundation burned a million quid)
Money is often described in terms of time, freedom, or as an object rooted in the colonialist, modernist, or imperial projects of standardization.
But when do we actually learn to talk about money? Did someone teach you how money works, what are the rules of who gets to own, earn or safe money and how and what are the histories and ‘logics’ of inflation and value?
In fact, money is quite a fictual construct that is only worth something in ‘the right’ context or space - in the ‘condition’ that ascribes its worth. In this condition - or rather at the fringes of this space, the value of money also gives rise to alternative spaces, such as tax havens, Extrastates or bodies of de-regulated flows of capital.

a look at the slides of the subjects we spoke about during the Beyond Resolution Summer Semester course!

Alternative formats: Manifestos 
Tokyo Threading. A presentation given at the Sony Centre, Tokyo, Japan
AR, VR and ‘empathy’. A presentation for Impakt, Utrecht, Netherlands
Posthuman Glossary

Monopolized services (Included an Amazon Fullfilment centre visit with class)
Lets talk about money! 

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