For 5 years, the Gulf Labor Coalition, a group of artists and writers, has been pressuring Saadiyat’s Western cultural brands to ensure worker protections. Gulf Labor has coordinated a boycott of the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi and pioneered direct action that has involved spectacular museum occupations. As part of a year-long initiative, an array of artists, writers, and activists submitted a work, a text, or an action
In the wake of the Snowden revelations about the surveillance capabilities of intelligence agencies, this interdisciplinary symposium gathers experts to discuss the place and implications of secrecy in contemporary culture and politics
The talks from the panel Tracking Drones, Reporting Lives zoomed out from the personal perspective and brought together a data journalist, a documentary director and an artist whose work examines the drone issue
The practice of targeted killing by drones raises many questions: “How many civilians have been killed as collateral damage during these strikes?” “And even if we’re talking about militants, how can the killings be justified when there has been judicial supervision? “If these drones can reach their targets anywhere, then how is the battlefield defined?” “Right now, only 3 countries use drones for targeted killings: the U.S., Israel and the UK. Where will this stop?” “And if these targeted killings are illegal, why does Europe keep silent?”
Suohpanterror is an anonymous group of Sami artists who use wit, iconic images and humour as weapons to comment on the issues their people have to face on a daily basis: discrimination, racism, marginalisation, colonialism, dam building, logging, military bombing ranges, as well as exploitation by the tourism and energy industries. And of course, climate change
In a unique take on a subject that has grabbed headlines and is consuming billions of taxpayer dollars each year, philosopher Grégoire Chamayou applies the lens of philosophy to our understanding of how drones are changing our world. For the first time in history, a state has claimed the right to wage war across a mobile battlefield that potentially spans the globe. Remote-control flying weapons, he argues, take us well beyond even George W. Bush’s justification for the war on terror
The publication details the banality and violence of the architecture of detention centres and contrasts them with stories of daily resistance among immigration detainees. This book explores migrant detention centres, a global industry and the fastest growing incarceration sector in North America’s prison industrial complex, and questions the role of architectural design in the control and management of migrants in such spaces
Enter a tumultuous era with this unparalleled collection of photographs made by a group of photographers working for the Rome-based agency Team Editorial Services.
The press photographers constantly shifted between battling film stars at play and the reality of near civil war unfolding on the streets. Politics and celebrity are brought together through the paparazzi style of alto contrasto, collusion and intrusion. Alluded to, although less visible, are the murkier dealings of clandestine groups linked to the Italian Secret Services, The P2 Masonic Lodge the CIA and NATO, operating against the backdrop of the extremes of the Red and Black Brigades
Deborah Cowen traces the art and science of logistics over the past sixty years, from the battlefield to the boardroom and back again. Though the object of corporate and governmental logistical efforts is commodity supply, she demonstrates that they are deeply political–and, considered in the context of the long history of logistics, deeply indebted to the practice of war
Friction Atlas addresses the issue of legibility of public space, its programs, and the laws that regulate its uses. Many regulations discretize human behavior, tending to be algorithmic, quantitative and invisible. Friction Atlas aims to make regulations – that are always implicitly present in any public space – explicit and visible, through graphical devices
On display are arts of rebellion from around the world that illuminate the role of making in grassroots movements for social change: finely woven banners; defaced currency; changing designs for barricades and blockades; political video games; an inflatable general assembly to facilitate consensus decision-making; experimental activist-bicycles; and textiles bearing witness to political murders
While children and other innocent civilians are being terrorized and murdered right now in Gaza, people are still accused of anti-semitism simply because they believe that the basic human rights of the Palestinians should be respected. I fear there is still a lot of disinformation and misunderstanding about what is happening in Israel/Palestine. I would certainly never claim that i understand precisely the situation but i do think that Ben White’s book and his talks are clear, well documented and very engaging
Forensic Oceanography critically investigates the militarised border regime in the Mediterranean Sea, mapping the liquid geographies of maritime jurisdictions in order to document the violence perpetrated against migrants at sea. By producing maps, visualisations, human right reports, videos, articles, exhibitions and websites, Forensic Oceanography interrogates this maritime sensorium in the attempt to challenge the regime of visibility imposed by surveillance means and become a tool in the struggle for freedom of movement
In this counterfactual speculation, a new Scotland is formed following a Yes vote in 1979′s Referendum for Independence.
The New Scottish Government creates a Sovereign Wealth Fund from oil revenues and enacts a number of bold laws with a generational perspective. These enable the citizens to achieve their own energy and economic independence
Jennifer Lyn Morone has turned herself into a corporation and collection of marketable goods and services. Everything she is biologically and intellectually, everything she does, learns and creates has the potential to be turned into profits. Jennifer Lyn Morone™ Inc is a graduation project in Design Interactions but as Jennifer underlines, this is not a speculative project
With Smile, The Fiction Has Already Begun, Zoe Hough explores what happens when happiness becomes a political target.
In her scenario, not only is the happiness of a UK town closely monitored and assessed but active measures are also taken to almost enforce happiness upon its inhabitants
FIELDS investigates the place of contemporary art practices in society and the role artists can take not just as generators of new aesthetics but also as catalysts of active involvement in social, scientific, and technological transformations. While some of the works in the show present a critique of ongoing political or ecological issues, others go a step further by suggesting positive visions for the future
Palestinians living in an undetermined future would be housed inside a colossal high-tech skyscraper. Each city (Jerusalem, Nablus, Ramallah, etc.) would have its own floor. The building is surrounded by concrete walls but its inhabitants would be able to travel in and out of their country using a highly efficient subway system and go from one Palestinian city to another using an elevator.
In this episode we will talk about the ultimate cliché vacation but also about the Networks of Dispossession, the collective mapping of data about the relations of capital and power within urban transformation in Turkey. I also had plenty of questions about Graph Commons which seems to be a brilliant tool for reporters, researchers, activists, etc.
For the past few years, CAA’s founders Steve Lambert and Stephen Duncombe have been traveling around America (and increasingly Europe) to train grassroot activists to think more like artists and artists to think more like activists. The objective isn’t to replace traditional strategies with unbridled inventiveness but to use creativity as an additional tool that will help them gain more attention, make activism more approachable and that will, ultimately, make their campaigns more effective
Critical Exploits showed how a new generation of artists, designers and engineers are taking a highly critical approach to the development and use of the engineered systems and infrastructures that we increasingly rely on for daily life
The artist uses live art, interventions and new media to investigate social and political systems; and to find his position in and to these larger systems.
Some of his projects involved outsourcing the production of a written constitution for the UK to China and having 1,000 dolls voice it, using the price of an African financial index to control lightning in a Berlin art center, testing certain hypotheses about social behaviour in a dinner party. And building an outdoors spiral staircase for cats.
Historian Garrick Hileman, sociologist Nigel Dodd and financial activist Brett Scott reflected on the question “Is Bitcoin the new gold?” Shaking up online and offline worlds, the online currency Bitcoin has increased its ‘value’ at immense speed in the last year. Being immune from government interference and private manipulations, it has been celebrated as a new alternative currency by some and condemned as source of unpredictable risk by others
The main preoccupation of the exhibition is not the militant commentaries behind artworks but the effect that political values and social movements have had on the production modes, aesthetics and communication of visual culture. As such Art Turning Left stands out from other shows dedicated to political art or activism
Much of Treister’s recent work maps ways that human intelligence and military intelligence currently interact and work on each other. She explores how in a world increasingly determined by pervasive technologies and the demands of the military and security arms of government and state, new relations between the observer and the observed have been established and new subjectivities formed
Unseen is the way Doherty used to work when had to remain as inconspicuous as possible to the British military that kept a close watch on Northern Ireland.
Unseen are also the memories of violence, control and conflicts that are lurking in overcast landscapes and dark city corners. There’s always something in his images that seem to conceit and conspire. At least that’s what the viewer suspects because Doherty is a master of making them paranoid
Drawing on the work of a diverse group of contributors, from art historians, anthropologists, and political theorists to artists, filmmakers, and architects, Sensible Politics situates aesthetic forms within broader activist contexts and networks of circulation and in so doing offers critical insight into the practices of mediation whereby the political becomes manifest
The Reposition Matrix is an investigation into the military-industrial production and trading networks of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (also commonly referred to as Drones). The workshop aims to reterritorialise the drone as a physical, industrially-produced technology of war, and consequently explore how this affects our understanding of the covert drone campaigns in the Middle East
Under the Shadow of the Drone is a life-size depiction of a Reaper drone, one of a number of such weapons in service with US and UK forces. The Reaper is used for surveillance and bombing missions, in the declared war zones of Afghanistan and Iraq, and in the illegal wars of assassination taking place in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere. Such wars are made possible by the invisibility of drones to most people
In Tarnac. Le chaos et la grâce, Joachim Olender explores a police and judicial blunder that hit France in November 2008 when a group of policemen wearing black balaclavas stormed into the small village of Tarnac and arrested a group of people who were later accused of being far-left terrorists plotting to overthrow the state
Illustrations of an alternative world where bespoke sports events replace traditional warfare as a means of solving seemingly chronic conflicts. Each sport is designed to reflect the cultural and geopolitical characteristics of the opposing sides, in this case North Korea vs South Korea + Japan + USA, and India vs Pakistan
The Ostkreuz agency was founded when what was probably the most important border in the history of Germany–the Berlin Wall–disappeared. Two decades later, the agency’s photographers set out on a search for today’s frontiers. Their pictures tell of discovering a state identity in South Sudan; they portray groups of indigenous peoples battling for their land in Canada and gay people in Palestine seeking exile in the enemy country of Israel. The focus is always on people: how do boundaries influence their everyday lives, and how do they shape their lives along those that surround them?
On Thursday i was in Turin and visited For President at the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo. The timely, informative and a tad star-struck exhibition examines the American election campaigns, its calculated emotional moments, theatrical strategies and incestuous relationship with media. Part of the show is also looking at the interest Italy (and with it, the rest of Europe) is having for the American event, from a very brief article on page 3 of a daily newspaper in 1868 to the current front pages
Our society is governed by all sorts of systems and structures that organise and steer life. No system, however, whether political, judicial, economical, socio-cultural or spatial, can comprise life in its entirety. Every system has gaps, leaks and ambiguities.
The artists in the exhibition Mind the System, Find the Gap seek out these gaps. They set forth from this intermediate position to unveil, circumvent or criticise ruling systems and structures
One of the current interests of the Office involves an ‘overt research’ that attempts to build up an alternative and experimental knowledge source about the UK’s “Dark Places”, the labs and facilities of advanced technological development which are often (purposefully or not) concealed, secret or inaccessible to the public
The Cold Coast Archive project investigates and explores human beings’ efforts to preserve civilization and defy the inevitability of its demise. We look at the vault as a whole: its practical, political, historical and symbolic structure, its arctic location, as well as its infrastructure and cultural nuances, with all the research concentrated at this site, as a backdrop to explore the human relationship to time between now and eternity
There’s an exhibition featuring sci-fi, history, video games, homosexuality, soap operas, censorship and a powerful sense of humour at Cornerhouse in Manchester right now. The show is called Subversion and it questions and knocks around whatever assumption you might have about an homogenous ‘Arab world’, whatever image politicians and the media might have given you about its culture and identity
The film that inspires you to google your name again….
My name is Janez Janša is a documentary film about names and name changes, focusing on one particular and rather unique name change that took place 5 years ago, when three artists officially changed their names into the name of the Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša
‘ZOO, or the letter Z, just after Zionism’ starts at page number 437 of ‘The Atlas of the Conflict’ and continues into a fascinating exploration of ideas, snapshots and associations, that could be raised once seeing a white donkey tied with a rope, covered with beige tape and being transformed into a zebra by a beautiful Palestinian boy
You might never have heard of Abkhazia and that’s probably because only a handful of countries regard it as an independent state.
Abkhazia broke away from Georgia after a short, violent civil war in ’92-’93 and only Russia, Venezuela, Nicaragua and the atoll of Nauru recognised it as independent state in 2008.
The artists spent four years witnessing and documenting the country’s attempts to repopulate with new immigrants a country that is ravaged by the war, almost empty and in great economic distress