Artist Talk & Workshop
Friday, 07.05.21, 10am
Complexity of the biotechnological environment we are part of is difficult to comprehend. Understanding art as an endless exercise in perception can help us not only to understand but also to feel, experience and collaborate in the entangled networks that sustain us.
Artistic practice of Saša Spačal researches how signals such as the sound of symbiosis, the vibrations of mushrooms, the smell of antibiotics and microbiologically enriched air help us map out our position in networks and to become aware of the multiplicity of feedback loops through which interspecies communication is enacted. Once we step down from the anthropocentric throne, non-human actors such as bacteria, fungi, and plants can teach us about diverse ways of connecting, not as our opposite, but as part of us and as collaborators in biogeochemical processes. Dualisms such as natural and artificial, virtual and material, technological and ecological intertwine into opaque biotechnological assemblages of planetary dimensions, which humanity is trying to understand by developing models that are more or less useful. Perhaps in times of anthropogenic crisis, it would be wise to ask how empathic practices of caring collaboration can be developed through the models, theories, cartographies and stories we create with and about other-than-humans such as fungi. How do our thinking tools define our relationships to the wider ecology?
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