Thursday 28th July, 2022, 17:30-19:00
Mari Bastashevski is an artist, writer, and a lecturer at Kunstakademie in Trondheim Norway. Occasionally she collaborates across disciplines and performs random acts of journalism. Twice she circumnavigated the world by sea. Her current research explores how emerging visual technologies like VR could become field sites for researching speculative near futures of human-animal-technology relations. Mari’s work, Pending Xenophora, is the result of this research.
Pending Xenophora is a multiverse designed with a rout of garden snails. The term comes from a category used to label unorderable and unclassifiable organisms at the Natural History Museum in London and a genus of medium-sized to large sea snails. Xenophora are quintessentially unclassifiable; the ideal speculative being to engage in this work. They are collectors that sort through and then cement other shells onto their bodies. Since no two Xenophora are the same, the Xenophora is always pending, always in the process of knowing, unknowing, learning, unlearning, collecting, and computing. They point towards parallel futures, abandoned exactly at the fork between curiosity and subjugation.
Mari will showcase her collaborative world-building methodology with snails through her exhibit and keynote. Participants will listen to a snail performance and explore their world in VR. They will then be invited to join Mari in generating speculative methodologies that allow other-than-human subjectivities to be included into the speculative practice of world-building. In thinking with snails, we will try to establish what constitutes an interesting question and a satisfying answer, what is and isn’t meaningful research, and how common household technologies can be reconfigured to this task.
Roundtable discussion with all exhibitors
Chair: Dr Julia Poerting
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