Panel: An Ecosystem of Excess at transmediale 2014 afterglow

Panel: An Ecosystem of Excess at transmediale 2014 afterglow

With Pinar Yoldas, Heather Davis, Jennifer Gabrys, Bernd Scherer, Daniela Silvestrin


Starting from Yoldas' project An Ecosystem of Excess and her artistic approach through speculative design and biology, this panel will analyze and discuss the impact on what we call "nature" and the term's ontological crisis. In her exhibition, plastics are the starting point for thinking a new speculative evolution. Plastics have radically changed our environment and the ecological footprint we are leaving on the planet, and in big part contributed to the ecological turn that we are experiencing as one symptom of the anthropocene. But plastic seems to even have become a natural force of its own, unstoppable, invading every space, eliminating and ousting bit by bit the life that had been inhabiting these spaces before. Do plastics have their own agenda? If so, what do we find if we study the ethology of plastics? If there are more and more parts of the ocean where we find numbers of plastic molecules and particles that are many times higher than those of plankton, what is left of "nature" - and the world - as we know it? The ubiquity of plastic, mostly in the form of trash, is creating a new kind of "nature", and therefore "environment", which we will use as a starting point to rethink the term and its meaning today, as well as the geopolitical and ethical thinking related to it. In an attempt to overcome old habits of thoughts we will reflect on possible ways of positioning ourselves in relation to other humans as well as nonhumans in these "next" or “post-natural" landscapes surrounding us.

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