Part Four | Reading the Earth

Part Four | Reading the Earth: Vibrant Matter and Human Hubris

In the age of advanced technology, the earth could be read as if it were a script that needs to be interpreted—a trace of its own past and future. This recalls traditional beliefs in animistic nature and begs the question: What are the political implications of recognizing that everything—including rocks, garbage, polluted air, volcanic deserts, the oceans—is alive? The films in Part Four of the series Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory probe the limits and potentials of visualizing the wasted, the inanimate, and the geological. The Otolith Group’s Medium Earth (2013), Ernst Karel, Toby Lee, and Pawel Wojtasik’s Single Stream (2014),Malena Szlam’s Altiplano (2018), Arjuna Neuman and Denise Ferreira’s 4 Waters, Deep Implicancy (2018), and Zlatko Ćosić’s Un-Pollute (2017) examine images of vibrant matter composed by a complex web of active bodies and materials.

Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory is an online series of film programs and discussions on e-flux Video & Film, programmed by Lukas Brasiskis.

The films in Part Four | Reading the Earth: Vibrant Matter and Human Hubris will screen for two weeks from Sunday, September 27 though Saturday, October 10, 2020. Subsequent parts will follow bi-weekly, with new films screened every other Sunday.

Part Four also includes Visualizing the Anthropocene: Aesthetics and Politics, an online discussion with T.J. Demos, Toby Lee, Sasha Litvintseva, and Susana de Sousa Dias, moderated by Lukas Brasiskis. The discussion will livestream on Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 1pm EST.

1–6
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
The Otolith Group, Medium Earth | Part Four – Reading the Earth
Sunday, September 27—Saturday, October 10, 2020
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
Ernst Karel, Toby Lee, and Pawel Wojtasik, Single Stream | Part Four – Reading the Earth
Sunday, September 27—Saturday, October 10, 2020
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
Malena Szlam, Altiplano | Part Four – Reading the Earth
Sunday, September 27—Saturday, October 10, 2020
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
Arjuna Neuman and Denise Ferreira da Silva, 4 Waters-Deep Implicancy | Part Four – Reading the Earth
Sunday, September 27—Saturday, October 10, 2020
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
Zlatko Ćosić, Un-Pollute | Part Four – Reading the Earth
Sunday, September 27—Saturday, October 10, 2020
e-flux presents Ecology After Nature: Industries, Communities, and Environmental Memory
Visualizing the Anthropocene: Aesthetics and Politics | Online discussion with T.J. Demos, Kodwo Eshun, Toby Lee, Sasha Litvintseva, Anjalika Sagar, Susana de Sousa Dias, and Lukas Brasiskis
Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 1pm EST
Contributors
A-B
Lukas Brasiskis

is a film and media researcher and curator, currently a PhD candidate at New York University in the Department of Cinema Studies, and an adjunct professor at NYU and CUNY/Brooklyn College. His interests include eco-media, the politics and aesthetics of the world cinema, and intersections between moving-image cultures and the contemporary art world.

C-D
T. J. Demos

T. J. Demos is Professor in the Department of the History of Art and Visual Culture, University of California, Santa Cruz, and Founder and Director of its Center for Creative Ecologies. He writes widely on the intersection of contemporary art, global politics, and ecology and is the author of several books, including Decolonizing Nature: Contemporary Art and Political Ecology (Sternberg Press, 2016), Against the Anthropocene: Visual Culture and Environment Today, (Sternberg Press, 2017), and The Migrant Image: The Art and Politics of Documentary During Global Crisis (Duke University Press, 2013)—winner of the College Art Association’s 2014 Frank Jewett Mather Award.

K-L
Ernst Karel

works with sound, including electroacoustic music and experimental nonfiction sound, with an emphasis on performance and observational cinema.His recent solo projects are edited/composed using unprocessed location recordings; in performance he sometimes combines these with analog electronics to create pieces which move between the abstract and the documentary.

Toby Lee

is an artist, anthropologist, and Assistant Professor of Cinema Studies at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Her research interests include visual and media anthropology, the anthropology of cultural institutions, cultural citizenship, expanded documentary, and cultures of surveillance and documentation.

Sasha Litvintseva

Sasha Litvintseva’s work as an artist, filmmaker, and researcher has been presented at numerous film festivals and exhibitions worldwide. She is a lecturer in Film Theory and Practice at Queen Mary University of London.

M-N
Arjuna Neuman

is an artist, filmmaker, and writer. As a writer he has published essays in Relief Press, Into the Pines Press, The Journal for New WritingVIA MagazineConcordArt VoicesFlauntLEAPHearings Journal, and e-flux journal.

S-T
Malena Szlam

is a visual artist and filmmaker working at the intersections of cinema, installation, and performance. Her practice is concerned with transforming time and space through the unique properties of analogue cinema. Szlam is interested in relationships between the natural world, human perception, and intuitive process. The resulting work is a "sensorial cinema” that exists between figuration and abstraction, artificial and natural phenomena, still and moving images.

The Otolith Group

is an award-winning artist-led collective and organization founded by Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun in 2002. The Group's work is formally engaged with research-led projects exploring legacies and potentialities of artist-led proposals around the document and the essay film, the archive, the aural and sonic mediums, speculative futures, and science fiction.

W-X
Paweł Wojtasik

creates poetic reflections on cultures and ecosystems in his films and large-scale installations. His investigations into the overlooked corners of the environment have led him to pig farms, sewage treatment plants, wrecking yards, autopsy rooms and cremation sites.

C-D
Susana de Sousa Dias

was born in Lisbon, Portugal. She has exhibited her films at international film festivals and art exhibitions worldwide including at Viennale, Visions du Réel, Sarajevo IFF, Torino FF, Mar del Plata Independent FF, PhotoEspaña, and Documenta. She lectures at the Fine Arts Faculty at the University of Lisbon.

O-P
Zlatko Ćosić

was born in Banja Luka, former Yugoslavia. Ćosić's work spans from short films and video and sound installations, to theater projections and live audio-visual performances. His themes often relate to issues of identity, immigration, and the complexity of living in a new environment, concentrating on the necessity to embrace cultural differences and establish dialogue among people.

Part Four | Reading... 1–6 Contributors
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