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»Transformation – Unfolding the Future« Online lecture and workshop by Nishant Shah
July 15, 2020: »Transformation – Unfolding the Future« Online lecture and workshop by Nishant Shah
16. July 2020

Now it’s your turn: Nishant Shah invites you to comment on his three-thesis lecture on »The Quantified Future Was Always Scarce: Constant Catastrophization & Computational Counting« using the digital environment PADLET. All questions and discussions will be moderated by the artist Mary Maggic and will be discussed live and online with Nishant Shah on September 2, 2020.

Register now to get access to the digital environment of »Transformation – Unfolding the Future«:
register@akademie-solitude.de


Online lecture and workshop series »Transformation – Unfolding the Future«

Akademie Schloss Solitude is delighted to present its new online lecture and workshop series »Transformation – Unfolding the Future«.

The series brings together international scientists and artists who make significant contributions on the question of how we want to shape our society and our coexistence. In their research, they raise questions on new concepts for social transformations, political invention and solidarity. The role that artists and artistic production plays in the unfolding of the future is at the core of the lecture and workshop series.

The novel digital format is a response both to the global health pandemic and climate crisis, thinking through accessibility and affordances of participation without travel.

It was developed by Nishant Shah, vice-president Research at ArtEZ University of the Arts, The Netherlands, together with Akademie Schloss Solitude. It offers an option of radically rethinking a performance lecture to engage with the distributed and global communities of Akademie Schloss Solitude.

The series consists of a thesis lecture, which will be released online for six weeks. During this time questions, suggestions and feedback can be shared. A moderator from Akademie Schloss Solitude gathers the questions and synthesizes some of the key aspects. In the next step, they will be discussed with the speaker in an online live event. The recordings feed into a growing archive, which will be made permanently accessible on our website.


Nishant Shah: »The Quantified Future Was Always Scarce: Constant Catastrophization & Computational Counting«

Thesis lecture: from July 15, 2020, 7 pm (CET)
Online-workshop: July 15–August 27, 2020, hosted by Mary Maggic
Live event: September 2, 2020, 7 pm (CET)

In the inaugural lecture feminist, humanist, and technologist Nishant Shah speaks about how scarcity of the future has emerged as one of the biggest global anxieties of our times. In his talk, Shah will suggest that the future that is in crisis is a quantified future, and it has some characteristics that it takes from computational counting technologies.  He will argue that the scarcity of futures is something that has been experienced by a large precarious global community for a long time and it has learned to both navigate and cope with this scarcity. Shah examines how the computation of a scarce future is a result of digital shifts and needs to be understood as a form of future while exploring other forms of making sense. Drawing from digital cultures, artificial intelligence developments, social justice movements, feminist epistemology of science and technology, and postcolonial theory, he will attempt to denaturalize the impulses of constant catastrophization enabled by the quantified future, and suggest a new orientation for transformations away from the rhetoric of a scarce quantified future.

Dr. Nishant Shah is a feminist, humanist, technologist who works at examining infrastructures, collectivity, and subjectivity in the digital turn. He is currently the vice-president Research at ArtEZ University of the Arts, The Netherlands, a knowledge partner for the global art-technology Digital Earth Fellowship with Hivos, and a mentor on the Feminist Internet Research Network, with the Association of Progressive Communication. His new book, Really Fake is coming out with the Minnesota University Press in fall 2020. 

Mary Maggic is a non-binary Chinese-American artist currently based in Vienna/Austria. Their work spans amateur science, public workshopology, performance, installation, documentary film, and speculative fiction. Maggic is a current member of the online network Hackteria: Open Source Biological Art and the laboratory theater collective Aliens in Green, as well as a recent contributor to the radical syllabus project Pirate Care. 

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