Undoing the Trap of The Planetary Shift

From bioplastic cookbooks to multispecies speculative fictions: five new web residencies by Solitude & ZKM have started, selected by curator Mary Maggic.

Juror's Statement by Mary Maggic — Jan 17, 2019

Header, »Planetary Glitch«, 2018

Multispecies speculative fictions, bioplastic cookbooks, cephalopod training tutorials, YouTube chatroom roulettes & eatings, and VR-storytelling – five new projects from Indonesia, Thailand, Lebanon, and the US are selected by curator Mary Maggic for the web residencies by Solitude & ZKM. This time, the topic was »Planetary Glitch«. Against the background of climate change, rising sea-levels and the chemical alteration and industrialization of the planet, the call asked for new open–source strategies for undoing the trap of this planetary shift. Read Maggics juror’s statement and have a look at the concepts by the artists, designers, and storytellers: Natasha Gabriella Tontey, Tiare Ribeaux, Jennifer Katanyoutanant, Bassem Saad, Miriam Simun.

»From Pest to Power«
by Natasha Gabriella Tontey

Indonesian artist and graphic designer Natasha Gabriella Tontey has a brilliant portfolio and a clever aesthetic that pokes at our deepest, darkest fears. The cockroach alludes to this gut fear, and Tontey plans to use speculative fiction in the form of texts, recipes, and codes to propose an interspecies kinship with the cockroach that survives beyond our hyper-sterile capitalist desires.

Natasha Gabriella Tontey, »From Pest to Power«, 2019, Planetary Glitch


»Bioplastics Cookbook for Ritual Healing from Petrochemical Landscapes«
by Tiare Ribeaux

The Bioplastics Cookbook by Tiare Ribeaux perhaps answers the open call the most directly, channeling the 3D Additivist Cookbook and its open-source ethos for combatting an irreparable planetary problem, such as the overproduction of plastics. Tiare Ribeaux plans to supplement her extensive documentation of recipes, texts, and photos on DIY bioplastics with mythologies and stories of plastic entanglements, offering visions of new material relationships.

Tiare Ribeaux, »Bioplastics Cookbook for Ritual Healing from Petrochemical Landscapes«, 2018, Planetary Glitch


»The Dinner Table: Reconstructing Mukbang Live Streaming«
by Jennifer Katanyoutanant

The Korean YouTube phenomenon of Mukbang – live overeating on the Internet – embodies a culture of excess and consumption and a very real material consequence of web use, causing an imbalance in our global food supply chain. Jennifer Katanyoutanant approaches this topic by creating an online dinner table. Its guests and hosts are confronted with alternatives and awareness of the problems of online indulgent media.

Jennifer Katanyoutanant, »The Dinner Table: Reconstructing Mukbang Live Streaming«, 2018, Planetary Glitch


»All Cared for by Chains And Loops«
by Bassem Saad

Artist and writer Bassem Saad proposed a site-specific storytelling of the garbage crisis in Beirut and plans to address the issue through 3D objects, architecture and fictional narration. This will call attention to the hypocrisy of for-profit waste management programs that only serve to bring further toxicity to the region.

Bassem Saad, »All Cared for by Chains And Loops«, 2018, Planetary Glitch


»Training Transhumanism (I WANT TO BECOME A CEPHALOPOD)«
by Miriam Simun

Interdisciplinary artist Miriam Simun asks us to become cephalopods in the wake of rising sea levels and watery realities. Rather than taking the stereotypical transhumanist approach of using high technology and gene modification, Simun proposes we use physical training, a strategy that is founded in equity across race, class, and gender.

Miriam Simun, »Training Transhumanism (I WANT TO BECOME A CEPHALOPOD)«, 2018, Planetary Glitch


Mary Maggic

Mary Maggic is a non-binary artist working at the intersection of biotechnology, cultural discourse, and civil disobedience. Their work spans documentary video, scientific methodology, public workshopology, performance, and large scale installation. Maggic’s most recent projects Open Source Estrogen and Estrofem! Lab generate DIY protocols for the extraction and detection of estrogen hormone from bodies and environments, demonstrating its micro-performativity and potential for mutagenesis, i.e. gender-hacking. They hold a BSA in Biological Science and Art from Carnegie Mellon University and a MS in Media Arts and Sciences from MIT Media Lab and have had the privilege to exhibit and/or perform at Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), OK Center (Linz), Haus der elektronischen Kunst (Basel), Jeu de Paume (Paris), Institute of Contemporary Arts (London), and Spring Workshop (Hong Kong).

Natasha Tontey

Natasha Tontey is an artist and designer based in Yogyakarta, interested in exploring the concept of fiction as a method of speculative thinking. Through her artistic practice, she investigates how fear, horror, and terror could be manifested to control the public. Her works have been shown internationally in the Next Wave Festival ’16, the Koganecho Bazaar ’15, and the Instrument Builders Project–Kyoto Art Centre. She recently held a solo exhibition at Cemeti Institute for Art and Society in Yogyakarta.

Tiare Ribeaux

Tiare Ribeaux is a Hawaiian-American new media and interdisciplinary artist and curator based in the Bay Area. As an interdisciplinary artist, her work explores the entanglements of human technologies, biology, and infrastructures with mythologies, the environment, and microbial/nonhuman species. She is interested in living systems, deep/dark/media ecology, rhizomatic networks, speculative futures, multispecies and collaborative entanglements. She is the founder and artistic director of B4BEL4B gallery, cofounded REFRESH Art, Science, and Technology, curated the Soundwave ((7)) Biennial in 2016, and runs art-science workshops out of Counter Culture Labs. She has produced visual arts, new media, and performance arts events focused on radical inclusivity, and critical and cultural dialogue for more than five years.

She recently completed an international artist fellowship as part of the ZERO1 American Arts Incubator in Kiev, Ukraine, and has shown work both nationally and internationally, including Southern Exposure, the Museum of Capitalism, IZOLYATSIA, Transmediale, ISEA Hong Kong, and Tokyo Fashion Week. She has worked with the de Young Museum, California Academy of Sciences, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, Fort Mason Center for the Arts, and the Oakland Museum of California, among others.

Jennifer Katanyoutanant

Jennifer Katanyoutanant is an artist, creative producer, and founder of Made in Asia, a new media consultancy and Creative Tech Lab that uses the power of storytelling and immersive media to better connect with and learn from local communities. She’s interested in using social aspects of interactive art and technology to find common ground between seemingly different cultures. Most recently, Jennifer collaborated with a small group of foragers, artists, hackers, and writers and conducted a series of interactive feasts in Thailand called DinnerCons. They cooked with local Thai community, foraged jungle ingredients, and exhibited the intricacies and unique flavor profiles of Thai cuisine through sculptures, design, and games. It is the group’s starting point for exploring how food crosses boundaries in unexpected ways.

Bassem Saad

Bassem Saad is an artist/writer born on 9/11 and trained in architecture. His work deals with future visualization and simulation, queer fear, identity-based space and knowledge production, and market exchanges and/or interfaces that include affect, bodily pleasure, and care. Recently his work was shown in the Dutch Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennial. His video work has recently been screened in Beirut, Paris, and Rimini, and he has spoken at Harvard University VES. He has also written for ArteEast, FailedArchitecture, Jadaliyya, and other publications. He is currently a resident fellow at Ashkal Alwan’s Home Workspace Program in Beirut.

Miriam Simun

Miriam Simun is an interdisciplinary artist whose work is about the collision of bodies (human and non-human) with rapidly evolving techno-ecosystems. Bodies … seeping into the world as the world seeps back into us…pleasure is important, as is pain. I work in multiple formats including drawing, writing, performance, installation, scent, video, and sculpture. I am interested in tales of survival.

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