Saturday, January 25, 19:00
Radicalizing speculation: emancipatory imagination in an age of future fatigue
Hosted by Jorge Vega, with Edna Bonhomme and guest TBA
Octavia Butler called Science Fiction ‘the freest genre in existence,’ based on the author’s perceived freedom to define their own limits or boundaries, especially those that transcend the limits or boundaries of contemporary society. The power of speculative fiction lies in its capacity to conjure what Ursula K Le Guin identified as ‘realism of a large reality.’
More often than not, speculation is tied to the future. And the future as territory is subject to the same historical dynamics of colonization, exploitation, appropriation, co-optation, and commodification: at best to sell technoscientific solutionism and humanize market narratives, at worst to normalize – in its mass media incarnation – the state of emergency and its ideologies of self-alienation and collective nihilism.
When can speculation transcend its aesthetic and recreational consumption, into the realm of transformative change? Whose voices and which values set the metaphorical conditions that can guide our escape from Mark Fisher’s capitalist realism or realize Angela Davis’ vision of Critical Resistance? And how, both as an artistic and political practice, might speculative fiction become what adrienne maree brown called a “way to practice the future together”?
In this discussion circle we’ll invite researchers and practitioners rooted in speculative practices and future narratives to shed light on how they approach and understand Speculative Fiction, especially that framed by narratives from Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC), and generally responding to the need for alternative visions of futures built on transformative change, multi-species emancipation, planetary healing, and restorative justice.
This discussion circle is invited by Luiza Pado de O. Martins as part of her residency at TIER, In Weaving Shared Soil.
Edna Bonhomme is an activist, historian, writer, curator, and lecturer whose research interrogates disease, gender, surveillance, and embodiment. Edna earned a PhD in history of science at Princeton University with a dissertation that examined plagued bodies and spaces in North Africa and the Middle East. She is also co-host of the podcast Decolonization in Action. Her creative work is guided by diasporic futures, herbal healing, and bionic beings. Follow her on Twitter @jacobinoire
Jorge Vega. Born in Puerto Rico (1987). For the past 8 years has worked as an ethnographer and design researcher, in places like São Paulo, Lyon, Guangzhou, and Jeddah. The output varied, but most projects have involved understanding emerging systems and behaviors, often demystifying the technologies and cultural context underpinning them. Speculative fiction and narratives and symbols pertaining to the social imaginary of the future underpin his work.
He is currently focused on artistic and projects under ‘Peripheral Intuitions,’ an ongoing collaboration with artist Chaveli Sifre. They mix artistic interventions, immersive spaces, and education guided by the senses as a way to break from logic-driven oppression while championing cultures in flux and marginalized subjectivities as agents for collective change.
Thursday, January 9, 19:00
Audre Lorde — The Berlin Years 1984 to 1992 (2012)
With Dagmar Schultz (Director) and Ika Hügel-Marshall (Script co-writer)
Audre Lorde’s incisive, often-angry, but always brilliant writings and speeches defined and inspired the US-American feminist, lesbian, African-American, and Women-of-Color movements of the 1970s and 1980s. Audre Lorde – the Berlin Years 1984 to 1992 documents an untold chapter of Lorde’s life: her influence on the German political and cultural scene during a decade of profound social change. The film explores the importance of Lorde’s legacy, as she encouraged Afro-Germans—who, at that time, had no name or space for themselves—to make themselves visible within a culture that until then had kept them isolated and silent. It chronicles Lorde’s empowerment of Afro-German women to write and to publish, as she challenged white women to acknowledge the significance of their white privilege and to deal with difference in constructive ways. Previously unreleased archive material as well as present-day interviews explore the lasting influence of Lorde’s ideas on Germany and the impact of her work and personality. For the first time, Dagmar Schultz’s personal archival video- and audio-recordings reveal a significant part of the private Audre Lorde as well as her agenda—to rouse Afro-Germans to recognize each other. 2012 marked the 20-year anniversary of Audre Lorde’s passing.
The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director and screenwriter Dagmar Schultz, as well as co-author Ika Hügel-Marshall — friends and collaborators of Audre Lorde during her years in Berlin.
Dagmar Schultz is a German sociologist, filmmaker, publisher and professor. She has taught seminars on issues related to women’s studies, race, immigration, and class at Columbia College Chicago, Freie Universität Berlin, State University of New York, and Alice Solomon Hochschule. In 1974, she established together with a few fellow campaigners Orlanda Verlag, a book publishing house specialized on feminist literature, and a feminist women’s health center.
Ika Hügel-Marshall is a German artist and psychological consultant with an intercultural focus. Intense colored graphics and the imaginative processing of finds from wood are her specialty. In 1998, she published the autobiographical novel “Invisible Woman: Growing Up Black in Germany” about her life as a daughter of a Black officer from the United States army and a white German woman through Orlanda Verlag.
This screening is presented by Luiza Pado de O. Martins as part of her residency at TIER, In Weaving Shared Soil.
In Weaving Shared Soil
In this long-term project, TIER will become home to a small garden of plants traditionally used in Latin American and Northern European herbal medicine as aphrodisiacs and fertility enhancers. In promoting this encounter between distinct onto-epistemological traditions, the garden means to nurture discussions around matters of decolonisation, care and affect, the production of scarcity under capitalism, and the control of reproductive technologies.
Luiza Prado de O. Martins is an artist and researcher whose work engages with material and visual culture through the lenses of decolonial and queer theories. She is particularly interested in technologies and practices related to fertility and contraception, and their entanglements with colonial hierarchies of gender, race, ethnicity, class, and nationality. Her current artistic research project, titled “A Topography of Excesses,” examines the transmission of indigenous and folk knowledges about herbal reproductive medicine in Brazil as a decolonising practice of radical care.
Friday, July 26, 19:00
Were we never fish
Intervention by Sophie Erlund and Stephen Kent
Space is limited to 20 participants
“Were We Never Fish”
Intercorpereity, according to the italian neuroscientist Vittorio Gallese, is a term used to describe when mirror neurons make us experience the actions of another as if we were performing the same actions ourselves. The mirror neurons are connected to our sense of empathy and is part of how we develop a sense of connectedness.
The we-ness we might feel together could be extrapolated upon in our connectivity with objects. Through the use of symbols, we create parallels in objects in order to navigate meaning and placement within our perceptions of reality.
In variations of myth making and oral traditions our relationship with objects can be a guide in establishing the self. Perhaps, as we mirror ourselves through symbols, a play of intercorpereity extended through objects, becomes part of our interconnected paths of meaning.
With a guided evening of sound, food, images and objects paired with an exercise in oral meditations on the fish, we allow for an exploration of how we navigate interconnectivity through symbols.
Stephen Kent (Pennsylvania ’85) received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Pennsylvania State University and a Master of Fine Arts from Cranbrook Academy of Art. He has been a student at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Maine, and received a Fellowship at the Oxbow School of Art and Artist residency in Michigan. In 2013 he moved to Berlin where he has continued to work around ideas of historical image production through the decorative gesture and the exploration of cultural codes embedded in everyday objects. He has recently exhibited with Elephant Kunsthall in Norway, Good Weather Gallery in the U.S., LVL 3 in Chicago, Philipp Haverkampf Galerie in Berlin, and has an upcoming exhibition at Die Brücke Museum. He is also the co-founder of Daydreamers.biz, a continual online exhibition platform exploring the intersection of art blog aesthetics and hotel rental sites.
Sophie Erlund (b. 1978) is a danish born artist living and working in Berlin. She researches architecture as a synonym for the human body and mind, creating sculptures, installations and complex soundscapes, which deal with the central theme of transition and understanding the world through the irrational mind. Sophie Erlund’s work has been exhibited in galleries and institutions as well as participated in biennials across Europe and the US. She received a BA of Fine Art with Honours from Central St. Martins College of Art and Design (London) in 2003 and has been working in Berlin since. She has been represented by PSM since 2009 and recently had her 4th solo show with the gallery, which comprised of a large audio/visual, immersive installation.
Excitingly Hands.on.matter invites you to this 5th event. We will on the arrival of summer celebrate how flowers, plants and trees are blooming and growing. Looking deeper into these green matters you will find cellulose, which can be used as a source of material! At the end of this event we will try something new! We will see if we can make our own paper out of some of the kitchen waste and gardening leftovers we already find at home.
Julia Perera is invited to discuss how ancient production practices can guide us to circular/ sustainable innovation. Her “bast shoe” project will illustrate what thinkers such as the co-author of “Cradle to Cradle”, William McDonough, have hinted at already: Innovation can be found by looking backward.
Anton Richter showcases with his 100% Asparagus project how the inedible parts of asparagus are ideal for bowl making among others with its high degree of natural binding materials, as well as flexibility and stability.
Kanako Ishii hangs up her second largescale curtain painting at The Institute for Endotic Research as a part of this fifth hands.on.matter event. The imagery is found in the neighbouring Bohemian-Rixdorf garden.
The presentations will be followed by a hands-on workshop. Food and gardening leftovers serve as the input for beautiful paper making. Orange peels, nettle and hay among others will be used to experiment with different recipes.
Learn more about natural fibers – come and experiment with us!
MORE ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTIONS
JULIA PERERA: Julia Perera (HU) is a designer and stylist that recently graduated with a B.A. in fashion design from University of Applied Sciences (Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft in Berlin). Perera focuses on circular design practices. Consistently challenging the conventional approach throughout her studies, she experimented with upcycling, zero waste and 3D printing. She has co-organized multiple Open Source Circular Economy Days events, a global hackathon series that advocates creating a truly sustainable economy with the help of open source methods of collaboration.
Julia is interested in everything it takes to get there, especially the question how to make people connect emotionally to circular fashion practices.
ANTON RICHTER: Anton Richter (DE) is a product designer currently studying at Kunsthochschule Weißensee. Here he started his project “100% Asparagus”. What looks like wood chips or straw at first glance reveal itself as the outer layer of asparagus. During drying, the white and soft peel turns into a brownish and durable material with wood-like properties. With suitable processing, a fibre composite material can be produced, which consists entirely of asparagus peel, as they don‘t require any binder due to their own bonding properties. The particularly long fibers also allow a high degree of flexibility and stability. Both surfaces and bodies can be pressed, modeled and folded. In spite of its robust nature, the material is easy to dissolve and can be returned into its natural cycle.
KANAKO ISHII: Kanako Ishii is a Japanese visual artist born in Tokyo who spent her early childhood in Frankfurt am Main. Since 2012 she is based in Berlin. Ishii has held solo exhibitions at Künstlerhaus Bethanien (2018), Japanese-German Center Berlin (2015), Goethe-Institut Tokyo (2014), among others.
“Re-Landscape” is a long-term curtain project by Kanako Ishii that captures memories of views from windows that change as time goes on, through processes such as urban development, natural disaster, war damage or leaving one’s own place. In her ongoing intervention at The Institute for Endotic Research, Ishii’s curtains will be layered one after another in the storefront window to represent the four seasons. It is developed through a walk based on research about the neighborhood, especially regarding the history of the Bohemian refugees who fled to Rixdorf in the 18th century, and will eventually become a situated visual archive.
Monday, April 15, 19:00
Hands.on.matter: Regeneration and Soil. feat. Ivana Palčić
Bimonthly program organized by Sandra Nicoline Nielsen and Tim van der Loo
Hands.on.matter invites you to its 4th event. In the face of spring we will be looking into the matter of soil; how soil is a living matter, what components soil is made of, how we keep soil healthy, and how soil is a part of cycles of re- as well as degeneration. Ivana Palčić will be sharing her knowledge on the matter.
The format of the event is based on an expert presentation, a workshop (we will be making seed bombs!) and an exposition by two material practitioners. Ayumi Matsuzaka showcases her entrepreneurial biodegradable diaper project, Dycle. Christian Frank Müller exemplifies a hidden design potential found in soil through his animal seedling coffins.
IVANA PALCIC: Ivana Palčić (HR) holds a Master in organic agriculture and Agrotourism. Agriculture has played an integral role in Ivana’s life for as long as she can remember. Growing up on a farm inspired her to enroll in an Agricultural Studies Master program in Croatia. As a student, she actively participated in various projects involving sustainable agricultural development. She collaborated with professors, local government authorities and fellow students to build a Zero Carbon programme for urban development in Austria. She spent 3 months at North Carolina State University, where she helped local residents and faculty at the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS). After the 2013 hurricane, alongside with other students and faculty members she transformed a barren landfill into a community garden. Following her formal education she was assistant manager at the oldest organic based business in SE Europe “Biovega” GmBH. She recently moved to Berlin to pursuit her passion in social gardening, organic agriculture combined with enology and gastronomy.
CHRISTIAN FRANK MUELLER: Christian Frank Müller (DE) is a multi skilled designer, with a specialisation in textile and surface design, and research assistant at Kunsthochschule Berlin Weißensee. He realises a wide range of different projects along his themes of diversity and details and simplicity with a twist.
With his project Animal Coffin (2012) he investigated waste and how it could be transformed into a new material. Starting with only using natural, biodegradable materials like hair, flour, vinegar, starch and coffee leftovers he created a new material.
With the properties of the material and quote of Antoine Lavoisier ‘Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed’ in mind he designed an animal coffin. After burying your beloved pet in this coffin the material will start to biodegrade and the coffin including the corpse will be nutrient for the soil and the seeds implanted in the coffin. The deceased animal will be transformed into a tree.
AYUMI MATSUZAKA: Ayumi Matsuzaka (JP) holds a Bachelor degree in Fine Arts from Nihon University College of Art, Tokyo, Japan, and a Master’s degree in Planning and realization of Visual Art from IUAV (Institute Universitario Di Architettura Venezia) Venice, Italy. Ayumi’s practice pivots around social experiments that explore the bizarre, disgust and emotional attachment through longer term performative engagements with her participants. Bodily waste has become input for Ayumi’s later work, as in Future Beer Cycle, which is beer brewed on urine, and her latest entrepreneurial occupation, Dycle, where used diapers are incorporated in a community cycle.
DYCLE: Dycle is a fundamentally new way of how baby diapers are to be produced, used and recycled, or rather upcycled, when they are no longer a waste but a nutrient for plants, transformed into fertile soil. The project will create small communities of around 100 families each living in the same neighbourhood, meeting regularly at the diapers distribution/collection points, planting fruit trees together, living their lives in a more connected way.
Saturday, March 16, 18:00–21:00
Hand to mouth
Ayami Awazuhara and Elia Nurvista
For a one evening event at TIER, Elia Nurvista and Ayami Awazuhara invite the audience to share their thought through foods, how eating habits or the basic nourishment of one’s own culture travels as a body travels.
A hand of someone, large, small, bold, thin or boney is different and individual. A hand has temperature and sensory function, and the skin and lines on the palm shows how we have aged. Not only thinking of where the food is from, from a field to mouth through a marketplace and kitchen, who has touched the food? Who shared the warmth of their hands with the food you just ate?
Ayami shares her two recipes that use fermentation. There will be a demonstration and tasting of pickles in wheat bran and gazpacho with left over rice water. Fermentation as an alternative clock of endurance, she shares the idea of food as medicinal usage for both body and mind.
Elia questions the invisible structure of food preparation and how it is related with domestic work and the activity of caring, usually taken for granted as a wife/woman/mother’s job in the family. She will prepare some home/soul food from Indonesia in the kitchen, which is considered a private space but whose integral activity of cooking will be projected into the public space at TIER. Through this event, she intends to discuss hospitality and invisible labour, both in daily life in the art scene.
Ayami Awazuhara looks for the consequences of hybrid cultural appropriation and transitional processes in the everyday and omnipresent.
A stone, or an orange can become a starting point for a reflection on systems of classification as well as their impact on the design of our world of experience. This practice results in installations, artist’s books, videos and photographs as well as in performances and sound pieces by means of which Awazuhara introduces the phenomena considered into communicative situations, thereby altering the phenomena themselves.
Elia Nurvista (*1983 Yogyakarta, Indonesia) is a young Indonesian artist whose practice focuses on food production and distribution and its broader social and historical implications. Food in various forms — from the planting of crops, to the act of eating and the sharing of recipes — are Nurvista’s entry point to exploring issues of economics, labour, politics, culture and gender. Her practice is also concerned with the intersection between food and commodities, and their relationship to colonialism, economic and political power, and status. She runs Bakudapan, a food study group that undertakes community and research projects, and her social research forms the background of her individual projects, presented through mixed media installations, food workshops and group discussion. Her previous installations use a range of materials from crystalline sugar sculptures to sacks of rice, often incorporating video or mural painting and an element of audience interaction. She lives and works in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.