On Ocean Intelligence
Master Symposium of the Art Institute in collaboration with TBA21–Academy
• Public day: April 12, 2018, 10 am – 5 pm, Atelier Building, room A 0.11
On Ocean Intelligence
“I decided to name this three-year cycle on artistic intelligence, philosophy, science and nature the ‘Spheric Ocean’. The Ocean is spherical because it is not beside the earth nor below it, but all around it. Its form is not what our eyes see, or not only. Its reality cannot be separated nor told apart from anything else on the lived earth, and therefore it poses a demand on us: the need for a philosophy to help us exercise the Ocean. It is difficult to describe what we are aiming for. I would say we are aiming for a philosophy more than anything else. It would be wrong to think that when one says ‘Ocean,’ one is naming a ‘subject.’ One could be as radical as stating that to say ‘Ocean’ is, today, to say ‘art.’ Art without the burden of institutional life, without the ideological twists of cultural politics, art as a practice that belongs and should belong to the artists, art facing the urgency of socializing with all those that care about life. Or, in other words, to say ‘Ocean’ is to replace the historical notion of the avant-garde with a code that is not determined by form and the invention of new gestures, but by an investigation of the substance of life, identifying this as the mission of art.” Full text on e-flux.com
Chus Martínez, Head of the Art Institute HGK FHNW in Basel
and Expedition Leader of TBA21–Academy’s The Current II: “Spheric Ocean”
The new interest in nature is not naming a new trend, but the necessity to expand our public space inhabiting it, not only with the institutionalized presence of art and culture, but with questions that represent a transformation on the way we think about the role of art and artists in the invention of a new ground to sense the future. Nature, and so the Oceans, name a complete revolution in the way we sense, in the way we relate organic and non-organic life, in the way we understand gender, generative life, power and life.
The first day of the symposium will be dedicated to sharing the context and the experience of “To Find the Vegan Lion,” TBA21–Academy’s first “The Current” expedition under the leadership of Chus Martínez that took place March 9 – 24 in New Zealand. Francesca von Habsburg, founder of TBA21 and Markus Reymann, director of TBA21–Academy will introduce the program they initiated almost a decade ago on the relationship of art and artists with the understanding of the Oceans. The participants of this first expedition were: Julieta Aranda, Claudia Comte, Francesca von Habsburg, Eduardo Navarro, Ingo Niermann, Markus Reymann, Albert Serra, Teresa Solar and Roman Bayarri as cameraman. Some of them will be present this day and will share their experiences but also discuss the general conditions of a program aimed at creating a different relation with scientists, with the environment and the role art and artists play in expanding traditional notions of experience. We will also introduce the summer school we are planning from September 24– 30 in Venice, and open to our Master’s students.
DAY 1: Open to the public
April 12, 2018, Atelier Building, room A 0.11
10 am – 1 pm: Part I – on Spheric Ocean
Julieta Aranda, Francesca Habsburg, Chus Martínez, Ingo Niermann, Markus Reymann and Teresa Solar
Francesca von Habsburg, founder of TBA21, and Markus Reymann, director of TBA21–Academy, will present the work of their foundation, their investment in creating a new working and research ground for artists and scientists, as well as their initiative to open a permanent art and research space on the Ocean in Venice. They will also introduce Patricia Francis, with whom they are currently working.
A short series of presentations, and round table will follow with: Julieta Aranda, Patricia Francis, Francesca Habsburg, Chus Martínez, Markus Reymann and Teresa Solar. Moderation: Ingo Niermann
1 pm – 2 pm: Lunch Break
2 pm – 4 pm: Part II – Dialog about the Agency of the Ocean
Julieta Aranda, Ingo Niermann and Teresa Solar
4 pm: Summary and Discussion
DAY 2: Only for students
April 13, 2018
The second day of the symposium will be dedicated to two subjects: “The Ocean” and “The Land.”
10 am – 1 pm: Workshops with Julieta Aranda and Fernando García-Dory
One group will work with Julieta Aranda, whose work addresses energy, the politics of water as well as the capacity of some animas to change form. She will reflect on the importance of seeing nature and the oceans as a crucial expansion possibility for artistic research and artistic practice, but she also will link nature with the development of technology and the question of time.
Fernando García-Dory has been investing a great deal of his practice to understanding the role of non-urban knowledges and practices. He has been in contact with farmers and shepherds all over Europe and other parts of the world to understand the ancient routes of animals, traditional ways of growing plants in water – aquaponics –, and he is currently developing the collaborative platform INLAND, that combines cultural and farm production recovering a desert village in the mountains of Northern Spain amongst other actions. Art production and sustainability go hand in hand in his thinking.
1 pm – 2 pm: Lunch Break
2 pm: Final Discussion and Debate
About TBA21-Academy and The Current
TBA21–Academy, founded by Francesca von Habsburg in 2011, and drawing on her experience as a producer of cross-disciplinary art installations and socially engaged cultural programming, leads artists, scientists, and thought-leaders on expeditions of collaborative discovery. TBA21–Academy under the directorship of Markus Reymann is guided by its mission to foster a deeper understanding of the ocean through the lens of art and a belief in the power of exchange between disciplines to engender solutions for the ocean’s most pressing issues. Chus Martínez will envision three expeditions of The Current ’s second cycle. The Current is TBA21–Academy’s three-year field study programme for artists, cultural agents and scientists. Its aim is to value the crucial role artistic intelligence plays in understanding the radical reality of our climate, as well as to help us engage emotionally and cognitively with the ocean and all who inhabit it.