PUB VPN (2019)

VPN, Proxy, Infrastructure 1 pieces

PUB VPN (Virtual Pub Network) is a participatory fileserver and artwork. However, whereas archives typically help to create order, the visual interfaces of PUB VPN is location-dependent and coded to intentionally disrupt the user’s scroll. The first encounter with PUB VPN was when it served the purpose of mapping and archiving the graduation show of the Art and Design university Sandberg Instituut (Amsterdam) (2019). Functioning as an open-source instrument, PUB VPN was presented as a framework for circulating knowledge through shared visual, lingual, and vocal material. What makes the case study of PUB VPN of interest is not so much the meaning of the content but the physically dependent disruption of it. Under regular conditions, a server remains static; however, due to the disrupted content of PUB VPN, the server transformed into an active element of the experience. By revealing the doings of the PUB VPN, the PUB VPN tactic was likewise inviting the user to understand the making of its infrastructure.

PUB VPN Network by Agustina Woodgate, Miquel Hervas Gomez, Sascha Krischock

100 Rabbits

Software and solar panel-powered floating 1 pieces

100 Rabbits is a solar panel-powered floating art collective. Living, working, and DIY making minor tech tools from their sailboat at open sea, the setup of 100 Rabbits includes everything from generating the power they need to building the programmes they use (drawing, writing, editing, archiving, coding). When at sea, bandwidth is limited, electricity scarce, and access to information is protocol dependent, effectively the tools and programmes by 100 Rabbits demand simple constructions (to be disassembled, reassembled, and repaired). 100 Rabbits presents a hyper-local scale of how consequences of connectivity limitations and power consumption materialise into creative DIY solutions.

100 Rabbits by Rekka Bellum and Devine Lu Linvega

Cosmos Carl

Website 1 pieces

The digital platform Cosmos Carl presents a website and framework with links to artistic initiatives that appropriate existing commercial platform tools. Amongst the works are projects that modify publicly accessible surveillance cameras (Someplace, somewhere 2020) or intentionally misuses Airbnb to present infrastructures of lakes in Georgia (Petits Filous (26,000 Rivers)). While internet pages are commonly visited with a purpose and directed according to expectations (Bucher 2017), Cosmos Carl playfully challenges such online navigation.

Cosmos Carl, by Frederique Pisuisse and Saemundur Thor Helgason

Neil Beloufa, L’Ennemi de mon ennemi (2018)

Palais de Tokyo, carte blanche 1 pieces

The installation“L’Ennemi de mon ennemi” by French-Algerian artist Neil Beloufa brings together a polyphony of voices and a comprehensive collection of heterogeneous materials. Through an exhausting maze of broad cultural connotations, the installation in different ways reflects digital simulations. With dispersed content, compiled sounds, and infrastructural paths, the compilation of elements reproduces the everyday state of mind associated with online navigation.

Hito Steyerl, This is the Future (2019)

Installation, 58th Venice Art Biennial, Arsenale 1 pieces

Consisting of a web of visual content, projected onto transparent screens, the installation presents a looping 360 degrees video work. In the installation, content moves around the entirety of the space – from walls to floors – and inevitably transforms the visitors into unintentional projection surfaces of the work. "The Future is Here" exemplifies a tendency in contemporary artistic production to adopt, extend, mimic, or “hijack” digital platform environments and logics.

Damaged Earth Catalog

Website, catalog 1 pieces

The Damaged Earth Catalogue, initiated by Marloes de Valk, functions as an “evaluation and access device” for tracing actions and initiatives of collaborative and intimate counter-reactions to capital, commercial, and political power.

There’s an elephant in the room (2019)

Text 1 pieces

"There’s an elephant in the room”(2019) deserves attention as it addresses explicitly the complicated awkwardness of questioning the institutional responsibility to embrace conscious digital consumption.

Drawing on inspiration from the principles of copyleft and Free/Libre software, many projects and collaborations of Constant fit into the oeuvre of Minor Tech and the topic of alternative creative tactics to commercial digital platforms and “There’s an elephant in the room”(2019), deserves attention as it addresses explicitly the complicated awkwardness of questioning the institutional responsibility to embrace conscious digital consumption.

Common Garden, Constant Dulleart (2020)

Digital conference platform 1 pieces

While most larger cultural institutions continue to use larger digital platforms for internal and external communication and events, a few places stand out. In this context, the frame and online conversation platform for the event, Common Garden, is of interest.

As a first step of using Common Garden, you enter the version of what seems to be a non-structured cyber “garden” with clusters of lecture text and images substituting the garden greens. On top of this layer, multiple egg icons bounce around. These are made up of the visitors, speakers, and technical staff for the talks. As the users hover over their individual screens, their assigned egg icon moves accordingly. Like on other meeting platforms, a hierarchy of options exists, and only presenters are audible and viewable. Simulating the natural law of sound and position, the volume of the presenting speaker decreases when hovering away from the icon and increases when placing oneself just next to it.

The conceptual media artist and initiator of Common Garden, Constant Dulleart, is among the floating eggs and explains that Common Garden grew out of the critical observation that cultural institutions increasingly have become dependent on services distributed by large commercial platforms. And that, Common Garden critically resists the capitalization of social media platforms by large tech corporations.