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23 NOVEMBER 2014

Protofarm 2050: guide to free farming (urban agricultural speculation)

"Design Indaba invited five designers to look beyond the possibilities and predictions currently in the public domain. Futurefarmers, 5.5 designers, Dunne&Raby, Revital Cohen and Frank Tjepkema each created a unique vision of the year 2050 with increased urbanisation and population, limited natural resources, climate challenges and digital–biological integration. Defining farming as the sustainable cultivation of a renewable resource, Design Indaba presented Protofarm 2050 at the ICSID World Design Congress in Singapore from 23 to 25 November [2009]."

(Design Indaba)

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TAGS

20092050 • 5.5 designers • agricultural futures • agricultureAnthony Dunne • Anthony Lebosse • bookletcamouflage • Cape Town Design Festival • Claire Renard • climate challenges • climate change • dandelion • dark humour • Design Indaba • designers • digital-biological integration • Dunne and Raby • edible fauna • edible flora • ethical consumptionfarmingFiona Rabyfishingflora and faunafood • food design • food gathering activitiesfood security • food system • Frank Tjepkema • fruit • Futurefarmers (artist collective) • gleaning • hunting and gathering tactics • ICSID World Design Congress • Jean-Sebastien Blanc • leftovers • limited natural resources • meat consumption • Paris • pate • pigeon • poodlepopulation growth • Protofarm 2050 • prototype tools • rat • renewable resource • Revital Cohen • Seine • Singaporesite-specific interventionsSouth Africa • speculative approaches • speculative designspeculative proposals • speculative scenarios • speculative urbanism • starlingssustainabilitysustainable consumption • sustainable cultivation • tactical behaviourtactics • urban food • urbanisation • Vincent Baranger

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
02 NOVEMBER 2014

Exhibition about the use of self-education as an emancipation tactic

Exhibition: "Really Useful Knowledge", 29 October 2014 – 9 February 2015 / Sabatini Building, Floor 1, Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid.

"The notion of 'really useful knowledge' emerged at the beginning of the 19th century alongside the workers' awareness of the need for self–education. In the 1820s and 1830s, working class organisations in the UK introduced this phrase to describe a body of knowledge that encompassed various 'unpractical' disciplines such as politics, economy and philosophy, as opposed to the 'useful knowledge' proclaimed by business owners who had previously begun to invest more heavily in their companies' progress through financing workers' education in 'applicable' disciplines like engineering, physics, chemistry and mathematics. In this reference to the long–forgotten class struggles of early capitalism, the title of the exhibition suggests an inquiry into 'really useful knowledge' from a contemporary perspective.

The exhibition endeavours to position the notion of critical pedagogy as a crucial element in collective struggles, and explore the tension between individual and social emancipation through education with examples that are both historical and current, and their relation to organisational forms capable of leading unified resistance to the reproduction of capital. In doing so, the exhibition highlights the collective utilization of public resources, action and experiments, either forgotten or under threat of eradication, taking the museum as a pedagogical site devoted to the analysis of artistic forms interconnected with actual or desired social relations."

(Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía)

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TAGS

19th century2014alternative educational models • authorised discourse • body of knowledgecapitalist structurescapitalist values • class struggles • collective action • collective struggles • critical pedagogy • early 19th century • early capitalism • early modern periodeducation and employmenteducation system • emancipation through education • everyday understanding • exhibition • folk knowledge • hegemonic discoursehegemony • historical models • inculcation of capitalist values • inculcation of values through education • individual emancipation • industrial educationindustrial model of educationknowledge is powerMadridMuseo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia • organisational forms • political actionpower and agencyproper • really useful knowledge • reproduction of capitalreproduction of social relations of production • self-education • social emancipation • social hierarchiessocial historytactical behaviour • unified resistance • unpractical disciplines • useful knowledge • workers education • working class • working class organisations

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
17 OCTOBER 2008

Situationist cinema attempt to critique capitalist consumption practices

"Debord's mode of cinematic situation construction owes much to Marx's understanding of the relationship between production and alienation, especially as articulated in the Economico-Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844. For Marx, the commodification of labour in a capitalist society means the loss of reality for the worker; in turn, the subsequently produced commodity ensures her simultaneous loss of and bondage to the object produced. Situationist cinema reverses this trend by refusing to produce any new filmic 'work', any reified artifact for consumption whose potential exchange value might negate the use-value acquired in its spatio-temporal projection and the subsequent construction of an indeterminately meaningful event.

Debord picks up Marxian concepts that the Marxist tradition hitherto had all but ignored, frequently echoing Marx's conclusion that alienation appears as the true induction into civil life, and, even more significantly, his observation and critique of 'commodity fetishism' in capitalist society. (3) The spectacle, Debord argues, thrives on the repetition of commodity form, reinvesting the structure with seemingly new products and images. By compiling image after image of the commodification of life by consumer capitalism (female bodies, political figures, product advertisements, popular films, and so on), his films expose this oppressive repetition and artificial sense of the new, and, as if to help along one of the most problematic concepts in Marx's work, Society of the Spectacle (1973) ponders the commodity's 'metaphysical subtleties' while sequentially imaging automobile showrooms and naked cover girls."

(Ricky Crano, 2007)

Crano, R. (2007). "Guy Debord and the Aesthetics of Cine-Sabotage." Senses of Cinema.

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CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
21 NOVEMBER 2005

Tactical Behaviour Vs Strategic Planning

"I call a 'strategy' the calculus of force–relationships which becomes possible when a subject of will and power (a proprietor, an enterprise, a city, a scientific institution) can be isolated from an 'environment.' A strategy assumes a place that can be circumscribed as proper (propre) and thus serve as the basis for generating relations with an exterior distinct from it (competitors, adversaries, 'clienteles,' 'targets,' or 'objects' of research). Political, economic, and scientific rationality has been constructed on this strategic model.

I call a 'tactic,' on the other hand, a calculus which cannot count on a 'proper' (a spatial or institutional localization), nor thus on a borderline distinguishing the other as a visible totality. The place of a tactic belongs to the other.[20] A tactic insinuates itself into the other's place, fragmentarily, without taking it over in its entirety, without being able to keep it at a distance. It has at its disposal no base where it can capitalize on its advantages, prepare its expansions, and secure independence with respect to circumstances. The 'proper' is a victory of space over time. On the contrary, because it does not have a place, a tactic depends on time–it is always on the watch for opportunities that must be seized 'on the wing.' Whatever it wins, it does not keep. It must constantly manipulate events in order to turn them into 'opportunities.' The weak must continually turn to their own ends forces alien to them. This is achieved in the propitious moments when they are able to combine heterogeneous elements (thus, in the supermarket, the housewife confronts heterogeneous and mobile data–what she has in the refrigerator, the tastes, appetites, and moods of her guests, the best buys and their possible combinations with what she already has on hand at home, etc.); the intellectual synthesis of these given elements takes the form, however, not of a discourse, but of the decision itself, the act and manner in which the opportunity is 'seized.'"

(Michel de Certeau, 2011)

Michel de Certeau (2011). "The Practice of Everyday Life", University of California Press; 3rd Revised edition edition (11 Nov 2011).

[20] The works of P. Bourdieu and those of M. Détienne and J.–P. Vernant make possible the notion of "tactic" more precise, but the socio–linguistic investigations of H. Garfinkel, H. Sacks, et al. also contribute to this clarification. See notes 9 and 10.

[Michel de Certeau makes a distinction between 'top–down' strategic planning and structure that impose a 'proper' place and behaviour upon subjects of power – for example, the classical score is the proper score, everything mapped out (or at least, that's what the powers that be think – the conservatorium that I was trained in though that all the musical content of a work was IN and ONLY IN the static permanent score, fuck the temporary sounds and performances – logos). Whereas, tactical behaviours comes from the 'bottom–up', guerrilla style, in which there is no proper place for things, no condensation of activities into discursive or commercial commodities. Shit happens is kind of what it means. Improvisational, tactical ways of operating that aren't solely bounded by strategies from above. This is the political potential of Jazz, freeing up listeners and performers to be with the immediate moments of sound and play. What is tactical planning and tactical structure then? It must be a minimal way in which to encourage guerrilla behaviour without denying it. Blogging and Picture communities on the net might be examples, but think then of how corporates try to take over this spontaneous communal grass–roots activity and commodify it (Wrigley's Juicy Fruit gum tried to market themselves through a corporate blog about how fictional 'Fred' loved it some much and found many tactical uses for it beyond chewing it). When Jazz improv becomes codified and taught/assimilated into conservatorium schools, then it loses its purely tactical nature and becomes strategic. Which perhaps is always going to be the case if we agree with Guy Debord that the strategic Spectacle will always come to incorporate the tactical interventionist Fringe.]

TAGS

Edward Laumann • Erving Goffmanfragmentary • guerrilla style • Guy Debord • Harold Garfinkel • Harvey Sacks • has on hand • Jean-Pierre Vernant • Jeremy Boissevain • Joshua Fishman • Marcel Detienne • Marcel Mauss • Michel de CerteauPierre Bourdieuproper • propre • scientific rationalitystrategic modelstrategytactictactical behaviourtactical engagement • victory of space over time
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