[-empyre-] Beginning Week 1: Radical Aesthetics, EcoAesthetic Systems and Entanglements

margaretha haughwout margaretha.anne.haughwout at gmail.com
Tue Oct 3 16:10:53 AEDT 2017

Greetings to all on this list and the many species that surround you,

I'd love for the conversations with Valentine, Lissette, and Randall to
seed and nourish our coming weeks together:

We must begin by asking -- what are the radical aesthetics of our
ecological practice? How do we fuse politics and aesthetics in the
more-than-human Capitalocene? How do we understand the work of de-centering
the human and art making, and how does the collapse of the nature/culture
binary figure for us as multispecies artists, activists, collaborative
worlders? Indeed, Lissette's multispecies architecture and decolonial
laboratory introduce engagements that undo conceptions of nature as
ahistorical or apolitical.

And, how do systems figure in our understanding of ecological practice?
Randall and Valentine call for a soil practice, a 'terroirism' that
transforms social practice from a model of art making wholly tied to
neoliberalism to a regenerative art system that can recuperate ecologies
and re/generate matrices of relationships between humans and non-humans.
They introduce  ecoaesthetic systems.

Systems and entanglements. Do systems and systems theory inform our radical
aesthetics of multispecies worlding and ecological art in the Capitalocene?
What happens to our systems and our designs when we tangle with other
species? Do our entanglements uphold our systems, our designs, our
architectures? which ones?



Week 1: Radical Aesthetics, EcoAesthetic Systems and Entanglements

Valentine Cadieux
Professor Valentine Cadieux is Director of Environmental Studies and
Sustainability at Hamline University. Using art and science approaches to
society-environment relations and specifically the political ecology and
moral economy of agrifood systems, she builds publicly-engaged
participatory research processes for students and members of the public to
learn together about differing ways of understanding environments, and to
practice performing and justifying environmental and food system
interventions in collaborative ways.

Her research and teaching focus on how social and environmental practices
can help people negotiate aspirations for equitable, healthy, and
sustainable food systems and residential landscapes. She has developed a
public Food and Society workshop for building collaborative knowledge tools
that help communities build food systems. These tools focus on valuing
existing community assets and capacity — and on understanding what
practices can make food chain relationships sustainable and just, and can
repair social and ecological traumas that have resulted from food
production methods.

Lissette T. Olivares
Lissette T. Olivares is the co-founder and co-director of Sin Kabeza
Productions, an activist collective of researchers who work together as
symbionts. She is a graduate of Vassar College, Peking University, the
History of Consciousness Department at the University of California, Santa
Cruz, and the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program. Between 2010 and
2012 she was an Assistant Professor and Faculty Fellow at the Gallatin
School of Individualized Studies where she was supported by an NYU Provost
Postdoctoral Fellowship for Academic Diversity. In 2012 SKP produced their
first architectural intervention, SEEDBANK: An eco evo devo design fiction
in the SF Mode, designed for posthumanist research at dOCUMENTA(13), which
was published in the Lodz Museum’s Urban Ecologies program. After an
unexpected encounter with an orphaned hedgehog in Kassel Lissette became
committed to wildlife rehabilitation and multispecies architecture, and has
worked with Indian dogs, raccoons, squirrels, and white tailed deer.
Between 2015-2016 she was a research fellow at Terreform ONE where she
collaborated on the Modular Edible Cricket Farm while investigating
“Speculative architecture and design for a Post Anthropos/Anthropocene.” In
2016 Lissette was selected as a rapporteur for the Feral Technologies:
Unmaking Multispecies Dumps work group at the HKW’s Anthropocene Campus.
She was invited to present SKP’s multispecies architectural platform at the
Yinchuan Biennale Conference, while their designs were featured at the NGBK
gallery in Berlin as part of the Animal Lovers exhibition. Her
intradisciplinary research has been supported by the Fulbright Fellowship,
Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, ICI-Berlin Curatorial Fellowship, and A Blade
of Grass’ Artist Files Fellowship, which recognizes socially engaged art
production.  Lissette and SKP are currently engaged in a coevolutionary
dream that envisions a refuge, research, and rehabilitation center for
dis/placed and dis/abled wildlife that will also serve as a decolonial
laboratory for eco and bio artist activist research.

Randall Szott
Randall Szott is a writer, chef and former merchant mariner. He has an MFA
in Art Critical Practices, an MA in Creative Arts, and an interdisciplinary
BA with a minor in philosophy. He has given presentations at The San
Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the California College of the Arts, the
University of Houston, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee among
others. His writing, commentary and interviews have been published and
cited widely including the recent books Say It While You Still Mean It:
Conversations on Art and Practice, and I’m Going to Live the Life I Sing
About In My Song: How Artists Make and Live Lives of Meaning. He recently
was invited to participate in a three week National Endowment for the
Humanities summer institute: Space, Place and the Humanities. He lives in
Barnard, VT where he has been collaboratively developing a ten acre parcel
of land using a variety of regenerative agriculture techniques. There is a
small permaculture test plot on the site, as well as a dye garden, small
elderberry orchard, and a two acre vineyard. He has studied mushroom
cultivation with Tradd Cotter and regenerative agriculture with Darren J
Doherty. His work as a chef has involved farm to table restaurants, cooking
at sea, and farm to school education for a small elementary school. His
ongoing research has involved the intersection of soil + social practice.

Antonio Roman-Alcala
Antonio Roman-Alcalá is an educator, researcher, writer, and organizer
based in Berkeley, California who has worked for just sustainable food and
political systems for the past 15 years. Antonio co-founded San Francisco’s
Alemany Farm, the San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance, and the
California Food Policy Council, and his 2010 documentary film, In Search of
Good Food, can be viewed free online. He holds a BA from UC Berkeley, and
an MA from ISS in The Hague. Currently, Antonio maintains the blog
antidogmatist.com, teaches with the Urban Permaculture Institute and at UC
Santa Cruz, conducts activist-scholar research, and leads the North
American Agroecology Organizing Project. He is also in search of new land
to farm – a tough prospect in the urbanized and gentrified San Francisco
Bay Area!

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