[-empyre-] rehearsal of a network - [week 1]

Marysia Lewandowska marysia at marysialewandowska.com
Tue Jun 5 02:03:46 AEST 2018

Hello Shu Lea and all,

I appreciate the introduction sent by Marc from Furtherfield as it would be
to identify how the participants to this online network are distributed
So when it comes to growing the mycelium network we can feel its impact

As with all rehearsals, we need to go over the material several times until
we arrive
at a version that feels useful. While proposals accumulate, we might
experience repetition.


Marysia Lewandowska
www.marysialewandowska.com  <http://www.marysialewandowska.com/>
Instagram: share_what_you_know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Undoing Property? 
Sternberg Press 2013

From:  shu lea cheang <shulea at earthlink.net>
Reply-To:  shu lea cheang <shulea at earthlink.net>, soft_skinned_space
<empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au>
Date:  Monday, 4 June 2018 12:42
To:  <empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au>
Subject:  Re: [-empyre-] rehearsal of a network - [week 1]

----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------

dear -empyre-

if i may, allow me to get back to june, 2018.

question (1): why mycelium network?

question (2): why a society?

question (3): how to start a network?

mycelium as an after nature's network, to quote-

***I believe that mycelium is the neurological network of nature.
Interlacing mosaics of mycelium infuse habitats with information-sharing
membranes. …..The mycelium stays in constant molecular communication with
its environment, devising diverse enzymatic and chemical responses to
complex challenges. - Paul Stamets, Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help
Save the World
 ***We are stuck with the problem of living despite economic and ecological
ruination….. Neither tales of progress nor of ruin tell us how to think
about collaborative survival. It is time to pay attention to mushroom
picking. Not that this will save us— but it might open our imaginations. -
Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, The mushroom at the end of the world : on the
possibility of life in capitalist ruins


The project Mycelium Network Society was inspired by artist Taro's
myco-logick project at  infolab Stadtwerkstatt during STWST48 (a 48 hours
festival hosted by Stadtwerkstatt and in association with Ars Electronica)
in 2015. Taro grows fabulous mushrooms sculpted by his own will. That year,
Taro launched 2 weather balloons filled with fungal spores  to the
stratosphere, anticipating  these balloons to expand while rising and
finally burst at a height of approximately 30km, releasing the spores to
continue direction outer space and/or to fall back on earth, where they
possibly find suitable conditions to spread their information.

The project is a powerful poetic gesture. It prompted us to consider a free
will network possibility, post-NET, (after) the nature. When we (Shu Lea
Cheang of cycleX and Franz Xaver of Stadtwerkstatt ) first started Mycelium
Network Society (MNS), we were excited to 'discover' many artists who work
with mycilium, mushroom, spores, culture+++ as (art) medium. When MNS was
first presented at transmediale2017, we showcased some artists works -
myco-logick (since 2015) by Taro, Mycophone_unison (since 2013) by Saša
Spačal, Mirjan Švagelj , Radio Mycelium (since 2011) by Martin Howse,  The
T-shroom (since 2002) by Kartina Neiburga and Art bureau OPEN. In this same
year, we hosted a residency at Eleonore/STWST in Linz, Austria. We held an
open call for artists and got some great responses,  finally selected three
artists, Azucena Sanchez, Servando Barreiro and Callum Caplan, their
residency works would consequently be presented at STWST48x3 in September.
After this year's presentation/exhibition, we were referred to, introduced
to many more artists who work with  mycelium culture matter and came to
realize that it was not quite possible for us to keep hosting residency,
holding exhibitions. There is also carbon matters that concern us for
transporting artists.

Thus, the consideration - asking local art agencies to host
residency/expositions and we connect via agencies (NODES) to build the
network. The question arise, do we go through EU funding route? Getting a
few organizations and launch a network, s shared platform? The recent
network initiative example being the NEW NETWORK NORMAL, NNN (a partnership
project by  Abandon Normal Devices <http://www.andfestival.org.uk/>  (uk),
Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona <http://www.cccb.org/en>
(CCCB) (es), The Influencers <http://theinfluencers.org/en>  (es),
transmediale (de) and STRP <https://strp.nl/en/>  (nl). We didnt take this
route, (well! administration alone would drive us a bit insane!) , instead,
we thought to start with writing to art spaces we know, Furtherfield in
London, Apo33 in Nantes, FACT in Liverpool.....Then, In March, i had a
chance to go back to New York for some lectures, travelling through Buffalo,
Troy and New York city, signing on nodes to 'adopt a network". I shook hands
with Paul Vanouse at his Coalesce Center for Biological Art at the
University at Buffalo, took an agreement photo with Ekrem, Anne, Stephanie
at Squeaky, and at the Santuary for Independent Media , we had a public
voting to sign on its Nature lab (directed by Kathy High) as part of MNS.

 <https://www.mediasanctuary.org/> The simple guidelines apply-

 (1)To adopt the network concept as art spaces/collectives/labs that host
artist projects.
 (2)To focus on artists who work with mycelium, fungus, spores as art and
network medium.
 (3)To organize workshops/residencies/exhibitions.
 (4)To cultivate your own local mycelium network, independent and
 (5)To share information, resources and be part of larger global network.
 (6)To harvest spores from your local mushrooms and make spore prints for
node to node spores exchange.
 (7)To collect spores towards a global spores release party.
 (8)To be part of a book to be published along with the spores’ release.
 And now we ask ourselves, how to get this network started? how can such
autonomous, self managed network grow/branch out under/above ground?

Is it at all possible???


 On 01/06/18 08:53, Shu Lea Cheang wrote:
> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> On this sunny june 1 morning -
> Thanks, renate, for inviting to me on -empyre- editorial board and for the
> introduction to this month's launch.
> I have titled this month's topic  “rehearsal of a network” with a focus on
> network activation, network construct, networked activism, performance,
> leading towards some (un)imaginable scenarios for nets and nets.  Taking
> Mycelium Network Society as a starting point, we hope to unfold this
> discussion on networks in four weeks -
> June 1-8  (week 1) – mycelium network society with network nodes' participants
> June 9-15 (week 2) –   networked activism and performance
> June 16-22 (week 3) –  post-Net network imagination
> June 23-30 (week 4) – proposals for speculative, tangible networks
> [flashback]
>  In the 80s in New York City,  I was part of Paper Tiger TV collective. By
> 1986, PPTV gave rise to Deep Dish TV network that takes on "creating and
> distributing politically radical independent videos that challenge the
> narratives of corporate media." For DDTV,  I have collaborated and co-produced
> 'Racism on the Mainstreet" for its premiere launch, followed by 'Will be
> Televised' (1990), a 5 part series of video documents from Asia. In my art
> works, I have worked with networked installation and performances, including
> Bowling alley (1995, Walker art center) which connects a bowling lane in
> Minneapolis to the gallery at Walker and WWW, then a fresh outpost; Brandon
> (1998-1999),  one year web narrative that networks actual and virtual -
> spaces, beings, genders and crimes. Working in collective modes, I co-founded
> several network initiative, including TAKE2030 (since 2003) which "operates in
> parallel net media scheme and shifts the social media mission into hypermedia
> playing fields", LaptopsRus.me (since 2009) which hosts "MEETING | REUNIÓN"
> inside an electronically updated boxing ring for networking woman live
> performers. 
> In the early 90s, i hitchhiked onto the superhighway, claiming my homesteading
> and squating the cyberspace. By the early 2000, we (co-curation with Armin
> Medosch and Yukiko Shikata) launched Kingdom of Piracy, an online, open work
> space to explore the free sharing of digital content - often condemned as
> piracy - as the net's ultimate art form. By then, i have located much of my
> work in the post-netcrash scenarios, i.e. Garlic=RichAir (2002-2003), in this
> public performance project, organic garlic was ordained as new social
> currency,  serving as "credito" for a global shared network.
> [flash forward]
>  In 2017,  in association with Stadtwerkstatt (Linz, Austria) and CycleX
> (Andes, New York),  we launched  “Mycelium Network Society” (MNS)
> (http://myceliumNS.net <http://myceliumNS.net> ) at Ecologies excursion at
> transmediale 2017. Mycelium Network Society imagines an underground network
> situated in a post-internet mudland. Powered by fungus, spores, culture,
> kitchen, radio, transmission, installations, workshops and performances, MNS
> departs from the pursuits of magic mushroom to chart a state of
> hyper-hallucination and collective fungal consciousness. As an after nature’s
> network, MNS investigates the fungi culture,  its network capacity to
> communicate and process information. MNS commands its own domain in
> human-disturbed forests - sprouting across the moisture of rich soils,
> expanding its colonies, sharing informations, networking co-habitants across
> borders. In our withered ecosphere, we seek out mycelium to lead us out of the
> ruins, to construct political tactics, to salvage economic meltdown, to
> persist in constant molecular communication a la mycelium mode. For years
> 2018-2020, we propose to branch out Mycelium Network Society a la franchise
> mode. Observing the concept of distributed network, we seek out art
> spaces/collectives/labs to participate as nodes, a node that grows and
> connects nodes globally. We set cycle1 of network cultivating for three years,
> from 2018 to 2020. On a giving day in 2020, we call for a global action with
> connected nodes, to release the collected spores into the stratosphere,
> letting them drift in blowing wind till they ground themselves in the new land
> where cycle ll begins. so far, we have these nodes signed on as part of
> Mycelium Network Society
> APO-33 Nantes, France
>  furtherfield London, UK
>  Coalesce: Center for Bilogical Art, Buffalo, USA
>  Squeaky Wheel film and media art center, Buffalo, USA
>  The Santuary for Independent Media | Nature Lab Troy, USA
>  GENSPACE, New York City, USA
>  DIMENSION PLUS, Taipei, Taiwan
>  竹圍工作室|Bamboo curtain studio Taipei, Taiwan
> With this week's discussion, we hope that more nodes will ADOPT 'MNS'.
> I am grateful that most of these nodes' directors are joining us for [week 1]
> and also like to welcome a very special guest from Mexico, Adrian Guzman.
> We begin.
> Adrian Guzman (Mexico), Biohacker concentrated in Genomics and Epidemiology of
> Communication. Has been advisor of the Director General of Inecol, one of the
> 27 national public research centers in Mexico focused in Ecology and
> Agro-nanobiotechnology. Has been a visiting fellow at Wyss Institute in
> Harvard, Centre for Bio Inspired Engineering. With a BSc background in physics
> and artificial intelligence, a BSc in Telecommunications Engineering, a Master
> degree in Environmental Intelligence and Digital Architecture and a PhD in
> Social Representations and Communication (office of the future, anthropology
> of learning and cognition and food representations) his interests are broad
> and collective. As Gaston Guzman (+) deceased, collaborator. Helped to
> classify and update the most extensive collection database of fungi in Mexico.
> http://mushroomjohn.org/guzman1.htm <http://mushroomjohn.org/guzman1.htm>
> Franz Xaver (stadtwerkstatt, Linz, Aystria)  has studied at the Academy of
> Applied Art, department of "Visual Communication" founded by Peter Weibel.
> Subsequently he wasteaching computer languages, audio-visual productions,
> electronics and electrical technics at the same Academy until 1992.At the
> Technical University of Graz he was lecturing at the departure "Institut für
> Baukunst" "CommunicationTheory". He was participating in numerous exhibitions
> in Austria and abroad, including Ars Electronica, Aperto Biennale di Venezia,
> Triennale Milano, Bonn Kunst und Ausstellungshalle from Germany. He directs
> the two workspaces - Medienkunstlabor Kunsthaus Graz and STWST(Stadtwerkstatt)
> Linz. 
>  http://stwst.at
>  Jenny Pickett (apo33, Nantes, France) is a British artist based in Nantes and
> member of the artists' collective APO33. Pickett’s workcrosses experimental
> music, visual and sound arts, regularly working in collaboration with Julien
> Ottavi and performing regularly with their duo Solar Return. She creates
> installations, sound sculptures and compositions, often ontological,
> philosophical or scientific, her subject is articulated around complex notions
> related to the slipping of times, cycles, identities and their memory. Pickett
> and Ottavi were artists in residence at EMS (Electronic Music Stockholm) in
> 2017 and she was awarded Lauréat prize for visual arts, Ville de Nantes 2016.
> Pickett teaches drawing and sound creation at École Nationale Supérieure
> d'Architecture de Nantes.      http://apo33.org
> Julien Ottavi (apo33, Nantes, France)- A mediactivist, artist-researcher,
> composer / musician, poet and tongues destroyer, experimental film maker and
> anarchitect, founder and member of Apo33, Julien Ottavi is involved in
> research and creative work, combining sound art, real-time video, new
> technologies and body performances. Since 1997, he develops a composition work
> using voice and its transformation through computer. Active developer of
> audio/visual programs with Puredata, he has also developed since many years
> DIY electronics (radio transmitters, oscillators, mixers, amplifiers, video
> transmitters…etc) in the perspective of knowledge sharing on technological
> development. Main developer for the Gnu/Linux operating system APODIO for
> digital art and A/V & streaming diffusion. His practices is not limited to the
> art spheres but crosses different fields from technological development to
> philosophy / theoretical research, biomimetic analysis & experimentation.
> Since many years he reflects on the relations between experimental practices
> and collective practices within the creation of autonomous collective groups,
> putting in question the authorship strategy of the “art ideology”.
>  Ruth Catlow (furtherfield, London, UK) is an artist who works with
> emancipatory network cultures, practices and poetics. She is co-founder and
> artistic director, with Marc Garrett, of Furtherfield for arts, technology and
> social change. Furtherfield’s public exhibition and lab venues in the heart of
> Finsbury Park, London, provide a unique physical interface for free
> exhibitions, events and workshops and an online hub provides a forum for
> exchange and critical review. These spaces bring together diverse local
> cultures with thriving networks of international artists, technologists and
> activists. Recently published ‘Artists Re:thinking the Blockchain’ with Marc
> Garrett, Nathan Jones, and Sam Skinner 2017.
>  Marc Garrett (furtherfield, London, UK) is co-director and co-founder, with
> artist Ruth Catlow of the arts collective Furtherfield, in Finsbury Park,
> London. Has curated over 50 contemporary Media Arts exhibitions, projects
> nationally and internationally. Curated the renowned major exhibition Monsters
> of the Machine: Frankenstein in the 21st Century, at Laboral, Spain. Main
> editor of the Furtherfield web site. Written for various books and articles
> about art, technology and social change. Recently published ‘Artists
> Re:thinking the Blockchain’ with Ruth Catlow, Nathan Jones, and Sam Skinner
> 2017. Currently in the last year of Phd at the University of London, Birkbeck
> College.      
>  http://furtherfield.org
> Paul Vanouse (Coalesce: Center for Bilogical Art, Buffalo, USA) is a Professor
> of Art and Director of the Coalesce Center for Biological Art at the
> University at Buffalo. Interdisciplinarity and impassioned amateurism guide
> his art practice. His biological and interactive media projects have been
> exhibited in over 25 countries and widely across the US. His recent projects,
> “Latent Figure Protocol”, “Ocular Revision”, “Suspect Inversion Center” and
> “America Project” use molecular biology techniques to challenge “genome-hype”
> and to engage issues surrounding DNA fingerprinting, particularly the idea the
> most authoritative image of our time, the DNA fingerprint, is somehow natural.
> He has a BFA from the University at Buffalo and an MFA from Carnegie Mellon
> University.     http://www.buffalo.edu/gem/coalesce
> Anna Scime (in association with Coalesce) is an internationally exhibited
> media artist, whose recent solo and group screenings and exhibitions include:
> Burchfield Penney Art Center (Buffalo), Berlin International Directors Lounge
> (Berlin), Centro Cultural Borges (Buenos Aires), Detroit Independent Film
> Festival (Detroit), FLORA ars+natura (Bogotá), Kuala Lumpur Experimental
> Film,and PS1 MoMA (NYC). Her documentary work has been broadcast nationally
> and published throughout the web on Free Speech TV, PhillyCAM and ArtGrease.
> She has received awards for her work including fellowships from ARTS Council
> of the Southern Finger Lakes and The New York State Council of the Arts
> (NYSCA) among others.   She was very much part of the cultural ecosystem in
> Buffalo, serving as interim Executive Director at Squeaky Wheel (2015-2016),
> working with community arts nonprofits, like the Buffalo International Film
> Festival. She is also Lumiflux Media’s Executive Director, and since 2013 has
> worked to ensure that the organization sustainably stewards a dynamic roster
> of media productions.  http://www.a--a.org/ <http://www.a--a.org/>
> Stephanie Rothenberg’s ((in association with Coalesce) interdisciplinary
> artworks make visible the physical and imaginary networks that create
> technological utopias. Moving between real and virtual spaces, she explores
> how new technologies mediate our everyday experiences and connect us to larger
> global systems. Her artworks that engage digital media, plant life and
> networks have been exhibited in venues including House of Electronic Arts
> (HeK), MASS MoCA, LABoral, Sundance Film Festival, Transmediale and ZKM. She
> is a recipient of numerous grants and awards including a Creative Capital.
> Residencies include the LMCC Workspace program, Eyebeam and the Santa Fe Art
> Institute. Her work is in the collection of the Whitney Museum and has been
> widely reviewed including Artforum, The Brooklyn Rail and Hyperallergic.
> Rothenberg received her MFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
> She is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department
> of Art at SUNY Buffalo.    http://www.stephanierothenberg.com
> Ekrem Serdar (Squeaky Wheel film and media art center, Buffalo, USA) is the
> curator for  Squeaky Wheel, responsible for the organization’s exhibitions,
> public programming, and artist residencies. Previously, he was a programmer
> with Experimental Response Cinema (Austin, TX) which he co-founded. He is the
> recipient of a Curatorial Fellowship from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the
> Visual Arts (2017), a SAHA Scholarship for the ICI Curatorial Intensive New
> Orleans (2017), and a Professional Development Fellowship from the Robert
> Flaherty Film Seminar (2015). He is an advisory member of Experimental
> Response Cinema, and the FOL Cinema Society (Istanbul). His writing has
> appeared in The Brooklyn Rail, Millennium Film Journal, 5harfliler, among
> others. He completed his B.A. in Critical Studies, and his M.F.A in Media Arts
> Production at the Department of Media Study at SUNY Buffalo. He is from
> Ankara, Turkey.  http://squeaky.org
>  Kathy High (nature lab, Troy, USA) is an artist / educator who collaborates
> with scientists and others, and considers living systems, eco-empathy and
> animal sentience, and the social, political and ethical dilemmas of
> biotechnology and medical industries. She has received awards including
> Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and National Endowment for the Arts. High is
> Professor in Arts, and oversees a lab in Center for Biotechnology and
> Interdisciplinary Studies at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY.  She
> is NATURE Lab coordinator with community media organization, The Sanctuary for
> Independent Media. She is Vivo Art resident at Center for Microbiome Sciences
> & Therapeutic, DePaolo Lab, UofW, Seattle.     https://www.mediasanctuary.org/
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