[-empyre-] Welcome to Week 3: Social Media: algorithms, untruths and insurrection

Kerry Guinan kerry.guinan at gmail.com
Wed Feb 17 21:20:18 AEDT 2021

Hello everyone,

Thanks for the introduction and invitation. I'm really enjoying the flow of
discussion and am grateful to be in such great company.

I'm a conceptual artist working through interventions, relational art, and
digital media. While my art practice is not specifically focussed on issues
of technology, it is targeted at new iterations of capitalism, so these
issues inevitably arise.

In 2018 I co-wrote 'The Living Stream'
for Dublin Fringe Festival, which used the format of a radio nature
documentary to present internet infrastructure as a natural ecosystem.
For 'Portraits'
<http://kerryguinan.art/Portraits>(2019) I hired people from across the
world to pose before a Skype live stream connected to a gallery in Dublin.
This work is exemplary of my current research, which aims to use
communication technologies to make relational works of a global scale- with
technical help from Robbie here. What Alex has raised about the glitch is
really key for me in this project because these errors reveal the presence
of 'human qualities and idiosyncrasies,’ as Lukacs called them. I'm
interested in how these glitches de-reify commodities and systems. I think
this is what you mean Alex when you say '*the subjective articulation, is
always already included in the mechanism and preserves the locus of

However- like Paul I'm conscious of the limits of subversive artistic
actions, or as it was put by Renate a week or two ago, the 'tactical
intervention' over the 'digital revolution.' I'm influenced by Michel de
Certeau's differentiation between tactics and strategies in this regard.
Separate from my art practice, I dedicate a lot of my time to political
organising and I've previously written
about why I feel it's important for me to draw a clear line between these
two modes of address.

I'm also grateful to Pual for his tours of Dublin's internet infrastructure
which have really helped 'ground' the cloud for me and have also informed
some of the work I've been doing in housing activism. I've previously
about the relationship between art and the Dublin property market and these
relations have become all the more cynical recently, as social media
platforms such as Facebook and AirBnB have started commissioning arts
projects in Dublin. A recent initative by AirBnB, for example, offered
Dublin artists 300euro (if I recall correctly) to develop a place-making,
community-engaged public art project, which was to be judged by AirBnB

That's all for now, looking forward to the discussion.

Kerry Guinan

On Wed, Feb 17, 2021 at 9:20 AM Ricardo Castellini <
ricardocastellini at gmail.com> wrote:

> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> Hello all,
>  A great pleasure to be here. Very nice discussions and I have been
> learning a lot.
> I am a media literacy educator and my work is currently focused on
> disinformation and new literacy studies for young people. My academic
> background is from media and communications, not tech or art, but of
> course due to this overwhelming digital media environment I have
> increasingly been drawn to the tech world.
> I have been designing and delivering media literacy courses and
> workshops, especially for teenagers, and when it comes to discussing
> topics such as disinformation, surveillance and the role of
> algorithms, I think there has been too much emphasis on the technical
> side of the question, instead of a more nuanced approached that also
> encompasses a broader understanding of the politics and the
> sociocultural basis around these issues.
> It is definitely important to teach kids how to research online, find
> reliable sources, avoid digital traps, spot ‘fake news’ (I know this
> expression is problematic) and so on… But this is far from enough, and
> it seems to me that media educators around the world are only now
> beginning to understand that. Kids are not attracted to false stories,
> conspiracy theories and extremist groups because they are simply
> stupid or lack a technical skill; there’s much more involved in that.
> And Media literacy education should start focusing on that.
> I was happy to see Jon’s work with transmedia knowledge and civic
> storytelling involving young people, that’s exactly what I see as a
> perfect combination of education and digital media to achieve ‘praxis’
> in a Freirean sense. I have been doing something similar with
> Transition Year students (15/16yo) in Bridge21, Trinity College
> Dublin. In this place students create various digital artefacts
> (videos, photo stories, animation, digital magazines etc.), and the
> focus is not on the technical skills, but on the development of
> critical thinking, civic engagement and collaborative practices.
> This brings me to another point that I think is worth mentioning here:
> activism in media literacy education. I have always believed in the
> neutrality of my work as an educator – not literal neutrality, of
> course, because it doesn’t exist, but the idea that I am not in the
> classroom to proselytize and make people believe in what I want them
> to believe. I like students to think for themselves and I act as a
> facilitator. However, in this new situation of surveillance capitalism
> and all the issues stemming from that, I am re-thinking my role as an
> educator. Even though I still believe that the purpose of my work is
> not to impose ideas on anyone, we are living in very dangerous time
> and if we don’t act now to stop the accumulation of power by tech
> companies and the circulation of malicious and damaging stories, we
> might end up in a dystopian world very soon.
> All the best,
> Ricardo
> On Tue, 16 Feb 2021 at 00:33, Renate Ferro <rferro at cornell.edu> wrote:
> >
> > ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> > Hello -empyreans-
> > Many thanks to our Week 2 guests:  Ana Valdés, Derek Curry, Jennifer
> Gradecki, and Geert Lovink.  Also, thanks to our subscribers:  Brian
> Holmes, Jon McKenzie and Amanda McDonald Crowley for joining in as
> participants.  We appreciate all of your contributions and we hope that if
> your schedule permits that you will continue to post through Week 3.
> >
> > We welcome long-time subscriber Alex Taek-Gwang Lee for joining us once
> again on -empyre-.  We always love to have Alex share with us his
> perspectives especially on the pulse of things in South Korea and Asia.  A
> warm welcome to our new subscribers:
> >  Paul O’Neill, Domenico Barra, Robert Collins, Roisin Kiberd, Ricardo
> Castellini Da Silva, and Kerry Guinan. Their biographies are listed below.
> >
> > Looking forward to hearing more about each of your research areas and
> work as relates to this topic and extending our discussion.
> > Best, Renate
> >
> > Paul O’Neill (IE)
> > Paul O’ Neill is a media artist based in Dublin, Ireland.  His practice
> and research is concerned with the implications of our collective
> dependency on networked technologies and infrastructures. This discourse is
> reflected in his academic background, a graduate of Dublin City University
> with a BA International Relations, he followed this with a MSc Multimedia
> also from Dublin City University and then an MA in Digital Art from the
> National College of Art and Design, Dublin.  Paul is currently completing a
> practice-based PhD which focuses on media art practices that critique and
> subvert techno-solutionist narratives and histories.
> > www.aswemaysink.com
> >
> > Domenico Barra (IL)
> > Low resolution, High vision. Glitch is the event. Pixel is the element.
> My aesthetics is to be found in the realm of machines failures where I
> interpret the glitch in various environments and digital styles. The error.
> The limit. The unexpected. The diversity. The fragility. The imperfection.
> The vulnerability. Departing from these grounds of elaboration, I develop
> my research and practice on various topics related to temporality,
> functionality, accessibility, opportunity, the influence of new
> technologies, design and politics, have on human relations in terms of
> interactions and values, in the relation human and machine, with a focus on
> networks and community, behaviors and languages, memory and identity, how
> those contribute in the evolution of a new world, society, human, their
> conception and perception through machines, individuals new self-awareness.
> My works have been published on sites and magazines including Motherboard,
> Bullet Magazine, Hyperallergic, Monopol, Observer, Artribune, Exibart,
> Widewalls and Digicult. I am listed in the second volume publication about
> art and technology promoted by the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs. I
> took part in many curatorial projects, my works exhibited at the DAM
> Gallery in Berlin, at the Media Center in New York, at the Galerie Charlot
> in Paris, at the Digital Art Center in Taipei, online at World Intellectual
> Property Organization [WIPO], at the Central Academy of Fine Arts [CAFA] in
> Beijing, at the MediaLAB of the University of Brasilia, at the Wrong
> Biennale and in many other galleries and cultural art events worldwide, and
> also included in academic talks and lectures at international institutes
> and universities. I directed the organization of the first Glitch Art group
> show in Italy, Tactical Glitches, curated by Rosa Menkman & Nick Briz. In
> 2016 I was among the artists invited by the School of Art Institute of
> Chicago [SAIC] for its 150th anniversary where I gave a lecture and a
> public talk about piracy pratices, the impact of the internet and digital
> media on the production, distribution and consumption of NSFW materials. I
> am part of the curatorial projects of Sedition Gallery, ELEMENTUM and
> Snark.Art. I collaborated with the MoCDA Museum, Hard Disk Museum and The
> Wrong Biennale. I teach glitch art and dirty new media at the Rome
> University of Fine Art [RUFA] and I give lectures and presentations about
> glitch art and related topics at academies, schools and festivals. I am the
> creator of the online art network and community White Page Gallery/s.
> >
> > Alex Taek-Gwang Lee (KR)
> > Alex Taek-Gwang Lee is a professor of cultural studies at Kyung Hee
> University in South Korea and a visiting professor at Jamia Millia Islamia
> University in India. He is a member of the advisory board for The
> International Deleuze and Guattari Studies in Asia, Asia Theories Network
> and the board member of The International Consortium of Critical Theory
> (ICCT).
> >
> > Robert Collings (IE)
> > Robert Collins is an artist and designer based in Ireland.His work
> explores the inherent noise and saturation of information in contemporary
> society, through speculative objects, abstract interfaces and digital
> ethnography.Recently he has moved into the area of Post-Industrial Design,
> seeking to explore design methodologies which can empower the public to
> answer the questions raised by Critical and Speculative Design. He holds an
> MSc in Interactive Media, where he explored the creation of spaces for
> adversarial discussion and common ground.
> > http://www.robbycollins.com
> > Roisin Kiberd (IE, DE)
> > Roisin Kiberd is a writer from Dublin, currently living (on and off) in
> Berlin. Her essays and journalism on technology and culture have been
> published in the Dublin Review, the White Review, the Stinging Fly, the
> Guardian, Vice and others. Her first book, The Disconnect, will be
> published by Serpent's Tail in March 2021.
> >
> > Ricardo Castellini DaSilva  (BR, IE)
> > Dr Ricardo Castellini da Silva is a media literacy educator with an
> interest in studies and practices at the interface between education and
> communications, especially in relation to digital media, multimodal
> learning and new literacy studies. His research investigates the many ways
> in which new digital technologies can be used to promote media literacy for
> secondary students and enhance teachers’ practices in the use of technology
> in the classroom. Since 2015, Ricardo has been designing and delivering
> workshops on media literacy to both teachers and students in secondary
> schools in Ireland. He also teaches on undergraduate and graduate
> programmes at both Dublin City University and Trinity College Dublin.
> Ricardo holds a PhD in Media Literacy from Dublin City University, and a MA
> in Media, Culture and Education from the Institute of Education, University
> College London
> >
> > Kerry Guinan (IE)
> > Kerry Guinan is a conceptual artist based in Limerick, Ireland. Her
> multi-disciplinary practice
> > critiques capitalist relations through interventions, performances, and
> digital media. She also writes, curates, consults, teaches, and organises
> politically. Recent projects include a residency in Bill Drummond’s Curfew
> Tower in Antrim (2019), the curation of TULCA Festival of Visual Arts:
> TACTICAL MAGIC (2019) in Galway, and the solo exhibition ‘Our Celestial
> Sphere’ at Pallas Projects/Studios, Dublin (2019). Upcoming projects
> include a public art commission for The Museum of Everyone, Offaly and
> exhibitions at Rua Red, Dublin, the Glucksman, Cork, and Govan Project
> Space, Glasgow.
> > In 2018,  Guinan was awarded the Arts Council of Ireland’s prestigious
> Next Generation Award to develop her practice. She is currently a research
> scholar at the Limerick School of Art and Design where she is developing
> the practice of relational socialist realism: an artistic methodology that
> gives form to global social relations.
> > www.kerryguinan.art
> >
> > Renate Ferro
> > Visiting Associate Professor
> > Director of Undergraduate Studies
> > Department of Art
> > Tjaden Hall 306
> > rferro at cornell.edu
> >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > empyre forum
> > empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
> > http://empyre.library.cornell.edu
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
> http://empyre.library.cornell.edu
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