Future foundations is a year long series.
We are consumers of technology, mainly from mainstream sources; commercial gadgets, government and corporations. Gatherings of physical humans are decreasing as our connectivity through gadgets and technology is increasing. We are often disconnected from the workings of technology, and our imagination is limited to what is provided to us. In this setting, it is of utmost importance now to create better understanding and re-imagine the tools we use everyday.
What is it to be an artist in the technoscene? We raise concerns around data collection, privacy, surveillance, agency, and ownership and the role these dynamics are playing in “cultural production”. How do new forms of cultural production, including technological mediums like social media, the Internet and 3D printing influence, enhance, challenge, render redundant or invisible, older more traditional forms of cultural production, such as classical artistic forms or means of education? How do these forms work together? What are the tensions between them?
This is especially important in a hyper-connected world where we are constantly surveilled at all times. Some questions we wish to help artists and technologists address through the shared language of new media art:
How do we navigate this world? What tools and resources are available to help us to cope with this onslaught of information? Are there alternative - off-grid structures? How does technology impact citizenship and mental health and what are the dangers of only engaging with particular sources. How are environmentalists using technology? And what are the impacts of our new technological dependency on the natural environment? How has the role of NEWS shifted?
Are we in the future?
The day of the sci-fi futures we’ve imagined is here and now, present in our hands as mobile gadgets. Data collection and algorithmic fed news is the norm. We know what the future is because data has mapped and analyzed to not only tell us all about your day, but through ‘informing’ us, shape the way we will choose to play out our days. It can tell what time of the week most people like to eat out, it can tell what time of the year a region will have a disaster, and what issues a country will vote for. Does this mean we are in the future? The future where a predicted analysis is playing out in the ‘now.’ Have the lines between present and future become blurred beyond recognition? What are the possibilities of this new ‘NOW’ of the future?