Transmediale 2008: Conspire


Transmediale, a festival which began in 1988 as a kind of video appendage to the Berlinale Film Fest, gradually shifted to become a wide-scope medium through which to explore digital culture in all its revolutionary glory … and dubious constructs. Perhaps this year’s theme ” Conspire” has the unenviable but urgent task to shed more light on the latter, where any number of problematic and slippery (non-)creatures are crawling under the bed of our latest precarious superstructures, wherepon so many fragile social threads dangle from the wavering abstract towers.

From the Transmediale site:

“Long before a clandestine military-academic collaboration created the 1960’s ARPANET the speculative mechanisms of conspiracy theories have fueled global events. Much like our yearnings for desire, mystery and unpredictability, conspiracy is a human condition used to decipher the way in which we read an increasingly chaotic world of manipulated disinformation. The Internet and its associated Web 2.0 counterpart have begun to move beyond communal and user driven realms of information exchange towards mechanisms fuelling and fanning all forms of popular speculation. They are indicative of a loss of control and a growing sense of surrender to perceived hidden forces and secret societies where mythologies of world domination, corporate control and government induced fear fetishism emerge. Examining the means with which we use and understand contemporary networks, be they digital or interpersonal, the conference will discuss the notions behind conspiratorial acts, structures and speculation, and consider the mechanisms therein as new forms of cultural, technological or political strategy.”

A grand opening begins on Jan.25 with Club Transmediale’s presentation of a live performance by one of electronic music’s pioneering giants Pierre Henry. And then the investigative and conspiratory meat of the matter begins on Jan.29 … Some highlights :

Keynote event: Lecture Timothy Druckrey: The ‘Real’ Conspiracy
Introduction: Andreas Broeckmann [de]
Featuring: Timothy Druckrey [us]

Embedding Fear: The Internet And The Spectacle Of Heightened Alert
Moderator: Brian Holmes [us] Participants: Loretta Napoleoni [us], Naeem Mohaiemen [bd], Yassin Musharbash [de] Respondent: Thorsten Schilling [de]

Techno-Historical Collusions: The Making Of A Trojan Horse
Moderator: Florian Cramer [nl] Participants: Eva Horn [de], Trevor Paglen [us], Pierre Lagrange [fr] Respondent: Konrad Becker [at]

Web 3.0: Conspiring To Keep The Net Public
Moderator: Olga Goriunova [ru] Participants: Seda Gürses [de], Fran Ilich [mx], Felipe Fonseca [br], Michelle Teran [ca] Respondent: Simon Yuill [uk]

Stay tune for the XL Terrestrial coverage.

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