[spectre] International Summer Camp Call, Oradea, Romania

Tincuta Heinzel tincuta.heinzel at gmail.com
Fri Jun 15 12:13:17 CEST 2018

*International Summer Camp on “Attempts, Failures, Trials and Errors”, *

*Oradea, Romania*

*July 15th– 22nd, 2018*

Organized by 2580 Association Cluj in collaboration with the University of
Oradea and Zest Collective Bucharest with the financial support of AFCN -
Romanian Agency for Cultural Fund.

*Application deadline: 22ndof June, 2018*


*IDEA: *Following a series of events organized in the frame of “Attempts,
Failures, Trials and Errors” project, we invite you to a summer camp that
will take place in Oradea (Romania) between 15th-22nd of July 2018. The
topic of the summer camp is “SYSTEMIC FAILURES” and the focus will be on
our attempts to design (or re-design) and to control our political, social,
economic and technologic systems.

Digital technologies are today at the core of our activities, but they are
mere tools/ infrastructures onto which political and economic visions are
articulated. Instead of falling prey to the quasi-utopian technological
determinism which positions machineries as the implicit conditions for more
efficient communication and – hence- optimization of economies, we shall
address the conditions and consequences of such assumptions. “Systemic
failures” provide a methodological vantage point for the analysis of
critical junctures between concepts and infrastructures, community of
scientists and political fields, IT developers and society. We argue for a
critical approach to “datafication”, for the understanding of the larger
discursive contexts within which data is managed and, last but not least,
we address the limits of such critical approaches with regards to more and
more professionalized - hence hermetic – techno-fields. The historical
insights will provide lessons about the tensions between planning and
reality, but they will also reveal rhetorical models of handling new-born

The aim of this summer camp is to bring into discussion in order to further
develop research projects related to different social and economic
contexts. We also intend to encourage a heterogenous participation, one
which will overpass the North-South and West-East European divisions.


During the summer camp will take place 6 workshops:

   1. *Cybernetics Models in Economy – an Eastern European perspective**(lead
   by Tincuta Heinzel & Ioana Macrea-Toma).*The imposition of the industry
   was made possible through the extensive use of machines in production
   contexts. Designed to take over certain tasks previously realized by man,
   the machines have enlarged their area of applications. Cybernetics have
   been defined as the communication between man and machine and the
   conceptbrought with it the idea of various possible interactions between
   multiple aspects of economy-society-arts-policies. The sciences of
   management were given a new twist through the mathematization of economic
   cycles and the development of computers was modelled after what was
   considered the functioning of human brain. Even the arts followed suit
   envisioning themselves as autonomous self-regulating structures within a
   broader milieu. The cybernetic imagination stimulated a dialogue between
   different disciplines, countries and political factions due to the common
   assumption of transcultural, transnational and trans-political (if one may
   say so) potential of communicative action based on formalization of
   relations. This workshop will map some of the most interesting attempts at
   macro-management during the Cold War which consisted in technology transfer
   as well as international cooperation. Through these case studies we shall
   address the historical fantasies of quantification and computerization as
   politically neutral –concepts and infrastructures. In so doing we shall
   also open the larger discussion on social and infrastructural
   compatibilities and will address the need to imagine methodologies for
   grasping the complexities of such exchanges. This overview will be the
   starting point for a series of debates related to the present models of
   digital economies (AI, Big Data based economies) and the way they can fail

   1. *The Laborious History of Computing (lead by RYBN)*.The workshop will
   consist in a clinic decomposition of a complexcomputing process.
   Participants will split up a perceptron (one of theearliest neural network)
   in a series of small operations, and then,will undergo through the whole
   process to understand how a computercategorizes different classes of
   objects.During the process, RYBN.ORG will retrace the laborious history
   ofalgorithmics: from the computation factory of Gaspard de Prony tothe
   Mechanical Turk of Amazon. In this counter-history of automation,the
   multiple narratives of the little hands at the heart of theprocess of
   calculation will be recalled, emphasizing the conditions ofemergence of the
   current regime of digital labour.The whole workshop will aim to demystify
   the actual hype around AI andcomplex computing procedures, by learning and
   understanding the basicsof digitalization and discretization.No particular
   skills are needed, the workshop uses only paper and pen.

   1. *Illusory digitalization of life and the new forms of
   by Emmanuel Ferrand & Corina Catana)*. Modern biotechnologies, in their
   convergence with the digital paradigm, are supposed to be the new horizon
   of a globalized capitalism. Where the obsolete, extractive, fossil-based
   economy more than failed to provide us with a sustainable future,
   bioengineering and its new tools (CRISPR Cas9, ...) are presented to us as
   the key point for a possible "solution": new "green" bio fuels, a clean
   chemistry based on genetically modified microorganisms, plentiful supplies
   of food for an overcrowded and overheated planet (engineered crops,
   cellular agriculture, lab grown meat, ...), and even a new, fabricated,
   bio-diversity (concept of de-extinction).This workshop will be an occasion
   to evaluate to what extent this story is illusory, from a scientific view
   point, but also from a social, political view point. Those modern
   techniques are certainly not free of failures. There is a specific issue
   here for (bio) hackers and (bio) artists, who might be sometimes too easily
   fascinated by the promises of science.It will be also an occasion to share
   our experiences of the infinite complexity of living organisms and
   ecosystems, by, for example, replacing our understanding of biology and
   agriculture in its proper historical and cultural context. Local food
   traditions (fermentations ...) and farming techniques can be seen as
   low-tech biotechnological achievements of incredible social value (think
   for example of the patient work of generations and generations of farmers
   who selected crops and farming animals). This low-tech, modest approach of
   the living must be advocated at times when the countries formerly known as
   "Eastern Europe" are becoming once again the agro-industrial Eldorado /
   breadbasket of a globalized world.

   1. *Tracking bucks in e-textiles (lead by Tincuta Heinzel)*. The
   workshop aims to introduce the participants to e-textiles and show them
   some of the issues they have to take care of while prototyping with
   e-textiles. No previous knowledge of electronics is needed. The materials
   will be provided by the organizers.

   1. *Failing Parametrically (lead by Zoran Popovici & Ionut Patrascu).*The
   workshop aims to familiarize the participants with themirage of the codein
   parametric design.Form finding with the aid of algorithms is atwo-day
   workshop which will help the participants to get familiarize with
   Rhinoceros 3D and Grasshopper. The results will be later on discussed in
   order to find some pitfalls of current trends like Algorithm Aided Design
   and Parametricism. No prior knowledge of Rhinoceros or Grasshopper is
   required, just the will to spend two days understanding how algorithms
   shape the world around us. *Note: *2 days workshop for 15 participants.

   1. *Drones and Don'ts (lead by Octavian Fedorovici & Stelian
Saracut). “*Drone
   I'd Like to Fly" is the failed open-source project that team Techarus from
   Cluj-Napoca submitted to NASA Space Apps Challenge back in 2016. Octavian
   Fedorovici and Stelian Saracut, members of the team who are
   still enthusiastic about emergingdrone technologies, will host the
   workshop and talk about the challenges they had to face with their app and
   how drones can be hacked, custom controlled and repurposed. *Note: *2
   days workshop for 15 participants.

For a detailed schedule, please see the attached document.

*TARGET GROUP: *Undergraduate and graduate students, scholars, artists,
designers, architects, economists, historians, technologists, biologists,
philosophers, etc. interested in learning more about the ways in which
digitalization has an impact on the way we cultivate, project and build,
the way in which digitalization has an impact on our societies and

*VENUE: *The summer camp will take place in the campus of the University of
Oradea. Situated in North-West Romania, once part of Austrian-Hungarian
Empire and completely redesigned during the communist era, Oradea is well
known for its thermal waters and its Art Nouveau buildings. For more
details: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oradea.

*TRAVEL: *Oradea has an airport. Other travel options are to fly to Cluj,
Timisoara or Budapest (Hungary) and then take the train.


Tincuta Heinzel – tinca at textiltronics.com

Corina Andor – corinastus at yahoo.com

Ioana Popescu – ioana at zestcollective.ro


*COSTS: *Accommodation, main meals and materials for the workshops will be
covered by the organizers. Participants have to arrange for their travel to
Oradea and possible accommodation before orafter Oradea themselves.

*APPLICATION DEADLINE: *Applications are accepted until 22ndof June 2018.
Please email a short motivation letter, a CV and a portfolio to the
following email address: design at zestcollective.ro. Please specify in your
letter for which of the last two workshops are you opting.

*SELECTION RESULTS: *26thof June 2018.

*NOTE: *For the Romanian student participants, Edukube will provide the
necessary documentation for the summer internships.


*CORINA CATANA *is Head of the Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation
(CBC), Faculty of Horticulture, UASVM Cluj-Napoca. She coordinates research
projects on *in vitro* culture techniques and systems to understand the
plant cell functional activity, genetic manipulation, modelling and
analysis of risk scenarios for biosecurity / genetically modified
organisms. Part of the work is dedicated to wildcrafting - collecting plant
material (seeds and plants) from natural sources and cultivated areas,
inventory and storage of the local populations of economic interest for the
CBC`s germplasm collection, virtual herbarium (barcode system, Genebank
Information Management System, OLTP, Standard Material Transfer Agreement)
and circulation and exchange of germplasm material (international databases
and networking). She also coordinates the activities of BioArt group,
founded in 2009, at UASVM Cluj-Napoca, in association with University of
Art and Design (UAD) Cluj-Napoca.

*OCTAVIAN FEDOROVICI *is a developer and multimedia artist based in
Cluj-Napoca, Romania. He is passionate about photography, video art,
animation, op and net art, while also demonstrating a history of
professional work as a full-stack developer in the information technology
and services industry.

*EMMANUEL FERRAND *is an engineer and mathematician (Sorbonne University,
Paris, France), with a deep interest for biological complexity, and the
intrinsic limitations of the mathematical models in biology.Also active in
"La Générale", an independent culture space in Paris, where citizen science
and open technology is actively promoted (Free Fermentology Foundation)
together with urban farming and many artistic projects. Website:

*TINCUTA HEINZEL *is Senior Lecturer at Loughborough University UK. Over
the last 14 years she worked extensively in the field of electronic and
reactive textiles, and conduct research on art and design theory and
philosophy of design and technology. She initiated, curated and/or
coordinated several projects, such as “Artists in Industry” (Bucharest,
2011-2013) and “Haptosonics” (Oslo, 2013), “Repertories of
(in)discreetness” (Budapest- Bucharest, 2013-2015). She is member of 2580
Association (Cluj, Romania) and of Paidia Institute (Cologne, Germany).

*IOANA MACREA - TOMA *is researcher at OSA Archives Budapest, Hungary.
Trained in philology, comparative literature and history, Ioana is
interested in the study of knowledge formation through the perspective of
archival and media theories, the history of science and philosophy of
history. She wrote about the history of intellectuals and the interplay of
perception about the Other by observing cognitive systems during the Cold
War (Radio Free Europe, Secret Police, intellectuals within the literary
field and listeners to the radio).

*IONUT PATRASCU *is an architect and computational designer. During
university studies, he explored through volunteering, workshops and
competitions sustainable architecture, traditional vernacular building
techniques, built heritage rehabilitation, architectural publishing.
However, he best identifies himself with algorithmic design and digital
fabrication, fields in which he worked as part of ZEST Collective and
currently with IDZ Architectura studio.

*ZORAN POPOVICI *studied architecture and, slightly out of context,
motorcycle mechanic. Currently digital storyteller and expert virtual
studio creator at TVR, the Romanian Public Broadcasting network. Prior to
that, Co-Founding & Directing edukube, an educational hub for digital tools
used in art and architecture focused on lecturing, teaching and holding
workshops in multiple 3d software and real-time applications.

*RYBN.ORG <http://RYBN.ORG> *is an extra-disciplinary artistic research
platform createdin 1999. RYBN.ORG leads investigations within the realms
ofhigh-frequency economics and information technologies, writingkabbalistic
algorithms, inserting suicidal trading machines into thefinancial markets,
perverting neural networks during their trainingphase or hunting ghosts in
the noise of data traffic.The works of RYBN.ORG have been shown in numerous
contemporary artexhibitions such as Infosphäre (ZKM), Nervöse System (HKW),
the GlobalContemporary (ZKM), 2062 (la Gaîté Lyrique), Stock Overflow
(iMAL), ElProcesso Como Paradigma (LABoral), Gutes Böses Geld
(KunsthalleBaden-Baden), Requiem for a Bank (HMKV), Media Mediums (Ygrec),
StockOverflow (iMAL), l'espace Virtuel du Jeu de Paume, CNAP; and
numerousmedia art festivals, such as ISEA, Transmediale/CTM,
Pixelache,Malaupixel, NEMO, Elektra, Cellsbutton, Ars Electronica. Website:

*STELIAN SARACUT *is an electronics enthusiast since childhood. He is
currently working as a software developer and in his spare time he builds
Mega Sumo robots for international competitions. He likes working with
anything from vacuum tubes to FPGAs.

Tincuta Heinzel

Tel: +49 (0)176 84 68 84 61


Tincuta Heinzel
www.textiltronics.com | www.2580association.info
www.artistsinindustry.com | www.aires-de-confluxence.info
tel DE: 0049 (0)176 84 68 84 61

Tincuta Heinzel
www.textiltronics.com | www.2580association.info
www.artistsinindustry.com | www.aires-de-confluxence.info
tel DE: 0049 (0)176 84 68 84 61
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