[spectre] transmediale 2016 Conversation Piece

Kristoffer Gansing kg at transmediale.de
Tue Jul 14 13:12:16 CEST 2015

HKW, Berlin

The next edition of transmediale follows the format of a “Conversation
Piece” which unfolds through a series of dialogues and participatory
formats that articulates the most burning topics of post-digital culture
today and that reflect the main ongoing themes of transmediale. This
conversational format references and problematises the ideal of finding
common ground through four interconnected thematic streams: Anxious to
Act, Anxious to Make, Anxious to Share and Anxious to Secure.

Through these streams we take a critical look at what we could today
think about as the fragmented and contradictory “ideal scenes” of
cultural production and life under digital capitalism. Can the
anxiousness to take part or not to take part in these idealised
activities be used in a way that does not only lead to reactionary
positions based on fear and exclusion? How to deal with the anxiousness
of living with technology at the beginning of the 21st century? Are
there any ways left to commonly re-invent processes of socio-cultural

Call for Workshops & Cross-disciplinary Projects

Deadline 10 August 2015

In addressing these questions, we are looking for cross-disciplinary
projects that can engage the festival audience on multiple levels.
Workshops, both theoretical and/or hands-on are especially welcome, as
are thematic discussions, artistic research presentations, performances,
performative lectures and other hybrid formats.

Proposals that include several such activities across the programme are
welcome. More specifically, we are looking for proposals from ongoing
local and translocal networks, projects, groups and collectives that
address one or several of the following thematic streams:

Anxious to Act
This stream deals with the complexity of taking action in a world
consisting of constantly networked flows and the increasing „messiness“
of the global. It zooms in on the irritated ideal scene of „media
activism“ and the multiple logics and meanings of „intervention“
enmeshed in grammars of the artistic or technological. It asks: What
makes people anxious to act today? What possibly hinders them to do so
in more substantial forms according to the micro- and macro-political
scales of a global society characterised by asymmetric power? In a world
poised for change, what fundamental irritations exist about ever more
mediated actions and can these irritations stimulate new effective
assemblages of action?

Anxious to Make
This stream looks closer at the new conglomeration of cybernetic
automation, DIY culture and industrial production. Here, on a
macro-level, anxieties of global competition come to the fore and on a
micro-level there are anxieties to at all deal with the socio-political
consequences, as the new maker cultures revel in the craftsmanship of
the prototypical, instrumental and entrepreneurial. What are the
cultural implications of the ideal scene of Industry 4.0 or the so
called “third industrial revolution” where new cultures of industrial
fabrication meets DIY culture?

Anxious to Share
The ideal scene of this stream is that of a sharing culture of
micro-practices and cottage industries that emerged as part of
innovative citizen-driven alternatives to the crisis of a receding
public sphere and relentless privatisation. The stream however takes a
critical, post-startup economy look at interrelated topics such as
disruption and displacement, conditions of cultural production, spatial
politics, and network economy. We are anxious to share but do we really
want to take the responsibility for what and how something is being
shared? And from a non-anthropocentric perspective, are new planetary
scales of sharing emerging?

Anxious to Secure
This stream looks at the increasing securitisation of everything from
individual communication, artistic and media production to corporations
and nation-states. Against the ideal scene of total security, more
localised and intimate ideas of networking and secure communication are
developing with the rise of resilient, autonomous and hybrid networks.
This stream looks at securitisation both from the point of view of the
old/new military-industrial-media complex and from the point of view of
the insecurity of everyday life. How can we learn to live with
precarisation as the anxious position from which we now try to secure
whether as hackers, whistleblowers, artists, workers or simply users?

Deadline: 10 August 2015

Submit your proposals here:

More info on transmediale Conversation Piece at:

Kristoffer Gansing
artistic director

Klosterstr. 68, 10179 Berlin
tel +49 30 24749 760

More information about the SPECTRE mailing list