Conference: Criticism on consumption

14 Sep 2010 - 10:00 to 15 Sep 2010 - 16:00

Venue Stavanger Kunstmuseum
Address Henrik Ibsensgt.55
Time 14-15 september, (10:00 – 16:00)
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Costs for both days 300kr/200kr for students

Something is Not Quite Right
In this series of presentations during the Article 2010, Something is not quite right, artists, designers, researchers, scientists, architects and activists will be sharing how their processes and products have been responding to today’s uneasiness fueled by clime change, consumerist attitudes and threatening facts about the future of our planet.

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Oversikt Konferanseprogram

Critisism on consumption

Venue Stavanger Kunstmuseum

Adress Henrik Ibsensgt.55
Time: 14-15 september, (daytime)

Something is not quite right.
In this series of presentations during the Article 2010, Something is not quite right, artists, designers, researchers, scientists, architects and activists will be sharing how their processes and products have been responding to today’s uneasiness fueled by clime change, consumerist attitudes and threatening facts about the future of our planet.

Day 1 – In response:
The mixed presentations by individuals and groups will create a cross section of activities that are currently creating awareness, proposing solutions and presenting personal reflections. The resulting discussion and exchange hopes to involve the audience to further grow an existing open-ended debate of creative action for global change and reflect on the efforts presented.

Day 2 – Process / In Action
Given the complexities and enormity of the challenges we are currently being faced in dealing with issues of global environmental crises, the consumerist attitudes of the majority of our population and the dubious approaches of global powers, the presentations highlight strategies for dialogue and approach. The strategies and processes for communication by creative practitioners in collaboration with scientists will feed into current questions of alternative models and approaches to the process of art making.


Part 1: In response

Raitis Smits (LV)

Raitis Smits is a media artist and curator based in Riga, Latvia. One of founders of Electronic arts and media centre E-LAB (1996) and The Center for New Media Culture RIXC (2000) in Riga. Involved in many new
media art and culture projects initiated and produced by E-LAB and RIXC, among them project Milk which has received Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica.His artworks have been exhibited in various international media art
exhibitions and festivals. Together with Rasa Smite and Janis Garancs has received Prix Ars Electronica Award of Distinction for streaming media project Xchange.Curator and organizer of the annual International new media art festivals "Art+Communication" in Riga (since 1996).
Assistant professor at Latvian Academy of Arts in department of Visual Communication (since 1999) and PhD researcher at Latvian Academy of Arts (since 2009).

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Registration/coffee 09:30

10:00 – 10:15 Welcoming and introduction (Hege/Marcus)

10:15 – 10:30 Moderator presentation

Artists presentations

10:30 – 11:00 Andrea Polli (IT) / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
For almost 100 years, throughout the world from Antarctica to Greenland to the middle of the Pacific Ocean, people have been stationed in remote, uncomfortable and sometimes hazardous locations for the sole reason of physically observing and recording the weather. Meteorologists, military and commercial pilots, air traffic controllers, and many others depend on this regular information, what they call 'ground truth', despite the ubiquity of instruments that can provide precise and often much more detailed information without endangering human lives. Why, with all this sophisticated sensing instrumentation and satellite imagery, do we still depend on people on the ground looking up at the clouds? What is the meaning of 'ground truth'?

Andrea Polli is a digital media artist, Associate Professor in Fine Arts and Engineering and Mesa Del Sol Chair of Digital Media at The University of New Mexico. Polli's work with science, technology and media has been presented widely in venues including the Whitney Museum of American Art Artport and The Field Museum of Natural History. Her work has been reviewed by the Los Angeles Times, Art in America, Art News, NY Arts and others. In 2007/2008, she spent seven weeks in Antarctica on a National Science Foundation funded residency.
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11:00 – 11:30 Terike Haapoja (FL) / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
In her talk Terike Haapoja will discuss the connections between scientific thought and the way new technology is applied to art projects. By referring to her exhibition project Closed Circuit - Open Duration and other works she will examine the similarities and differences between scientific and artistic ideas of representation, and the connections of subjective and objective approaches to a shared reality.

Terike Haapoja (b.1974) is a visual artist, working and living in Helsinki, Finland. Her work consists of videos, installations and performance projects, dealing with human-nature relations and characterized by innovative use of new media and new technlogy.

Haapoja has a master´s degree from the Theater Academy of Finland (dep. of Performance art and -theory) and from the Academy of Fine Arts in Finland. She is currently working on her artistic reasearch PhD in the Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki.
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11:30 – 12:00 Simon Høgsberg / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
Four days in September (sept. 15 - 18) Danish photographer Simon Hoegsberg will be giving 'Free Advice About Everything + Coffee' on Torget in Stavanger as part of the Article Biennial 2010. Anyone can get an advice, the booth is open for all.
In his presentation Simon will explain what made him leave the camera behind and go to Norway to engage in conversations with people on street level.

Simon Høgsberg (b. 1976 in Aarhus, Denmark) lives in Copenhagen where he divides his time between jobs and self-initiated photo projects that have at least one thing in common: they are about people. His latest project - We're All Gonna Die - is a photograph of 100 meters containing 178 portraits of people shot in the course of 20 days from the same spot on a railroad bridge in Berlin in the summer 2007. Simon got a BA in photography in London in 2002, and has been working as a freelancer since then.

12:00 – 13:00 LUNCH

Inventing things
13:00 – 13:30 Karolina Sobecka / 20min talk + 10min Q&A
Karolina Sobecka will discuss her past work as related to the theme of creative approach to sustainability concerns and present her new project Amateur Human, a series of design accessories that personalize our relationship to the environment. Amateur Human designs are playful and absurd, yet functional and informative, and encompass various methods and media.

Poland native Karolina Sobecka works with animation, design, interactivity, physical computing, computer games and other media and formats. Her work often explores cultural repercussions of scientific and technological advances, and the subjectivity of perception.
Sobecka received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her MFA from Calarts in Experimental Animation/Integrated Media. She has also studied and taught in the University of Washington's Digital Arts and Experimental Media PhD program. Sobecka's work has been shown at festivals and galleries around the world, including the V&A, the Beall Center for Art + Technology, ISEA, Medialab Prado. She has received awards from the Creative Capital, New York State Art Council, Princess Grace Foundation, the Platform International Animation Festival, Vida Art and Artificial Life Awards, Asia Digital Art Festival and the Japan Media Arts Festival.
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Green design
13:30 – 14:00 Interactive Institute v/ Tina Finnas / 20min talk + 10min Q&A
VISUAL VOLTAGE, sustainable gadgets/designtools.
Most people are aware of the global environmental problems we are facing and know that it is everyone’s responsibility to contribute to a sustainable development. Yet it can be difficult to break old patterns of behavior and to know how to do active choices in everyday life. Adding on more things to remember; must´s and to do´s is not always the best way to reach good results and the desired change. Design, at its best, does not only fulfill the need of a beautiful interior but can also, trough visualization, help you understand and thereby change your energy behavior.
What is a Kilowatt? What does 2000 kg CO2 really means? What does this mean in the bigger perspective? Does my behavior have any impact in the bigger context?

Since 2004 the Interactive Institute has been working with new approaches on how to save energy and lower energy usage. One important goal is to make it easier for people to be aware of their energy consumption by making the energy usage visible and a part of their everyday life. We also believe that it is important to reward a good energy behavior as is the case with the Flower Lamp that opens up when energy consumption decreases. Another good example is the Energy Aware Clock that shows the households energy consumption in real-time, and is designed to be part of the home interior.

Both the Flower Lamp and the Energy Aware Clock are part of the world touring exhibition Visual Voltage that enables visitors to explore various forms of electricity, and to experience and reflect on energy consumption. The exhibit features installations and prototypes from some of Sweden's best known artists and designers that have been brought together with engineers, technical know-how and environmental consideration in this ground breaking exhibition. The exhibition features work by Steven Dixon, Nils Edvardsson, Tina Finnäs, Front Design and Tore Nilsson. The exhibition is a collaboration between the Swedish Institute and the Interactive Institute and has so far been exhibited in Shanghai, Washington DC, Brussels, Berlin, Beijing and will end its tour in Tokyo in Autumn 2010.

Tina Finnäs is an artist and project leader and has worked at the Interactive Institute since 2006 with consultation, project leading and communication. She has also been involved as an artist in different projects developed by the Interactive Institute, the latest project is the installation Like There Was No Tomorrow for the world touring exhibition Visual Voltage. She has an MFA from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm. Tina is also founder and project leader of TICA - Tirana Institute of Contemporary Art in Albania.
The Interactive Institute is a Swedish experimental media research institute that combines expertise in art, design and technology to conduct world-class applied research and innovation. We develop new research areas, concepts, products and services, and provide strategic advice to corporations and public organizations. Our research results are communicated and exhibited worldwide and brought out to society through commissioned work, license agreements and spin-off companies.
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Architecture/urban landscape projects
14:00 – 14:30 Helen & Hard v/ Ane Dahl / 20min talk + 10min Q&A
Presents renewable and sustainable architectural models
Helen & Hards work attempts to creatively engage with sustainability, moving away from a solely technical or anthropocentric view towards a synergistic mode, which allows for an extended confluence not only with humans but also with contextual and material resources. Far from passive ingredients, they have a space-generating capacity as active participants in the design process. This requires a communicative engagement, and synergistic collaboration with particular, local and global resources and knowledge fields. During the design process, they are synthesized in between empirical and experimental sequences, and woven together into architecture.

Helen & Hard's work explores the heterogenic nature of relational space, not as a post-modern narrative collage, but as a fine weave, a field of interrelated sensitive elements, responding to its surrounding environment. This evocative and interwoven space expresses to the user potentiality for interaction and sharpening of all senses.

The endeavor is to create meeting spaces accommodating both, shared social and individual meditative encounter.

Helen & Hard was founded in 1996 in Stavanger on the west coast of Norway by architects Siv Helene Stangeland and Reinhard Kropf. Today, the company has a youthful staff of 18 drawn from different countries. The firm works with a wide spectrum of projects from interior, design, art and architecture to town planning.

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14:30 – 15:00 Closure of moderator

15:00 End

Part 2: Process / In Action

Erich Berger
Austrian-born Erich Berger is an artist and cultural worker based in Helsinki/ Finland. His interests lie in information processes and feedback structures, which he investigates through installations, situations, performances and interfaces. His work has been shown and produced internationally, and received a number of awards. Venues include Ars Electronica Festival Linz/ Austria, File Festival Sao Paulo/ Brazil, Sonar Barcelona/ Spain, TEKS Trondheim/ Norway and Venice Biennial Italy. He worked for Ars Electronica/ Linz/ Austria, Atelier
Nord Oslo/ Norway and LABoral Gijon/ Spain. Currently he is a lecturer at the Fine Art Academy in Vienna/ Austria and the coordinator of the Ars Bioarctica initiative of the Finnish Bioart Society in Helsinki/ Finland.

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Registration/coffee 09:45

10:15 – 10:30 Moderator introduction

The interventionist/communicator
10:30 – 11:00 UBERMORGEN.COM / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
Media Hacking: massive intrusion into mass media channels with low-tech and a strong story, Conceptual Art: the evolution of digital actionism into mere technical systems of imagination and Research Based Art: the current method of production spinning off product-vectors into all possible fields and technologies. Featuring UBERMORGEN.COM projects 2000-2010 including supercontemporary pieces (DEEPHORIZON, Asylum Defence Agency), blockbusters (Vote-Auction), conceptual pieces (EKMRZ-Trilogy) and painful projects (Superenhanced).


UBERMORGEN.COM is an artist duo created in Vienna, Austria, by lizvlx and Hans Bernhard. Behind UBERMORGEN.COM we can find one of the most unmatchable identities – controversial and iconoclastic – of the contemporary European techno-fine-art avant-garde. Their open circuit of conceptual art, drawing, software art, pixel painting, computer installations,, sculpture and digital activism (media hacking) transforms their brand into a hybrid Gesamtkunstwerk. The computer and the network are (ab)used to create art and combine its multiple forms. the permanent amalgamation of fact and fiction points toward an extremely expanded concept of one’s working materials that for UBERMORGEN.COM also include (international) rights, democracy and global communication (input-feedback loops). “Ubermorgen” is the German word both for “the day after tomorrow” and “super-tomorrow”.
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Artists – research-science
11:00 – 11:30 Tapio Màkele / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
ELOCATEDNESS: Art and Science Practice as Situated Information Design
How do you make situated design and art practice in contexts of living ecologies? I suggest “ecolocatedness” as a way of combining environmental data with experience and location, thus basing art and science practice on situated information design. I will discuss these concepts in the context of an ongoing project, M.A.R.I.N. a networked residency and research initiative, integrating artistic and scientific research on ecology of the marine and cultural ecosystems. For the first three years M.A.R.I.N.’s operational focus is a mobile residency program in marine environments. Emerging from long experience of collaboration within media art, M.A.R.I.N. develops integrative arts/science/technology practice models. The name of the project is an acronym of Media Art Research Interdisciplinary Network.

Tapio Mäkelä is a researcher and a media artist based in Manchester, UK and Helsinki, Finland. He is currently an AHRC Research Fellow with department of Creative Technology, School of Art and Design, University of Salford. He is researching social and cultural uses of location based media and environmental interaction and information design.
Mäkelä is also a co-founder of Marin Association and M.A.R.I.N. (Media Art Research Interdisciplinary Network), an art, science and ecology research residency and network initiative.
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11:30 – 12:00 Sophie Jerram / 20min talk + 10min Q&A
New Zealand artist and curator Sophie Jerram will present work that aims to sit on the threshold between disciplines, taking the position that the failure of much climate change negotiation is due to beliefs in arbitrary boundaries. She will discuss two New Zealand projects: Dialogues with Tomorrow, a series of interdisciplinary lectures addressing climate change held in Wellington this year, and Letting Space, a series of artworks commissioned for commercial sites made empty through economic recession. As part of Letting Space, Kim Paton ran the Free Store in May 2010; an expose´ of the waste rife in current industrial food production and marketing systems. The Free Store required the negotiation of free rent, a large volunteer database, and the ongoing relationship management of supermarkets and other retailers. It was, predictably, a popular installation which attracted the attention and goodwill from many groups: over 45 food businesses, 84 volunteers as well as student groups and the dispossessed. It also served to prompt a new way of working for the NGO community as a model of collaboration.

Sophie Jerram is an artist and independent curator based in Wellington New Zealand.
Recent artistic projects include The Mud People of Tawharanui for The Tawharanui Open Sanctuary project (New Zealand March 2010), Southern Men on the Rig for The Water Show (Physics Room, Christchurch 2008), Oil on Troubled Water (Enjoy Gallery Wellington 2007).
Curatorial projects include: Kim Paton’s Free Store as part of the Letting Space series (co-curated with Mark Amery); Bombs Away (Physics Room and Adam Art Galleries 2005); Posted Love (National Library of New Zealand touring to 4 venues, 1999).
Sophie is also founder of the Now Future partnership and this year programmed with co-founder Dugal McKinnon a series of inter-disciplinary conversations between artists, business people and scientists on the subject of climate change, called Dialogues with Tomorrow.
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12:00 – 13:00 LUNCH

13:00 – 13:30 Herbologies project by Ulla Taipale / 20min talk + 10min Q&A
The Herbologies/Foraging Networks programme, previously focused in Helsinki (Finland) and Kurzeme region of Latvia, explores the cultural traditions and knowledge of herbs, edible and medicinal plants, within the contemporary context of online networks, open information-sharing and biological technologies. The initiators/organisers of the programme are Andrew Gryf Paterson (SCO/FI), Ulla Taipale / Capsula (FI/ES) and Signe Pucena / SERDE (LV).

Ulla Taipale / CAPSULA (FI/ES) is an independent curator and cultural producer. Since 2005 she works in Capsula, that is a curatorial research group whose interests focus on the meeting point between art, science and nature. Capsula collaborates with cultural institutions internationally and several projects have enhanced collaborations between cultural and scientific institutions. Currently she is working in two ongoing projects, Curated Expeditions and Herbologies/Foraging Networks.
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13:30 – 14:00 Scott Kellogg (US) / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
Struggles for Sustainability in the Urban Environment
Ecological designer, Scott Kellogg, will talk about his work in developing environmentally regenerative systems in cities throughout the world. He will give descriptions of tools and technologies that urban residents can use to achieve greater local access and control over food, water, waste management, and energy production, all with an emphasis on methods that are affordable, decentralized, and simple.

Scott Kellogg is the co-author of the book "Toolbox for Sustainable City
Living: A Do-it-Ourselves Guide" (South End Press) and the primary
teacher of R.U.S.T. - The Radical Urban Sustainability Training, an intensive weekend workshop in urban ecological survival skills. Currently, Scott is developing a new organization in Albany, New York named the Radix Ecological Sustainability Center. It is planned to be a demonstration of environmental technologies and sustainable micro industries applicable in today’s urban environment.
Scott is also a co-founder of Austin, Texas' Rhizome Collective, (, an urban sustainability education project, and worked as the director of its sustainability program from 2000-2009.
He has extensive experience designing and building numerous sustainable systems and has taught numerous workshops and multi-part sustainability courses in locations as diverse as Mexico, East Timor, Canada, and inner city America. He is currently earning a Masters in Environmental Science from Johns Hopkins University.
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14:00 – 14:30 Michel Bauwens (AU) / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
The current modality of globalization is based on massive material flows which are fast becoming unsustainable and are seriously harming the biosphere. The system's DNA is based on a false notion of abundance applied to the natural world, seen as compatible with infinite growth, and with active measures of scarcity engineering concerning the free flow of ideas, culture and science. In this lecture, we will have a look at how increasing numbers of people are attempting to reverse its logic into its opposite, through the building of integrated networks of resilience, based on combining open infrastructures for sharing immaterial flows of knowledge, code and designs, while also organizing the shared use of material objects, for common usage instead of permanent exclusive property. The adage of the emerging p2p and commons movement becomes: "together we know everything, together we have everything". Far from being the description of a promised utopia, we will describe the many nowtopian practices that are emerging, and how a meshwork of those initiatives may represent the seed of the successor civilisation.

"Michel Bauwens is an active writer, researcher and conference speaker on the subject of technology, culture and business innovation. He is the founder of the Foundation for Peer-to-Peer Alternatives and works in collaboration with a global group of researchers in the exploration of peer production, governance, and property. He has been an analyst for the United States Information Agency, knowledge manager for British Petroleum, eBusiness Strategy Manager for Belgacom, as well as an internet entrepreneur in his home country of Belgium. He has co-produced the 3-hour TV documentary Technocalyps with Frank Theys, and co-edited the two-volume book on anthropology of digital society with Salvino Salvaggio. Michel is currently Primavera Research Fellow at the University of Amsterdam and external expert at the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (2008). Michel currently lives in Chiang Mai, Thailand, assisting Richard Hames with the development of the Asian Foresight Institute."
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14:30 – 15:00 The Yes Men – over skype / 20 min.presentation + 10 min Q&A
The Yes Men will discuss the form of direct action protest they have come to call Identity Correction, in which they impersonate powerful business entities in order to ridicule them for putting profits before people and planet. They will share their successes, failures, and their secrets, and will explain how others might participate in similar actions using the resources of the Yes Lab (

The Yes Men are a group of activists who use mimicry and masquerade to invade the halls of power and ridicule those who would kill the planet. They can be found at their comfortable home on the interweb, at
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15:00 – 15:30 Closure of the moderator

15:30 End

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17:00 – Opening of Nele Azevedo`s installation at the town square (Takes about 30min to walk from the Art Museum to this venue)