As part of the three-year Research Initiative, Blockchains & Cultural Padlocks, 221A presents the workshop New Models Module 1: Imagining Collapse developed by Daniel Keller, and his network from the New Models community. New Models is a pro-complexity media node for art, politics, tech and pop culture. New Models exists across platforms with all channels running through their aggregator https://newmodels.io, and features a podcast hosted by Daniel Keller, Caroline Busta, and @LILINTERNET.
Through a multimedia presentation and lecture, a Q&A, and interactive exercises we will explore some of the foundational concepts, teleologies and online communities engaged in the discussion around climate change and collapse, moving away from the impossibility of ‘sustainability’ and resilience and towards a strategy of ‘coping’ and ‘relinquishment’. The workshop is based in diverse and interlocking memeplexes about coping with, and maintaining dignity and individual sovereignty in the face of inevitable 21st century climate tragedy.
Since at least the 1990s, the conventional messaging around climate change has been focused on “resilience”–recycling, driving/flying less, reducing plastics, building/farming with the expectation of more volatile weather patterns–all with the intention of being able to mitigate the velocity of climate change and society’s chances of snapping back to “normal” in the wake of extreme events. But increasingly, people who work in the climate sector feel that this hope-and-resilience narrative suppresses the full truth: that in the face of climate change, untold loss is inevitable — and that the timeline for living life as we know it, is far shorter as assumed.
Some in this cohort are starting to shift the conversation from “resilience” to one of “relinquishment,” advocating for a policy prescription that supports societies in psychologically preparing for this change. Indeed the model for this … acknowledging the limits of human production, de-possessing, assuming loss… is the opposite of the narrative capitalism sets out: one of total control, perpetual accumulation, requirement of gains. And not surprisingly it is not only in the science community where this shift in thinking has already begun to take place.
The workshop will also be simulcast with Blockchain@UBC’s Summer Institute. The Q&A session will be informed by an art and design audience, alongside students and faculty from computer and information sciences.