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Re-imagining future landscapes by designing human-animal-technology relatio...
Wed 8 February 2017, 16:00 – 17:30 GMT
Re-imagining future landscapes by designing human-animal-technology relations, or: queering the farm with ecofeminist robotics
Clemens Driessen (Wageningen University)
This talk will start with a series of projections of agricultural technologies that have been proposed as the future of farming. From high-rise pig farms to mobile milking robots, and from in-vitro meat to playing-with-pigs. These technological proposals offer several lenses to engage with the future of agricultural landscapes, of human-animal relations, and of the nature of farm work. Most visions of agricultural futures tend to extrapolate and naturalize modernist trends of progressively displacing the human and eventually the animal from landscapes of production. But there are some alternative practices of imagining future landscapes as both technological, social and (multi-)natural, in which design is not just a matter of human/economic projection, but can be a site-specific experimental process ‘with’ animals, plants, and socio-ecologies. Engaging with ambivalences of farm work and questions of animal use, while hopefully navigating the pitfalls of ecomodernist promises, this talk will sketch a mode of more-than-human design and eco-art geared to produce more meaningful landscapes and human-animal relations. The talk will end with speculations on the potential of this approach in resisting the emergence of agricultural production as a corporately controlled data driven ‘massively multiplayer online game’ on an ecologically empty monocultural terrain.