felix's blog

12.01. If everything is true. Knowledge and Manipulation (HKW, Berlin)

Curated by Bernd Scherer and Olga von Schubert

From the linguistic development of so-called Artificial Intelligence to the decentralized structure of the blockchain, new technologies operate on the basis of training sets, into which are inscribed prejudices, world views, material infrastructures, and ownership logic. To what extent do the metaphors of intelligence and learning apply to the new technologies?

Who writes the protocols of algorithmic infrastructures and on the basis of which semiotic and semantic processes do they operate? Where do the opportunities for emancipation, self-determination, diversity, and decentralization lie within the realm of technological development? To what extent does it make sense to renounce the quest for meaning in the technological development of language, and what kind of algorithmic poetry does this engender? Taking as reference the work of Luc Steels, one of the world’s leading AI developers, artistic and activist positions are deployed to explore the development of technological language.

Giulia Bruno, Kate Crawford, Simon Denny, Armin Linke, Trevor Paglen, Felix Stalder, Luc Steels, Hito Steyerl, moderated by Bernd Scherer

Timetable of the event (PDF)

Detailed program infomation and essays (PDF)

my contribution:

HKW, AUDITORIUM 5:30 P.M. – 6:00 P.M.


Rethinking the Public Sphere under the Digital Condition

This text was written as a contribution to the workshop Public in the Making, 18-20 October 2018 İstanbul, part of the project Trans making: art, culture and economy to democratize society. A well layouted PDF is also available. Thanks to Fatih Aydogdu for the invitation.


Democracy, even in its most rudimentary definition, contains two elements.1 The first is that of public deliberation and contestation of the issues affecting the “demos” (the people) as a collectivity. The precondition here is the availability of an easily accessible, shared space in which different opinions and attitudes can be expressed, compared and peacefully fought over, as a way for the members of the collectivity (the “citizens”) to form their opinions and plot out diverging futures. The second element allows to express those opinions and interests in a way that leads to a decision regarding the future that is binding for, and accepted by, all. Usually, this is done by voting either “yes” or “no” to a specified proposal for action, or by selecting representatives from a group of pre-selected candidates, often, but not necessarily, organized as political parties that stand for competing visions of the future. If the first element is weakened, voting is transformed to a ritual of submission and propaganda in the machinery of dictatorship, if the latter is reduced, democracy turns into post-democracy where issues are debated but decision making is outsourced to “experts” or “the market” (Crouch 2004).

28.11. Pre_invent. Vortrag und Diskussion (Düsseldorf)


Wir laden Sie herzlich zum Vortrag von Prof. Dr. Felix Stalder und einem gemeinsamen Diskurs über die »Kultur der Digitalität« im Rahmen der Konferenzreihe Pre_Invent ein. Die Veranstaltung findet am 28.11.2018 um 18:30 im Photostudio Raum 6.E.019 in der Hochschule Düsseldorf statt. Der Eintritt ist frei und es ist keine Anmeldung erforderlich.
Pre_Invent ist eine Konferenzreihe der Hochschule Düsseldorf. Das Ziel der Reihe ist es historische und bestehende Konzepte des Digitalen und Politischen sowie verschiedener Gestaltungsmethoden zu analysieren. Auf dieser Basis werden neue Gestaltungsansätze entwickelt, die das Digitale als Intervention und Austragungsort für politisches Handeln reformulieren.

Mittwoch, 28. November 2018
3rd Chapter:
Cultures of the Digital

weitere Information unter www.facebook.com/preinvent


Hochschule Düsseldorf
Peter Behrens School of Arts
Campus Derendorf
Gebäude 6, Photostudio, 6.E.019
Münsterstraße 156
40476 Düsseldorf


18:30 Uhr: Begrüßung und Einführung
Prof. Mareike Foecking

19:00 Uhr: Kultur der Digitalität
Prof. Dr. Felix Stalder, ZHdK Zürich

20:00: Q&A Diskussion

Datensouveränität - jenseits des Datenschutzes

Radio Organge: Sendung vom 29.10.2018:

Katja Mayer und Felix Stalder auf der PrivacyWeek #3

Datensouveränität wird oftmals mit Datenschutz gleichgesetzt, dabei öffnet der Begriff vielfältige Möglichkeiten den Umgang mit Daten neu zu gestalten. Besonders interessant sind Ansätze die neue Institutionen hervorbringen um kollektiv Daten zu nutzen und so eine gemeinschaftliche Form von Souveränität zu stärken. Die Soziologin Katja Mayer und der Kultur- und Medienwissenschaftler Felix Stalder erörtern die Thematik anhand von Beispielen aus den Bereichen Open Science und Gesundheit sowie städtischen Technologieprojekten.

Im Website-Player abspielen (pop-up)
Archivierte Sendung im cultural broadcasting archive

8.11. Technopolitics and ecology (keynote, Sigradi, Sao Carlos, Brazil)

Abstract for the keynote lecture: Technopolitics and ecology

Throughout its history, Western capitalism has renewed itself through continuous crises that drove technological innovation and political change. The crisis turned structural when the two transformations conflicted with, rather than complemented, each other. Capitalism has been able to overcome this type of crisis by developing a new techno-economic paradigm. In this light, the moment we are witnessing today is the crisis of neo-liberal informationalism that centers around computer technologies and deregulated global financial markets. This paradigm began to emerge in the 1970s as a response to the crisis of Keynesian industrialism, which itself was a response to the crises of laissez-faire capitalism that followed the crash of 1929.

But this is not all. On a deeper level, materialism and consumerism as a social promise and model for economic growth is reaching hard limits today, generating a planetary ecological emergency. In other words, the current crisis is both one within capitalism, heralding yet another structural transformation, and one of capitalism. The latter because it is no longer possible to treat natural resources as externalities not the be counted (as raw material waiting to be commodified at the beginning of the capitalist process or as waste-ground to dispose of unwanted materials at the end of the process).

05/06.11 Writing the history of the present. Technopolitics Worksop (Sao Carlos, Brasil)

writing the history of the present. collaborative editing of the technopolitics timeline

Technopolitics Working Group

What are the relationships between artistic/intellectual practices and large-scale historical processes? How did the two evolve in the Information Society? Does the contemporary period represent a continuation of this evolution or does it constitute a transformative crisis leading to a new paradigm? These are some of the core questions that Technopolitics as an ongoing, international artistic research project is interested in.
The most prominent visual aspect of the project is the TECHNOPOLITICS TIMELINE. The timeline, as a print-out measuring 20 x 1.5 meters, traces the Information Society from the year 1900 to today and contains about 500 entries of events that have contributed to the emergence and transformation of our era. These entries are organized in six horizontal categories and 12 vertical tags.

The timeline will be accompanied by audio-visual and printed material that contextualizes the entries. An additional contextual layer is provided by three hyperlink network visualizations of the Timeline entries identified in multilingual Wikipedia that yield a crowd-sourced view on their semantic relationships.

27.10. Datensouveränität - jenseits des Datenschutzes (Wien)

2018-10-27, 12:45–13:30, Saal 2
Speaker: Katja Mayer und Felix Stalder

Datensouveränität wird oftmals mit Datenschutz gleichgesetzt, dabei öffnet der Begriff vielfältige Möglichkeiten den Umgang mit Daten neu zu gestalten. Besonders interessant sind Ansätze die neue Institutionen hervorbringen um kollektiv Daten zu nutzen und so eine gemeinschaftliche Form von Souveränität zu stärken. Anhand von Beispielen aus den Bereichen Open Science, Gesundheit und städtischen Technologieprojekten werden wir deren Potentiale erörtern und gemeinsam mit dem Publikum diskutieren.

25.10. Brown Bag Lunch Forschung – Creating Commons (Zürich)

Brown Bag Lunch Forschung presents:

Creating Commons – feministische Perspektiven auf digitale ästhetische Praktiken
Lecture und Diskussion mit Felix Stalder und Shusha Niederberger, IFCAR, DKM

25. Oktober 2018, 12.30–13.30 Uhr
ZHdK, Raum 6.C03

Das Forschungsprojekt «Creating Commons» (2017–2019) beschäftigt sich mit aktuellen, von der digitalen Kultur inspirierten künstlerischen Praktiken. Im Feld zwischen Kunst und Commons entwickeln sie radikale ästhetische und praktische Modelle der künstlerischen und kulturellen Produktion im digitalen Zeitalter.

In den Research Meetings mit Künstler_innen, Theoretiker_innen und Aktivist_innen zeigte sich, dass neben der digitalen Kultur der Feminismus eine zweite zentrale Referenz darstellt. Beide berühren ein verändertes Verhältnis von Produktion und Reproduktion. Davon ausgehend werden digitale ästhetische Praktiken und die damit verbundenen Institutionen neu gedacht und experimentell gelebt. Was bedeutet es, wenn man die Forderung von Silvia Federici ernst nimmt und die Commons feministisch denkt, also all die auch mit der Schaffung und Verwaltung von Gemeingütern verbundene reproduktive Arbeit ernst nimmt? Welchen Stellenwert bekommen darin Institutionen, Infrastrukturen und Tools? Und wie drückt sich das spezifisch auf dem Gebiet der digitalen Commons aus?
Ausgehend von im Rahmen der Research Meetings entstandenen Interviews stellen wir einige Positionen vor und diskutieren, wie solcherart gelagerte künstlerische Praxen sich konkret artikulieren und wie sie sich im ästhetischen Feld verorten.


12/13.10. E-relevance of Culture in the Age of AI (Rijeka)

Culture, Creativity and Artificial Intelligence will be discussed at an expert seminar in Rijeka, Croatia on 12-13 October 2018. The seminar “E-relevance of Culture in the Age of AI”, organised in the framework of the Croatian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, will offer sector-specific input to the Council of Europe’s work on artificial intelligence.

In the presence of the Minister of Culture of Croatia, Ms Nina Obuljen Koržinek, experts and policy makers from the Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape (CDCPP) will discuss orientations for working towards a culture of responsible innovation, empowering citizens and laying the foundations for the emergence of a modern Leonardo da Vinci. Questions for debate include:

  • How can culture maintain its important human imprint and guidance role in a time where AI already heavily impacts people’s creativity?
  • Can it contribute to a more human- and citizen-centred technological future by proposing and developing alternative concepts?
  • How does AI impact on the perception of human uniqueness/genius, the role of artists, intellectual property? Can culture still represent a mirror of society in a time when AI intelligence blends with human creativity?

Experts, including Régine Debatty, Luba Elliott, Philippe Kern, Davor Misković, Matteo Pasquinelli, Felix Stalder, Vuk Ćosić and Gerfried Stocker, will shed light on AI-related challenges and opportunities that actually present not just a technical revolution, but also a cultural and social one.

1.10. Technopolitics Lecture (Tranzit, Bratislava)

Technopolitics Salon

lectures and discussion

Felix Stalder, Gerald Nestler, Axel Stockburger
Kristian Lukić

date: October 1, 2018 at 6pm
venue: tranzit.sk, Beskydská 12, Bratislava

The event will be conducted in English.

Second edition of Technopolitics Salon in Bratislava will present three talks on the topics of communality and algorithmicity, finance and activism, digital culture and contemporary art. Technopolitics is an independent, transdisciplinary platform of artists, journalists, researchers, designers and developers who jointly develop innovative formats at the intersection of art, research, science, and pedagogy. In 2011, it was set up in Vienna as a circle that regularly meets for lectures and discussions. Technopolitics also produces interdisciplinary conferences and artistic research projects internationally. An important common objective is the investigation of large-scale historical processes structured by technoeconomic paradigms from a critical, explorative standpoint.

Felix Stalder
The Digital Condition

Referentiality, communality, and algorithmicity have become the characteristic cultural forms of the digital condition because more and more people – in more and more segments of life and by means of increasingly complex technologies – are actively (voluntarily and/or compulsorily) participating in the negotiation of social meaning. They are thus reacting to the demands of a chaotic, overwhelming sphere of information and thereby contributing to its greater expansion.

Gerald Nestler
What has art got to do with it?

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