The Zone is a project about the Anthropocene/Capitalocene landscapes of our damaged planet. It takes its name from a real physical space, the exclusion zone established as a consequence of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan. The Zone is also a metaphor that constructs the mythology of the present, warning us against dreams of technological progress turned into nightmares. The project explores the possibilities of art & cartography displays in understanding contemporary environmental disasters.
The project consists of four main parts: 1/ an outdoors installation, 2/ an interactive map, 3/ a workers area, 4/ a documentation area.
An outdoors installation occupy the public space at the entrance of LABoral Art Center. It consists of a deposit of radioactive bags evoking the storage facilities for contaminated soil from the nuclear crisis spread over all the ridges of Fukushima prefecture.
The main piece is a 78 square metres interactive map. The map is projected on the floor allowing the visitors to walk on the top of it. Five digitally fabricated objects on its surface, when approached by the visitor, activate a specific story. These stories include 1/ the earthquake and tsunami, 2/ the multiple nuclear reactor meltdowns, 3/ the evacuation of the population, 4/ the first journalist to get into the Exclusion Zone, and 5/ the citizen science as a response to the radiological disaster.
The workers’ area is a tribute to the thousands of workers, mostly subcontract ones, who enter Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant everyday or work in the decontamination brigades. It includes a Geiger Counter developed by Safecast, a citizen science community established in Japan as a response to the nuclear disaster.
The documentation area includes books, reports, photos and academic papers on the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. It additionally includes resources from primary sources collected in Japan between November 2011 and February 2012. Selected Academic Papers are organised into six main categories: Social Movements, Citizen Science, Philosophy, Ecosystems, Activism, Workers and Public Health.
What does a resilient community against neoliberal urbanism look like from the sky? Vila Autodromo is a local community in Barra de Tijuca facing real state violence from construction companies and the local goverment close to place of Rio 2016 Olympics.
The Global Street is an online video-cartography linking the streets and squares the streets and squares across Tunis, Cairo, Madrid, New York, Tokyo, Istanbul, São Paulo, Belo Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro.
From the Arab revolutions to the 15M movement in Spain, from Occupy Wall Street in the USA to the Hydrangea revolt in Japan, from #direngezi in Turkey to the June Journeys in Brazil, music has played an essential role to sustain and in some ways synchronize protestors hearts, political agendas and imaginations.
The Global Street assembles a selection of affective songs and disruptive beats which were part of already historical atmospheres of democratic change: from the chanting crowds in Tahrir Square and Puerta del Sol to the Taksim Gezi Park barricade drums, from the Gospel band in Zuccotti Park to the Brazilian protest funk.
Drone Hackademy is a temporary hacktivist school, citizen science laboratory and critical theory platform for the use and discussion of unmanned aerial vehicles as a social technology. It is a collaboration between computer engineer & artist Lot Amorós and architect & researcher Pablo De Soto. It took place in June 2015 in Rio de Janeiro with ten participants aged between 19 and 49
The participants are chosen through a public call with the objective of bringing together people of different backgrounds and knowledge fields: filmmakers, mediactivists, artists, architects, researchers, geographers, biologists, hackers, software developers, etc. We practise positive discrimination welcoming people from low income classes, limited access to technology and also those how represent activist groups. #Dronehackademy aims to create a community of learning, “situated knowledge” exchanges and action.
Drone Hackademy last for a week combining theory and practical application. Participants learn both how to build unmanned aerial vehicles and how and why to protect themselves and their communities against them. The final activity consists in the realization of a operation where drones are employed in a socially beneficial function. The objective of Drone Hackademy is therefore to provide this technology to those places and situations where its use is ethically justified in order to counterpower social/spatial/environmental injustice. #Dronehackademy collaborates with these communities and territories contributing the capacity of action in the airspace. Two open source UAVS were built, a FLONE with cell phone control and a FLONE with arducopter control.
A research project and a open urban laboratory to explore that complex concept called the urban commons. The project proposes a method where the commons are discussed, defined with parameters and, sometimes, represented in short videos.
Este trabajo recoge un catálogo de mapas, software y vídeos coordinados de forma narrativa usando tecnologías avanzadas de descripción del espacio (GIS, Software, Modelado 3D) mostrando aspectos que no serían evidentes en una primera lectura. Pueden ser extrapolados a territorios y contextos de paz sujetos a tensiones y transformaciones en que la arquitectura y el urbanismo tengan una importancia relevante.
Cartografiando Gaza es una prolongación del Taller de Invierno de 2009 del Área de Proyectos Arquitectónicos en la Escuela Politécnica Superior de la Universidad de Alicante y que en la presente edición contó con el comisariado de Régine Debatty, José Pérez de Lama y Pablo de Soto, y la coordinación del catedrático José María Torres Nadal y los profesores Miguel Mesa del Castillo y Juan Carlos Castro.
Road movie documental que recorre los 330km que separan El Cairo de la frontera sur de Gaza durante los días de la Operación Plomo Fundido en enero de 2009, que causó más de 1400 muertos y miles de heridos entre la población palestina. El viaje sigue los intentos de la sociedad civil egipcia de quebrar el bloqueo impuesto por su propio gobierno organizando acciones y protestas para mostrar su solidaridad.
TITLE: De El Cairo a Gaza
INTERNATIONAL TITLE: From Cairo to Gaza
LENGHT: 13 min
FORMAT: video PAL 16/9
LANGUAGE: english / arabic
COUNTRY-DATE OF PRODUCTION: Spain / december 2010
The term Situation Room is normally used to designate a secret place used in times of crisis to assess and monitor data for decision making purposes. Its origins can be traced back to World War II with the invention of computers, digitalization, and the collaboration of architects and the military. These rooms are equipped with monitors and data boards used to control everything from flows crossing the strait of Gibraltar to nuclear fission processes in Nuclear Power plants and the life support mechanisms on board the International Space Station.
Water 4 Bits, a Second Life for Expo92 Europe Pavillion, was a synchronised (and visitable) installation in both physical and digital space that explored dreams, nightmares and the realities of post-modern technology at the heart of Seville’s Technology Park.
The physical space was the European Pavilion at the Cartuja Technology Park, Seville. The park is the result of the urban recycling of the site of the World Fair held in the city in 1992. Although in general it is a successful, productive environment, some of the world fair pavillions still stand empty. One such is the European Pavillion, which nowadays looks like a ruin from a novel by J G Ballard: subterranean, empty, partly flooded. The installation in question aims to turn it into a type of visitor’s centre for the archaeological exploration of the future.
The digital space was a 3D clone of the physical space created in a synthetic or Metaverse world, Open Simulator, which could be described as a free and distributed version of Second Life. This digital space shows environmental data collected from the pavilion in real time by means of sensors (arduino-squidbee / light, relative humidity, temperature) while simultaneously displaying a project to transform the pavilion into an experimental citizen’s media lab, on the lines of the Prado and Hangar media labs (Madrid and Barcelona).
Meanwhile, the process was documented at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo by means of two screens that act like mirrors: one shows the physical space and project details, while the other is an Open Simulator version of the pavilion in the future, which can be toured by visitors.
The project raised public awareness about the place as a space of opportunity for Seville and explores its future use as an experimental citizen’s media lab. Digital artists, architects, students and the public in general were invited to take part in a forum on the participatory construction of the project.
Hackitectura’s map Cartografía Crítica del Estrecho (Cartography of the Straits of Gibraltar) creates an alternative understanding of the Spanish-Moroccan border region. The border is not an abstract geopolitical line but an increasingly complicated, contested space. The inversely oriented (north at the bottom) map highlights connections between southern Spain and northern Morocco to show a single region. A multitude of migrants enters Europe in flows, past motion sensors, semi-military repression and expulsion. The idea of the map is to follow the flows that already traverse the border, such as migrants, Internet data and cell phone calls, as well as capital and police. The flows reshape the very border into a border region. In this mapping project, Hackitectura and their collaborators map the border region to contest and transcend it.
The straits of gibraltar is a mirror-territory of the transformations taking place in the world today: globalisation, migrations, borders, citizenship, network-society, communication, technologies… the border is a crossed-place, an extensive territory of life and mobile confinements where multiple social practices put pressure on established limits. new spaces and relationships emerge from and through the border between southern europe and northern africa.
the book and all it entails plays an important and irreplaceable role, but it is just a fragment of a process that goes far beyond it in terms of both time and subject matter. Here it opens new possible becomings that were mere conjectures until it was written; it is a line with relative autonomy running parallel to the other relatively autonomous part-projects and establishing fruitful exchanges among them, which in turn become an opportunity for new projects.
through this process, and specially the publishing of this book, we want to contribute to the existence of new spaces of social and technological hybridisations that, by forging new paths, continually (re)invent world(s).