Overland: ‘Power of assembly: On the New World Summit’

[‘Richard Bell, Callum Clayton-Dixon and Ilena Saturay, New World Summit Utrecht, 31 January 2016.’ Photo: Ernie Buts.] My short overview of the last New World Summit in Utrecht, January 2016 is now online at Overland. ‘Drawing on Rojava’s political experiment, the sixth NWS convened in Utrecht over the last weekend in January this year to… Continue reading Overland: ‘Power of assembly: On the New World Summit’

Runway: ‘Institutional Reform’

[Mathias Jud and Christoph Wachter speaking on the panel ‘Border Visions’ at Transmediale, Haus der Kulteren der Welt Berlin, February 2016.] A new article, ‘Institutional Reform: Art as Anti-Statecraft’ for Runway #30, Ecologies is now online. Institutions that facilitate the coming together of cultural objects, historical narratives, philosophical concepts, the wealthy elite and their political… Continue reading Runway: ‘Institutional Reform’

Counterpower

[‘Dilar Dirik, Sixth New World Summit, 29–31 January 2016, Utrecht.’ Photo: New World Summit] The late American historian and political theorist, Murray Bookchin (1921–2006), remains a prominent theorist of the peoples’ assembly. Bookchin pioneered the field of ‘social ecology,’ concerned with the inter-relations between social justice and ecological wellbeing. He considered collective face-to-face meetings as… Continue reading Counterpower

Prefiguration in the Present

[‘Freedom of Assembly, Protest at Zuccotti Park.’ Photo: Jason Lester] Paula Serafini begins her recent study of climate art-activists movements in the UK with the following statement: In the study of activism and social movements, prefiguration is seen as the creation of a future through present social relations (Serafini 2015, p. 195). She goes onto… Continue reading Prefiguration in the Present

Statecraft

[‘Abbot Point coal port, Queensland.’Photo: Tom Jefferson/Greenpeace] In a statement made in response to the announcement of The Paris Agreement, December 2015, Brian Ricketts, the head of the European coal lobbying association ‘Euracoal’, stated his industry would ‘hated and vilified in the same way that slave-traders were once hated and vilified.’ According to a report… Continue reading Statecraft

RealTime: ‘Art versus the war against Nature’

[Photo: Artúr van Balen / Tools for Action] My report from Paris COP21 for RealTime, re-titled as ‘Art versus the war against Nature’ is now online. I will keep the title it was filed with, ‘Choreography of disobedience,’ for an upcoming conference paper. The second week of COP21 was notable for the influx of activists from… Continue reading RealTime: ‘Art versus the war against Nature’

Fossil Free Culture

In December 2015 I was involved in an intervention undertaken by a group of artists and activists at the Louvre museum in Paris during the COP21 conference on climate change and also in the context of Climate Games. The event, ‘Big Oil Out of Culture’, was well publicised in the days before with the following… Continue reading Fossil Free Culture

The Paris Agreement

Prior to COP21 in Paris, December 2015, policy makers agreed that a suitable target for the UN summit was to keep global temperature rises caused by greenhouse gas emissions below 2 ˚C, a figure commensurate with a pre-industrial era (for a critique of this figure and the use of surface temperature as a catch-all indicator… Continue reading The Paris Agreement

The Shadow of the Future

The crisis of anthropogenic global warming presents an urgent problem requiring a rapid response and a re-prioritising of values. Planetary climate change is often discussed, notably by Naomi Klein, as an irreconcilable conflict between ‘extractivist’ capitalism and Earth systems that support life. Klein and a range of climate justice social movements are advocating that communities… Continue reading The Shadow of the Future