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Worlds not yet recognised

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Abstract: With a focus on futures and speculation, creative approaches for environmental technoscience are often positioned as a methodological toolkit for computing practices, a practice with which to dream new desires and imaginaries of life and living. Practices in which designers and artists might make space for the inventiveness and liveliness of environments and more-than-humans. This work is often premised on a common technological narrative that minoritarian subjects are passively held in place by computing—and that the responsibility lies with the (white male) designer-programmer-maker to make these words better. In this talk I argue that this mode of responsibility becomes another regulatory regime that intersects with structures of race, class, gender, nation, age, and ability, to erase the possibility for some worlds to become-with computing practices. Instead, I ask how might we account for ways of thinking through the world and attempts to dream computation otherwise, whilst attending to worlds that are already excluded, latent, unrecognizable or already foreclosed by the injust forces of technoscience? I propose that it is the complexity of the relations between these projects and practices that need urgent creative work. I will consider these questions through two collaborative projects, the “Urban Sensing” project by Citizen Sense and “Extended Trans*feminist Rendering Programme” with Possible Bodies:The Underground Division. Together with these companions, I propose that instead of focusing on generating ever new futures we might work on ways to dream of worlds not yet recognised as existing within technoscience into the spell of being from which they have been excluded.

Bio: Helen Pritchard the head of BSc Digital Arts Computing and a lecturer in Computational and Digital Arts. As an artist and geographer Helen’s interdisciplinary work brings together the fields of Computational Aesthetics, Geography, Design and Feminist TechnoScience. Her practice is both one of writing and making and these two modes mutually inform each other in order to consider the impact of computational practices on our engagement with environments. Central to Helen’s work is the consideration of co-research, participation and environmental practices. Helen’s practice often emerges as workshops, collaborative events and computational art. She is the co-editor of Data Browser 06: Executing Practices, published by Autonomedia. NY (2017).