CJW: It’s an absolute bumper of an issue (even with MKY out to the CVD), so let’s get right to it.
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The latest bonus is a piece of short fiction from your’s truly - a cyberpunkish take on Tom Waits’ Romeo is Bleeding - Blood Eclectic
m1k3y (MKY) - @eattrainrevolt
Lidia Zuin (LZ) - Journalist, MA in semiotics, and PhD in Arts. Sci-fi writer, futurology researcher and essayist. @lidiazuin
CJW: climate hauntologies: notes on reading carbon removal through Mark Fisher - Holly Jean Buck (via Sentiers)
Capitalist realism is a pervasive atmosphere, and moral critique only reinforces it; gestures against it only reinforce it, writes Fisher. “So long as we believe capitalism is bad, we are free to continue” on our way — so long as we perform that it is bad, we have liberty to go about our lives in it.
This is the same with the anti-fossil-fuel gestures: performing being against fossil fuels reinforces the industry’s power.
A really interesting piece on the different realisms (in Mark Fisher’s Capitalist Realism sense) related to climate change futures and environmentalism, specifically the failures of environmentalism to evolve in the face of these realisms. Interesting use of hauntology here too - climate futures that are haunting us and ones that may haunt future generations. If you’re across environmental questions but not hauntology or Capitalist Realism, I imagine this will work well as an introduction to those ideas.
CJW: Decarbonization as a Service - Holly Jean Buck at Logic
The rise of a decarbonization-as-a-service sector may make it easier to commodify and exchange carbon. But what if it doesn’t actually help address climate change? […]
First, ask yourself what any of these platforms want. Continued emissions; more exchange. The platform becomes a vested actor. The company is not oriented toward the phaseout of fossil fuels. Rather, it wants to maintain its own life, its own revenue stream. If you were designing a net-zero platform with the goal of working towards full decarbonization, it would be a time-limited project. But that would be incompatible with market imperatives: nobody wants to start a business with an expiration date.
This is a great piece covering the current situation and future of carbon offsets as a market and the many issues involved in that (including the above, fraud, proprietary platforms, and more).
To tie this together with the above HJB piece, this focus on the market as a tool for mitigating climate change seems like neoliberal realism in action. I worry that we don’t have time for these supposed interventions to fail before we address climate change seriously.
We need platforms that monitor our world for the sake of collective management of a shared commons—not platforms that measure our world for the sake of profiting from the data created from it, extracting value from the digital layer the same way that value is extracted from the mines, forests, and soils of our physical world. Plundering the earth and then repeating the plunder in the metaverse is dystopia squared.
DCH: How Bitcoin mining devastated this New York town - Lois Parshley at MIT Technology Review
In January 2018, there was a cold snap. People turned up their heat and plugged in space heaters. The city quickly exceeded its quota of hydropower, forcing it to buy power elsewhere at much higher rates. McMahon says his Plattsburgh home’s energy bill jumped by $30 to $40 a month. “People felt there was a problem but didn’t know what to attribute it to,” he says.
As the long winter began to thaw, neighbors noticed a new disturbance: mining servers generate an extreme amount of heat, requiring extensive ventilation to avert shutoffs. Those fans generated a constant, high-frequency whine, McMahon says, “like a small-engine plane getting ready to take off.” It wasn’t just the decibels, but the pitch: “It registers at this weird level, like a toothache that won’t go away.” Carla Brancato lives across the river from Zafra, a crypto-mining and hosting company owned by Plattsburgh resident Ryan Brienza. She says that for several years her condo vibrated from its noise, as if someone were constantly running a vacuum upstairs.
Lois Parshley on the climate and economic chaos that descended onto Plattsburgh, NY when cryptobros came to town for cheap energy bills..
Read dismisses the promises that green investments or greater efficiencies can solve this problem. In a recent working paper, he found that cryptocurrency’s energy usage will rise another 30% by the end of the decade—producing an additional 32.5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide a year. As long as the price of Bitcoin goes up, the rewards of mining increase, which spurs energy use, he says. He refers to this situation as “the Bitcoin Dilemma.”
There is no such thing as green crypto. There is no dilemma. This parasitical unmoney needs to be fucking banned into oblivion.
The Human Rights Attorney Who Took On Chevron Is Out of House Arrest after 933 Days - Audrey Carleton at Vice
A Major Ocean Current Is at Its Weakest Point in 1,000 Years - Chelsea Harvey at Scientific American (DCH: No relation.)
Everyone is quoting Gramsci on the interregnum, but that assumes that something new will be or could be born. I doubt it. I think what we must diagnose instead is a ruling class brain tumour: a growing inability to achieve any coherent understanding of global change as a basis for defining common interests and formulating large-scale strategies.
In part this is the victory of pathological presentism, making all calculations on the basis of short-term bottom-lines in order to allow the super-rich to consume all the good things of the earth within their lifetimes. (Michel Aglietta in his recent Capitalisme: Le temps des ruptures emphasises the unprecedented character of the new sacrificial generational divide.)
Some interesting insights in this piece. I included the second para above because now I want to read an English translation of Capitalisme.
DCH: A Global Police State Is Emerging as World Capitalism Descends Into Crisis - William I. Robinson at Truthout
Yet often these movements are based on moral appeal to social justice, which by itself begets, at best, mild reform. If these movements are to attack the global police state in its jugular vein, they must identify global capitalism as the driver of the systems of social control and repression that they are combating. This book attempts to do just that. It sets out to identify the contemporary dynamics of capitalist transformation and the novel forms that are emerging. This concept of a global police state allows us to specify how the economic dimensions of global capitalist transformation intersect in new ways with political, ideological and military dimensions of this transformation….
Truthout with an excerpted intro from William Robinson’s new book The Global Police State. Definitely one to add to the read pile. (via Kipbot)
DCH: South Africa’s private surveillance machine is fueling a digital apartheid - Karen Hao & Heidi Swart at MIT Technology Review
The effect has been the rapid creation of a centralized, coordinated, entirely privatized mass surveillance operation. Vumacam, the company building the nationwide CCTV network, already has over 6,600 cameras and counting, more than 5,000 of which are concentrated in Joburg. The video footage it takes feeds into security rooms around the country, which then use all manner of AI tools like license plate recognition to track population movement and trace individuals.
AI colonialism hard at work rebirthing apartheid. Great read from Karen Hao & Heidi Swart that follows the technologists building out this dystopia and the activists trying to fight it.
DCH: Inside the New Right, Where Peter Thiel Is Placing His Biggest Bets - James Pogue at Vanity Fair
Thiel has given more than $10 million to super PACs supporting the men’s candidacies, and both are personally close to him. Vance is a former employee of Thiel’s Mithril Capital, and Masters, until recently the COO of Thiel’s so-called “family office,” also ran the Thiel Foundation, which has become increasingly intertwined with this New Right ecosystem. These three—Thiel, Vance, Masters—are all friends with Curtis Yarvin, a 48-year-old ex-programmer and blogger who has done more than anyone to articulate the world historical critique and popularize the key terms of the New Right. You’ll often hear people in this world—again under many layers of irony—call him things like Lord Yarvin, or Our Prophet.
Great Vanity Fair piece on Peter Thiel’s increasing investment and patronage of The New Right in America. Good insights into their nihilistic, trollish, tech bro worldview(s). These are the exact voices that Elon Musk (age old friend of Thiel) has in mind when he talks about his “free speech absolutism.” I wish more people would see how obvious and well-timed this ploy is.
CJW: Ancient Green - Robin Wall Kimmerer at Emergence
In successive waves of evolution and extinction, the once dominant is replaced by the upstart with greater adaptation to a changed environment. The Plant Kingdom has evolved and changed. Today, the names of those early plants are rarely heard. Psilotum, Rhynia, Archaeopteris. They came, they grew, they changed the world and changed with the world—or if they didn’t, they are known today only as fossils, for extinction is the fate of most. Far more plant species have come and gone, evolved, and become extinct than are alive today.
That scares us, and it should. The lesson is clear: adapt to change or become extinct. Your choice.
Since that momentous colonization of land 450 million years ago, when the first moss set leaf on rock, everything on Earth has changed. All those species, entire phyla—gone. And yet, the mosses are still here, their contemporary form indistinguishable from their fossil ancestors. They have drunk from the fountain of youth, or maybe the fountain of longevity, flourished beneath a sky of pterodactyls, and flourish today under a sky of weather satellites that tell us the oceans are rising and the ice caps are melting.
A beautiful piece by Robin Wall Kimmerer, starting with the Anishinaabe creation story, and connecting that to the history of life and evolution on Earth and on to the present day, focussed specifically on mosses. It ends with lessons we might learn from our soft green cousins.
Frame height is approximately 1km, with images captured by a satellite 250kms above the surface.
DCH: Elon Musk Is a Problem Masquerading as a Solution - Anand Giridharadas at The New York Times
Obviously the biggest news in tech is Daddy Dotcon’s impending purchase of Twitter. The very best piece on the disaster-in-the-making is by Anand Giridharadas.
Mr. Musk operates from a flawed, if widespread, misapprehension of the free speech issue facing the country. In his vision, what we may, with help from the philosopher Isaiah Berlin, call negative freedom of speech, the freedom to speak without restraint by powerful authorities, is the only freedom of speech. And so freeing Nazis to Nazi, misogynists to bully and harass and doxx and brigade women, even former president Donald Trump to possibly get his Twitter account back — this cutting of restraints becomes the whole of the project.
“Freedom for the wolves has often meant death to the sheep,” Mr. Berlin once said. This is a point often lost on Americans. Government — or large centralized authority — is one threat to liberty but not the only one. When it comes to speech, what has often kept a great many people from speaking isn’t censorship but the lack of a platform. Social media, including Twitter, came along and promised to change that. But when it became a cesspit of hate and harassment for women and people of color in particular, it began to offer a miserable bargain: You can be free to say what you wish, but your life can be made unrelentingly painful if you so dare.
As he points out throughout the piece it should come as no surprise that yet another billionaire has published yet another media empire. And that Twitter, steeped in the outrage economy, has had a problem for years with racism, conspiracy and misinformation, misogyny, and bullying is already very much made in the image of this racist, sexist, asshole conman’s image.
A few more useful reads on how we got to this point and where things may go next:
CJW: Masters of the Userverse - Grafton Tanner at Real Life Mag
A userverse provides users with the experience of control as convenience. It is an enclosed space where other people or things are rendered within it only insofar as they are of service to the user. […] more of us are passing into userverses than we might realize, whenever we expect to be catered to by people with the push of a button, as an increasing profusion of delivery services promises. Users often believe they’re doing nothing worse than using advanced “smart” technology to meet their needs […] but in practice they’re really using people, in an asymmetrical, exploitative relationship. You don’t have to don a headset or helmet, but this practice amounts to a kind of virtual reality, an escapist illusion sustained by reductive interfaces and devalued labor.
This is a really interesting way to frame the experience of being a customer of gig-work systems - rendering the real work of real people into a (seemingly) virtual experience by filtering those exchanges through apps, putting it into a screen so it feels less real. A distancing effect that allows us to experience the gig-workers as less present and thus less real, so we don’t need to concern ourselves with their working conditions.
I’ve definitely noticed this with the way the uber experience has evolved. Early on there was the expectation of conversation and a sense (however unreal and however beneficial it was to uber itself) that this was somewhere between pure commerce and getting a ride with a friendly stranger, and also a sense that if you didn’t sit up front you were being rude. Now it’s rare to have a driver that seems to want to converse (and I’m sure plenty of passengers who barely look up from their phone during the ride), and the backseat has become the norm (partially due to COVID, but I think things were trending that way already).
DCH: Facebook Doesn’t Know What It Does With Your Data, Or Where It Goes: Leaked Document - Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai at Vice
“Facebook has a general idea of how many bits of data are stored in its data centers,” he said in an online chat. “The where [the data] goes part is, broadly speaking, a complete shitshow.”
“It is a damning admission, but also offers Facebook legal cover because of how much it would cost Facebook to fix this mess,” he added. “It gives them the excuse for keeping that much private data simply because at their scale and with their business model and infrastructure design they can plausibly claim that they don’t know what they have.”
Facebook can’t and won’t comply with GDPR let alone newer privacy regimes around the world. They can’t and won’t protect your data because they’ve designed their systems to provide maximum plausible deniability instead of privacy and protection. Best minds of a generation my ass.
DCH: Netflix’s Bad Habits Have Caught Up With It - Josef Adalian at Vulture
Twenty minutes after Netflix announced the shocking news Tuesday that for the first time in a decade, it actually lost subscribers during a fiscal quarter, an executive at a rival streamer texted me a very simple reaction: “🤣🤣🤣,” he wrote. Schadenfreude via emoji may sting, but it’s the least of Netflix’s problems right now: Its stock price collapsed by more than 35 percent Wednesday, erasing more than $50 billion in value in a single day. (It has since dropped another 4 percent today.) The news was so grim, even longtime Netflix bulls had no choice but to concede the tech company that ate Hollywood now finds itself grappling with the reality that its decade of unchecked growth has come crashing to a halt. As streaming evangelist Rich Greenfield of Lightshed put it in a report for clients, “Netflix felt vulnerable yesterday in a way that it never has before.”
Nice rundown on the utter hubris of Reed Hastings and Netflix leadership. The company has had its clock fucking punched. And the hits are likely to keep coming as they predict losing even more subscribers over the next few months.
How Silicon Valley is helping Putin and other tyrants win the information war - Natalia Antelava at Coda
‘Bossware is coming for almost every worker’: the software you might not realize is watching you - Zoë Corbyn at The Guardian - CJW: A great overview of bossware. See below for classic related meme…
CJW: Belarusians are using Telegram – and their own printers – to deliver the news - Katie Marie Davies at Coda
This is the new Belarusian samizdat: clandestine, self-made publications that seek to spread trustworthy information under a government dedicated to keeping it hidden. But unlike Soviet-era samizdat that came before it, Belarus’ new free press is a hybrid, digital-and-print operation. While its delivery is decidedly low-tech, the network of volunteers behind it uses anonymous, decentralized apps to enlarge its reach and minimize individual risk. Distributors take the materials from online publications, but then print out the leaflets at home — ready to be handed to friends, neighbors, and people who rarely use the internet.
A great example of the mundane cyberpunk of the now.
LZ: How mindfulness can make you a darker person - David Robson at BBC
What can I say? ¯_(ツ)_/¯ Kind of obvious, isn’t it? Good thing it’s becoming apparent now, though. And the funny thing is that the author of this article has also published a book about mindset lmfao
Lost in Thought, by David Kortava at Harpers
This is another article that was shared with me about incidents and research that point towards the negative impacts of meditation. Very well written and researched, the report starts with the feeling that we are reading/watching “Nine Perfect Strangers”. Even though this was published in 2021, it could definitely be an inspiration for the book/series, but without a “happy” end. I tried to meditate a couple of times, years ago, when I got a headband that could guide the exercise, but I couldn’t keep a routine. On the other hand, I have spent too much time with people who prefer to ignore their psychiatric conditions to believe they are transcending through meditation and esoteric experiences.
CJW: That second link is a really great read and raises a lot of questions about meditation in general and the current focus on mindfulness and meditation as a cure for social ills. I thought this was interesting:
[…] mindfulness was not invoked to savor the beauty of nature or to be a more present, thoughtful spouse. According to the Pali suttas, the point of meditation was to cultivate disgust and disenchantment with the everyday world and one’s attachments to people and things. Aspiring Buddhas were “asked to contemplate the body from head to toe, inside and out,” McMahan writes, “not for relaxation and even less for body acceptance, but to bring to full realization its utter repulsiveness, coursing as it is with blood, phlegm, and pus.” If meditation conferred any practical benefit, it was in helping ascetics “accept the discomfort of a hard bed and a growling stomach or in preventing them from being beguiled by physical beauty.”
Maybe meditation is meant to make you break from society/reality.
MJW: Is it the practice of mindfulness that makes us more selfish, or have we co-opted mindfulness to excuse our selfish lives or escape our negative actions? WHO CAN SAY? I think I’m one of the people who Kortava mentions for whom meditation makes things worse. Alone with my thoughts? Way to make me spiral. I also think it’s interesting the way one researcher mentions dissociation, because that’s what meditation has always felt like to me. When clearing the mind becomes numbness, or staring into the void. And sometimes the void hisses back at you.
DCH: Time for a rewatch of Adam Curtis’s The Century of The Self. There’s a loooooooong history of con men and capitalists co-opting self-help cultures too.
CJW: Why Are Politicians So Obsessed With Trans People? We Investigate - Mika Benesh at Pedestrian
When Scott Morrison said “Australians are fed up with walking on eggshells” last week in defense of Katherine Deves’ transphobia, he did just that. By framing trans people as being in opposition to Australians — as though trans people aren’t also Australians — he’s poured more petrol on the idea that trans people are a dangerous foreign invasion.
It’s no coincidence that politicians are spreading panic over refugees crossing national borders by boat and trans women playing womens’ sports simultaneously; there’s a fixation here on the purity and stability of racial and gender hierarchies in Australia, and you can’t challenge one bioessentialism without implicating the other.
These debates over whether refugees and trans women deserve to participate in public life are an expression of the deep anxieties at the heart of the Australian colonial project. Together they work to manage the internal and external social boundaries of a nation built on stolen land — who can be a part of it, and how.
We’ve brought up transphobia in the UK context (and if we haven’t already mentioned the anti-trans bills being legislated in the States, that is some particularly heinous shit), but here’s a great piece on our home-grown transphobia and how it is connected to our long-running and bipartisan offshore refugee torture prisons.
LZ: When Nostalgia Was a Disease - Julie Beck at The Atlantic
Nostalgia used to be seen as a disease that you could treat with.. bullying, leeching, and even torture. But in some cases soldiers faked homesickness so they could be discharged from war. In the meantime, hauntology capitalises on our nostalgia by inciting it in reboots, remakes, sequels, prequels, and references!
MJW: For mRNA, Covid Vaccines Are Just the Beginning - Amit Katwala at Wired
Developing countries could, Hatchett suggests, leapfrog over traditional vaccine-manufacturing processes and go straight to mRNA—mRNA plants are already being planned in countries across Africa and Asia. After Covid, they could be quickly repurposed to create vaccines for other diseases—all you need to do is change the order of the bases in the mRNA to give the body a new set of instructions.
I’m sure we’ve talked about the potential of mRNA vaccines before, but it’s worth saying again. And can these planned mRNA manufacturing facilities stop vaccine inequity? Maybe not:
Although mRNA could eventually be cheaper than traditional vaccine manufacturing, that’s not the case today—and ensuring equitable access could require some technical breakthroughs.
Though I am very much looking forward to this:
There are efforts to make universal vaccines for coronaviruses or influenza that would target their stable features—like the stalk of an influenza virus—getting around their ability to shift and mutate. “Even for those coronaviruses that are still in the bat and have not jumped to us, we will be protected,” Karikó says.
DCH: How to Make Smart COVID Risk-Benefit Decisions - Devabhaktuni Srikrishna at Scientific American
Scientific American asked experts in epidemiology, medicine, risk assessment and aerosol transmission for advice on how to decide which risks we are willing to take. These decisions are based on assessments of personal risk, community risk and exposure risk—and the steps one can take to take to mitigate them. Personal risk refers to the danger of contracting COVID faced by an individual and the members of their household. Community risk is the current likelihood of encountering COVID among members of one’s community. And exposure risk accounts for the increased chances of catching COVID at a particular venue based on airflow characteristics of the space itself and other people’s behavior.
It’s bonkers to me that the US is acting all “Covid? Nbd!” given last I looked that had 47000 new cases daily (and that number is underreported since states like Florida refuse to publish data now). Still it’s one of the best write-ups I’ve seen on the confusing mess of juggling personal, community, and exposure risk factors that the CDC poorly explains. Certainly giving me more comfort in going back to the cinema for example.
LZ: Meet Freshii’s new ‘virtual cashier’ — who works from Nicaragua for $3.75 an hour - Jacob Lorinc at Business Reporter
Happy Labour Day!
Screenshot from Sleep Dealer, Mexican science fiction film about remote workers using VR to operate machines in the US
DCH: The gig workers fighting back against the algorithms - Karen Hao and Nadine Freischlad at MIT Technology Review
This sense of community is now at the heart of what distinguishes Jakarta’s drivers from other gig workers around the world. While such workers everywhere have felt increasingly squeezed and exploited by unforgiving algorithms, most have struggled to organize and effect concrete changes in the platforms that control their work or the government policies that enable their mistreatment.
But in Jakarta, things have played out differently. Through base camps, drivers don’t just keep each other informed; they support one another and band together to bend Gojek’s system a little more toward their will. It’s opened up new channels of communication with the company and laid the groundwork for lasting policy change.
Over the years, as more and more workers have fallen under the gaze of algorithms, a growing chorus of experts have noted how platform companies have paralleled the practices of colonial empires in using management tools to surveil and exploit a broad base of cheap labor. But the experience of Jakarta’s drivers could reveal a new playbook for resistance: a way for workers to build collective power, achieve a measure of security, and take care of one another when seemingly no one else will.
Brilliant story on how gig workers in Jakarta are using community power and collective action through IRL and digital means. More like this please.
After decades of union decline, Amazon workers in Staten Island have achieved the most important labor victory in the United States since the 1930s. Taking on and defeating Amazon would be a David versus Goliath story no matter who led the effort, but it is especially stunning that the successful unionization drive at the JFK8 warehouse was initiated by the Amazon Labor Union (ALU), an upstart, independent, worker-led effort.
Christian Smalls and Derrick Palmer, best friends and workers at Amazon’s fulfillment center in New York City, strategically organized the first successful unionization effort of an Amazon warehouse in the United States, one of the most significant labor victories in a generation.
I would’ve shared both of these links in the last issue but I was waylaid by a mysterious medical event. Anyway Christian Smalls and everyone involved in this win is a goddamn hero and we should be building statues in their honour and writing songs of their valour. The economic injustice Amazon workers endure IS NOT worth the convenience you gain for their sacrifice.
LZ: The Mushroom at the end of the world - On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins by Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing
The title is pure gold, but you will probably only enjoy the read if you are an anthropologist. To be 100% honest, I couldn’t finish the whole book, but I went through half of it to confirm that it was basically a tale about mushroom pickers, or more specifically matsutake mushroom pickers in the US, Japan and Finland. There is some interesting info about fungi, multispecies living and how we should be getting inspiration or at least paying closer attention to other kinds of life, especially bizarre ones like fungi. But these are just some short commentary, the main content is an ethnography about pickers, their condition as immigrants (in the case of the US) or how regulated the practice is etc. Cool thing is that Tsing quotes Donna Haraway and Ursula K. Le Guin when it comes to multispecies living and a criticism against capitalism from a feminist/sci-fi/fantasy point of view.
LZ: 964 Pinocchio (1991)
One of the classics of Japanese cyberpunk. Visceral, chaotic, guerilla-style, loud, punk. Following the steps of Tetsuo and Death Powder, this is a rather short film but it will feel like an eternity due to its accelerated rhythm. It’s like you’re listening to Atari Teenage Riot, in a sense, but in fact several of the actors here are from the director’s punk band. There’s a beautiful nod to Possession’s metro scene, except that they did everything without a permit issued by the government. Startled people in the streets are not extras, they are people who were just commuting to work when… suddenly there’s a guy running, screaming, and pulling a concrete pyramid from a chain.
LZ: Born in Flames (1983)
A movie filmed like a documentary about a time when the U.S. has turned into a socialist democracy, or so the government says while they implement policies to tame radicalism in feminist groups like the Women’s Army. A fictional, but very interesting film with an astounding soundtrack – 70s groove and 80s punk.
CJW: The Northman
The Lighthouse was the last film I saw in cinemas before the pandemic, and now Eggers’ next film The Northman is the first film I saw in cinemas post-lockdown (drive-in doesn’t count). Funnily enough, The Lighthouse would have been a simple film to produce during the pandemic with its cast of two actors and its single locale, but Eggers’ actual pandemic film is his biggest production by far.
It’s a Shakespearean viking epic with some incredible visuals, touches of the mythic, and an amazing cast. What more do you need to know? If you want a comic that’s similarly a blend of viking action, tragedy, and myth, check out Eternal from friend of the newsletter Ryan K. Lindsay and Eric Zawadzki (Aus, US).
LZ: I had the pain and the pleasure of watching it with Swedish subtitles, so when they were talking in ancient Norse, I was 200% lost. Apart from that, I was a little bummed that Björk has such a small screen time. Still, the visuals are beautiful as ever, same for the soundtrack. Anya is perfect and Alexander Skarsgard gives us a nod that everyone can look like a viking with such an amazing posture.
If you like shoegaze but also some more chaotic, experimental sounds, Cremation Lily might be your next favourite band. They just released a new album called “Dreams Drenched in Static” and it seems the inspiration behind it was disturbed sleep. A very relatable topic, right? Favourite tracks so far are Selfless and I Need to Stop Blaming Myself.
I don’t remember if I was first searching if it’s possible to do taxidermy with humans or if I searched for this after seeing Kate’s work, but in any case, all paths led me to this uncanny collection of deers with human faces. It came at a very convenient moment, to learn about her work, since I’ve been reading a lot about multispecies living and how humans, as selfish as we might be, cannot survive without other species – mostly bacteria, since we are 90% made of them.
CJW: Mari Katayama
I came across this interview with Katayama and found her work incredibly interesting. Check out her creations for the bystander series (on her website) and the way she poses them and poses with them. She works in photography (particularly self-portraits) but includes objects she makes herself as well as her own prosthetic limbs in the photos.