How could citizenship be reconceived in an age of globally accelerated dislocation? In the face of resurgent nationalisms around the world – and given diminishing public confidence in many existing political institutions – could technology enable alternative forms of societal organisation to develop beyond national borders?
Christopher Kulendran Thomas is an artist who manipulates the processes by which art produces reality. Annika Kuhlmann is a curator who works through long term social processes. Together they’ll introduce the real estate technology startup that they are founding in order to develop a flexible global housing subscription that aims to make homes work more like informational goods – as streamable perhaps as music or movies.
The art world has always been good at prototyping new lifestyle formats; and now increasing automation could mean that the future of immaterial labour might look more and more like what artists do. Meanwhile the home (rather than the factory or office) is increasingly becoming a primary site of production for an increasingly post-work economy. So how could the ownership of this means of production – the home – be reorganised beyond existing property relations?
Taking this post-capitalist venture as a starting point, Kuhlmann and Thomas will speculate on how a new economic system might evolve without friction out of the present system – through the luxury of communalism rather than of individual ownership. They will discuss the political potential of mobility and the possibilities of more liquid forms of citizenship. Looking at examples of opt-in alternatives to incumbent systems, they will suggest that technological innovation can reduce barriers to exit, amplifying democratic voice reinforced by the ease of leaving. Threatened by increasingly mobile constituents who can transfer their loyalties to the cloud, existing political institutions they’ll argue will be forced either to improve or to face collapse.
Christopher Kulendran Thomas is an artist whose work manipulates the processes of circulation and distribution by which art produces reality. Thomas’s work has been included in the 11th Gwangju Biennale (2016), the 9th Berlin Biennale (2016), „Bread and Roses“, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw (2016), „Co-Workers: Network As Artist“, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2015) and „Art Turning Left: How Values Changed Making“, Tate Liverpool (2013). Forthcoming exhibitions include shows at Hamburger Bahnhof (Berlin) and Tensta Konsthall (Stockholm).
Annika Kuhlmann is a curator based in Berlin and London. As Artistic Director at New Eelam, she is collaborating with artist Christopher Kulendran Thomas on exhibitions for the 9th Berlin Biennale (DE), the 11th Gwangju Biennale (KR), Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart (DE) and Tensta Konsthall (SE). Together with curator Anna Frost she established the curatorial project planes.sx which launched with an exhibition at BFI Miami in December 2015 and as an artist and founder of Brace Brace she has exhibited at MoMA Warsaw (PL), LD50 (UK), Auto Italia (UK), KM Temporär (DE) and for DIS (US).