schizoaesthetics
sami hammana
Apparatus of Escape: Urbit & the State of Urgency
text

2018


Written in collaboration with Jack Clarke for How To Sleep Faster issue 8, Autonomy & Automation

excerpt:

"What must be recognised from this is that we are in fact, above all else, in a state of urgency when it comes to these issues of autonomy and automation, sovereignty and technology. If those of us who have grown fond of (or, more seriously, who are now dependent on) the internet want to see a future that is not dictated by the repressive and contradictory desires of the NRx we need to start bootstrapping alternatives quickly."



Prepositional Shifts: Design Methods in the Age of Finance and the Anthropocene
lecture, workshop

2017



Lecture + Workshop at the HFG Karlsruhe

Prepositional Shifts: Design Methods in the Age of Finance and the Anthropocene
(lecture, 1st of november)
Two pervasive and seemingly unrelated events that have gained global attention in the recent decade have had, and will continue to have, large-scale implications on socio-economic and planetary conditions. Both of these events, financial violence and climate change, have become popular considerations in the field of contemporary design, with design projects that are about those events as commonplace sights in recent design exhibitions and biennales. This lecture explores in how far a thematic consideration can be simply ‘poured’ into the funnel of the design machine, and rhetorically asks if perhaps another task is more urgent. Proposing that these global events are not only thematic consideration, but perhaps more importantly, methodological necessities for design practices. Financialization and the fast-pace destruction of the Earth have to be seen as reasons to refashion how design operates.

a/b/c…
(workshop, 2nd and 3rd of november)
Departing from Dunne and Raby’s A/B manifesto, which are two juxtaposed sections of listed qualities that are assigned to ‘affirmative design’ and ‘critical design’. This workshop, afforded by the theorization of prepositional shifting, sets forth to problematize the current listed qualities in this work and provokes to collaboratively construct a ‘phylum’ or genealogy that extends into a multiplicities of design methods. Manifesto’s that function as a resource in negotiating the status and functional position of design interventions. The workshop thus invites the students to discuss and design methods of design, by taking the A/B structure of Dunne and Raby as a departure-template for thinking and assigning qualities for design methods. This working-group sets forth to account for the influence that contemporary conditions have on how we design.



Geofinance: Financialities of the Anthropocene
research project

2017



(ongoing research project)

Geofinance: Financialities of the Anthropocene analyses a cause and effect relationship between financial systems and Earth-systems. The ‘geofinancial’ relation is elaborated on in the video essay Political Economy of Geofinance, which encompasses an analysis of a systemic conversion of environmental catastrophes and the use of financial products. This analysis is followed by a proposition: If derivative finance influences and instigates environmental catastrophes, then environmental emancipation needs to occur along similar speculative financial lines. Implied Volatile Earth is a financial mathematical model which brings together volatility mathematics and the spatial reconfiguration of territories through a model of the Earth covered with volatility surfaces. These graphs allow for price speculations on the future conditions of the territories that they cover, a zoomed-in section of the model underneath the whole view of the Earth together with the financial data next to it, propose the desired price to attain environmental emancipatory conditions of these territories.



MA dissertation

Political Economy of Geofinance
video

2017



video 00'01'00" +
Led message board

Geofinance: Financialities of the Anthropocene analyses a cause and effect relationship between financial systems and Earth-systems. The ‘geofinancial’ relation is elaborated on in the video essay Political Economy of Geofinance, which encompasses an analysis of a systemic conversion of environmental catastrophes and the use of financial products. This analysis is followed by a proposition: If derivative finance influences and instigates environmental catastrophes, then environmental emancipation needs to occur along similar speculative financial lines. Implied Volatile Earth is a financial mathematical model which brings together volatility mathematics and the spatial reconfiguration of territories through a model of the Earth covered with volatility surfaces. These graphs allow for price speculations on the future conditions of the territories that they cover, a zoomed-in section of the model underneath the whole view of the Earth together with the financial data next to it, propose the desired price to attain environmental emancipatory conditions of these territories.

Geofinancial Lexicon
book

2017



Softcover Book
(175 x 108 x 10 mm)
146p

The Geofinancial Lexicon extends the research project of relating finanical mechanisms to climate degradation by zooming in on the language that is used within financial trading. Taking the Financial Times’ (FT) online lexicon as a basis, the Geofinancial Lexicon archives and expands on the definitions of terms that hint at a relationship between finance and the climate.







Implied Volatile Earth
video

2017



Synchronized 3-channel video
00'01'00"
Design by Ioana Tomici

A proposition for a mathematical model of the Earth that uses financial derivatives as a way to speculate on the future conditions of territories

Investopedia explains: “The volatility surface is a three-dimensional plot where the x-axis is the time to maturity, the z-axis is the strike price, and the y-axis is the implied volatility.” It is a speculative take on what the derivative instrument will behave like. For extraction industries, this means that a specific desired outcome has a financial equivalent in the graph: If the price of an underlying changes x amount, then this will correspond to change y in the extraction of such commodity from the Earth. A volatility surface doesn’t therefore only allow for a speculation on prices to come, but it also sets the condition for the influencing of these prices that generate trading strategies. This notion of the financial equivalent requires a sketch of the Earth as an assemblage of financially contingent entities, ones that are influenced by price-setting. Such a financial model of the Earth with their correlating mathematical derivatives allows for a mapping of environmental conditions through the volatility surface. The volatility surface would then encompass both the current conditions of commodities reflected in the price, and the ones to come, reflected in the implied volatility. Collecting these volatility surfaces and mapping them on their respective position on the globe generates a model with which variables could be calculated to financially enhance these environments.




Excerpts from the videos:

Anti-social Design
research project

2016

(ongoing research project)

Excerpt out of text "Anti-social Design":

This ‘anti-social design’ might be a useful tool to obstruct and repurpose the exploitation of the commons. A design approach where neoliberal technologies such as freedom in trading, speculation on value and privatisation might be adequately understood and used against the interests of those who devised such technologies in the first place. Design resistance needs to take a different direction where the axioms of the market are repurposed and stripped from their socio-political nature – a deterritorialization of finance technology. Such a techno-social appropriation could be realizable through infiltration, hybrid collaboration and re-engineering. The skeptical reader is already thinking: how is such an appropriation possible? Well, the argumentation of this assertion lies first and foremost on the following question; how to depoliticize neoliberal technology?


Research Interviews
00'04'05" out of 00'16'15"
Air-trading
advertisement, website

2016



air-trading.com

Air-Trading is a start-up hedge fund that introduces the deritvative trading in clean air as opposed to trading in carbon.
Launched in 2016 with an advertisement in the Financial Times, Air-trading provides OTC (over the counter) dertivative products that use the incentive of capital accumulation as a possiblity of reducing green house gasses.

Untitled(Chandelier)
sculpture

2016


In collaboration with Anna Pech and Lauren Brand

Masquerading as a piece of contemporary art, Untitled (Chandelier) catches, decodes and decrypts the secured radio communications between police officers. By making use of contemporary art’s insistence on endless representation and multiplicities of meanings, the project sets out the use the "safe-space" conditions of the white-cube to install insurgent critical functions. The polished aluminium housing, fluorescent circular tube and the aestheticization of the antenna makes its illegal function secondary to its visual appearance. Untitled houses a custom software running computer that has been developed in collaboration with a hacker collective, this software catches the specific radio frequency through an antenna. The software extracts data packages from the police frequency, the data packages are decoded and decrypted in order to extract metadata of these radio calls, metadata that shows the duration, time and the signifier code. Due to its legal status, Untitled (Chandelier) is only able to exert its critical function in the white-cube. It is a piece of contemporary art after all.