Urban (Media) Ecologies. New Modes of Earthly Habitation (Spezielle Gebiete der Digitalen Medien (MW))
Kurs Nr.: DM.B-MW-12
Semester: SS 2021
„What we make and what (we think) we are co-evolve together.“
„Every field-site has monsters—spooky, menacing, terrifying beings—who lurk in the shadows and the dark, under beds, in caves and lakes, beyond the line of sight, and in the imagination.“
In this seminar we will dissect the posthuman in many ways: We will unwrap the socio-political and historical implications of what it means to be human, as well as analyze what it means to be post-anything. Through the lens of posthumanism we will examine technological futures, more than human relations, and social and environmental justice.
Which parameters or value systems have been employed to distinguish the human from non-human beings in relation to mental and/or physical conditions, relations, and behaviors? How does art/design/literature reflect contemporary notions of „normal" or „accepted“ human embodiment and how can it challenge normative ways of being? What are the possibilities and limits of the concept of posthumanism for co-evolving, co-existing, and co-creating the condition of earth?
This course aims at an appreciation of fictional futures, fabulous beings, and monstrosities as a recognition of being hybrid, connected, and fluid. We will find, that the world indeed is full of monsters, and ask ourselves how to design with them.
Kurs Nr.: DM.B-MA-2 (MW)
Semester: WS 2021/22
„All of this will call into question the notion of the city as an enduring sociomaterial form—perhaps the end of the modernist city, once the symbol of dynamism and progress.“ –Arturo Escobar, 2018
At the verge of the third decade of the 21st century, the majority of earth’s population lives in cities. Urban terrains are the dominant setting of imagined futures in light of social injustices, climate catastrophes, overpopulation, and the loss of biodiversity. Fast urbanization is one of the main factors changing the earth’s climate that will impact geo-physical processes irreversibly. Yet, they are closely linked to an imaginary of progress, hope, and social change. The density of people, information, infrastructure, media, capital, and ideas qualify cities to be the wellspring for more just and equitable futures.
In this course we will work with concepts at the intersection of architecture, design, media and the humanities that flag the city as an embedded, networked, intersectional and complex ecology in need of critical examination with regard to its political, social, and economic entanglements that enable the climate crisis. Drawing on examples from from media art, architecture and design, literature, and film we will examine urban (media) ecologies and unlock modes of earthly habitation covering topics such as: Cities for and with more-than-human lifeforms, ecotopias and e-topias, urban metabolism, urban media infrastructures and materiality, architecture for environmental justice, climatic city futures and speculative urban imaginaries.