face value: transmediale 2018 explores the political, economic, and cultural divides of our time
Things are what they are—but could they be different?
Under the title of face value, transmediale 2018, directed by Kristoffer Gansing for the seventh time, is probing the values, as well as the processes of value creation, that have contributed to our present moment of extreme political, economic, and cultural divides. The 31st edition of the festival is taking place at Haus der Kulturen der Welt from 31 January to 4 February 2018. Its participants will seek possible new ways of resisting and deconstructing the alarming development of digital populism, the radicalization of net culture, and the new culture wars.
“Taking things at face value” seems to have become the norm of public discourse—as has the reduction of life to economic motives, which is widespread in neo-liberalism.
transmediale wants to look at less visible issues instead, which run deep across all sectors of society: How can artists, cultural workers, and speculative theorists respond to the current politics of taking things at face value and, at the same time, face their own values?
First program announcements
Among the participants of transmediale 2018 are the Demystification Committee with their art and research project Offshore Investigation Vehicle. CAMP will present From Gulf to Gulf to Gulf / The Wharfage, which traces the informal maritime trade routes between Sharjah Creek and various Somali ports as well as the everyday lives of the sailors on their boats.
Amidst everyday racism, celebrity worship, stereotypes, and the overwhelming power of finance, traveling culture workers of different origins tell each other about their experiences and dreams in Stefan Panhans’ and Andrea Winkler’s hybrid work HOSTEL Sequel#1: Please Be Careful Out There, Lisa Marie – Hybrid Version.
The artistic documentary Also Known As Jihadi by Eric Baudelaire follows a young man’s journey from France to Syria and back to France, where he is incarcerated for allegedly joining the so-called Islamic State. Angela Nagle, author of Kill All Normies: From 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right, will engage in an in-depth conversation with media theorist Florian Cramer about the role of counterculture in a time of resentment and radicalization.
One of the keynote speakers is Lisa Nakamura, professor at the University of Michigan. She is a leading scholar on the topics of race, gender, ethnicity, and identity, more specifically the forms of social inequality that emerge, recur, and persist in the digital sphere. Artist and writer Aria Dean will talk about blackness and blaccelerationism in a panel focusing on shared territories and new forms of collective being within and beyond the web today.
transmediale is a project by Kulturprojekte Berlin GmbH in collaboration with Haus der Kulturen der Welt. It is funded as a cultural institution of excellence by Kulturstiftung des Bundes.