Notes on No 3, – CommComm
It fucks, it shits. bio-
We are alienated, distracted from the world, from each other, from ourselves. A life reduced to commodity exchanges. What does relationship mean today? How can we connect, interface and actually ‘live’? Perhaps, to combat this, we need a conception of the future on more biological terms: values that stems from and is grounded in nature and biology. We need to think about our shit.
We fuck and we shit, in that we proliferate. We consume and we dispose, yet in that it destructs. What becomes of waste when it is rethought of as nourishment, nutrients or fertlisers, when waste takes a life on its own and not be at the end of a life cycle?^1 In thinking more about our shit, man is widened and would be sensitive to what we devour and discharge, thereby affecting the nature of relationships–into something more biological, ecological and ethical.
A prefix to be added before man-made:
^1 In “Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things”, the authors critiques traditional environmentalists’ urge for ‘reducing, reusing and recycling’ as an empty, shortsighted, mere downcycling gesture. In that, they call for a shift away from the current ‘cradle-to-grave’ manufacturing model to one of positive proliferation, capable of enhancing and propagating (similar to the gift economy).
“Every participant in the cycle literally lives off the others with only the ultimate energy source, the sun, being transcendent. Widening the study of ecology to include man means to look at ourselves as part of nature again, not its lord.”
– The Gift, p. 23
(of a surface) reflections
interdependence} I still maintain that the best conversations I’ve ever had in my life revolve around art. Discussions borne out of this domain are transmitted with staggering substance: there is something incredibly meaningful to listen and learn from people who imbue great magnitude of creativity, emotion, humanness in an endeavour that reaps little exchange value or affection. In many ways, art allows for individual autonomy whilst bringing people together. As we proceed, I hope that the space would afford us to intermix our individual practices, an entaglement-of-sort
capitalism} Reflecting upon the past session, we focused on a critique of capitalism as oppose to developing the concept, basis of capitalism. What exactly is capitalism? How can we better understand the mechanics of the system? And these readings cannot be insular, it must bleed just like how capitalism has managed to defy comprehension and remain formless (latching and co-opting upon existing and new forms). A reading about capitalism would not be thorough unless it is read with, against, alongside other specificities like gender, race, post-colonialism, the family, ecology, the news, pop culture, etcetera.
rigour and stamina} Uping the tempo. Reading more. Conversing more. Having the endurance to follow through, to come through. A level of intensity. A challenge.
on non-occurrence} I must admit that it is awfully disappointing. Perhaps, it wouldn’t hit that hard if you hadn’t thought that the dream of a community, incubator, catalytic environment was about to take off, was at its cusp, was just beginning to gain momentum. That you had many ideas, that you were excited to hear other ideas. It is lonely, but when have I never been? The project lives, even if it has to exists as a delirium or mumblings to oneself. In the echo chamber, reflected sounds can propagate, perhaps not as dynamic but we do the best with what we can afford.
unalienated labour} the engagement with art as a form of unalienated labour and in a lot of ways, !reading! as well. A reading group as a form of resistance against capitalism, against alienation, towards a peer-sharing community. The struggle of a text, the time required as threshold for committment. What is community without committment or belief?
Watch: The Society of the Spectacle here
Watch: TedTalk: Cradle-to-Cradle here
Research: Situationist International’s technique of ‘Détournement’, often used by Debord in writing