Programme

Burning Futures #5: Beyond The End Of The World? / Podcast and Film

With T.J. Demos & Otolith Group (Anjalika Sagar und Kodwo Eshun)

Art theorist T.J. Demos, author of “Against the Anthropocene” and “Decolonizing Nature”, engages in this podcast edition of “Burning Futures” in a discussion with the award winning artistic collective The Otolith Group, founded and represented by Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun. Taking their recent film “INFINITY Minus Infinity” as point of departure, the discussion touches on genocide and ecocide at the origins of what is now called the Anthropocene, the biopolitics of citizenship and deportation, and the loss around which the Black Lives Matter movement assembles, as well as on art as a means to imagine eco-fictional and afrofuturist visions that go beyond the end of the world.

 

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Otolith Group’s film “INFINITY Minus Infinity” is the point of departure of the 5th edition of the podcast discussions for the series “Burning Futures: On Ecologies of Existence” with the title “Beyond the end of the world? Unacknowledged loss, racial capitalism and ecofictional futurity”.

Released at the end of 2019, “INFINITY Minus Infinity” reveals itself as a crucial film in order to grasp today’s historical context of racial capitalism and the resistance of Black Lives Matter movements. It confronts the compounded timelines of the afterlife of slavery enacted by British imperial capitalism with the forces and the fictions of 21st Century Black feminist digital cosmology.

The film brings together dance, performance, music, recital, and digital animation to compose a transhistorical zone in which the unpayable debts of racial capitalism cannot be separated from the ongoing crimes of the climate catastrophe – thus making clear that racial genocide and ecocide are both at the origins of the “Anthropocene”. 

It draws on several inspirations: the modernist verse of the Jamaican poet Una Marson, the alluvial invocations of the Martinican philosopher and poet Édouard Glissant, the black feminist poetics of the Brazilian philosopher Denise Ferreira da Silva, and the racial formation of geology theorised by British geographer Kathryn Yusoff amongst others in order to envision a Black feminist cosmos animated by the principles of mathematical nihilism.

Burning Futures: On Ecologies of Existence / Podcast and Film

#5 Beyond The End Of The World? / With T.J. Demos, Kodwo Eshun und Anjalika Sagar

Moderation: Margarita Tsomou, Maximilian Haas
Part of #HAUonline
Part of Unacknowledged Loss II

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Podcast Production: Fritz Schlüter. Speaker: Orlando de Boeyken. Jingle: Sonja Deffner.
“Burning Futures” is an event series by HAU Hebbel am Ufer. Supported within the framework of the Alliance of International Production Houses by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media. With kind support by Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung. Initiated by Margarita Tsomou (HAU Hebbel am Ufer) and curated by Maximilian Haas.

INFINITY Minus Infinity, 2019. Courtesy of [the artist] and LUX, London.

Commissioned by Sharjah Architecture Triennial SAT01. 2019 co-produced with Z33 House for Contemporary Art, Design and Architecture.