Technodiversity: Beyond Datafication and Digital Colonialism

Technodiversity: Beyond Datafication and Digital Colonialism

21 March 2024

Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands | Website

A Gerrit Rietveld Academie conference-festival, hosted by the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.

‘Thus, that which protects the Diverse we call opacity.’

– Édouard Glissant

In 1985, feminist science and technology studies scholar Donna Haraway theorized the informatics of domination as a networked, computational reconfiguration of what Black feminist theorist bell hooks termed imperialist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy. Now, almost forty years later, most of us live and die in the throes of this episteme, surrounded by informatic modes of control and injustice. But is there an outside? Are there informatics otherwise? What technologies might enable and nurture diversities of existence that exceed the informatics of domination? In response to these questions, this day of the conference-festival shares glimmers, desires, imaginaries, propositions, practices, theories, and lived experiences of an intergenerational, transnational gathering of artists and scholars committed to surviving in and beyond the informatics of domination.

The programme engages philosopher Yuk Hui’s concept of technodiversity by staging an encounter with Caribbean philosopher and poet Édouard Glissant’s notion of the Diverse, that is, minoritarian existences on Earth relating through alterities that are unknowable and unpredictable to standardized, dominant orders. Throughout the day, we will experience the Diverse’s technodiversity, a range of critiques and constitutions, protections and celebrations, that are anticolonial, antiracist, feminist, and queer, including presentations on indigenous futurism, computational hexes, viral love, opacity in cybernetics, and gendered robots and vampires. The program will also reckon with the institutionalization of diversity under the informatics of domination, questioning the very diversity of diversity today. Relating and resonating through Glissant’s opaque Diverse, the artists and scholars gathered here demonstrate how to create, use, dream, and think with technodiversity, in code and text, image and sound, performance and protest, seeking protection and liberation from the informatics of domination, but also alliance and pleasure along the way.

Guest curated by Zach Blas, titled That Which Protects the Diverse, featuring Shu Lea Cheang, Ricardo Dominguez, Isadora Neves Marques, Shaka McGlotten, and Nelly Yaa Pinkrah.