Collectivities in becoming

Raphaël Grisey, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Faculty of Architecture and Design

Collectivities in becoming aggregate and create interdependencies, like images and sounds in a film, members of a cooperative or ecosystems. Their motion is non-essentialist, generative, and implies definition of futurity, potentiality, time and history and an existential way of dealing with politics.

Collectivities in becoming is an artistic investigation, with the means of texts, films, archival researches and presentations or exhibitions, of collective forms – encompassing humans and non-humans protagonists, multiple territories and archives – that resist towards bio-political commodification, identification, representation and taxonomy by states politics, techno-sciences and therefore create a movement of decolonization and possible mode of empowerment.

Images themselves will be considered as collectivities, as actor and network in moving processes of appearance and disappearance for their own survival.

A theoretical post-colonial and eventually post-human approach will lead the researches to focus on mutation and “creolization” of these processes, which implies a becoming-animal or to discover the other in oneself rather than to insist on the colonizer/colonized binomial and narcissist cultural/political differences (Deleuze/Guattari; Viveiro de Castro; Edouard Glissant).

How could we think of images production, that tends to care or create relations to human or non-human collectivities, without giving to their agencies a too simplistic intentionality and rather support their contingency resistance? Does artistic practices have this capacity and will of being a “spoke person” in the edification of a collective (Alfred North Whitehead ; Bruno Latour)? Or are they rather instruments that would reveal the unseen and the unspoken of entanglements through the mean of time, bringing something from the past or from an unfold materiality into an actuality? How much techno capitalism and the new era of digital and algorithmic computation, informs the experiments and the use of certain instruments in science as in film practice and our understanding of non-human agencies?

Two works in progress, Cooperative and Remanescentes, consider the existential and empowerment processes of two collectivities in becoming of the African Diasporas within the means of documentary practices and text production : The agricultural cooperative of Somankidi Coura in Mali and the afro-brazilian quilombola communities in Brazil. Both have singular relations to post colonial states ‘politics, to vernacular or global technologies, representational politics and share definitions of futurity, ecologies and affects that will need to be understand in their partial and multi-situated differences. Both adopted along their history the survival strategy of fireflies: their capacity of appearance and disappearance, to territorialize and deterritorialize, to produce minor lights to communicate and create revolutionary communities of desire in a diasporic panafrican context.

Moreover, The Bay, a new collaborative project with the theatre company Kaddu Yaraax in the Bay of Hann in Dakar, will deal similarly with chemical waste, fishes and fishermen, their agencies and their translation to local politics with the means of the Theatre of the Opressed and moving images. The rocks and the fungi collective, a research that wish to be held in collaboration with specific science departments of the NTNU, will consider the politics and agencies of the rather non-human collective of fungis, its translation in sciences and techno capitalism as well as its chemical and semiotic entanglements with images production, humans, rocks and other beings.