Now + Then Infrastructure examines the unheard, invisible and repressed politics of the infrastructural terrain of southern California, making perceivable territorial struggle, energy flows, digital secrecy, and atmospherics. Four multi-media presentations will be followed by discussion between the panelists and a Q & A with the audience.
Ken Ehrlich — a network is a network is a network...
This image and text presentation stages a set of questions related to political agency, invisibility and the built environment by reflecting on the Edward Snowden leaks and the material infrastructure of digital communications networks in Los Angeles county. This performative lecture relies equally on visual research, speculative writing and political analysis to excavate the physical and imaginary infrastructure of the internet, nearby and faraway.
Sarah Kanouse — My Electric Genealogy
Functioning in a state of perpetual construction, a network of high-voltage transmission lines connects Los Angeles to its distant sources of mostly coal-generated power. For nearly forty years my grandfather was intimately involved with the planning, design, and management of this system. An engineer with an artist’s eye, he photographed innovations in electrical delivery with one foot in the aesthetic and another in a techno-scientific sublime forever altered by climate change. This performative presentation weaves together images, objects, and auto/biography to explore aging electrical infrastructure as inter-generational climate debt.
Marina Peterson — Sky scrapers: writing the aerial city
A child calls vapor trails 'sky scrapers' - knowing that a skyscraper is a building and equally entranced by 'downtown LA' as embodying 'city.' Here I consider how a child’s poetic notion of ‘sky scraper' recasts the architectural as process, built form as gesture, evoking the play between stasis and movement, ground and atmosphere, and the irreducible entanglement of the two.
Louis-Georges Schwartz — Seeing Infrastructure/Seeing settler colonialism
I want to think about THE EXILES (MacKenzie, 1961), a film that portrays a group of first nations people displaced by immiseration from the South West to Bunker Hill in Los Angeles. I'm interested in the way the location projects itself into a future after the end of the film: "with the right kind of eyes," ones that know the dynamic of proletarianized surplus populations and cities, the infrastructure in the movie's mise-en-scene poses the question of what will become of it in off screen time.