This is where I write about books, events, talks and collaborations in which I’ve somehow had a hand.
Back in 2012, Anna and I travelled to Oaxaca with our friend Nick Stewart, an artist and regular co-conspirator from my London days. We had in mind to make a film together that would centre on my conversations with Gustavo Esteva – the activist, 'deprofessionalised intellectual', friend of Ivan Illich, political advisor to the Zapatistas and founder of the Universidad de la Tierra.
During the next several years I intend to work on an epilogue to the industrial age...With these words, Ivan Illich opens Tools for Conviviality (1973), one of the series of short books written at the height of his fame. This month, the Design Museum in London are hosting a day-long symposium to explore the possibilities for Convivial Tools today. There's a great line-up – and I was delighted to be asked to offer a reflection as part of the day's programme.
We see things in the daylight, but in the night we have dreams and we process the things that we've seen and try to make sense of them, try to find a way of weaving them into our knowledge of ourselves and our ideas of ourselves in the world.
There is no such thing as standing, there is only being held up.
– Franz Rosenzweig
In the English language, we speak about hope in a way that suggests foundations, the starting point for whatever you are going to build. I want to say that there are two stories about hope going around. You can choose which of these to build on – and that choice has implications, for what you build, and maybe for the kind of world we end up in...
I still remember the night we were first brought together for dinner by a mutual friend and we laughed so much all night we said, we have to do this again tomorrow, and we did. That’s how we got tangled up with each other.It's a strange experience to go to a friend's PhD defence and hear them present words that I wrote. Together, Ana Džokić and Marc Neelen form the architecture practice STEALTH.unlimited. Since we met in 2012, our friendship has been an ongoing collaboration – and so it was an honour to be asked to contribute to the collaborative doctoral thesis which they have now successfully defended at the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm.
What's it like, when the Anthropocene is your day job? How is it to live with climate change, not as a thing you read about in the newspaper or go on a demonstration about, but as what’s waiting for you on your desk at nine o’clock each morning? What does it do to you as a person, to your relationships with those around you, to the decisions you make about your life?