The Curious G and The Uncertain Future

  • Laura Beloff (Speaker)

Activity: Talk or presentation typesLecture and oral contribution


Science scholar Helga Nowotny claims that uncertainty in society arises from an oversupply of knowledge and that curiosity is one of the main driving forces behind scientific activity (Nowotny 2008). The same could be claimed of the arts where curiosity is a permanent ally. Whereas one can argue that uncertainty is actually one of the key elements inherent in speculative art & design practices. These kinds of experimental and unpredictable practices, which do not follow an established path but rather explore new areas and ideas, emerge within contemporary conditions that are characterized by a desire to speculate on future scenarios.

The author’s artistic practice evolves around the notions of a human, technology, and human relation to her environment and the world when both human and the environment are artificially modified. In this paper the author investigates specifically the relationship between a human and her environment through presenting three recent art works: A Unit, Evidence and Appendix. These three works share similar notions on human as an organism compiled of complex network of connections, and reference Gregory Bateson’s argument that organism + environment is the unit of survival (Bateson 1978 [1969]). However, in the described example cases the situation is intervened by artificially constructed and modified components.

The author proposes that these kinds of speculative approaches that are allowed in art & design, and which offer us new potential scenarios about the future, also help us collectively share, evaluate and construct the desired futures.

Keywords: future; human – environment; speculative art & design; technology; uncertainty
Period7 Dec 2012
Event titleMutaMorphosis: Tribute to Uncertainty
Event typeConference
LocationPrague, Czech RepublicShow on map