[ISEA2023] Paper: Andrea Sick, Irena Kukric & Marcela Antipán Olate — Imaginaries in Becoming: The Dynamic Archive


Third Summit on New Media Art Archiving

Keywords: Archive, symbiotic, processes, scores, sharing, becoming, non-locality, performativity

Departing from one of the topics previously discussed in ISEA symposia, this paper introduces an artistic research project, The Dynamic Archive (thedynamicarchive.net). As an open source, collaborative platform that collects processes and methods, it represents another direction in archival strategies in the age of computation.

The paper will also further explore the term “symbioses” by describing relations that occur within the project, such as the relations between curator and contributor, component and version, and its digital and physical presence. Since it could be regarded as a symbiotic organization that aims at creating symbiotic imaginaries, the paper will work through how these notions relate to The Dynamic Archive and possible alternative terms to consider. Taking the book Symbiotic Planet by Lynn Margulis as a starting point, the paper will look into notions such as Karan Barad’s “becoming” (focusing on process), and “virtual” (or “non-local”, as Denise Ferreira da Silva calls it). These positions question Western knowledge production and problematize what its systems imply. Our research project reflects on these terms, not only in trying to position itself among them, but in the very attempt to question them.

  • Irena Kukrić‘s (1983) practice and research are related to the absence of the human body in time-based installation performance. Her performances focus on the balance between digital or mechanical dimensions of the works and on the poetics of human experience through non-human actors. Irena studied scenography at the Faculty of Applied Arts at the University of Arts in Belgrade, Serbia, and Digital Media at the University of Arts in Bremen, Germany. She is currently a PhD candidate at the PhDArts Leiden, NL (in collaboration with the University of the Arts Bremen). In 2012 she interned in the installation -department at MoMA PS1, New York. Irena lectures at the University of Arts Bremen and is a coordinator and researcher in the research project The Dynamic Archive” at the University of Arts Bremen. She was born in Belgrade and divides her time between Bremen and Berlin.
  • Marcela Antipán Olate is a designer and artist interested in technology as expressive media. In her practice, she combines concepts that are indistinguishable from the arts, sciences, or other fields. Within that framework, one of her main interests is the critical reflection on technological objects of daily use and their symbolic and technical connections in relation to politics, economies, ecologies, and cultures. With a background in graphic design, functionality, and speculative narratives intertwined with her processes, Marcela’s work translates into physical objects, software, research, visual pieces, and program-driven poetry. In the past she has worked on developing ideas and concepts for research institutions, as well as teaching at the School of Design at the University of Chile. Currently, she is working as an assistant in the research project The Dynamic Archive at the University of the Arts Bremen, while finishing her master’s degree at the same institution.
  • Andrea Sick has been a professor of Media and Cultural History and Theory at the University of the Arts Bremen (HfK Bremen) since 2009. She heads the Binational Artistic PhD Program at HfK Bremen, working in cooperation with international partners. Her main work and research interests cover the relationship between technological media and cultural (artistic) production; the transitions between art, biology, and information technology discourses; the interfaces of scientific and cultural activities; practices of archiving (collaborative knowledge [production] and scores in artistic context); and queer studies. Sick studied German language and literature, politics, cultural sciences, and the history of art at the universities of Heidelberg, Bremen, and Hamburg. In 2001 she obtained a doctoral degree at Hamburg University in Media Studies with a dissertation on the interactions between knowledge (production) and cartography. One of Sick’s main research projects is The Dynamic Archive. Together with Ralf Baecker and Dennis Paul, she has been curating the Salon Digital: Reenactments in Art, Science and Technology (salon-digital.com) since 2016. She is also the editor of the Manifestos Publication (manifesto.de).