The Hmm @ 4 locations
A decentralised event happening simultaneously
Location: Theater Berenkuil
In 1964, Marshall McLuhan wrote about the concept of the global village and that “we have extended our central nervous system itself in a global embrace, abolishing both space and time as far as our planet is concerned.” Almost sixty years later we’re still asking how different forms of media can bring us together across time and space, and tonight we want to explore just that. This event must be one of our most challenging experiments this year and, as far as we know, it is the first time something like this has happened in the Netherlands! The Hmm @ 4 locations is a decentralised event that takes place simultaneously at four locations in four provinces in the Netherlands.
The idea for this hybrid format emerged during our conversation with live-ness researcher Esther Hammelburg, who questions the importance of being together in one place in order to create a sense of togetherness. Tonight, we will investigate whether that is really the case. You can attend The Hmm @ 4 locations in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht and Eindhoven, and of course you can also follow the event online. Taking the shape of our Hmm fast events, we have invited eight speakers to join us across all four locations. Each location will have two speakers physically present there and the other speakers will be followed via a livestream in each location.
Speakers physically at Utrecht:
Ted Oliekan: with over 150,000 followers on Instagram (and 250,000 on Twitter!), Buff, Wally & Conan are some of the most popular guinea pigs in the Netherlands. Ted is the self proclaimed ‘pig dad’ of this very cute trio, and he started posting photos and videos of his guinea pigs on social media six years ago. What started off as a content geared for family and friends has now grown enormously, with fans all over the world from the US to Thailand to Taiwan. He’ll be joining us to talk about their world of Pigopolis that he and his family created and what it’s like to live in and manage this guinea pig paradise.
Googless: we might think we only interact with Google when we’re searching online, but how present is Google really in our lives? Ola Bonati, Timo Meilof & Kwan Suppaiboonsuk will be joining us tonight to tell us all about Googless, a project exploring the utopian vision of the internet where Google is barred form constant access to our data. The project features a browser plugin which reveal the omnipresence of tracking tools that Google uses to maintain its online presence and power.
Speakers in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Eindhoven:
Süeda Isik: how is ketamine related to the neoliberal world Gen Z finds itself in? Why do young people film themselves snorting coke on TikTok? Is alcohol losing popularity an dare drugs losing their bad stigma? Does the mega-hit series Euphoria play a part in this trend? Süeda, a 24 year old investigative journalist for the NRC (and it’s first meme editor!) will be joining us to answer all these questions and talk abut the rise in drug-related meme accounts and posts on social media.
Ying-Ting Shen and Yu-Ching Chiang: can online platforms extend our body awareness and state of emotion during video chats? Ying-Ting Shen a.k.a. TING.S and Yu-Ching Chiang are cross-disciplinary artist and designers, currently based in Rotterdam. Their works investigate both tangible and virtual space through new media, spacial sculpture, and interactive installation. They’ll be joining us tonight to talk about the Enter online residency they are part of with their project Chat Plannnnnnnnet: an experimental video chat platform that uses a geographical coordinates system.
Ananya Panda is a graphic designer and a visual artist whose practice revolves around collecting and reconfiguring materials, forms, gestures and stories to forge new constellations of meaning. Their aim is to expand the definition of design itself to accommodate indigenous knowledge-making techniques, placing craftsmanship at the centre of their practice. They will be joining us to talk about their work ‘Self-sufficient nodes’, an examination of the labor that upholds the internet infrastructure through the misuse of cloudsourcing micro-work platforms such as Amazon Mechanical Turk.
Ester van Vugt has 100k followers on TikTok, where she makes videos about her addiction. She has been addicted to GHB for seven years, and even made the drugs herself to save money. Now she has now been clean for several years and shares her experience of her addiction and life as an ex-addict on TikTok.
Lulu van Dijck: during the pandemic, galleries, museums and other exhibitions spaces shut down, but grocery stores always stayed open. Lulu is an artist and designer based in Amsterdam whose work revolves mostly around the body; ranging form AI generated and live-coded voice experiments to (visual) essays on mind-body dualism. She’ll be joining us tonight to talk about ‘Hacking the grocery store’ a web-based augmented reality platform which makes use of the existing infrastructure of Albert Heijn stores throughout the Netherlands, as a means to exhibit artworks made by young artists.
Marta Cecarelli: have you ever heard of Dark Forests on the internet? Marta is a student in the New Media and Digital Culture MA and is interested in digital subcultures and how they contribute to artistic/knowledge production. She’ll be joining us to talk about the idea of the internet’s Dark Forests, understanding them as a subcultural response to an increasingly tech-hegemonic environment. She’ll draw form her own experiences of DFs, especially on Discord, as well as highlighting the critiques of these otherwise seemingly utopic spaces.