airquakes: black weather forecast for sunny days
“Establish a society in which the individual has to pay for the air he breathes (air meters; imprisonment and rarefied air, in case of non-payment). Simple asphyxiation if necessary (cut off the air)”
— Marcel Duchamp
The discovery of air, the atmosphere, the environment, the many sorts of wavelengths that traverse it, pathogens, are at the base of the epistemological shifts and the development of human technologies and relations of the last one hundred years. From military air design (1915 saw the first chlorine gas attack) and the consequent parasite raids carried on by the new born agro-industry, to the discovery of semiology led by positivism, the psyche, the 4th dimension, the relationship between subject and object, and thus a regime of the visible, shifted beyond the several fields of confined human activities to all over the environment. War from the battle field became total war targeting the vital surroundings of the (civil) enemy. Art, since Duchamp, escaped the representation field and all its enclosures (or by enclosing the invisible), while images and sounds flee from their physical support volatilizing through frequencies, signals, information, communication, order-words, that give form to the mass’ psyche and its every-day-life through these environmental wavelengths.
We could say that these shifts entail an institutional shift, a hidden passage, from social institutions to the completion of a political (military) one, where our knowledge, sciences, philosophy, where our discourses and creations, work for a concealed patron —an institutional shift or a usurpation of the military under the guise of a civil lead.
The autonomy implicit in people has shifted to the rule that subjects the citizen, an order conquered by sky, leaving a military scent all over that we breathe as ever given. And notwithstanding all this scents’ technological innovations and order-words, beyond its pervasiveness, we still find air for our poetical enunciation and emancipation, we still perceive the right wind to correct course and to hopefully destroy the usurpation of creation and its administration.
To recall air, breath, beyond, behind and away from an occidental approach, would be to recall cosmic breath —desire— as the vital substance that holds lovingly its two attributes/principles together. To recall that our voice, born out of air, along the miraculous poetical word, does not explicit anything, but mitigates the primeval curse of distance, the one separating thought and extension, the abstract from the concrete. To recall air, is to free language from syntax: demilitarization of language (John Cage. Empty Words), to start listening and better understanding our living spontaneity.
The pandemic crisis we are living in, is a result of these series of shifts that give form in the sky through air design, and to develop a program online, on the digital domain, is not to reaffirm our times and what we are required to do to continue the art biz on distance, but to call into question the recoils of our knowledge, of language, of its technologies and applications, hoping to give a better weather forecast for future sunny days.