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WINONA

“Winona” by Trevor Paglen as part of the Eigenface series, where Paglen trained a facial recognition software to identify chosen characters in the ‘Wild Dataset’ of the Internet. It is a small part of his decade-long work in progress on computer vision. Hear all about it tomorrow evening at our mono.klub #52, where Paglen talks with the director of esteemed KW Institute for Contemporary Art,, Krist Gruijthuijsen, about the world of invisible images and our complex interdependency on machines.

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mono.klub #52
TREVOR PAGLEN
In Conversation with Krist Gruijthuijsen

16. January 2017 / 19h30

KW Institute for Contemporary Art
Auguststraße 69
10117 Berlin

MONO.KLUB #52: TREVOR PAGLEN

Dear Friends,

We will start into the new year with a little splash, or more precisely, with a glimpse into the future.

‘For me my works are almost like what a star is to a constellation. They are points or particulates within a larger story,’ says American artist Trevor Paglen in our current issue mono.kultur #44. And indeed, there are few artists whose work is as deeply embedded in current matters of concern, questioning the impact of technology, economy, military or politics on the human condition. Trevor Paglen likes talking about those larger stories, and we certainly love to listen.

So please join us for an evening of conversation between Trevor Paglen and Krist Gruijthuijsen, director of the venerable KW Institute for Contemporary Art, discussing Paglen’s latest cycle of works and research into the hidden worlds of machine vision. For almost ten years, Paglen has been studying computer recognition programs and how machines are learning to ’see’, and how these developments interact with our daily lives. His research has led to a new body of what he calls ‘invisible images’, generated entirely by Artifical Intelligence systems – but of course, those are only particulates within a larger story.

As ever, we look forward to seeing you there.
mono.kultur

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mono.klub #52
TREVOR PAGLEN

In Conversation with Krist Gruijthuijsen

Celebrating
mono.kultur #44
Trevor Paglen:
The Edge of Tomorrow

16. January 2017 / 19h30

KW Institute for Contemporary Art
Auguststraße 69
10117 Berlin

www.kw-berlin.de
www.paglen.com
www.mono-kultur.com

MONO.KULTUR #44: TREVOR PAGLEN / EXCERPT 02

Let us talk about your Last Pictures project, which is set against the backdrop of cosmic time and space. There is a quote from it where you’re talking about the Anthropocene: ‘The Anthropocene is a period of temporal contradictions, a period in which Marx’s space-time annihilation chafes against the deep time of the earth.’

For me, Last Pictures is a project about how social and political relationships become fixed temporally – even inscribed into the earth itself for potentially millions of billions of years. For instance, the rise of industrial capitalism meant rearranging the chemical composition of the atmosphere through burning coal. The effects of that environmental alteration will play out over hundreds of thousands of years. But the human ability to have an ethical relationship to the interventions we make on the planet is constrained by the length of our lifetime, or what we can imagine the limit to a family might be. It could also be the temporal constraints built into an economic or political system, such as term limits or capitalist turnover cycles. What we think of as banal ways of organizing time have put profound constraints on how we act conscientiously. Climate change is a perfect example of this. Political institutions are not up to the task of being able to deal with it, because there is very little to be gained by working on a project that might only be realized 20 years from now. With the current political cycles, you’d have to give something up. You pay a price for something you will never benefit from. The time scales humans are intervening on are out of sync with the time scales we are organizing our societies from. We are not even able to imagine the time scales we are interfering with. We produce something like nuclear waste that basically marks a place on the Earth as a place of death hundreds of thousands of years into the future. Humans haven’t even been around for hundreds of thousands of years, right, so what is that?

So Last Pictures was about presenting this contradiction. And this is a topic a lot of people have been thinking about lately, but that’s a contradiction in itself because by nature it is impossible to think through. With Last Pictures, you can only have notional points of entry of trying to grasp these kinds of questions. It was a really intense process for us. I actually think we ended up in a really weird place at the end of it, like the exact opposite of where I expected to go…

Trevor Paglen in our new issue mono.kultur #44

2018

Hello 2018 & nice to meet you!

2017

Goodbye 2017 – it was fun & what a year. Let’s do it all again! Have a good start into 2018 & guten Rutsch!

MONO.KULTUR #44: TREVOR PAGLEN / EXCERPT 01

‘For my work it’s important to build this armature around images that is outside of the images. It helps them to be read in a deeper way. When I was in school there was the notion that if something was going to be good art, it had to be self-contained; that artwork always had to be placed within a frame. I’ve always felt that nothing can contain itself, that things are constantly being defined outside of a frame and are inevitably part of a larger system. Now, what would happen if you build out that aspect as part of a ‘meta-art’ project? It would mean writing books, and creating a whole constellation from other media to try to give people pathways into the art. For instance, I’ll do a big show on spy satellites, and then I’ll give a lecture explaining how to track spy satellites and what it is they do. In an ideal world I want to create an extended vocabulary people can use to navigate the different themes of an artwork. So I guess I’m the opposite of the artist that tries to hide something away – I’ll just go on and on about it…’

Trevor Paglen in our new issue mono.kultur #44

MONO.KULTUR #44: TREVOR PAGLEN

Dear Friends,

We are proud to introduce mono.kultur #44 with American artist Trevor Paglen. And it might just be our most adventurous yet: traveling from the deserts of New Mexico to the exclusion zone in Fukushima, from satellite orbits in space to the inner realms of Artificial Intelligence, our conversation with Trevor Paglen is as expansive as his work is ambitious.

Best known for his series on clandestine military bases and spy satellites, Trevor Paglen’s practice reaches far beyond museum walls. Instead, it encompasses a variety of disciplines; from image-making and installations to investigative journalism, writing, engineering, geography, and sound design. Along the way, Paglen challenges our traditional notions of fine art. He has published a number of books on the functioning of the US intelligence services, installed a series of Autonomy Cubes that allow access to the entirely anonymous Tor network, and is currently working on his own satellite to be launched into space in summer 2018.

Holding degrees in comparative religion, music composition, fine arts, and geography, Trevor Paglen is undoubtedly concerned with the larger questions in life. In pieces that are statements as much as they are questions, his work exposes the invisible mechanisms of modern existence, exploring the human condition in relation to the political, social, military, and economic systems our societies operate on.

In a sweeping conversation with mono.kultur, Trevor Paglen talked about the volatility of truth, the dilemmas of the Anthropocene, and why Artificial Intelligence will not outlast humanity.

True to its precious content, the issue comes in a Static Shielding Bag normally used for sensitive electronic products. In loose reference to computer coding as well as archival documents, it contains a main booklet with the text and excerpts from Paglen’s current cycle on machine vision, as well as six ‘attachments’ covering seminal projects from his career to date.

Available as ever through our online store mono.konsum, or at the trusted book dealer of your choice very soon indeed.

Enjoy and all our best,
mono.kultur

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mono.kultur #44
TREVOR PAGLEN: THE EDGE OF TOMORROW
“The reality is always more complicated.”
Autumn 2017 / English / 15 x 20 cm / 24 Pages & 6 Inserts in Static Shielding Bag

Interview by Nick Houde
Works by Trevor Paglen
Design by mono.studio

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MONO.KULTUR #44 / SOUNDBITE 03

Out later this week: mono.kultur #44.

STORE OF THE MONTH: SHELF / TOKYO

Shelf is one of those little bookstores that are easy to pass by; but for those in the know and on the hunt for rare and special photography books, it is a must. Located in Tokyo’s central Shibuya district, it is to Tokyo what Claire de Rouen would be to London, or 25 Books to Berlin – a place to discover gems of photography art books that you can’t find anywhere else, or possibly didn’t even know existed. Like, for instance, our issue mono.kultur #37 with war photographer James Nachtwey. Sugoi.

Shelf
3-7-4 Jingumae
Shibuya-ku
150 – 0001 Tokyo

MONO.KULTUR #44 / SOUNDBITE 02

At the printers: mono.kultur #44.