- 00:01 Intro
- 16:28 Andrea Ballestero: How to think about/with aquifers
- 32:35 Figure and ground
- 38:39 Veins, pipes
- 46:31 Plumes
- 54:30 Side note
- 57:00 Chris Korda: A thin layer of oily rock
- 62:33 An inconvenience, immediate threats
- 68:04 Humanity has to become aware that it's capable of failing
- 75:36 It's not within our range of options to kill the planet
- 79:09 Limits, or lack thereof
- 84:59 A very complicated, messy experiment
- 99:43 Post-antihumanism
- 104:26 Coda
Music commissioned to Jessica Ekomane. Curated and produced by Roc Jiménez de Cisneros.
In previous episodes we have hinted at limits as an interesting feature of objects that are often fuzzy or vague, and therefore hard to outline. This time around, we take a radically different approach to limits. A much darker, urgent take on boundaries and edges, if you will. This is not so much about ontological boundaries, but rather about the dangers of looking at the world with no limits in mind.
The first one of our conversations features Costa-Rican anthropologist Andrea Ballestero, who tells us about her experiences, her field work, and her conceptualisations in the analysis of the underground world. She focuses on aquifers, as incredibly complex objects, and on our relation to their physical edges. As she puts it, “Aquifers interrupt many of our sense-making habits, as they require that we recalibrate our analytic and political vocabularies to oscillating figures and grounds, to unusual volumes and their dynamics.” We talk to her about water and movement, volumetric thinking and saturated spaces, but also about caves and mines as the objects that geology and the mining industry have primarily used to shape our preconceptions of the subsurface. And we consider the ideological baggage that comes with those assumptions. Andrea’s work problematises the commonly accepted view of the underground world as a fixed, static medium. She talks about that, and also about the commodification of water, “a substance that pushes all sorts of boundaries at the conceptual, pragmatic, embodied, and affective levels.”
Our second guest, American artist and activist Chris Korda, talks, and sometimes yells, about extinction in relation to population growth. Our conversation turns to procreation, exponential curves, post-antihumanism and how all of these things are closely entangled in our species-wide obsession with the absence of limits. We also talk about the changing tactics of Korda’s Church of Euthanasia, a non-profit educational foundation devoted to restoring balance between Humans and the remaining species on Earth: from the sarcasm and shock tactics of their early days, to the current version of the organisation, much more concerned with getting the message across, as loud as possible.