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Multimedia performative lecture

Black Water Rising. Lecture-performance of Laboria Cuboniks


Ocean Space
Admission fee
Free of charge

What is alienation, and what can it do? What is its relationship with scale, and how does this relate to contemporary ecological activisms? Drawing on a xenofeminist approach, Bauer (A.S.T and Laboria Cuboniks) and Hester (Laboria Cuboniks) characterize alienation as the dynamic between sapience and sentience. In this context, alienation speaks not to disaffection and incapacitation, but to the labour of freedom’s construction. Thus understood, alienation demands to be seen as the inalienable foundation of capacity building, and as an essential ingredient in any attempt reckon with global climate catastrophe in an age of complexity.

“Ours is a world in vertigo. It is a world that swarms with technological mediation, interlacing our daily lives with abstraction, virtuality and complexity. XF constructs a feminism adapted to these realities: a feminism of unprecedented cunning, scale and vision; a future in which the realization of gender justice and feminist emancipation contribute to a universalist politics assembled from the needs of every human, cutting across race, ability, economic standing and geographical position.”


Diann Bauer is an artist and writer based in London. She is part of the transcontinental working group Laboria Cuboniks who in 2015 wrote Xenofeminism: A Politics of Alienation and the collaborative A.S.T. based in Miami, whose focus is speculative urbanism and climate change. Bauer has screened and exhibited internationally at Tate Britain, the ICA and The Showroom, London, The Sharjah Biennale 13, UAE, Deste Foundation, Athens, The New Museum and Socrates Sculpture Park, New York. She has taught and lectured widely at universities and cultural institutions including: Cornell University, Yale University and Cooper Union (US), HKW (Germany), DAI (Netherlands), Ashkal Alwan (Lebanon), Goldsmiths, The Baltic, The Tate and the ICA (UK).


Helen Hester is Associate Professor of Media and Communications at the University of West London. Her research interests include technology, social reproduction, and the future of work, and she is a member of the transcontinental feminist working group Laboria Cuboniks. Her books include Beyond Explicit: Pornography and the Displacement of Sex (SUNY Press, 2014), Xenofeminism (Polity, 2018), and After Work: The Politics of Free Time (Verso, 2018, with Nick Srnicek).


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