GLOBALE: Next Society – Facing Gaia
Stones and buckets on a white podium
Fri, April 15, 2016 – Sat, April 16, 2016, Symposium
The epilog of the GLOBALE is the »Next Society – Facing Gaia« symposium, which will examine the current state of the Earth and the related question of how the world’s population will live and want to live in the future.

The Gaia hypothesis was formulated by the scientist and inventor James Lovelock. The least that can be said is that he was not lucky with it. By comparing this ancient Greek myth with the fragile and complex system through which living organisms change the Earth, some thought that he was talking about a unique organism, a giant thermostat, or even about Divine Providence. All of it could not have been further away from what he was actually trying to propose. Gaia is not the world, the motherland, or a pagan goddess, and neither is it the Nature that we picture since the seventeenth century, the Nature that serves as a mirror of human subjectivity. The Nature that has formed the background for our actions.

However, because of human history’s unanticipated effects, what we had gathered together under the name of Nature left the background and gone on stage. The air, the oceans, the glaciers, the climate, the land – everything we have made unstable interacts with us. We have entered geohistory. It’s the era of the Anthropocene – with the risk of a war where everyone is pitted against everyone else.

The old Nature vanishes and leaves space for an entity whose expressions are difficult to predict. This entity, far from being stable and reassuring, seems to be constituted of feedback loops that are in constant disruption. Gaia is the name that suits it best. Through the exploration of the thousands of forms of Gaia, we can untangle what the notion of Nature had intermingled: ethics, politics, a strange conception of science and, above all, an economy and even a theology.

This symposium will accompany the exhibition »Reset Modernity!«. It will deal with the procedures undertaken to recalibrate a set of measuring instruments which have become incapable of capturing the signals that they are supposed to register. Except that the concern here is far more complex than recalibrating a simple tool – its intention is to reset the notion of Modernity!

The symposium language is English.


Friday, April 15, 2016: Exchange Sessions | Saturday, April 16, 2016: Panels & Round table Friday, April 15, 2016

Friday, April 15, 2016
Exchange Sessions

at the »Reset Modernity!« exhibition space [ZKM_Atrium 8 + 9]
The Exchange Sessions on Fri, April 15 are already booked out. The further program of the symposium are open to the public.

The format of this session questions the notion of a »public« in the exhibition space. Rather than a formal conference in an auditorium, visitors will be invited to come to the show and experiment with the various sections of the exhibition. According to John Dewey, the public in this case is not considered as a preexisting entity. The notion of a »public« implies a community emerging from inquirers, interacting with a specific issue and, in return, giving it a more public character.
During this session, there will be seven different points of exchange. People will be able to listen, participate, and aggregate freely around them. This experiment will gather together several invited artists and scholars: Frédérique Aït-Touati, Jamie Allen, Johannes Bruder, Bureau d’´Etudes (Léonore Bonaccini and Xavier Fourt), Flavia Caviezel, Franco Farinelli, Folder (Marco Ferrari, Elisa Pasqual), Jean-Michel Frodon, Fabien Giraud, Sylvain Gouraud, Moritz Greiner-Petter, Hélène Guenin, Francesca von Habsburg, Dorothea Heinz, Ronald Kolb, Bruno Latour, Armin Linke, Claudia Mareis, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Donato Ricci, Dorothee Richter, Territorial Agency (John Palmesino, Ann-Sofi Rönnskog), Unknown Fields Division (Liam Young and Kate Davies), Peter Weibel and students of Bruno Latour at the Sciences Po École des Arts Politiques (SPEAP).

It is facilitated by the SPEAP (School of Political Arts) collective, who will be in charge of inventing formats of exchange, facilitating dialogues, raising questions, moderating debates, and setting up the internal structure of the exchange session.
11 am–1 pm & 2–4:30 pm Procedure 1 Relocalizing the Global
How to deflate the notion of »global«? And, instead consider the fact that a »global« network is local in all its points?
  Procedure 2 Without the World or Within
How to revisit the typically modern division between subject and object? And instead develop an account in which the position of the »observer« and the »thing observed« are both immersed in the flow of experience?
  Procedure 3 What Happens to the Sublime?
If we move to a new climate regime, is it still possible to feel the sublime?
  Procedure 4 The Return of Limits and Borders?
How could the Moderns absorb the discovery of limits without falling back on the notion of borders and identities?
  Procedure 5 Secular at Last
The common idea of modernity is that religion has become private, and that politics is in the public space, forming a specific political theology. In the current context, how could we redefine the notion of the secular?
  Procedure 6 Technology without »Hype«
How to shift our perception of technology from object to project?
  Procedure 7 Museum of Oil
The oil industry has expanded so far that its territories have become fragile and untenable. Territorial Agency suggests keeping oil in the ground; why exactly should we do so?
5–6 pm Dialog between »Reset Modernity!« und »New Sensorium«
Curator talk Bruno Latour and Yuko Hasegawa
​in the »New Sensorium« exhibition space (ZKM_Atrium 1 + 2)

Saturday, April 16, 2016, from 11 am
Panels & Round table

at the ZKM_Cube
​Based on the Friday's exchange sessions the two panels and the round table discussion explore the topics related to the exhibition »Reset Modernity!« through short presentations of speakers of different disciplines. The panels and discussions can be followed via live-stream until 3:30 pm.
11 am–12:30 pm Which Aesthetic for the Gaïa Hypothesis?
Keynote: Bruno Latour
​Participants: Graham Harman (philosopher), Hélène Guenin (curator), Francesca von Habsburg (collector, founder and chairwoman of Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary)
2–3:30 pm Reset vs. Revolution
How could we escape from the modernist metaphors of new beginnings?
Keynote: Peter Weibel
​Participants: Frédérique Aït-Touati (stage director and historian), Franco Farinelli (geographer), Yana Milev (artist, philosopher and curator)
3:30–4 pm Coffee break
4–5:30 pm Discussion in the exhibition »Reset Modernity!«
​Moderation: Bruno Latour
Participants: Frédérique Aït-Touati, Franco Farinelli, Hélène Guenin, Francesca von Habsburg, Graham Harman, Yuko Hasegawa, Yana Milev, Peter Weibel
Organization / Institution
ZKM | Karlsruhe

A project as part of the city birthday – 300 years Karlsruhe –