Denn die Maschine schaut uns nicht einfach zu, wie wir unsere Alternativen organisieren
[Since the machine will not simply watch us as we organize our alternatives]
Tue, 24.03.2015, 7.00 pm–9.00 pm
MAK Chimney Room
A roundtable discussion with author p. m. (Zurich), Ana Dokić and Marc Neelen (STEALTH.unlimited, Rotterdam/Belgrade), and Stefan Gruber (STUDIOGRUBER , Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna)
Under the title Denn die Maschine schaut uns nicht einfach zu, wie wir unsere Alternativen organisieren [Since the machine will not simply watch us as we organize our alternatives] (from p. m., bolobolo, Zurich, 1983), a discussion will be held on the relationship between utopias and social change from below as part
of the MAK NITE Lab.
Can bottom-up initiatives trigger and lead to systemic change? And what role might narrative fiction play on this path? In
1983, author p. m. composed a bizarre, satirical and deadly serious proposal for collective livinga life
in self-governing neighborhoods (bolobolos) that would help us overcome the planetary work machine. bolobolo was translated into numerous languages and soon entered the classic cannon of utopias. While p. m. takes on the challenges of utopias, the book remains rooted in the here and now, convinced that change is possible
and action necessary. Its ideas have become increasingly relevant in the context of current discussions on the commons. The MAK NITE Lab with p. m. will explore how the ideas elaborated in bolobolo can actually transform institutions and become reality. p. m. focuses on these questions in one of his recent books as well
as in his role as board member of the initiative Neustart Schweiz. The discussion will also cover the authors experience in the creation of Zurichs large and ambitious housing
co-op KraftWerk 1, a model project that is currently deploying several offshoots. Based on these experiences, how would bolobolo be written thirty years later? The MAK NITE Lab explores possible relations between fiction and everyday struggles in citizens initiatives. Can narrative
fiction contribute to overcoming the historically burdened notion of utopia and help us construct a horizon for working toward
an alternate future?
Guest curator: Maria Lind The MAK NITE Lab with p. m. is part of an ongoing project by STEALTH.unlimited and Stefan Gruber that speculates on an alternate future
for Vienna that emerges from bottom-up citizens initiatives. The project is the fourth event in a series that is guest-curated
by Maria Lind, director of Tensta Konsthall in Stockholm, in connection with her group exhibition Future Light for the VIENNA BIENNALE 2015. The series began with a talk by Brian Kuan Wood (Is it Love?, e-flux journal, 2009) and a film screening by Marysia
Lewandowska (Museum Futures, 2008) in April 2014. The second MAK NITE Lab in this series in November 2014 featured a talk
by Fernando García-Dory entitled On art, agriculture, and the countryside: possible futures of existing initiatives in the fields. Most recently, at the MAK NITE Lab in December 2014 organized by STEALTH.unlimited and Stefan Gruber, possible effects of
the crisis of the welfare state on the future of Vienna were discussed. An additional MAK NITE Lab in this series will take
place on 14 April 2015.