Since 2015, I have been an active member of the Aerocene Community: a multidisciplinary artistic project exploring the role of the aerosolar arts in changing relationships between human societies and earth’s atmosphere. Through the making, launch and flight of solar-powered, balloon-like ‘sculptures’, community members experiment with tools of atmospheric sensing, imaging and mobility. The project is directed by the Aerocene Foundation in Berlin, with satellite community endeavors in London, Los Angeles, Buenos Aires, and many other locations. More information on Aerocene can be found at www.aerocene.org. This page brings together a few of the pedagogical, discursive, written and technical elements that have arisen out of my collaboration with Aerocene.
Aerocene Symposium, Palais de Tokyo:
In Autumn 2018 I curated and moderated events and workshops in the public program at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris, as part of Tomás Saraceno’s “Carte Blanche” exhibition “On Air”, curated by Rebecca Lamarche-Vadel. The Aerocene Symposium on October 26th was an effort in bringing challenging questions animating the Aerocene community to the Palais de Tokyo through dialogues, gestures, and movements throughout the exhibition. More information here and here.
Aerosolar Pedagogies, Royal Holloway University of London
Since beginning my lecturing post at Royal Holloway University’s Department of Geography, I have designed and delivered undergraduate courses that explore atmospheric sensing, ethics and politics. As part of my third year undergraduate module “Atmospheres: Nature, Culture, Politics” my students prepare, launch and fly two Aerocene Explorer sculptures, and complete portfolio assessments based on their ability to link practice-based experiments with key concepts. The Aerocene Explorer workshop is convened with the help of Aerocene Community Members in London, Grace Pappas and Jol Thomson. In 2019, this course and its workshops was awarded a Teaching Excellence Commendation by Royal Holloway University.
Together with Derek McCormack, I am exploring elemental aesthetics and politics. This has included the article, “Elemental Aesthetics: on Artistic Experiments in Solar Energy” in Annals of the Association of American Geographers. The article draws upon participatory research with the Aerocene community and project to reimagine capacities to sense and engage with the elemental. Abstract below, and full version here.
Aerocene at Exhibition Road, London:
In November 2016 the first Aerocene Campus took place at the Royal College of Art in London. The three-day event, part symposium and part-hackathon, was the result of collaboration between the Aerocene team; the Exhibition Road Cultural Commission; with support from the Goethe Institute in London. I curated the discursive element of the Aerocene Campus and co-edited the Aerocene Exhibition Road Reader (Vol. 1), a publication related to these events and activities. In the reader are versions of the talks given at the Aerocene Symposium by: Harriet Hawkins; Carlo Rizzo; Bronislaw Szerszynski; Holger Thus; Anne Jungblut; Tom Hill; Peter Adey; Derek McCormack; Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos; Sir Brian Hoskins; Samuel Hertz and Ronald Jones. Find a full PDF version here.
The first Aerocene Newspaper was released at the COP21 Climate Conference in Paris in December 2015, and includes short articles by Derek McCormack, Bronislaw Szerszynski, Kiel Moe, Nick Shapiro, Sanford Kwinter, Oliver Morton, Lodovica Ilari, Bill McKenna and Glenn Flierl, Jol Thomson and myself. Please find a freely downloadable copy at: www. aerocene.com/newspaper
Or find a PDF of the newspaper here.