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Adam J B Walker

MPhil work

Ways of being beyond the inherent inequality of the technosphere: 
textual artistic intervention as a vital strategy in enabling resistant agency

This research project, comprising a body of practice and a thesis, proposes a set of positions, strategies and methodologies by which art might destabilise, subvert and proffer alternatives to technospheric hegemony.

The artworks developed work through text and language as both form and concept, looking to fragment their implicit presumptions. 

Three key research questions are addressed:

1. How can a critical, productivist art premised on ‘radical care’ destabilise, subvert and produce affective alternatives to the technosphere?

A concept of ’radical care’ is developed as the research project’s principle original contribution to knowledge. Emphasising both a co-vulnerable and co-invested human-to-human connection and a basis in chance continual change and action, an artistic strategy of ‘radical care’ is brought together through a series of artistic interventions as well as being theoretically argued and contextualised.  

2. How does technospheric inequality operate differentially across current sites and discourses of (dis)embodiment, subject, place, public, agency and artwork?   

Central to the project are a series of artistic event-encounters (re)produced at a range of sites positioned across geographical, bodily, technological and linguistic-discursive spectrums, and addressing entwined embedded inequalities running through these. This practice research is supported by an original analysis of a severely reduced public sphere of politics (by which the technosphere perpetuates and self-legitimises). Hidden material inequalities underpinning the surface-image-trace of the technosphere are engaged with, while at the same time recognition is given to the meaningfulness of being upon that surface.  

3. How does the technosphere, premised on a platform capitalist economic paradigm, manifest increasing hegemony over labour, the body, the artist and the future? 

Material labour and the variabilities of vulnerability, agency and value held with it, while rapidly changing, continues to hold a core position in perpetuating inequality. The post-Fordist and Fordist underpinnings of these structures are outlined, while arguing a denial of agency premised on control and elimination of future unknowns through data and surveillance constitutes a paradigm shift as platform capitalism (the economic model of the technosphere) takes precedence. 

Info

  • MPhil

    School

    School of Arts & Humanities

    Programme

    Arts & Humanities Research, 2017–

  • Degrees

  • MA Fine Art, Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London, 2016; BA (Hons) Fine Art: Painting, Camberwell College of Art, University of the Arts London, 2011; BA (Hons) Geography, University of Cambridge, 2006
  • Experience

  • SWAP UK/Ukraine residency, British Council Ukraine / Liverpool Biennial, Kyiv (Ukraine), 2017; Changing Play residency (with Emma McGarry), Serpentine Gallery, London, 2017; Research residency (with Emma McGarry), Camden Arts Centre, London, 2016; Paradox residency, Poznan University of the Arts, Poznan (Poland), 2015; AIR Caledonian Road residency, AIR / Central St, Martins, London, 2013; Park in Progress residency, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, 2012
  • Exhibitions

  • Our Skins Are Porous Too, Skelf, Online, 2019; undertitled, Tyneside Cinema, Newcastle, 2018; SWAP UK/UKRAINE (British Council /Liverpool Biennial), Yermilov Centre, Kharkiv (Ukraine), 2018; TOMBOLA! (with Vicki Thornton), Izolyatsia Platform for Cultural Initiatives, Kyiv (Ukraine), 2017; Art Feast, Skelf Site / Art Licks Weekend, Online, 2017; Let Me Hear You Click You Say Yeah No!, Skelf, Online, 2016; Parallax II, Chelsea College of Arts, London, 2016; It Will Be Okay (with Emma McGarry), Camden Arts Centre, London, 2016; No Nothing Salon, Chelsea College of Arts, London, 2016; Kar-a-sutra (as Donuts artist group), Fig-2 / Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, 2015; Paradox, UP Gallery, Berlin, 2015; Paradox, Centrum Kultury Zamek, Poznan (Poland), 2015; Structure Texture Future, Nunnery Gallery, London, 2015; We Forgot the Lot, Tate Britain, London, 2014; Vorkurs, Vulpes Vulpes / Standpoint Gallery, London, 2014; Project Visible, Tate Modern, London, 2013; Watershed, Tate Modern, London, 2013; Park in Progress, Nottingham Castle, Nottingham, 2012; Two and a Half Dimensions, Pangolin, London, 2011