Burning the Archives of the Earth. From Capitalist Extraction to War Destruction
With Amanda Boetzkes, Oxana Timofeeva, Kathryn Yusoff, and a performance by Chto Delat
In English with simultaneous translation into German
FFP2 masks and 3G are required for this event. More information
Swamps, permafrost, soil and rocks are the Earth’s archives. In the system of extractive capitalism, where nature is viewed merely as a collection of resources, they are gradually being destroyed. The past itself in its material form is being burned for energy production, which in turn contributes to global warming through CO2 emissions, accelerating the destruction. Can we still learn anything from the disappearing archives of the Earth? How do we decipher the messages from the past that they preserve? Are there any possibilities to mobilize the labor of nature against the greed of capital? Amanda Boetzkes takes a look at the ways art finds to articulate these transformations, while Kathryn Yusoff addresses the geo-social and -political impacts of human-induced climate change. The work of Chto Delat bridges these questions with the nightmare of today’s war. The erasure of historical memory produces a novelty effect making Putin seem exceptional and Russia’s military invasion in Ukraine a grandiose scandal. But the archives of history teach us that warfare is a planetary process resulting from the widespread colonial attitude that treats land as territories available for expansion. Ecological and humanitarian crises are two catastrophic aspects of capitalist developments driven by the logic of appropriation.
Concept and moderation: Oxana Timofeeva