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  • Read & Repair - Digital Solidarity feat. Jara Rocha and Yoana Buzova
    2021-09-26 11:00:00
    Published at 14 September 2021

    Every last Sunday of the month the Varia Library and the Rotterdam Electronica Depot hold Read & Repair events. Due to current circumstances, most of them have been in an online format. We invite you to visit our online space, make yourself comfortable, read or repair some things together, and share thoughts and ideas.

    In 2021 our Read & Repair sessions will be paired, we will take two months to explore one theme. During August and September 2021, we will be exploring the theme Digital Solidarity. In a time where everything points to the further consolidation and accelerated normalization of the Big Tech industry (Zoom, Facebook groups, Slack, Microsoft Teams, Skype, etc.), we need collective digital alternative practices. How can we develop mutual aid strategies and social closeness through alternative digital infrastructures in times of physical distancing, remote working or care giving?

    On Sunday 26th September we have a READ with Jara Rocha followed by a REPAIR with Yoana Buzova.


    Date: Sunday, 26th September 2021

    Time: 11:00-13:00 CEST

    Location: Varia (Gouwstraat 3, Rotterdam)

    NOTE: This reading session will be held in English. Please bring a laptop with you.

    The text selection and our reading choreography in September was made by Jara Rocha.

    Of all the greyzones of our readwrite worldings, bibliographic self-defence constitutes a specially powerful one. Both because of the fierce gestures of erasure and silencing that certain recursive presences and absences signal at, and because of the extremely lovely evidences of community building and care thereby performed. Self-defence, resistance, counter-weighting and mutual support operations of immense technopolitical value keep taking place at what can be termed "peripheral literature areas" such as bibliographies, footnotes, indexes, acknowledgement pages, colophons, library metadata and side annotations, where trans*feminist, anticolonial, antiracist, queer, crip, antispeciest, antifa and atiageist solidarities take very tangible and specific forms.

    On this Read session, we'll spend time with materials collected from such zones, to identify stories behind or below them, and to perhaps also extend them with our very situated manners to provide ourselves with the bibliographic solidarities that are urgent and precious to us as a latent "we" that exists across them.

    Fragments will be read from these bodies of text:

    • Katherine McKittrick, Dear Science and Other Stories
    • Dionne Brand, Blue Clerk
    • (plus a collection of scattered hegemonic bibliographies)

    Jara Rocha works through the situated and complex forms of distribution of the technological with an antifa and trans*feminist sensibility. Tends to be found in tasks of remediation, action-research and in(ter)dependent curatorship, and their main areas of study have to do with the semiotic materialities of cultural urgencies. Together with Femke Snelting they are making a book titled “Volumetric Regimes: Material Cultures of Quantified Presences” and also with Helen Pritchard they currently work on The Underground Division: an emerging research on the co-constitution of the so-called body of the earth and the patriarchocolonial turbocapitalist volumetric regime. With Karl Moubarak and Cristina Cochior, they conform the Cell for Digital Discomfort at the 20/21 Fellowship for Situated Research of BAK, Utrecht. Jara lives in Barcelona, and their show "Naturoculturas son Disturbios" emits monthly from that city's local Dublab radio.


    Date: Sunday, 26th September 2021

    Time: 13:30-15:30 CEST

    Location: Varia (Gouwstraat 3, Rotterdam)

    NOTE: This repair session will be held in English.

    The Repair session of this theme is hosted by Varia member Yoana Buzova. ойо is an artist/educator playing with tapes, neglected and banal objects, public spaces.

    The devices we surround ourselves with are an increasingly complex and extremely heterogeneous matter. In a short workshop we will investigate the materiality and inevitable politics of electronic components. We will take an interdisciplinary approach to dissect specific objects in terms of their material, socio-cultural and ecological dimension.

    In this process we will dismantle and dissect components to their very building blocks, investigating components from the Electronica Depot. What are the precious earthly compounds inside them? How do they operate, breakdown, fall into obsolescence? Where do they come from?

    The next theme we'll be looking at in 2021 is Community Memory.

    Read is alternatively guided by a Varia Library group member, the following Read (in the next month) is guided by a guest. Both sessions revolve around the same theme, with different texts and methods to read them. The guest Read session is accompanied a Repair session. The Repair session is a practical exploration of the same theme, led by a guest or a Rotterdam Eletronica Depot member. It is an active workshop you can experiment with at home, and one day in our Depot, when we can physically gather.

    Our January-November 2021 programme is funded by Gemeente Rotterdam.