8,000 metres above the sea level exists what climbers call the ‘death zone’. This altitude marks the limit for human habitation, above which our species cannot survive. We thrive in the ‘life zone’ – the earth’s land surfaces and oceans, its geological layers beneath, the dynamic atmosphere above – all affected by gravitational magnetic forces beyond. This living world is constantly being transformed by our social, economic and political interactions revealing our intricate dependences on the earth and its systems. Terms such as ‘Anthropocene’ and ‘Capitalocene’ have drawn attention to the role of political economy in transforming these earth systems and positioned design as a major geological force shaping the planet.
The ‘Design Agency within Earth Systems’ symposium invites participants to look through these planetary lenses to reflect upon the complicity of design in the destruction of the planet; to question the two dimensional, land based political technologies, by which we order our lives and our relations to the earth; to explore the material dimensions of air, ground and ocean as inter-twinings of socio-political and earth systems; and to imagine relations between socio-political and earth systems differently through design.
Speakers include: Neil Brenner (UTL, Harvard GSD); Stuart Elden (Warwick University); El Hadi Jazairy and Rania Ghosn (Design Earth) and Anglea Rui; Marti Franch (EMF Landscape Architecture) and Caroline Knowles (Goldsmiths).
The symposium is co-organised by Lindsay Bremner (University of Westminster), Alfredo Ramirez (Architecture Association) and Ed Wall (University of Greenwich). The symposium is free to attend.
The event is supported by the Architecture Association, Monsoon Assemblages (University of Westminster) and Advanced Landscape Research (University of Greenwich).