An online exhibition of network-based art from Brazil, China, Croatia, India, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, Turkey, and the United States.
. . . sarais were the typical spaces for a concrete translocality, with their own culture of custodial care, conviviality, and refuge. They also contributed to syncretic languages and ways of being. We would do well to emulate even in part aspects of this tradition in the new-media culture of today.
--Shuddha Sengupta, Raqs Media Collective, Translocations
"Think locally, act globally," artist and theorist Tetsuo Kogawa exhorts. Translocations explores notions of what constitutes the local in a globally networked environment. This is not simply a question of where the "trans-there" lies. If the nonspace of cyberspace can create the possibility of a diasporic community, united not by geography but by shared interests, what precisely is held in common? How do similarly worded ideas translate across cultures? Do the same mixes sound different depending upon where they are sampled? Is there the possibility of transcultures that are neither isolationist nor imperialistic? What is the public commons of digital intercourse?
Translocations is a series of platforms--the physical, networked exhibition installation of Architecture for Temporary Autonomous Sarai; the streaming media platform of the Translocal Channel, which is programmed by a number of artist groups from around the world; and the platforms of individual artworks such as OPUS and Translation Map, which require the participation of viewers to establish the possibility of translocal communities over the network. These projects and others in Translocations envision and promote an open, participatory culture that is translocal, interconnected, hybrid, and in flux.
Translocations is organized by Steve Dietz, Curator of New Media, Walker Art Center. It is made possible with funding from the Rockefeller Foundation and The Daniel Langlois Foundation.
MARCH 11-22, 2002, Steve Dietz (Minneapolis, Minnesota), Gunalan Nadarajan (Singapore), Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula, and Shuddhabrata Sengupta of Raqs Media Collective (New Delhi, India), and Yukiko Shikata (Tokyo, Japan) engaged in an online conversation that started from the idea of translocations and ranged widely across the terrain of global net art practice and philosophy. Following is an edited version of that conversation.
From: Steve Dietz <email@example.com>
Date: Mon Mar 11, 2002 0:48am
Subject: Why "translocations"?
Dear Guna, Jeebesh, Monica, Shuddha (Raqs), and Yukiko,
I first came across the term "translocal" in the writings of Andreas Broeckmann. For me, one of the ways the term resonated most strongly was the flip from terms such as transnational, transglobal, and global. If McDonald's and Starbucks are the poster children for such corporations--the near hegemonic presence of a single brand globally--then translocal foregrounds the aspect of "situatedness" (sometimes geographically local and sometimes psychogeographically?) while acknowledging that we live and practice in a (potentially) networked context.
Tetsuo Kogawa, who also uses the term translocal--and said in a conversation that he had coined/used the term independently--suggests a similar flip in "The Global Transformation of Books and Reading" when he states that the goal is not, in fact, to "think globally, act locally," as the popular refrain goes, but to "think locally, act globally." In other words, focus on the local, but allow the networks to propagate the action globally.
Anyway, my interest is not in the term per se, and I recognize that there is a complicated dynamic involved. Raqs, if I'm not off base, it is precisely the complexity of this dynamic--of not being "Indian," even though what Note: Except for the Web site provided in footnote 1, which was posted on February 7, 2003, all sites referenced below were visited by the author on June 12, 2002.
1 Steve Dietz is curator of new media at the Walker Art Center; Gunalan Nadarajan is dean in the faculty of visual arts, Lasalle-SIA College of Arts, Singapore; Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula, and Shuddhabrata Sengupta are founding members of Raqs Media Collective and participants in How Latitudes Become Forms: Art in a Global Age; Yukiko Shikata is a curator at the new Mori Art Center in Tokyo. The full version of this conversation is available online at http://translocations.walkerart.org/conversation.