Electric Brine. Esther Leslie in conversation with Jennifer Teets
Flowing, seeping, leaking, cascading, shaping. Electric Brine is a volume of poetry and critical essays by women voices from diverse fields such as literature, geography, media studies, history of life sciences, sociology, and poetics of science and fiction, each of them central to the independent curatorial research entity The World in Which We Occur (TWWWO, 2014–ongoing) and its associated online study group Matter in Flux. Conceived as an anthology and a register, it serves as a testimony to the initiative’s long-standing work of creative adaptation and ecological inquiry through a quest to situate a vision of material politics through the lens of six punctuated pieces on flow and fluids. The literary and scientific fabulations found in these pages speak of the conjunction of lived embodiment, the materialized quality of language, and the ability to trigger political imagination through reading, writing and witnessing. Each of these strands polyperform under TWWWO, for they can be traced, retroactively, to the themes present in the live event series, to Matter in Flux’s private study sessions, to the initiative’s collective writing work presented in public venues and publications. Also included in this volume is an appendix documenting the years of invitation and study, intricately linked to the ideological praxis of these overlaps.
Contributions by Dionne Brand, Barbara Orland, Sophie Lewis, Esther Leslie, Hannah Landecker, and Lisa Robertson
Introductions by Jennifer Teets and Margarida Mendes
Esther Leslie is Professor of Political Aesthetics at Birkbeck, University of London. Tonight she will be in conversation with editor Jennifer Teets about her contribution to the book and the project at large. Her books include various studies and translations of Walter Benjamin, as well as Hollywood Flatlands: Animation, Critical Theory and the Avant Garde (Verso, 2002); Synthetic Worlds: Nature, Art and the Chemical Industry (Reaktion, 2005); Derelicts: Thought Worms from the Wreckage (Unkant, 2014), Liquid Crystals: The Science and Art of a Fluid Form (Reaktion, 2016) and Deeper in the Pyramid (with Melanie Jackson: Banner Repeater, 2018). Current research includes a text on the history and present of the device, a study of turbidity and media, a biography of the composer and radio experimenter Ernst Schoen, research for an exhibition at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art on the chemical industries of the North East of England and the poetic and political significance of butter in Ireland for the Limerick Biennale.
The Wayward Canon by Mark Aerial Waller
This publication began in 2019 as a catalogue for Mark Aerial Waller’s retrospective exhibition at CAAM, Gran Canaria, Spain. With the onset of coronavirus, the publication uncoupled from its format to become a set of critical texts and possibilities for interaction. The back pages can be cut up to make a flip-book, a musical score is included to reenact the sense of one of Waller’s legendary Wayward Canon events. Texts include the invitation of two members of the former art collective and space France Fiction; Lorenzo Cirrincione and Marie Bonnet, with Jennifer Teets, to reflect on Waller’s work as they encounter spaces and streets shared with memories. A text by Prof. Mike Sperlinger (LUX / Oslo National Academy of the Arts) encounters Waller’s event based practice to discern alternative approaches to the cinematic experience. A third text, an interview between Gemma Medina Estupiñan (independent curator/ Van Abbe Museum) and Waller, details an artist’s thought processes and potential for political engagement in meta-cinematic practice.