Turning a Blind Eye | Paulo Tavares: CONTRA-ESTADO

Paulo Tavares: CONTRA-ESTADO
An open roundtable set to discuss the relations between spatial practices, visual cultures, political ecology, and the ruins of the anthropocene. 

November 12, Wednesday • 6.30pm - 9.30pm
Part I: Architecture against the State
Screening followed by public discussion: The mineral geology of genocide (Eyal Weizman and Paulo Tavares, 2013)

Space is not just the location of conflict, but the very means by which conflict unfolds. The natural and the built environment configure tools of political violence, and by consequence, resistance. Drawing on a series of case studies --- from the humanitarian wars in the Balkans in the 1990s, to the dirty wars that ravaged the forests of Mesoamerica and Amazonia during the Cold War -, this roundtable is set to discuss the long-standing alliance between modern planning and state violence; the role of spatial and visual cultures as ‘material witness’ of human and land rights violations; and how architectural practice can engage within an expanded field of spatial/media/political advocacy and activism that cut-through institutional and disciplinary boundaries --- from the studio to the field, from the curatorial to the legal courts of international law.

November 13, Thursday • 3pm - 6.30pm
Part 2: Over the Ruins of Amazonia: spaces-of-exception and the ‘Great Acceleration’
Archive screening and roundtable discussion

The exponential impact of humanity’s footprint over the Earth system triggered during the so-called ‘development decades’ of the Cold War, the turning-point from which was launched what climate scientists call the Great Acceleration - “the most rapid transformation of the human relationship with the natural world in the history of humankind” -, was accompanied by, and intrinsically related to, the enforcement of a generalized state-of-exception across the third world, which was followed by widespread environmental  destruction. Departing from Brasília - the quintessential exemplary of Brazilian colonial urbanism -, this roundtable navigates through filmic and cartographic archives related to the process of modern colonization of Amazonia, mapping the relations between environmental and political violence that lay at the base of the contemporary post-climate change/post-Anthropocene condition. As floods and droughts sweep across the Earth, we ultimately ask: do the Journeys of June in Brazil, as similar to the occupation of Tahrir Square in Egyp and the Yasuni movement in Ecuador, mark the wake of a post-climate change geo-political/geo-physical terrain of political struggles?  



Bienal Pavilion, Dialogue Room, Ground floor
Bienal Pavilion, Park area, Ground floor
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