E2-E4: Peter Lang, Learning from Cybernetic Forests
Programme for E2-E4 Thursday, November 23:
”The effect of these weapons”, Norbert Wiener wrote of scientific warfare in the age of expanding information networks, ”must be to increase the entropy of this planet, until all distinctions of hot and cold, good and bad, man and matter have vanished in the formation of the white furnace of a new star.” Are we on that star now? Or can we still salvage shards of reason from the (counter-cultural) promise of cybernetic emancipation? During this session we will discuss the architectural, pedagogical, ecological, and epistemological horizons of cybernetics.
Lars Bang Larsen, “NNWWWAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH: Beyond Control”
A brief intro in broad strokes about some founding terms of the bag of fleas that is – or was – cybernetic epistemology, and how the ‘60s counterculture creatively misused it to create a machinic imagination of its own.
Peter Lang, ”Learning from Cybernetic Forests”
Learning from Cybernetic Forests is about how a relatively little known architecture competition held in Florence in 1970 would become a key catalyst in an extraordinary rethink on architectural education, leading several young groups of architects and student architects to bypass the solution of the physical building and instead substitute it with a learning environment composed of immaterial information networks, modelled on nature, or on shopping malls, or on the latest cybernetic and space technologies. The main protagonists behind this shift were the groups Superstudio, Archizoom and 9999, who would come to be known as the Radical generation of Italian designers and architects.
E2-E4 is the name of the most common opening move in chess, the one that sets the game in motion. E2-E4 is also the name of a program for theoretical activities, exhibitions, and publications at the Royal Institute of Art, Stockholm. “Theory” is here conceived not as academic superstructure or epistemic authority, but as orientation, as that first grasp of our own situation, and of its location in a wider system, network, or totality, which may allow us to begin, to go from the disorientation of undefined possibility, to the provisional determination of practice. The program will explore the use values of the exhibition as a critical information system, in the service of education, aesthetic experience, and public dissemination.
The E2-E4 program is created by guest professors Kim West, Lars Bang Larsen, and curator Stefanie Hessler