Archive

Crisis x Critique at Elevator Radio

Guests: Max Fraser, Oli Stratford, Ilse Meulendijks, Noemi Biasetton
Moderator: Anna Winston
Elevator Radio members: Guanyan Wu, Noa de Sousa Costa

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NEW!

Four new episodes of Bookcloud are now available (for free!) at b-r-u-n-o
You can collect them at Calle lunga S. Barnaba 2729, VE

If you don't live in Venice and would like to receive the copies, DM me 💌

On November 30, I will attend a conference at Unibz called 'Small Books' where I will present Bookcloud together with b-r-u-n-o. See you there!

Biography

Noemi Biasetton is a design researcher, writer and editor based in Venice. Her academic studies focus on design cultures and mediated forms of visual representation, with a specific interest in how these are deployed within the social and political dimension. Her practice includes the production of essays and articles, the organization of talks and lectures, and the contribution to research projects for cultural and educational institutions.


For enquiries

noemibiasetton@gmail.com

Currently at

Free University of Bozen-Bolzano Design and Arts AR
Università IUAV di Venezia Design Sciences PhD
Design Academy Eindhoven Information Design MA
Free University of Bozen-Bolzano Design and Arts BA

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Bookcloud | Second Edition

bruno

2023

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

The second edition of Bookcloud (available between July and October 2023) focuses on the relationship between utopia and ecology. In this context, the term 'ecology' is to be understood in its broadest sense and in its oldest etymology, that is, from the Greek oikos, 'environment,' and logos, 'study': study of the environment. The relationship between design and ecology in a broad sense underlies every choice that designers make, and in recent years it has been progressively discussed and analyzed by a whole strand of literature concerned with the non-exclusivity of human beings within the environments in which they operate – from the non-human to the digital. In this context, utopia and dystopia are two systems of vision that, due to their imaginative and speculative power, allow for uncomfortable questions to be posed towards the present and the future, trying to predict how humans will interact with a given environment based on the given present.

  • Ep. 6 Fosbury Architecture with Il mondo nuovo. Ritorno al mondo nuovo di Aldous Huxley by Aldous Huxley (Mondadori 1989));
  • Ep. 7 Davide Tommaso Ferrando with Interregno: Iconografie del XXI secolo by Mattia Salvia (NERO, 2022);
  • Ep. 8 Institute for Postnatural Studies with Symbiotic Planet. A New Look at Evolution by Lynn Margulis (Basic Books, 1999);
  • Ep. 9 Raimonda Riccini with La speranza progettuale. Ambiente e società by Tomás Maldonado (Einaudi, 1971);

Project by: bruno
Curated by: Noemi Biasetton

Resources:

Bookcloud | First Edition

bruno

2023

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

Bookcloud is a project that explores the relationship between the contemporary design scenario and literature through a series of conversation with researchers and practitioners from the fields of architecture, design, and arts starting from a book of their choice. The conversations are printed and distributed for free at bruno’s bookshop. The first edition of Bookcloud (distributed between January and February 2023) focuses on seven texts that explore the relationship between politics and design through the topics of participation and architecture, capitalism and graphic design, ecology and anthropology, anarchy and science fiction, wildness and queerness – investigating their current possibilities, past experiences and futurable scenarios.

  • Ep. 1 Tommaso Guariento with The Nightmare of Participation (Crossbench Praxis as a Mode of Criticality) by Markus Miessen (Sternberg Press, 2011);
  • Ep. 2 Silvio Lorusso with CAPS LOCK. How Capitalism Took Hold of Graphic Design, and How to Escape from It by Ruben Pater (Valiz, 2021);
  • Ep. 3 Martina Muzi with The Mushroom at the End of the World by Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing (Princeton University press, 2015);
  • Ep. 4 Ruben Pater with Two Cheers for Anarchism by James C. Scott (Princeton University Press, 2012) and The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin (Harper & Row, 1974);
  • Ep. 5 Annalisa Sacchi with Wild Things: The Disorder of Desire by Jack Halberstam (Duke University Press, 2020) and C’era una volta una bambina by Zoboli and Concejo (Topipittori, 2015)

Project by: bruno
Curated by: Noemi Biasetton

Resources:

Matters of Lives | Notes and Records on the Pluriverse

ADI Design Museum

2023

Kind:

Visual, Textual

Abstract:

The new millennium has been marked by a strong interest towards the dismantlement of the alleged exclusivity of anthropocentric knowledge. Whether in the form of precarious coexistence, cooperation, co-evolution, or conflict, humankind rediscovers itself as one of the nodes of an intricate mesh which spans from the microscopic to the atmospheric scale, giving birth to a new conception of the world: the Pluriverse. But how does this new vision of global ecology connect to design practices? And how do we deal with the forms and aesthetics created by the Pluriverse’s relationships and meshes?
Matters of Lives | Notes and Records on the Pluriverse is a project that stems precisely from these issues and questions. The first part of the book contains six short essays written by the editors together with external authors involved in the research phase of the project. The same section includes four conversations with Italian researchers working on the edge of the Pluriverse – from microbiology to environmental law and cooking – to gain further insights. The second part of the book is a record of what took place during a series of three encounters held in September 2022 at the margins of the Venetian lagoon, which featured objects, people and other living things presented through a variety of heterogeneous outputs: installations, workshops, talks, panel discussions, performances and more.

Edited by: Noemi Biasetton, Costanza Sartoris, Matteo Vianello
Contributions by: Tommaso Guariento, Federica Timeto, Monica Nadegger, Isabella Pinto, Silvia Biasetton, Andreas Philippopoulos- Mihalopoulos, Roberto D’Alba, Lucilla Barchetta, Giulia Barison, Guilherme Pratti, Clelia Cadamuro, HAB (Melissa Grant, Heidi Pietarinen, Noora Sandgren, Anne Yoncha), Eléonore Geissler, boglárka lutz, Tocia!, Laura Hyunjhee Kim, Kevin Sweet, Faid Ahmad, Georgia Jamieson, Ilya Martynov, Katie Pelikan Baselj, Elisa Piazzi, Aleksandra Przybysz
Exhibited at: ADI Design Museum | ITALY: A New Collective Landscape
Curated by: Angela Rui with Elisabetta Donati de Conti and Matilde Losi

Resources:

Matters of Lives | Encounters on the Edge of the Pluriverse

Meta Forte

2022

Kind:

Spatial

Abstract:

While the future of our species is in increasingly put into doubt, humankind is slowly rediscovering itself as one of the nodes of an intricate mesh, which links the epidermis of our skin to the soil’s geology. This mesh, which spans from the microscopic to the atmospheric scale and harmonizes traditional wisdom with contemporary research, gave birth to a new model of the globe in continuous expansion – the Pluriverse. But how does this new vision of the global ecology connect to design practices? And how do we deal with the forms and aesthetics created by the Pluriverse’s relationships and meshes?
Matters of Lives | Encounters on the Edge of the Pluriverse consists of a series of gatherings which stem precisely from these issues and questions, and represents a shared effort to bring these topics together and stimulate discussion through embodied practices and shared knowledge. Born from an open call in late 2021, the project materialized during three weekends in September 2022, offering a series of collective encounters – in the form of talks, performances and workshops – where the invited researchers, designers, and artists discussed and engaged with the public through their work in the spaces of Meta Forte (Cavallino Treporti, Venice).

Curators: Noemi Biasetton, Costanza Sartoris, Matteo Vianello
Projects by: Clelia Cadamuro, Tocia!, Laura Hyunjhee Kim and Kevin Sweet, Aleksandra Przybysz, Katie Pelikan Baselj, Eléonore Geissler, Faid Ahmad and Georgia Jamieson, HAB, Elisa Piazzi, boglárka lutz and Ilya Martynov
Exhibited at: Meta Forte

Resources:

In Great Tempest

Università IUAV di Venezia

2022

Kind:

Spatial

Abstract:

“Ship without a helmsman in a great tempest” is how Dante, in the sixth canto of Purgatory, defines 14th century Italy - characterised by instability, great changes and weak leaderships. Today, in the information society and in the midst of the process of aesthetisation of political life predicted by Benjamin a century ago, international politics is once again in turmoil, juggling propaganda, populism and data control. The conference In Great Tempest wants to address these issues and open a reflection on the role of design within the dynamics concerning political discourse.

Guest speakers: Metahaven, Silvio Lorusso, Germano Maifreda, Leonardo Distaso
Curated by: Noemi Biasetton, Pierfrancesco Califano
Funded by: Dottorato in architettura, città e design – Curriculum di scienze del design

On Spaces and Places for Political Discourse

HAS Magazine

2022

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

While the Western pre-Information Age’s political space often corresponded to an identifiable, tangible, and social dimensionality, the contemporary space of and for politics is now moving toward an ever-changing, more slippery ground. Clearly, this shift did not result from an unequivocal event, but rather took place over the course of many years, and at pace with technological development. Citizens and politicians went from pursuing their political activities in designated places to pursuing them in 'non-supervised' spaces. They went from living democracy in 'explicit' venues, consisting of floors, walls, and ceilings, to 'implicit' venues – places, like social media, not necessarily thought appropriate for politics, and perhaps not even accordingly policy-equipped. But how, and when, did this shift happen?

Scenari Progettuali per un Design della Post-politica

Graphicus

2022

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

La campagna elettorale di Trump, così come quella pro-Brexit nel 2016, ha ribadito il ruolo fondamentale ma ambiguo delle immagini e dei media nella comunicazione politica, accentuando il passaggio da un’età politica ad una post-politica. Questa condizione, in particolare nell’ultimo decennio, ha scosso fortemente i mondi della comunicazione e dell’informazione. Per primo il mondo del giornalismo, che ha dovuto fare i conti con realtà arbitrarie e malleabili. Ma anche quello del design della comunicazione, che affronta non senza fatica la questione della rappresentazione visiva di un sistema in cui personalizzazione e spettacolarizzazione (in senso Debordiano) sembrano dominare le strategie comunicative dellз attorз politicз. Attraverso l’analisi di tre teorie nel campo del design relativo alla politica, l’articolo cerca di indagare il ruolo dellǝ designer all’interno dello storytelling post-politico cercando di prefigurare nuovi orizzonti progettuali.

Co-autore: Gianni Sinni
Pubblicato in: Graphicus, Issue 11, pp. 60 – 63.

For F☆ck’s Sake

Springer

2021

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

In the last 20 years, the industry of sex toys has grown exponentially within the Western online market, giving life to new forms of communication regarding topics such as sex and sexuality. However, if on one hand the online sale of sex toys and its related communication allow (once again) the spread of political narratives, on the other they seem to reinforce an individual and self-determining conception of sex and sexuality which preclude its broader understanding within societal norms and omit forms of collective and shared practices related to such topics.
To understand the consequences of this paradox, the paper will focus on sex toys as carriers of political narratives related to sex and sexuality, reflecting especially on the role of that online communication might have on their diffusion. To achieve this, the paper takes into consideration the visual communication of MySecretCase as a case study and analyze it through the visual methodology proposed by Gillian Rose. Through the analysis of the communication design strategies adopted by MySecretCase, we aim at interrogating whether – if confined in the virtual space – sex toys can still be considered as carriers of political and collective values, reflecting on the role of communication design in shaping the symbolic narrative around these objects.

Co-author: Silvia Biasetton
Published in: Series in Design and Innovation, Springer

Resources:

PEPP¥

GEO—DESIGN: COVID-19

2020

Kind:

Visual

Abstract:

With the spread of COVID-19, narrative structures proved to be fundamental sense-making devices. On one hand political actors used it to interpret and give meaning to the pandemic’s experience, on the other citizens contributed to the creation of narratives that could relieve fears and anxieties. Realized in the form of a video-essay, PEPP¥ analyses two trends in the Italian communication scenario: ‘argutainment’ and political fandom. The research project particularly analyses the political rise of Giuseppe Conte, Italy’s prime minister, whose growth in popularity was supported through the creation of memes, songs, video-games and more by the Italian web community.
Compared to the communication of political actors who shaped the debate around COVID-19, the project shows how the production of digital artifact reflects the crucial role new media play in the creation of today’s political culture, questioning the ever-growing authorship of online users as contemporary political sense-makers.

Project by: Noemi Biasetton
Exhibited in: GEO—DESIGN: COVID-19
Curated by: Martina Muzi

The Design of Politics

Design Culture(s)

2020

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

At present, populism is best understood as a combination of contextual issues (demand side) and the availability of successful parties (supply side). This article queries the impact of the new media factor as a third component for the fortune of contemporary populism, with the aim of clarifying how the features of new media communication can reflect or enhance the characteristics proper of populism. In order to do this, three aspects of the new media factor will be taken into account, hence the mediatization of politics, the process of disintermediation, and visual storytelling.
Specifically, the paper will analyze a controversial video posted on Facebook by the Minister of Justice Alfonso Bonafede in 2019, displaying the arrival at Ciampino Airport of the ex-terrorist Cesare Battisti. The latter will be used to explicit a coincidence of visual elements on digital media that can help political leaders better engage with their online audience, focusing on the assumptions that images can improve and facilitate the learning process, create identitarian spaces, and facilitate emotional involvement with the audience.

Written by: Noemi Biasetton
Published in: Design Culture(s). Cumulus Conference Proceedings, pp. 992 – 1006.

Advocating Complexity

Design Academy Eindhoven

2018

Kind:

Visual

Abstract:

Advocating Complexity is a bot that targets Twitter hashtags embodying extreme opinions on topics such as global warming, the refugee crisis and LGBT rights. Whenever the bot comes across hashtags like #sendthemhome, the bot asks questions such as: ‘Who are they?’ ‘How do you send them home?’ ‘Where is their home?’. Users are then sent to the online project platform, which aims to answer these questions by providing information based on reliable sources. With a relentless tide of populist propaganda within public digital discourse, this project advocates a more nuanced view on the complexities of contemporary social issues, often oversimplified by the use of hashtags.

Project by: Noemi Biasetton
Exhibited in: G-18 | Dutch Design Week
Organized by: Design Academy Eindhoven

Resources:

Il rifugio populista. Dall'immaginazione allo spazio pubblico

Officina

2019

Kind:

Textual

Abstract:

Da sempre spazio politico e spazio fisico si intrecciano delineando i confini di potere e democrazia. Fino ad oggi questi spazi risultavano “espliciti”: dalla agorà della polis greca fino alle sedi di partito della prima Repubblica, i luoghi della politica sono stati manifestazione fisica dei meccanismi di rappresentanza.
Tuttavia, a partire dal XXI secolo questi meccanismi hanno iniziato a vacillare, con un trasporto dello spazio politico in luoghi “impliciti”. Questo spostamento da uno spazio all’altro avviene all’interno di un contesto globalizzato, un luogo “liquido” (Bauman 1999) nel quale si verifica una scissione tra cittadini e istituzioni che polarizza lo spazio politico tra “noi” e “loro”. Il “noi” dei populisti nasce dal mondo dell’immaginazione e rappresenta un rifugio contro la globalizzazione, un rimedio al complesso mondo moderno. Questo “heartland”, come lo definisce Taggart (2000), è un locus amoenus, un recinto ideale «in cui, nell’immaginazione populista, risiede una popolazione virtuosa e unificata». Lo “heartland” trova la propria volontà di espressione nel web e specialmente nei social media, dove i populisti reinventano il proprio rapporto con la realtà e con il mondo mediante la creazione e la condivisione di segni. In ultimo gli abitanti dello “heartland” ridisegnano lo spazio politico nei confini della piazza, della sagra di paese, della spiaggia: strutture topologiche che reificano l’essenza identitaria del singolo, diventando non-luoghi.

Autrice: Noemi Biasetton
Pubblicato in: OFFICINA Issue 28, pp. 56 – 57.

Design and Populism

Dutch Design Week

2018

Kind:

Spatial

Abstract:

The panel 'Design and Populism' sprouted from the graduation project of Information Design graduate Noemi Biasetton’s thesis Advocating Complexity. Throughout the panel Andrew Stroehlein European Media Director from the NGO Human Rights Watch mentioned his joy in seeing people in different countries standing up for free speech and human rights. Clara Balaguer from Hardworking Goodlooking introduced the idea of changing the designer role from a modernist thinker to an active listener. Instead of opposing order, they should absorb the chaos. Graphic designer and author Ruben Pater tied in and urged designers to get of the 'high horse' and acknowledge that design can be patronising when it shouldn’t be. When the conversation led further into social media, political researcher Kristof Jacobs brought to attention the fundamental role of the designers: the pure construction of the algorithm facebook uses makes it a sphere of polarisation because it rewards it. If you change the algorithm, you can change the nature of social media.

Moderators: Noemi Biasetton, Gijs de Boer
Speakers: Clara Balaguer, Ruben Pater, Kristof Jacobs, Andrew Stroehlein
Organized by: ARENA 2018 programme at Dutch Design Week

Resources:

Design and code:
Francesco Bevilacqua