Speculative Ecologies

The Fertile Ground Between Art and Ecology
Speculative Ecololgies (2019) – cover image-cover-page-001.jpg

Inspired by the anthology Speculative Ecologies: Plotting Through the Mesh, edited by Vít Bohal and Dustin Breitling (2019).

The Speculative Ecologies series extends the original intent of the book Speculative Ecologies: Plotting Through the Mesh, published in 2019 in joint collaboration between the Philosophical Faculty of Charles University and the Agosto Foundation. It features essays, interviews and opinion pieces which serve to thematically support and extend the broader program of the Agosto Foundation.

These essays are an attempt to unpack the intersections and overlaps between art and ecology, and the potentialities which such a sensibility might afford. The series in this way builds upon the ‘speculative’ and ‘materialist’ turns, the fallout of which still haunts contemporary humanities discourse; and tries to salvage what is possible and productive for moving ahead into the future.

The series explores contemporary strands of philosophical praxis orientated towards mapping and theorizing the notion of the ‘environment’ as a geological, organic and social construct. It formulates the concept of ‘speculative ecology’ as a transdisciplinary form of discursive practice embedded within materiality. Accepting the existence and the imposing limitations of the material world functions as a point of departure for the contributors to speculate and experimentally navigate the topology of their surroundings in multi-tiered modalities. The main focus is placed upon exploring the integral materiality through digital projects and aesthetic production and is best encapsulated by the three overarching concepts which also create the publication’s basic thematic framework – Representations, Systems and Speculations. These three concepts provide the envelope within which a speculative form of ecological thinking might best function. The integral materialism of such a speculative ecology understands the material mandate of nature, and in this way tries to open space for tentative post-human design.

Image courtesy of BCAAsystem.