OLF's R&T + Ob_ & Ob_

The Object Liberation Front is a group of artists, technologists and researchers, who get together to discuss non-anthropocentric artificial intelligence and its implications to the social imaginary.

Given the complex relationships that humans have today with both “natural” systems (as evidenced by global warming), and engineered systems (internet as surveillance), we have been compelled into imagining a world without humans, or, at least, a world where the division between humans/nonhumans, as well as divisions between nature/culture, sciences/humanities, matter/thought, don’t make as much sense as they used to.

The group was initially formed by Alex, Sam, Radamés and myself while we were Researchers in Residence at FACT in Liverpool in 2015. It has grown to include many more people, objects and machines.

Reading & Thinging

Reading and Thinging is an informal monthly get-together that crosses a reading group with a ’show and tell’ session, exploring different themes in philosophy, science and culture through a curated reading list, discussions and manipulation of objects. It is an opportunity to make different areas of research, like philosophy, media theory and robotics, open and accessible, and to develop a community of readers, thinkers and thingers! that mix theory and making.

We’ve discussed topics like: emotional labour; post-humanism and post-internet networks; the difference between reflection, refraction and diffraction; Parapoetics and mechanics as non-anthropocentric reading/writing systems; and Technoxamanism.

We’ve read texts by: Donna Haraway, Karen Barad, Morten Søndergaard, Aaron M. Moe, Bifo Berardi, Dorion Sagan/Jakob von Uexküll, amongst others.

Some of the thingings we’ve done: playing cat’s craddle, building machines that draw straight lines, performative readings, breaking and rebuilding ceramic objects and ritualistic desoldering of circuits.

Ob_ject and Ob_serve

Ob_ject and Ob_serve was an exhibition we put together at A Small View in Liverpool in February of 2016. Alex presented work that looks at the relationship between breakdown in machines and people. Radamés, Edgar and Thiago presented ongoing work that deals with the hidden lives of our communication technologies. Sam presented a collection of text-based prints and ephemera drawn from archival research, conversations with former Liverpool observatory employees, and his project notebooks.