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Entangle for the Alien to Continue -Nadim Choufi

Updated: Apr 30

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Nadim Choufi presented this excerpt from his work at the New Centre symposium 'Alien Processes: Reproduction and Time'. His video essay, Entangle for the Alien to Continue, examines the space industry and the ways capital manifests in its designs to surpass its own ecological limits due to the climate crisis. By examining visual and sonic renders, bio-engineered extremophiles, and Mars architecture, he traces how capitalistic efficiency has become the key factor in designing living and non-living bodies at the limits of life. The video essay then probes the temporal and biological organization of current life and how future renders and imaginations can dictate the present life forms and their role in the forms of life. The works inquires into methods of dissociating design from better, faster, fitter attributes that maintain current operational conditions of labor for humans, microbes, and environments.

These methods are interdisciplinary approaches from novels, biological formations, and ecologies surviving in harsh conditions. It asks us to consider space imagination--that is currently captured in the hands of a few in the space industry--as an integral part of the futurity of life. Where hard science has a larger duty than its ability to improve labor--placing science fiction, anthropology, and philosophy as integral as the science itself to construct future modes of living. 


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Entangle for the Alien to Continue

Entangle for the Alien to Continue is a series of 3D infrastructures that exist as sculptures and in a video essay that deals with the material trajectory of evolution through design and a reconfiguring of efficiency to eco-efficiency, where the care for entanglement replaces production as an evolutionary scheme.

The video essay begins by tracing the influence of the pet-toy Sea Monkeys, marketed as Instant Life, on bioengineering and multi-planetary architecture as they exemplify failed promissory capitalistic mechanisms of care for built living environments and species while unfolding to complete the transition from capitalistic efficiency to ecoefficiency. The sculptures subvert the fiber-optic-like networks of bacterial vertical farming and Mars Scientific City into open porous dissipating ecologies of unbounded bodies where entanglement through design becomes the care for a new alien. An alien, meshed life forms whose place in our forms of life are yet to be determined, is then developed in this work to question the ontology of living and living space and time through linguistic, biological and material connections of a speculative eco-efficiency.


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Entangle for the Alien to Continue

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Entangle for the Alien to Continue



About the author

Nadim Choufi is an artist, trained as a chemical engineer, with a practice in installation, sculpture, performance, and video. He completed his studies at UCLA and recently completed an artist fellowship at Ashkal Alwan’s Home Workspace Program between 2018- 2019. His work deals with the socio-political implications of technological and scientific advancements as extensions of belief systems and explores how it manifests in the soft and hard aspects of materiality. Recent exhibitions include Sharjah Film Platform, Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah (2019), MENA-logue, Macao, Milan (2019), To the moon and back, South Hill Parks Art Centre, Bracknell (2019), and Inhuman Art, Galerie U Mloka, Olomouc (2018).

Nadim's practice is concerned with how modes of thinking transfer into scientific modeling particularly focusing on institutional bodies and its manifestation in organic and inorganic bodies. He recently produced a installation as part of his fellowship at Ashkal Alwan which investigated the ways radiation was made visible during and after the cold war on organic and celestial bodies through two technologies, the Reference Man and the Hubble Telescope, and traced their frontiers to the American frontier where expansion through conquest at the level of the pixel and the vertex. Currently he is researching how neoliberal thinking and promissory capital have directly influenced the design of organisms and built living environments.


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Entangle for the Alien to Continue


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