PROGRESSIVE POLITICS

delta_ark

TEXT + CODE

MISSION + clients

Since 2011, Delta_Ark has tracked and amplified progressive groups in the United States that work on fair housing and ecological advocacy. Delta_Ark has created installations on behalf of Occupy Providence, Building #13 Squat, the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, Biome Arts, Wetland, and Swale.

DATA + signs

Delta_Ark interviews members of these groups, mines their data, and remixes this information into texts that are displayed alongside an animated logo. These site-situated literary logos inform outsiders about the group’s values and practices, and provide information about how to get involved with their causes.

three californias

AN AR GAME AND SOCIAL WRITING PLATFORM FOR IMAGINING CALIFORNIA’S FUTURE

AR GAMING + SOCIAL WRITING

The Project will be a trilogy of geo-located AR games. Participants will seek out shrines across the bay area, pull data from them, and collectively assemble them into a large scale narrative about the future of the state through a social publishing platform. The above pieces are initial sketches.

“I grew up in a utopia, I did. California when I was a child was a paradise.”

THE FUTURE OF THE GOLDEN STATE

Delta_Ark is currently working on a trilogy of projects about (1.) a new decentralized internet in California that (2.) is used as a vehicle to develop regional autonomy such that (3.) California eventually becomes the major manufacturing center for sea-steads, launching a series of new nations.

Archive of the ecological future

A DATA GATHERING PERFORMANCE CENTER FOR MARY MATTINGLY’S ‘SWALE’

“The soil is the great connector of lives, the source and destination of all. It is the healer and restorer and resurrector, by which disease passes into health, age into youth, death into life.”

A FLOATING FARM

Mary Mattingly's Swale is a floating food forest built atop a barge that travels to piers in New York City, offering educational programming and welcoming visitors to harvest herbs, fruits and vegetables for free. In the summer of 2014, Delta_Ark and Biome Arts co-organized a large scale collaborative project: a month-long symposium on ecology, technology and autonomy that culminated in the construction of the Green House Theater, a networked, data-gathering structure on Swale. This structure served as a performance space, activist meeting hall, gallery, physical dashboard for environmental and agricultural data from the farm, as well as a platform for other artworks. Many other artists participated, including Sally BozzutoDavid KimChihao YoAdam FrezzaTerri ChiaoBrian House, Nupur Mathur, Hyojin Yoo and Ayodamola Okunseinde.

A ROGUE DATA CENTER

Inside the Greenhouse Theater, Delta_Ark and Biome arts build the primary installation: The Archive of the Ecological Future. The A.E.F. is a hub for information about Swale, Biome Arts and the organizations that have participated in Swale. The Archive has two primary sections. The Data Section contains a record of all data gathered at Swale during the summer of 2016; e.g., wind speed, wind direction, location, soil moisture, etc. The Entry section contains (a.) an organization, (b.) paired with a plant on swale and (c.) a poetic text clipped from the website of that organization. Throughout the month-long symposium, the archive was available online and also on site, when it was projected into a column of hanging fabric within The Greenhouse Theater. Participating artists used the archive as a jumping off point for the construction of their own works.

light atlas

PROJECTIONS AGAINST UNFAIR EVICTIONS FOR THE ANTI EVICTION MAPPING PROJECT

A COLLABORATIVE POEM BETWEEN THE EVICTED AND BOTS

The Light Atlas is a 40-stanza light-projected poem about the Bay Area, detailing the takeover of the technology industry, its impact on housing as well as present and future displacement resistance. The Light Atlas is composed of remixed fragments of twitter, testimonies of eviction collected by the Anti Eviction Mapping Project, excerpts of books, collaborations with bots, observations from protests and speculative narrative. The full text can be read here.

“Our cities have become unaffordable to our poorest families, and this problem is leaving a deep and jagged scar on our next generation.”

A DATA UNIOn

The Anti-Eviction Mapping Project is a multi-part citizen-driven data project that collects information about evictions in San Francisco. This data is used by community groups to lobby city hall and plan actions against no-fault evictions and gentrification. While in residence as Eyebeam's Fellow at the Buzzfeed Open Lab for Journalism, Technology and the Arts and then later on at Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, in collaboration with AEMP, Delta_Ark created “The Light Atlas."

GEO LOCATED NLP & NLG

GEO-LOCATED MEDIA ANALYSIS AND LANGUAGE-GENERATION SOFTWARE

The Software suite

Currently, the library incorporates five tools. “Sample” will scrape and save up to 100 geolocated tweets in batch form. “Real time visualizer” uses “Sample” to create a word frequency distribution chart which can grow and change in real time. “Scan and Respond” scans geo-located tweets and asks the user to verify they are of interest before sending a tweet response. “Suggest_Bot” is an auto-suggest text engine. The user can create poems with bots that suggest either words or phrases based on a pre-defined corpus and/or a geo-located twitter scans of an area. And "Scraper" rips text from websites.

“What strange phenomena we find in a great city, all we need do is stroll about with our eyes open. Life swarms with innocent monsters.”

READING AND WRITING AT SCALE

Delta_Ark has built a software library for geo-located scraping, analysis, monitoring and language-generation called Geobot. This library allows an operator to interact directly with the real-time linguistic field of a city. The city is language, constantly shifting and changing; these tools allow you to see it and work with it at scale.

Islands, accidents

PROJECTIONS FOR MARY MATTINGLY’S ‘WETLAND’

“Men argue. Nature acts.”

A PRE-APOCALYPTIC TEST SITE

Mary Mattingly’s Wet Land aimed at confronting operations in a future where networks suffer under ecological, physical and political collapse; during the summer of '14, the sculpture and living space played host to a variety of workshops dedicated to enhancing public knowledge around community activism, ecology and sustainable technology.

A POST-APOCALYPTIC FLOODED WORLD

Fulfilling the role of establishing both context and text, Delta_Ark’s installation cycled between a detailed schedule of the events active during attendance at the project and a litany of undeniable and resilient objects that the vessel putatively encountered during its voyage through a flooded future world.

Dream Catcher

PROJECTIONS ON BEHALF OF SQUATTER’S RIGHTS IN PROVIDENCE RHODE ISLAND

“Electricity, really, is just organized lightning.”

A FACTORY FOR ARTS AND LIVING

Building #13 was a semi-legal multiple collective live-work and performance space in Olneyville, Rhode Island. It was housed in 36 Manton Avenue, one of the largest industrial buildings in the state. In 2013, the residents were evicted and the Olneyville Housing Corporation acquired the building. These collective live-work spaces played an important role in cultural regeneration of the city as well as preserving the buildings against further decay. This role was under-recognized by the political and economic forces of the city. Delta_Ark tried to bring attention to that role through the construction of several installations.

REPURPOSING SPACE + TESTIMONY

For the first installation, Delta_Ark took over a room and converted it into a projection space; a projection was created for the glass facing the street that spoke to the current state of the building. For the second installation, the former occupants were interviewed about their time in the building and their interviews were distilled into short texts that were wrapped into a network diagram and projected in the nearby area. For the final installation, Delta_Ark kept a record of explorations of similar spaces throughout Providence. This record was distilled to short texts that were projected throughout the city.

Core

MAPPING SOLARPUNK AND THE SOLIDARITY ECONOMY

“Utopia is the process of making a better world, the name for one path history can take, a dynamic, tumultuous, agonizing process, with no end.“

THE CONTEMPORARY UTOPIAN FRINGE

In the summer of 2014, Delta_Ark and Biome Arts co-organized a large scale collaborative project: a two-week symposium on ecology, technology and autonomy that culminated in the construction of a networked, semi-autonomous structure in the woods of Delhi, New York. This structure served as a performance space, international activist meeting hall, gallery and platform for other artworks. Eleven artists participated, Sally BozzutoDavid KimChihao YoAdam FrezzaTerri ChiaoGene KoganJonathan SimsBrian House, Isabelle Fortier, and Anne Goldenberg. The artists gathered for two weeks to do collective research and mapping of both (a.) the solarpunk science fiction movement, a movement that renders a utopian future with local ecological control, cooperative ownership and decentralized governance and (b.) the solidarity economy, a political and economic movement that seeks to actualize these ends.

A BIO-DIGITAL CONVERSATION MACHINE

Situated within Forest Pavilion is Delta_Ark's collaborative installation with Biome Arts, The Core. The Core was a conversation machine that was also simultaneously an interspecies feedback loop and space for discourse. The digital component of Core is an interactive mind-map editable by anyone in the world with internet access 50.18.115.212/iameetinghouse. Also accessible within The Core via four computer terminals, the mind-map evolves as participants discuss, rearrange, and add new topics along an axial coordinate system. The mind-map was also projected on to a multi-layered column of sheer fabric at the center of The Core. The biological elements of The Core include cultivated Vanessa cardui butterflies. These insects are drawn to light of the projected mind-map, shifting the attention of participants and thus the flow of conversation.

beacon

A TACTICAL COMMUNICATION SYSTEM FOR OCCUPY WALL STREET

“There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”

occupy wall street

Delta_Ark developed The Beacon as a three-part installation for Occupy Wall Street. During Delta_Ark’s residency at Occupy Providence, Delta_Ark noticed that passers-by continued to remark that they did not understand the protestor’s intentions. Because the intensions were so numerous, yet important and interlinking, Delta_Ark decided to build a system that allowed protestors to broadcast to the surrounding area. The second image, provided as context, is The Declaration of the Occupation of NYC, another graphic that explores the interconnections of the ills of the neo-liberal system of political and economic management. The Beacon allowed these ills to be communicated through the protestor’s narratives.

A ROLLING CRISIS CAPTURED IN LIGHT

During the republican national primary in New Hampshire, Delta_Ark set up a tent, interviewed protesters about why they were occupying and these reasons were then projected onto the tent's exterior. #TheBeacon was one of the top trending tags at the event. Afterward, the Beacon also went on 'missions' to different sites in Providence to convey more nuanced aspects of the occupation. The long text about the dissolution of Occupy Providence was projected on the tent's exterior and is captured in total in the third video. Finally, the Beacon traveled to Europe to participate in the protests surrounding the sovereign debt crisis.