A Portland-based international series
i/C/U/: Connection & Control was a home school class led by Hiba Ali July - Aug 2018. In two reading group sessions and one Unity and Blender workshop, i/c/U/ students explored compliance and control in the panoptic state of surveillance, strategies of obfuscation, and how ideas of data ownership on policy.
For the first reading group, we read COC's FOI, Race Paper, Finn Brunton and Helen Nissenbaum's Obfuscation: A Users Guide to Privacy and Protest, Barton Gellman, Julie Tate and Ashkan Soltani's In NSA-intercepted data, those not targeted far outnumber the foreigners who are, Sam Levin's FBI terrorism unit says 'black identity extremists' pose a violent threat and watched Simone Brown's Surveillance and Race Online.
For the second reading group, we read an excerpt of Alexis Pauline Gumbs' Spill: Scenes of Black Feminist Fugitivity, Simone Browne and Zach Blas' Interview: Beyond the Internet and All Control Diagrams, learned about Othernet, CV Dazzle, Face Cages, and watched Micha Cardenes' Find Each Other :: Local Autonomy Networks .
The class culminated in an exhibition curated by Ali, featuring work from some of the class participants: Matthew Ward, Zachary Nicol, Tim Combs, Parsa Sanjana Sajid, Tabitha Nikolai, Jamondria Harris, and garima thakur in collaboration with Autumn Knight.
Through divergent responses of images, text and video, i/C/U participants have examined authoritarian, racist frameworks as well as their own “networks” of social relations. They posit that networks are not neutral. The networks of surveillance and obfuscation are defined by their relationships and statewide infrastructure, a systems that enables tracking and control of data but also facilitates our connection to one another.
The exhibition is paired with a publication printed by Letra Chueca, available here for sale. The publication features writing by Hiba Ali, manuel arturo abreu, deSolid State, and Maggie Sivit; and visual work by Zachary Nicol, Matthew Ward, garima thakur, Eric Patel, Tabitha Nikolai, Jamondria Harris, and Matthew Henderson.
home school is a free pop-up art school in Portland, OR run by Victoria Anne Reis and manuel arturo abreu. They provide welcoming contexts for critical engagement with contemporary art and its issues.
The 2018 curriculum is funded by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Calligram Foundation / Allie Furlotti, and a Rhizome Net Art Microgrant.