Last updated on Oct 31, 2016.
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Why is the internet user considered an unvalidated member of the crowd, an amateur if nothing else? Why are we not able to deal with content contributions purely on the basis of their intrinsic value? Why do internet contributions need certification of institutions in order to be taken seriously? Surfatial’s session would examine the attitude towards existing cultural production on the internet - whether being digital/virtual induces wonderment and whether the ideas presented carry a cultural value.
Does new infrastructure always challenge existing cultural practices or can it be seen as an optional enhancement? Cultures usually evolve by adding on layers that don’t necessarily mask the integral form. History gets more interesting when its translucency is apparent. In a scenario where our focus is increasing on the availability and authenticity of records, open access to knowledge resources does not guarantee an engagement, immersion or a valuation. We are also driving our questions towards locating scholarship and expertise that transcend preconceived territories and are not bound by the finitudes of space/time and resource.
The session will have three elements that are intrinsic to our practice which is primarily carried out through digital synchronous collaboration over the internet. We will present one story, one study group and one sound track. The story that will be read/performed is produced through the collaboration of Surfatial’s members and is extended to further development through the format of a book with open comments. The study group section continues our interest in engaging with community contributions regardless of personal identities/expertise towards the development of ideas. The study group will explore three questions regarding the effects of digitisation in levelling institutional and non-institutional knowledge frameworks. The sound piece is our playground for artistic and creative indulgences to generate an entertaining amalgamation of the content we produce.
The session will include the following:
1. One Story (25 mins):
2. Study Group (45 mins):
3. One Track 20 mins:
The Adversary will also be presented in the form of a physical notebook as well as an online collaborative document which will be open for commentary/tangential elaboration by all readers. Our sound piece will be available for listening on Soundcloud and the study group will be included in Surfatial’s archive.
Surfatial is a trans-local collective that operates through the internet. We use conversations to aid learning outside established structures. We are concerned with enabling disinhibition through the internet, for expressing what may not be feasible in physical reality. We organise internet-based audio conferences called study-groups where we deal with philosophical questions and a self-reflective exchange of individual experiences. We have previously presented our work at Soundphile 2016, Delhi; play_book (in collaboration with Thukral & Tagra), Gurgaon; CONA, Mumbai, Mumbai Art Room and CIS (Bangalore). Our upcoming engagement is with ZK/U, Berlin.
Surfatial is Malavika Rajnarayan, Prayas Abhinav, and Satya Gummuluri.