Medialab presents its research lines for 2022-2023
In this new stage at Matadero Madrid, Medialab aims to consolidate itself as an innovation laboratory open to citizen participation from which to promote collaborative projects based on experimentation and cooperation between agents from diverse backgrounds, deliberately transgressing the disciplinary barriers of art and culture to produce results with a critical and human value, capable of activating intellectual and/or technical debate, learning, and awareness.
At a time when the future seems increasingly uncertain, Medialab understands open culture as a tool at the service of society, which, if well articulated, has the potential to transform the geophysics and geochemistry of the planet for the benefit of all the entities that conform it. That, we understand, should be the function of Medialab: a public institutional platform for experimental research, creation and production driven by the dynamics of the commons, where culture with a social focus serves to address contemporary issues of pressing significance.
Therefore, Medialab's programming for 2022-2023 will orbit around 8 transversal lines of research that will mark the themes of interest for the center over the next two years.
RESEARCH LINES 2022-2023:
The line of work Nuevas Dinámicas (New Dynamics) uses the tools of computational social science to ask how we can better organize social, governmental and institutional structures. Medialab claims the role of new technological means to foster the self-composition of our social ecosystems, as well as to propose new management models applicable to communities, cities, companies and even entire nations.
Microscopes did not create bacteria, but it is as if they did. After their invention we could never conceive of the world in the same way again. Medios Sintientes (Sentient Media) is like a microscope. It will focus on the capacity of sensory systems to make the invisible visible, mediating the flows of accumulation, transmission and transformation of information in order to change the way we sense and make sense of the world.
The research line Ecosistemas Híbridos (Hybrid Ecosystems) operates at the intersection of infrastructural design, radical urbanism, or materials science to address urban design from a radical rethinking of the term "city", incorporating in its definition the set of operational landscapes on which the city depends, and in the context of the climate crisis, to propose alternative urban models that are not pathological for the proper metabolisms of the planet.
The research line Semióticas Inteligencias (Intelligent Semiotics) explores the future of communication systems between different intelligent agents, with special emphasis on the semiotics between the environment and human and non-human systems. It will seek strategies both to humanize non-human language, making it more affective and accessible, and to dehumanize our understanding of language, defining new dynamics and processes.
Sometimes big transformations start from very, very small changes. The line of work Micro-Macro Tectonicas (Micro-Macro Tectonics) will promote the development of transdisciplinary projects that investigate the capacity of micro-scale technologies or actions - generation of new materials, energy production systems, molecular engineering, carbon capture mechanisms, biofabrication... - to produce beneficial systemic changes on a large scale.
The line of work Herramientas Disruptivas (Disruptive Tools) will focus on the design, development, and implementation of a wide range of media tools and applications with the potential to transform society. We want not only to explore new physical and digital interfaces, but also to analyze the implications they may have for social, political or economic dynamics, as well as for traditional forms of artistic expression and dissemination such as music, film, literature or the visual arts.
Far from being a mere substitute for the "real world", cyberspace constitutes a media interface capable of integrating and intertwining physical and virtual dynamics in an increasingly interdependent ecosystem of worlds erroneously considered as opposites. The Cibernéticas Tangibles (Tangible Cybernetics) line of research will address the bridge between our physical and virtual worlds, as well as their capacity to construct dual ecosystems in which issues such as identity, privacy, portability, or ownership can be rethought.
HORIZONTE DE SUCESOS
The outermost layer of a black hole is called the event horizon. The one that does not allow us to see beyond, that we cannot cross. The Horizonte de Sucesos (Event Horizon) line of work will include all those investigations that, due to their strange, alien, or precursor nature, do not find their place in any of the other lines of work. It should promote projects that explore the unknown-unknown, the unclassifiable, those things for which we do not even have a name yet, helping us to detect unexplored paths and the risks they may entail.
All these lines of work will address specific themes in their objectives, but flexible enough in their methodologies to accommodate a wide range of projects and activities with the potential for mutual feedback.
To learn more about Medialab's new research lines, download this dossier with more information about each of them.