Sophie "Soph" Dyer is a transdisciplinary designer, researcher and sometime writer. They co-lead the feminist collective, open-weather.

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Teaching & Learning


The Oracle and the Algorithm

Guest workshop for the Curating, Managing and Mediating Art masters programme.
(March 2017)
Aalto University
#archives #storytelling

“The archive is the ultimate rabbit hole” Kate Crawford

The Oracle is the medium, the soothsayer and the search engine. In the word’s original sense, meaning to speak, the oracle articulates the archive. Whether you believe her words or not, they are prophetic. Her utterances have futurity. “Worlds world worlds”, writes Donna Haraway. Mind, the Oracle’s existence is subject to rituals, rites and algorithms.

Guided by the figures of the Oracle and the Algorithm we navigate the collections of Pori Art Museum. 

Our workshop is an experiment the ways in which we articulate the museum’s archive. Through the creation of image complexes we will engage in practices of (re)assembling, (re)animating and (re)composing. We will test the malleability of documents and explore methods of sampling.

The workshop outcome will be a series of so-called proxy archives. Our notion of a proxy archive draws on existing ideas of the “counter archive” (Abbas and Abou-Rahme), the “anarchive” (Zielinski and Weibel) and our own experiences of exhibiting. The anarchive “does not lay claim to leadership or truthfully know where things come from or where they may be headed to”. Rather, is an assembly of “poor images, mutated copies and re-inscriptions,” wrote Zielinski and Weibel.

A collaboration with Solveig Suess.

Shared readings: Abbas, Basel and Abou-Rahme, Ruanne (in conversation with Tom Holert). (2013) Journal of Visual Culture, (12)3. pp 345–363. The Archival Multitude. Crawford, Kate. (2016) ‘Astro Noise’, ed. Laura Poitras. Asking the Oracle pp 128–141