The Earthbound was realised within the framework of CPR (Curatorial Program for Research), hosted by Cannonball, Miami, and coinciding with Art Basel Miami Beach. This Film Festival includes works by Merike Estna, David Ferrando Giraut, Tuomas A. Laitinen, Tanel Rander, Jenna Sutela, Jaan Toomik, Anna Zett – curated by Niekolaas Johannes Lekkerkerk.
The Earthbound takes the shape of a film programme that revolves around the idea of the human being inextricably bound to the Earth, its soil and ecosystems. Differentiating between ‘the world’ as the social construct of a manmade and human society, and ‘the Earth’ as an assembler of living and inert, human and nonhuman, the programme aims to confront the persistent and often feigned disconnection between humankind and the Earth. In that, the programme seeks to reinscribe and reassert the human figure to the soil, as based on a playful etymological reading of the Latin root ‘humus,’ to furthermore seek for its recovery in the shape of a dependent, far from autonomous species that is becoming with and defined alongside the different forms of existence that co-inhabit the Earth.
From fieldwork-taking to patchwork-making, The Earthbound presents a number of film works by artists that underscore the importance and urgency of being responsive to the given matters and concerns at hand, to further engage in the diplomatic affair of establishing interrelations and alliances with and between the arts, politics and the sciences. In other words still, if one would come to think of Holocene ecologies in the wake of the Anthropocene, by what means could the arts position itself in accordance and response to the changing and intensifying climatological and environmental changes that face us today? Here one might think of the arts prompting and rendering oneself sensitive to the geopolitical concerns that – in terms of scale and reach – often take place outside of our daily living and working practices, or to generate awareness for those biological and ecological instances that bypass the human sensorium altogether. More actively speaking, The Earthbound looks at those instances from artistic practice that think through the possibilities of adaptive and livable ecologies; works that engineer new domains of experience and thinking of artificial, hybrid and synthetic constellations beyond business-as-usual, or a human “technofix” for every potentially threatening scenario.
Ultimately, The Earthbound aims to foreground the idea that the human fleshed existence is evenly and equally open to enquiry, furthered through artistic investigations into material states and substances that pass through both bodies of land and the tissues of being human – enabled through media archeology, psychogeography, documentary and speculative aesthetics. In thinking Earth magnitude, from the soil, let us engage in acts of consciousness-raising about our place in the scheme of things, resonate and tremble those ‘backdrops’ that are normally held still, for we are always coming home.