• Beyond animal-dystopia: exploring the artistic balance between human, animal, and machine for coexistence

    SESSION D: New Materialisms and Infrastructures
    Day 3. Saturday, 29th October.
    12:00 – 14:00
    Venue: ASM: Arts Santa Mònica

    Human beings pursue many different attempts at utopia in the political, economical, cultural, ethical, and religious realms, which causes suffering to non-human animals and nature. A political allegory and painting of Manifest Destiny, American Progress (1872), for instance, illustrates how pursuing modernization created animal-dystopia that coexists in the cause and consequences. The State Barrier Fence, Western Australia’s historic rabbit-proof fence, also revealed unforeseen consequences that arouse disruptions to native wildlife and ecosystems, which are caused by the maintenance of the human realm. Meanwhile, technology dramatically increases the productive value of animals as technologized objects for human desire. Our increasing knowledge about animals is actually helping us further commodify them, which then empowers anthropocentrism. This animal subjugation is biased toward extorting resources and enhances our disconnection from the natural coexistences in the ecosystem, which accelerates animal-dystopia.

    This paper introduces my own artwork, Organ-machine Hybrid project series, which are mainly based on the notions of posthumanism. Based on reviewing my art concepts, the paper explores and overlaps how artists, philosophers, and researchers speculate invisible opportunities and possibilities in different ways to ask: how we can view the increasingly multifaceted issues of reinterpreting animality and reassessing humanism and then shift our relationships with animals based on new views; how humanity could be moderated by the posthuman consciousness, with assistance from technology, to lessen or eliminate abject animal suffering, in order to create better relationships with non-human animals and nature; how we could deconstruct classical utopian ideology of traditional humanism as a perspective in posthumanism. These investigations speculate new human roles alongside technology as a posthuman being in the Anthropocene, to use technology not solely for expanding our realm and our territorial aggrandizement, but to mediate coexistence and symbiosis between humans and animals for mutual interdependence.

    Doo-Sung Yoo

    Doo Sung Yoo explores hybrid art, synthesizing natural and unnatural technology, interweaving arts, science, and technology, and discovering aesthetic possibilities for interactions between human and technological nature, and interspecies communication between human and animals. His works were exhibited, reviewed and published in Prospectives.09, and Ingenuity Fest 2012 (USA), International Symposium on Electronic Art 2012, the conference of College Art Association 2013 (USA), Bodies on Stage: Acting Confronted by Technology 2015 (France), Intertekst (Poland), Evolution Haute Couture: Art and Science in the Post-Biological Age (Russia), Wi: Journal of Mobile Culture (Canada), Media-N Journal (USA), and NY Arts magazine.


Department of Art History
Universitat de Barcelona
c/ Montalegre 6-8.
08001 Barcelona

Call for Papers
Organizing Committee

The images for the Art and Speculative Futures conferences are generously provided by artist Regina de Miguel from her video Una Historia Nunca Contada desde Abajo (2016).