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<nettime> Tactics & Practice #12: New Extractivism

Aksioma – Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana is proud to announce:


Tactics & Practice #12
New Extractivism

January–June 2022

Featuring: Joana Moll, Vladan Joler, DISNOVATION.ORG, Ben Grosser



In the information age, everything becomes a potential frontier for expansion and extraction – from the depths of the DNA code to the vast frontiers of human emotions, behaviour and social relationships, and nature as a whole. — Vladan Joler


In economics, the term “extractivism” is used to describe a model based on the extraction of natural resources – from minerals to metals and fossil fuels – from the Earth, to sell them on the global market. More recently, the terms “neo-extractivism” (Hans-Jürgen Burchardt, Kristina Dietz 2014) or “New Extractivism” (Henry Veltmeyer, James Petras 2014) emerged to describe how the model of extractivism has been deployed in the neo-colonial context of neo-liberal economies, where the extractive industry has developed into a specific growth-oriented development path, with a global regulation of the allotment of resources and their revenues, and a promise of growth and welfare for the countries where extraction occurs that is mostly betrayed.

In their book The Politics of Operations: Excavating Contemporary Capitalism (Duke University Press, 2019), scholars Sandro Mezzadra and Brett Neilson focus on the relationship between different forms of extractive operations in contemporary capitalism, and show how extractivism has been applied not just to the exploitation of natural resources, but also humans, labor, data, and cultures. Drawing from here, since 2019 artist and researcher Vladan Joler has been using the term “New Extractivism” in the context of contemporary techno-capitalism, to portray a form of extractivism that reaches into the furthest corners of the biosphere and the deepest layers of human cognitive and affective being. Based on the enclosure of biodiversity and knowledge and the privatization of cultural commons, the New Extractivism occurs when different fields of human knowing, feeling, and action and every form of biodata – including forensic, biometric, sociometric, and psychometric – are turned into raw materials, a new gold to be excavated and used to feed databases for machine learning and AI training.



1) Joana Moll will show how Advertisement Tech, the primary business model within the so-called Digital Economy, is as pervasive as alarmingly obfuscated.


The Hidden Life of an Amazon User, EXHIBITION, Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana, 19 January–11 February 2022

Carbolytics, EXHIBITION, Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana, 16 February–11 March 2022

Data Extraction, Materiality and Agency, ARTIST TALK, Cukrarna, Ljubljana, 16 February 2022 at 7 PM

The Hidden Life of a Browser, WORKSHOP, ALUO, Ljubljana, 16–17 February 2022, 2 PM–5 PM

- PUBLICATION: PostScriptUM #40, text by Matthew Fuller



2) Vladan Joler will dive deep into his practice of turning information and data into conceptual maps visualising the complexity of giant yet often invisible infrastructures.


New Extractivism, EXHIBITION, Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana, 16 March–15 April 2022

- ARTIST TALK, Cukrarna, Ljubljana, 16 March 2022 at 7 PM

Anatomies of a Black Box, WORKSHOP, ALUO, Ljubljana, 16 March, 2 PM–5 PM

- PUBLICATION: PostScriptUM #41



3) DISNOVATION.ORG will focus on dismantling the capitalist myth of permanent growth and question dominant techno-positivist ideologies to stimulate post-growth narratives.


Post Growth, EXHIBITION, Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana, 20 April–20 May 2022

- ARTIST TALK, Cukrarna, Ljubljana, 20 April 2022 at 7 PM

Post Growth Toolkit (The Game), WORKSHOP, ALUO, Ljubljana, 20 April 2022, 2 PM–5 PM

- PUBLICATION: PostScriptUM #42



4) Ben Grosser will critically analyse growth-obsessed entrepreneurial culture from Silicon Valley, which shaped the ideology of “more” that runs the software enabling the information society.


Software for Less, EXHIBITION, Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana, 25 May–24 June 2022, Opening day: Wed, 25 May, 12 PM–9 PM

- ARTIST TALK, Cukrarna, Ljubljana, 25 May 2022 at 7 PM

Recomposing the Web: Tools and Techniques to Regain Agency in a Software-Driven World, WORKSHOP, ALUO, Ljubljana, 25 May 2022, 2 PM–5 PM

- PUBLICATION: PostScriptUM #43




Aksioma | Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana, 2022

In partnership with:
ALUO – The Academy of Fine Arts and Design of the University of Ljubljana
MGML / Cukrarna Gallery

The exhibitions, lectures and publications are supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia and the Municipality of Ljubljana – Department of Culture.

The new commission Carbolytics and the workshops by Joana Moll, and Ben Grosser are produced in the frame of the 
konS ≡ Platform for Contemporary Investigative Art, which was chosen on the public call for the selection of the operations “Network of Investigative Art and Culture Centres”. The investment is co-financed by the Republic of Slovenia and by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union.




Marcela Okretič

Aksioma | Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana

Jakopičeva 11, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia


Aksioma | Project Space

Komenskega 18, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia

gsm: + 386 – (0)41 – 250830




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