Daniel Keller Lazy Ocean Drift at New Galerie, Paris Opening October 24th
IMAGINE A WORLD WHERE…. Labor, consumption, marketing, leisure and protest have all been hybridized, automated, outsourced and offshored into something both ubiquitous and unrecognizable. We still need a mass market to consume products and inspire entrepreneurs, but we don’t expect much else. 90% of late 20th century jobs haven’t existed for 50 years and humanity itself has become ‘nonessential’ for the continued maintenance and growth of the global economy.
Formerly safe, high skilled professionals like lawyers and radiologists were the first to lose their jobs to the botnets. Much of the field of journalism has merged into automatically generated motion graphic holotagcloud visualizations of trending humanitarian crises. Participating in the Developmenture Creategies Economy means sipping on a spirulina smoothie from the promenade deck Pinkberry while interpassively selecting the most pointed mashup portmanteau on a splash resistant tablet, sending it to the cloud to be 3d printed from reclaimed Great Pacific Garbage Patch plastic and calling it an early day. This style of Prosumarkritique is about as productive and rebellious as the postcreative classes can afford to be.
The polar ice caps melted and sea levels rose dramatically as predicted. Of course, this was seen as more of an opportunity than a tragedy; a new frontier that was literally expanding! The technology to profitably colonize the oceans had been extensively developed, but after the sudden and unexpected collapse of vertebrate sea life, only a handful of Californian billionaire playboys, neozionist cults, militant genderqueer anarchocapitalists and a cosmopolitan assortment of poisonous jellyfish still seem to want to live there.
None the less, these seasteaders did manage to force the governance services market open to private competition with a proliferation of subscription based quasi-sovereign multinational corporate offshore platforms, a few autonomous-zone Seapunk islets and other newly engineered legal-spatial anomalies. The basic legal distinctions between person, corporation, anchored ship and sovereign nation-state were finally erased.
Some of the first comers to the new oceanic frontier made fortunes hosting darkweb data havens and corporate team-building retreats, producing gonzo pornography and exporting plankton based fuel and eye creams. But ultimately, this long heralded Cambrian Explosion in Governance did little to help the degrading standards of living for the landlocked majority who couldn’t afford the best class SeatizenXperience subscripts nor AlgoLawyerswarms overwhelmingly litigious enough to ensure the acquisition of a family-size exit visa from the raffle. Either way, these days you’d have to be crazy to live out on one of those things — considering all the jellyfish.