Dreaming in Germany

Another example of Utopian Dreaming. This time from a german comedian called Jan Böhmermann. I read some harsh critic about the project, but when refugee homes are burning, the Afd is on the rise, and “besorgte” Bürger marching side by side with Neo Nazis, seeing somebody imagine Germans rise like zombies to fight these guys …
It made me laugh.

Right now I could go nuts not only about Germany but the whole world. Fear, panic, and despair are almost all around, all the time. A comic relief, at least, lowers my tension. Maybe it even helps with the constant shock-induced paralysis, few seem able to get rid of?

It’s late, but I just might put on socks and sandals tonight.

Zombie Apocalypse and the Utopian Tradition

Utopian Dreams I almost forgot

In the first post on this blog, I wrote about the reason why I started it. I wrote I wanted to work on utopian art projects again (like I did when I was young), and don’t know where to start. But I just realized, writing the Utopian Children’s Book post, that I actually was part of three utopian projects not that long ago:

Amazing Women of History

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The idea was to make, share and remix art under the Free Culture License, telling the stories of all the amazing women of history nobody knows about. I think seeing female role models would inspire girls and boys to dream bold futures. I created free coloring pages,  a game sprite, and even made 3rd place at Europe’s first live crowdfunding festival in Berlin (whose website is not online anymore, which I find annoying –  only thing left is their crowdfunding campaign). But I found myself alone. It’s no fun to remix that way, and so I gave up (for now).

I think that’s the reason I almost forgot about it. Not nice to abandon your dreams.

(Also please remind me to never use “Hi there” in a blog again or promise any future posts)

If you think it was a good project , and it’s sad I gave up (even if you don’t), go help Anita Sarkeesian get her wonderful project funded (only 5 days left) :

Announcing “Ordinary Women” Crowdfunding Campaign

The more people hear these stories, the more people might want to create all kinds of art about these women, and maybe then there will be a chance to remix together.



Visions of the Future

You can read about it here.

I think it slipped my mind, because being part of the first E-learning and Digital Cultures Mooc was an utopian experience. I remembered that much more than my own project. Thinking about it now, the collaboration and fun I had during that time, inspired me to create Amazing Women of History.


INTO THE WILD re:publica 14

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How could I ever forget? I didn’t. This was by far the biggest and most beautiful project my partner Paula and I worked on so far. The amazing feeling of creating an atmosphere for so many people coming together to communicate and collaborate,being part of the wonderful team making re:publica possible. I have no idea why I didn’t think of it, when I wrote that first blog post.

Utopian Children’s books (I)

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“For as long as she could remember, Regina Williams wanted to become an astronaut…”

Her friends just laugh at her and walk away, which leaves Regina all the more determined to pursue her dream.

It would be exactly a decade until Sally Ride became the first American woman in space, and nearly twenty years until Mae Jemison launched into the cosmos as the first African American astronaut.

Visionary Vintage Children’s Book Celebrates Gender Equality, Ethnic Diversity, and Space Exploration – Blast Off

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For all their immeasurable delight,children’s books also have a serious cultural responsibility — they capture young minds and plant in them the seeds that blossom into beliefs about what is socially acceptable, what is right and wrong, and what is possible.

No words necessary to add to that.

Utopian Hoaxes

The Uber of Creativity

Our fully automated “Creativity Engine” removes the human element entirely, so you can focus on what really matters, for free!

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Say Hello to Exploozy from Exploozy on Vimeo.

Made me laugh, when my response could be crying.

Let me tell you as an animator, the explainer video start up boom doesn’t look like the promised golden age of animation from inside – loads of work but nobody wants to pay a decent amount for it to be done. Seems like everybody already believes computers do all the work on their own…

The Yes Men are awesome, and I soon will make a post about their fantastic projects. They are masters of the art of utopian dreaming. Their hoaxes are funny and make the absurdity of our reality tangible, while creating an atmosphere that makes people want to talk about the problems we have and start dreaming about a future worth wanting to live in.

Some Dreams come True

If you are an animator like me, that really is a huge one.

Haven’t used it yet, but I will. It’s an easy choice to make. But it’s hard to learn a new program. Especially when doing something so tedious as animation, in need to get it done

Try it: 
OpenToonz Another fantastic free application for compositing I’ve been wanting to learn is Nuke. But the thing is, it’s not the tool I learned my skills with. And even though I love learning, animation is my job, and some skills just take time to get automatic.

One doesn’t really have time to learn that deep, because at least me, I keep working with what I already know to get by with. It’s  hard to get routine on the side with another program. Get to that point where you start to be creative on that special level, using the tools you have at your hands. And all the time there’s something new and amazing I want to try. I really would love to so have much more time.

Which makes me think, I was recently thinking about patterns being so important for learning and communication. Patterns as the things we need, to make sense of the world and to adapt. Music is a great example. Sounds that used to be conceived as weird or dissonant but now we love them.  Like things having to be repeated to come into the world.

Art For A Future Utopia

“News from Nowhere” seeks to build a greater consciousness of the present through imagining the future.

“The reason we started this project is…to face reality… . Starting with questions about how today’s art impresses people and whether art is still alive, we’re looking for people who can help us and listen to their opinions. We’d also like to create an arena for discourse with those who actually act on such issues.”

In their collaborative exhibition “News From Nowhere,” the artists seek to create a two-way dialogue similar to the feedback loop creative industries such as architecture, design, fashion, and engineering receive when working with clients.

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Not a cyber Utopia

I was still thinking about Steve Lambert’s We are all going to die …

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when I came across these mighty words today:

Bruce Sterling | SXSW Interactive 2016

despair is an act of intellectual arrogance. If you get really confused it can be very healthy because if you become despairing, you falsely imagine you have everything figured out. And in fact none of us do.

It’s an inspiring rant.

Quick thoughts:
Steve wants people to think about Utopia as a direction, a spectrum, not as a permanent destination, and Bruce wants us to rethink our fear of confusion. Both want us to admit that we don’t have the answers, but it’s not a reason to despair. Both see uncertainty as a compass for Eutopias (positiv Utopias).


Utopia as a direction is possible, if based on constant change.

Before I stumbled up on Bruce Sterling today, that was the thought I was trying to write a blog post about. I don’t think I will finish it today.

Since this blog is about sharing thoughts on Utopia, but also me, trying to understand what Utopia means for my life. I decided to start posting links as I encounter them, even if I am not ready to write about them yet. They are resources to come back to. Should be helpful to have them all in one space trying to explore how they might fit together.

Here are two more recommended readings, I came across today while thinking about Utopia:

This was the first time I read about the “Overton window” (Bruce mentions):

and this…just read it: