An EXTRACTION event: Matthew Coolidge and the Center for Land Use Interpretation

Tuesday, January 17, An EXTRACTION event: Matthew Coolidge and the Center for Land Use Interpretation, 5:30 pm, DARC 108


Tuesday, January 17 is the first artist lecture in EXTRACTION, a research program exploring the industrial operations which abuse natural resources and thrive off of labor exploitation and racialized impoverishment coordinated by TJ Demos and A. Laurie Palmer for the Center for Creative Ecologies.


Matthew Coolidge, "Pits and Piles: Search for the Fulcrum with the Center for Land Use Interpretation,” 5:30 - 7:30 pm, Digital Arts Research Center (DARC) 108


Matthew Coolidge is the founder and director of the Center for Land Use Interpretation, an education and research organization based in Los Angeles. Since 1994, the Center has produced exhibitions, presentations, tours, publications, online resources, and other public programs that examine, describe, and explain the built landscape of the USA. For this presentation, Coolidge will provide an image-intensive examination of the contemporary American landscape, focusing on the notion of extraction and deposition.


This event is FREE and open to the public. Metered parking is available in the Performing Arts lot.




EXTRACTION features an artist lecture program, film screenings, field trips, and a conference, interrogating the current cultures of extraction.


In this series of interrelated events, extraction designates capitalism’s fundamental logic of withdrawal—of value, nutrients, energy, labor, time—from people, lands, culture, life-forms, the elements, without corresponding deposit (except as externalities of non-value in the form of pollution, waste, climate change, illness, and death). Extraction signals processes as diverse as the industrial operations around fossil-fuels (oil, coal, and natural gas) and rare earth minerals, biogenetic patenting, data mining, cognitive capitalism, and prison-industrial and unpaid domestic labor. It also points to the hierarchies of power around divisions that are racially, ethnically, sexually, and ecologically inscribed, as highlighted in Indigenous struggles for sovereign land rights and climate justice activism.




How can we understand the diverse cultures of extraction in relation to histories of colonialism, green capitalism, the Anthropocene and Capitalocene—beginning with our region, California, but also extending outward to such comparative geographies as North Dakota, Alberta, and Chicago—and how are these cultures being visualized?


How is extraction, constituting a fundamental logic of living and dying in the era of fossil fuel capitalism and catastrophic climate change, being contested at the individual and collective levels, including by cultural producers (socially engaged artists, anti-colonial activists, Indigenous water protectors, media theorists, writers, architects, and designers, etc.)?


Can we distinguish between “predatory,” “sensible,” and “indispensable” extractivism, where the latter may even define an anti-imperial movement toward greater sovereignty by countries in the global South?


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Faced with multiple tipping points moving us implacably toward a catastrophic environmentally altered future—and now with a US president hostile to climate science and industrial regulations—how might we create possibilities for living non-extractively in ways singular and plural today​?

Tuesday, January 17, 2017 - 5:30pm - 7:00pm
DARC 108