Astrovandalistas is a translocal artist collective, whose members come from different geographical areas. Their projects operate in the intersection of art, activism, research, and the free distribution of knowledge.
The project Æffect Lab consists of the research and creation of a free communication network based on affectivity: a network parallel to the internet in which direct human-human cooperation and communication take place. This network revolves around the creation of several communication hardware prototypes, which include a mobile Telematic Sound Weapon, Modular Text Screens and a FreeNet. The prototypes will be developed through workshops in Mexico City, Tijuana, Los Angeles and other cities TBA, and the documentation of these workshops will also be part of the exhibition. These prototypes will be brought to the public in test-case scenarios that will also be understood as urban public space performances and interventions.
With this project, Astrovandalistas seek to create technologies that can be replicated and utilized in different countries, proposing collaborative dialogues that promote the construction of new and shared realities.
MOLAA’S Project Room will be converted into a control and visualization hub for this network, allowing the visitor to take part in its communication flow and to glimpse its current progress. The spectator will be able to experience the prototypes, as well to witness the documentation of the evolution of the project. The exhibition catalogue will function as an “Astrovandalista Cookbook,” with a manifesto and information on how to reproduce the prototypes.
The three prototypes to be developed are:
Telematic Sound Weapon: a mechanical device that will be activated by messages sent via the internet containing a hashtag similar to #armasonoraMOLAA. Its main purpose is to move virtual protest into physical space.
Modular Text Screens: a modular system of separate low-resolution screens that display messages which are received wirelessly. They are able to function individually and/or to automatically start functioning together when more than one is in the same space at the same time. When carried, these individual screens can be understood as electronic picket signs that convey messages received in real time. When installed in public space, they function as an open billboard that a community can activate and place messages on.
FreeNet is a mobile wireless server able to store archives, audio and video, generating an independent communal net in which the users can also talk to each other. The users can log into this system without using Internet. This net will be used in workshops in Tijuana and Los Angeles.