My Domestic Routines

Farzin Lotfi-Jam
Farzin Lotfi-Jam
My Domestic Routines

Exhibition
29 March–14 April 2023
Aksioma | Project Space, Ljubljana

Part of Tactics & Practice #14: Scale
In the framework of konSequences realised by
konS – Platform for Contemporary Investigative Art


Almost every aspect of our lives is now subject to regimes of monitoring. Using transportation infrastructures and accessing shared spaces requires membership and compliance with public and, more often, commercial digital network codes. From the biometric imprints taken at checkpoints to the vehicle tags needed to drive through tollbooths, from the history-tracking smart cards of many mass transit systems to the constant video recording in public spaces and workplaces, our cities watch and track us. Increasingly, movement through the city has less to do with the quality, design or programme of urban spaces and more to do with the command and control systems connected to them.

But control systems are not only organising cities, police actions, borders and online behaviour, they are also present in the most intimate aspects of our lives. The corollary to the self-monitoring of social media are the monitoring devices that have entered homes. Marketed under the rubrics of “smart living”, “health and wellness” and “mindfulness,” these self-focused products offer tantalising opportunities for consumers to disrupt their domestic routine and innovate their lifestyles. Taking the form of biometric data-collecting wearables, chirpy digital assistants and fully integrated command and control systems tasked with monitoring security sensors and optimising energy use, these products make digital-collar workers out of consumers, whose data is sold to the highest bidder. Undoubtedly, these forces are reshaping domestic space – this exhibition explores how.

My Domestic Routines comprises a film and a physical installation. The installation displays a catalogue of readily available smart products sourced from IKEA, Amazon, Google and Wyze. A recursive routine connects these proprietary systems and casts them in a never-ending performance of detection and response. The film presents a composite image of Farzin Lotfi-Jam and his home rendered through the attentive vision of the smart home industry. The film reveals how regimes of monitoring have produced a neurotic domestic subject simultaneously obsessed with seeking ever more representations of his domestic life, while securitising himself against the imagined fears lurking in the American suburban imaginary. Our domestic routines may seem banal, even scripted and contrived. This exhibition captures a feedback loop between domestic desire, data collection and the insidious possibilities of convenience.

ARTIST TALK

Scales of Realtime
28 March 2023 at 6 PM
Cukrarna, Poljanski nasip 40, Ljubljana

WORKSHOP

Farzin Lotfi-Jam
Realtime Subjects
29 March 2023, 2 PM–5 PM
ALUO, Tobačna 5, Ljubljana

THE AUTHOR

Domen Pal / Aksioma

Farzin Lotfi-Jam is an architect whose work explores the politics of technology and cities. He is an assistant professor of architecture at Cornell University where he directs the Realtime Urbanism lab. The lab uses and invents new spatial media and technologies to visualise and simulate how algorithms, models and notions of “real time” govern urban life.  He is also the director of Farzin Farzin, an interdisciplinary design studio working across architecture, urbanism, computation and media. From modelling the control matrices of smart cities to spatialising the cultural logics of social media, his individual and collaborative projects are research-based and multimediatic. Lotfi-Jam’s work has been collected by The Centre Pompidou and the Sharjah Art Foundation, and he is the recipient of the 2022 Architectural League of New York League Prize, as well as recent grants and support for his research from the Alexander S. Onassis Foundation, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, M+/Design Trust and The Shed, where he was an inaugural Open Call Artist. He has been exhibited at Storefront for Art and Architecture, MAXXI, the Venice Architecture Biennial, the Oslo Architecture Triennial, the Istanbul Design Biennial, the Seoul Architecture Biennial, the Sharjah Architecture Triennial and elsewhere. His co-authored book Modern Management Methods: Architecture, Historical Value, and the Electromagnetic Image was published by Columbia University Press.

CREDITS

Project team: Farzin Lotfi-Jam, Arseny Pekurovsky, Christopher Arya Rouhi, Allison Wenner

Production of the exhibition:
Aksioma – Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana, 2023

Part of the series:
Tactics & Practice

In the framework of:
konS – Platform for Contemporary Investigative Art

The project konS:: Platform for Contemporary Investigative Art 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.

Thanks: Center Rog Creative Hub
Technical support: MAO – Museum of Architecture and Design

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