A Geekosystem

Participatory Artwork, Physics Room, Christchurch, NZ, 23.02.08 — 22.03.08

Adam Hyde, David Merritt and Julian Priest

We have all been and are sometimes artists working with communities, technology, and anything else we find interesting. The Geekosystem itself is a system of geekery that takes places in art galleries and art spaces and invites local communities of geeks and non-geeks alike to come together and explore old technologies, discuss gadgetry, read old computer books, contemplate the ethics and ideologies of planned obsolescence, find new uses for hardware, make things, show others how to make things, and shred proprietary software manuals (and turn them into soil).

A Geekosystem was a participatory workshop based on a redundant technology collection created by David Merritt. Items were selected from the collection and packed into a Landrover and driven to The Physics Room in Christchurch. A call for participation was issued by the physics room and a group of geeks gathered to re-configure the technology into artworks. A workshop space was created and plinths were placed at once end of the gallery and populated with artworks made from the e-waste. The workshop was open to the public and continually added to during the duration of the show. Old technology books were formed into a library. Proprietary software manuals were shredded and mixed with coffee grounds. This was mulched into soil and silver beet seedlings were successfully germniated in floppy disk trays.

A Geekosystem was shown first at the Physics Room in Christchurch in 2008 and then at The Green Bench during the Whanganui Open studio week in 2008. The Geekosystem garden was transfered to a permanent location and produced vegetables for a number of years.