The Martian Word for World is Mother
20. 10. – 19. 11. 2023
The Martian Word of World is Mother (2022)

The Martian Word for World is Mother

Alice Bucknell

PYLON is pleased to present the online screening of "The Martian Word of World is Mother" by artist and writer Alice Bucknell, starting October 20, 2023.

Working with game engines and speculative fiction strategies, Alice Bucknell's work explores interconnections of architecture, ecology, magic, and non-human and machine intelligence.

In 2021, they founded New Mystics, a digital platform merging magic and technology. In 2022, they organized New Worlds, an experimental event series expanding on emergent worlding practices, held at Somerset House Studios in London. Their work has appeared at Ars Electronica with transmediale, Arcade Seoul, the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale, Honor Fraser Gallery in Los Angeles, Gray Area in San Francisco, Basement Roma in Rome, Singapore Art Museum, The Museum of Modern Art in Fort Worth, Texas, Fiber Festival in the Netherlands, and Serpentine in London.

Their writing appears in ArtReview, Flash Art, Frieze, e-flux Architecture, and the Harvard Design Magazine. Bucknell is currently faculty at SCI-Arc in Los Angeles, Associate Lecturer in MA Narrative Environments at UAL, and a Somerset House Studios resident in London. They studied Anthropology at the University of Chicago and Critical Practice at the Royal College of Art in London.

The online screening is part of the curatorial program NEWS FROM NOWHERE by PYLON, including a series of on- and offline screenings and exhibitions and will be on view until November 19, 2023. The screening is kindly supported by Landeshaupstadt Dresden - Amt für Kultur und Denkmalschutz and by Kulturstiftung des Freistaates Sachsen. Gefördert durch die Kulturstiftung des Freistaates Sachsen. Diese Maßnahme wird mitfinanziert durch Steuermittel auf der Grundlage des vom Sächsischen Landtag beschlossenen Haushaltes.

The Martian Word of World is Mother (2022)

Merging science-fiction strategies with a critical approach to contemporary proposals for the habitation of Mars, The Martian Word for World is Mother explores three Martian worlds with very different understandings of the Red Planet’s future, and who gets to decide.

Red Mars doesn’t stray too far from what we already know - a billionaire tech despot proposes a carbon-neutral megacity nestled inside the cliffs of Tempe Terra, positing interstellar settlement as a knowledge project, and living on Mars as the logical salvation from a dying mother planet.

In Blue Mars, a multinational conglomerate named Praxis taps into Mars’s booming bio-infrastructure business. This world explores precarious legal loopholes in current space law, presenting a future interplanetary resource market where water is harvested on Mars and sold back to Earth.

Green Mars presents an alternative future for Mars that’s far removed from human hierarchies. Narrated by an alien ecology and featuring its own language system built from dying and imagined languages, this world makes connections between artificial intelligence and alien intelligence. It contemplates the possibility of knowledge systems that exist outside of human cosmologies and even language itself.

The project was devised in collaboration with space lawyers, planetary habitability astronomers, Scottish drone pilots, and AI linguists. The script was co-written with the Language AI GPT-3. Within the context of a physical presentation, the work is shown as a three-channel video with a custom lighting sequence.