Techne is an episodic documentary series based on diverse sets of research from a wide range of experts in fields such as philosophy, zoology, astrophysics, planetary science, robotics, and Artificial Intelligence among other fields. The aim of the series locates these research groupings as being in direct conversation with the inquiries of contemporary artists and the ways that the term “artist” has become a catch-all for generating ideas in fields such as philosophy, archaeology, cultural anthropology, law, biology, technology, and various other disciplines. Through analyzing case studies involving the evolution of humans, the natural world, and the amplification of technologies, Techne forms an epistemology of the present that models generative bodies of evidence.

Techne: Evidence in the Anthropocene telescopes between galactic and planetary evidence that is presented by scientists and artist-investigators who contemplate both deep time and the fate of the human species. Using the framework of a simulation model developed at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory that considers the probability for intelligent life to occur in the Milky Way galaxy, as well as the potential for self-annihilation; new forms and methods of investigation are highlighted. By moving back and forth between dystopian landscapes, forgotten technologies, legal conditions, and forensic traces a web of interconnected realities emerges through seemingly disparate sets of ideas and research methods. Evidence in the Anthropocene is about an era that is marked by a crisis of imagination and travels with these scientists and artists to explore the lush landscape of a remote Indonesian palm oil plantation; the abandoned ruins of a former nuclear test site in the Bikini Atoll lagoon that now appears as a sub-natural alien megastructure; the concept of the “material witness” in the context of the legal imagination; and gestures towards colonizing other planets and the “cone of imaginable possibilities” by developing weaving prototypes in zero gravity.

Directed by: Daniel R. Small
Executive Producers: Daniel R. Small, Fernando Sanchez
Produced by: Riccardo Maddalosso
Edited by: Fernando Sanchez
In Association with: LACMA Art + Technology Lab
Cast: Jonathan H. Jiang (NASA JPL), Kristen Fahy (NASA JPL), Julian Charrière, Susan Schuppli, Ebru Kurbak
Director of Photography: Johannes Förster, Steven Heuer, Fabian Moser, Susan Schuppli
Visual FX: Chris Parks
Post Sound Services: Tonemesa Inc, Nathan Van Hala
Drone Operators: Khalil S Nabelsi, Steven Heuer
Music by: Jefre Cantu-Ledesma, Félicia Atkinson and Stephen O’ Malley, Stephen O’ Malley, Aaron Lepley

Techne: Evidence in the Anthropocene is produced in partnership with: LACMA Art+Technology Lab, MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative, and the Universität für angewandte Kunst Wien (University of Applied Arts Vienna)

Copyright © 2022 Daniel R. Small. All rights reserved.