July 23, 2018

Hangouts: Jaz Papadopoulos

Just as we (Jaz and I), head to the rooftop for another interview, another man is trying to catch the elevator up. Jaz presses the button that holds the door open and lets the man enter. I'm not really paying attention, looking over my notes for the day, when I hear the man drop, "Well maybe you should just give me your number". [eyes emoji...] He exits the elevator and as we get settled in on the roof, he comes running toward us and Jaz lets him have their number. His name is Gavin :•) from tech :•) For the record, Jaz is a water sign.
Jaz Papadopoulos in Studio.
Jaz Papadopoulos

Jaz doesn't have an art background, they received their undergrad in conflict resolution. They are interested in non-violent action which has led them to feminism and art which further pushed them to study clowning. Jaz also interest in critical theory, especially post structural theory and post-colonial theories – the likes of Judith Butler, Michel Foucault, Edward Said, and Gloria Anzaldua. Judith Butler is an american philosopher and gender theorist whose work has informed political philosophy, ethics, and third wave feminism, queer, and literary praxis.  Michel Foucault (already mentioned in a previous blog post is a french philosopher and social thinker whose work mainly examines the relationship between knowledge and power. Edward Said examines colonialism, imperialism, orientalism, and the role of the intellectual. Gloria Anzaldua is an american scholar of queer theory, feminist theory, and chicana cultural theory who has done significant work on the mestiza. These theorists inform Jaz' own practice in attempts to understand how bodies navigate diaspora, gender, place, memory, grief, and ritual as well as how these ideas operate on their own.

After school, they were inspired by Anzaldua's dialects of writing. Gloria Anzaldua had challenged the norm of language which is what led to Jaz studying clowning. Clowning was used as a tool for subverting language resulting in their interdisciplinary practice of experimental poetry, installation, video, and performance.

At the DIS Summer Institute, Jaz is looking to do more research on emotional labour and anti capitalism organizing. They ask the question, "Is getting paid for emotional labour feminist? Is it possible under capitalism?" In their research they've been looking at feminism, money, and capitalism. So far, they have been critical of the libertarian ideas being presented by some of the speakers and in conversation with peers. Specifically, the topic of accelerationism has sparked their interest in capitalist futures. There is a film, In Time dir. Andrew Niccol. 2011., starring Justin Timberlake where instead of using the material made up value of money, they use minutes.  This examination of a capitalist future removes material currency and replaces it with non-material value that also determines your life's value. Jaz relates In Time to the role and existence of bitcoin and data mining. They were so flabbergasted at the idea of bitcoin and data mining using such an unsustainable amount of energy (why your battery life runs out so fast when you illegally stream video on your browser vs. youtube streaming; adblocker only does so much unfortunately). Though they see the value in crypto currency, they can't help but draw the comparison between crypto currencies and life minutes. How are intangibles measured/given value under capitalism? How does this compromise or expand Jaz' own research and understanding on payment for emotional labour?

Sun Sign: Cancer
Website: http://vimeo.com/jazpapadopoulos

In Time film poster. dir. Andrew Niccol. 2011.

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