About the exhibition
Jennifer Lyn Morone and panke.gallery present COOP, an exhibition that circles around private data and the interwoven questions as to who owns our so-called private data and what their value is in a society based on data processing.
In 2014, Morone founded Jennifer Lyn Morone™ Inc (JLM Inc) – including ‘Extreme Capitalism’ and ‘DOME’ — as an ongoing project to protest data exploitation and corporate personhood. She established herself as a corporation, using the legal container to protect her data through intellectual property and have access to the market. Society has since accelerated its data hunger and what in 2014 could be understood critically is now the new normal. In reaction to this an artistic gesture is made once again, advancing from technological capitalism to technological socialism. JLM adapts her corporate methods, moving from the absurd private and hyper-individualistic framework to a collective one, proposing a positive vision to claim control of and handle personal data – through a cooperative – ‘COOP’.
The title takes on the two variations of the word: ‘Coop’: a cage or small enclosure; a confined area; a jail, and ‘Co-op’: marked by cooperation; a willingness to work with others; an enterprise or organisation owned by and operated for the benefit of those using its services. With COOP people could harvest, collect and share their data, decide together on its uses, and benefit collectively from the output. Morone has developed sets of device-equipped stoles that participants could wear and so join the cooperative and continue building together in a community as brother and sister, with face to face trust, ritualistic consent, and gestures of respect.
This is an invitation to consider possible ways forward in the debate around data while asking questions. How could this work? Do we even want this? Can a technological socialism exist or escape capitalism and this uniquely Californian brand of violence? Would this even lead to a positive outcome that disrupts established hierarchies or would each individual, each node, or the cooperative become another profit-seeking agent caught in the cycle of a market economy to its own detriment? Are we even able to contemplate a utopia or a preferred world, or are we condemned to dystopia and critique?
Jennifer Lyn Morone is an artist, activist, and design researcher whose work focuses on the human experience in relation to technology, economics, politics, and identity and the moral and ethical issues that arise from such systems. Her interests lie in exploring ways of creating social justice and equal distribution of the future. In 2014, Morone founded Jennifer Lyn Morone™ Inc (JLM Inc) – including ‘Extreme Capitalism’ and ‘DOME’ — as an ongoing project to protest against data exploitation and corporate personhood. Her approach with this project often takes principles of individualised Western civilisation to an extreme form, imitating and in doing so parodies various strategies, language, and dogma taking the entire system to the outer boundaries of its absurdity. She works multi-disciplinarily and with multiple mediums – from video, graphics, books, data, laws, businesses, and the body. She is currently working on stories of post-work worlds that ask how we want to live, and she is leading the non-profit RadicalxChange Foundation. She is based in Germany.