Networks of Ones Own #1 : Variahttps://networksofonesown.constantvzw.org/
Digital version of the publication: https://networksofonesown.vvvvvvaria.org/
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The second issue of Networks of One’s Own was initiated by Varia, a Rotterdam based initiative which focuses on working with, on and through everyday technology.
This publication is an occasion to revisit three very different projects that have been important for the emergence of Varia, and for its individual members. These projects give insights into how and why we engage with collaborative practices. While we were gathering in different formations to initiate, develop, organise or present these projects, Varia was being conceived, first as an idea, then as a group and later as a physical space.
As artists, designers and researchers working with and around free/libre open source technology, the authorship of the tools and research that we develop is shared, not just amongst us at Varia but also with a wider international network. Multiple agents are involved at different moments, with varying intensity and for a range of different reasons. This results in intricate interrelationships of ownership which complicate documentation and long-term maintenance. Relational projects need flexible support structures that can handle and hold fragmentation and clustering.
For the projects in this publication, a chain of interrelated events provided an infrastructure for ongoing reflection, sharing and collaborative attention to such projects. Our path crossed at Varia in Rotterdam but also during 35c3 in Leipzig, at the Computer Grrrls exhibition in Paris, at Constant worksessions in Brussels and Antwerp, in conversation with XPUB tutors and students or at AMRO in Linz. While a lot of work was done by bringing these projects to different meeting points, we felt there was a need for concentrated rumination and active documentation. By collapsing maintenance work with publishing, we found a form that enabled this collective care work to happen and to spend the necessary concentrated time together. The making of this publication created a space to interconnect multiple ways of taking care. As a result, we hope that the projects have become more clearly articulated and are now ready to be released back into the networks to form new constellations.