Another Sunday, Another Naive Weekly — Observations From The Internet Wilderness.
This Monday we bought a file cabinet. Since all shops are closed here in Denmark, we bought it from a second hand website. I had adjusted our search radius to only show results within two kilometers. It was all very convenient. I could bike it home on our cargo bike. The seller’s name was Jacob. And now we store our papers in what used to be his cabinet.
Our home is still a frankenstein. It has the vibe of a crazy professor working from the garage during lockdown. But the piles are disappearing week by week. And I can start to sense the feeling of a clean desktop and empty bin.
Clara Nebeling is a perky fashion photographer and initiator of social creativity projects. She studied and taught photography, and lived in multiple places, at the same time. Currently, Clara is combining Southern Germany and London. Her Instagram is mind blowing and it is no wonder she is covered by the likes of It’s Nice That.
K: Where do you escape to when your internet is crashing?
Clara: I live in a small house in East London and our kitchen, my current workplace, has the worst internet in the house. But luckily it is next to our garden. So the crash becomes a blessing because it gives me an excuse to step outside, marvel at the plants blooming, examine the soil, smell a rose or mow the lawn. The internet sucks you up and the garden spits you back out.
K: How do you prepare for an internet exploration?
Clara: One of my favourite past times is diving deep into online communities that are not my own. How could you ever understand people better than when finding them in their own little corner of the internet? But finding this specific corner is not the easiest so I need to prepare. First I read and watch everything there is and then slowly I start my search, thinking like someone else, finding the outskirts of the internet and enjoying the view.
To be honest sometimes the view is scary, the world I dive into is sometimes so different from my own it is hard to believe we are from the same planet. But understanding others should be our key mission on an internet that only wants to show us our own kind.
K: How would you describe your work to my grandparents?
Clara: After years I am still not sure if my grandparents know what I do. So maybe I need to find new ways to explain my work. Basically I have the great privilege of doing what I love which is to visualize stories of many kinds, tell and shape ideas of beauty by the medium of photography. As I tell my gran often, sometimes you do projects for love and sometimes for money and in best cases the two meet. Recently I also worked a lot with kids on photosets so everything is ready for me to retrain as a kindergarten teacher. That will be easier to explain at least.
K: How do you archive your thoughts?
Clara: If I would visualize my thought process it would look like a huge unfinished spider web with things woven together that might not belong to one another at first glance. All my ideas are equally stored in random places, from phone scribbles, to actual notes, books in all corners of my room and most commonly inside my mind. I should be more concerned with bringing them to the physical world but my mind is the spider, keeping things together. And in the chaos unlikely thoughts find each other.
K: What is progress to you?
Clara: Last year that has been one of my favourite questions to ask when all we could do is stand still. Do I still progress when I don’t move? As someone who was always on the go and never in one place longer than a few weeks at a time it was a bliss to find out that progress is so inherent to our world we don't have to do anything to achieve it. There is no regress in life, we move forward even without wanting and to accept that has been a lesson I am grateful for. How freeing is it to know that in absolute calm we progress. A stone moves forward just like a piece of paper will but in their own time.
K: What is the most touching you’ve experienced online?
Clara: The online world has shaped my whole life. Some of my best friends, great love and great heartbreak would not have existed without the webs of the internet. How touching is it that between all the fake news, addiction to the constant new and endless scrolling there is this opportunity for human connection? One of my most treasured experiences will always be coming together with so many like minded young photographers on the web and watching them bloom into wonderful talented adults over the decades but in real life, as their friend. Holding their hand in hard times and celebrating the wins along the way. Thank you internet.
Jazz Computer (An interactive song. Also very ???)
Ritual for Empowerment. (Your star is huge)
Feelings Wheel. (it is what it is, except it doesn’t roll)
I haven’t shared an Internet Joke article in a long time. So here is one about a person who made a website where rich and famous people in San Francisco can pay $3,000 to get a verified check mark for their homes. The website is real, but the service a joke, yet more than 400 people applied.
Robin Sloan with a solid primer on bl—ch— art. Yes, people are paying six figure numbers to have their identity linked with a digital artwork and burning a lot of electricity in the process. I — still — don’t understand it, but interesting to follow nonetheless.
Natural History project by Jenny Odell.
“The more intuitive a device becomes, the more it risks falling out of media altogether, becoming as naturalized as air or as common as dirt.” — Alexander Galloway
Hi, I’m Kristoffer and you have just read Naive Weekly — Observations from the Internet Wilderness.
Last week this letter was sent to 731 people. Thirtyfour are crazy enough to chip in every month/year to support me making time to write. Logo by Studio Hollywood. Print by Luka. Photograph by Ana Santl.