ISTANBUL. Martin Nadal y César Escudero Andaluz “Bitcoin. “Bitcoin” 22 september – 4 november 2018. 4th Istanbul Design Biennial

As a space for critical reflection on design established in a historically rich context, the Istanbul Design Biennial offers the opportunity to question the very production and replication of design and its education. In 2018, the 4th Istanbul Design Biennial builds on the legacy of previous editions, in order to reinvent itself and become a productive process-orientated platform for education and design to research, experiment and learn in and from the city and beyond.

Titled A School of Schools, the 4th Istanbul Design Biennial will stretch both the space and time of the traditional design event, manifesting as a flexible year-long programme within which to respond to global acceleration, generating alternative methodologies, outputs and forms of design and education. A School of Schools manifests as a set of dynamic learning formats encouraging creative production, sustainable collaboration, and social connection. Exploring eight themes, the learning environment is a context of empowerment, reflection, sharing and engagement, providing reflexive responses to specific situations.

The Spanish artists Martín Nadal & César Escudero Andaluz have been invited to present in the Biennal the project “Bitcoin” with the support of AC/E. “Bitcoin” was originally conceived as an electronic decentralized system for financial struggle in which computing power is the most important variable for earning Bitcoins. Each node (user) in the peer-to-peer network has the same opportunities to get a reward when validating a transaction. In recent years this system has triggered a strong competition, which involves the use of powerful equipment, and server farms spending physical and environmental resources. A struggle that only benefits the owner of the most powerful and efficient technology.

»BitterCoin«, an old calculator machine hacked for use as a miner to validate the pending Bitcoin transactions in the blockchain, takes up this discourse in a rhetorical way: it works like the most basic computer, increasing the time needed to produce Bitcoins almost to infinity.

Martin Nadal is an artist/creative coder based in Linz and studying the Interface Cultures program at KunstUni. In the past years he has collaborated in a variety of projects and taught some workshops related to art and technology. He is also interested in illustration and cinematography. His works have been shown at Visualizar 11 (Medialab Prado), Ars Electronica, AMRO Festival y Settimana della Scienza (Genova).
César Escudero Andaluz is an artist and researcher focused of Human-Computer Interaction, interface criticism, digital culture and its social and political effects. His work spans image-making, sculpture, videogame, installation, networked culture, IoT, robotics, interfaces appropriations, media archaeology. Since 2011 he is researching at the Kunstuniversität Linz in Interface Culture LAB. (AC/E press-release)

İstanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts. Sadi Konuralp Caddesi, No: 5. Nejat Eczacıbaşı Binası. Şişhane 34433 İstanbul

Image: Bitcoin. Martín Nadal & César Escudero Andaluz