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First Encounters

Anticipatory Ecology meets Speculative Design

Cascade of Ecological Momentum — © Sophie Falkeis

What happens, if two species that have never interacted before are now going to encounter due to anthropocentrically changed climatic circumstances?
The investigation drafts scenarios of ‘first encounters’ to visualise the entanglements of the planet ́ s ecosystems with human-made structures.

First Encounters

The project ‘First Encounters’ narrates the story of species that meet for the very first time, due to climate-change induced range shifts. Our history of anthropogenic impact on biological processes provokes shifts in global animal movement patterns. This creates novel species interactions, as species that have evolved in isolation from one another come into contact for the first time. The current pandemic has shown, how the impacts of the encounter of bat and pangolin on a wildlife market can travel the globe within days. With more species inevitably crossing paths in the future, events like these are expected to happen more often. Patterns of movement become patterns of encounter.
Building on empirical data of documented species range shifts, the investigation drafts scenarios of species encounters and envisions possible consequences for our human lives and systems through the lens of Speculative Design. By exploring planetary inter-species dependencies the project shows that we are just one species amongst many, fostering visions of a of a multi-species society. As a long term goal the project aims at including other species in processes of geopolitical decision making.

Building on empirical data of documented species range shifts, the investigation drafts scenarios of species encounters and envisions possible consequences for our human lives and systems through the lens of Speculative Design. By exploring planetary inter-species dependencies the project shows that we are just one species amongst many, fostering visions of a of a multi-species society. As a long term goal the project aims at including other species in processes of geopolitical decision making.

About Sophie Falkeis

Sophie Falkeis is a multidisciplinary designer from Vienna, Austria. Her work investigates evolutionary mechanisms under anthropocentric influence by envisioning future scenarios of multi-species cohabitation. Her work has been exhibited including the London Design Biennale, Vienna Design Biennale, MAK Museum Vienna and has been featured in the New York Times. She has worked at Iris van Herpen Couture and Terreform One, and spoken at international conferences including PRIMER21 Global.

Polar bear meets Grizzly bear — © Sophie Falkeis

The human at the center of consequences — © Sophie Falkeis

Hoverfly meets Alpine Accentor — © Sophie Falkeis

First Encounters on Earth

Centre area, Eindhoven Library, Emmasingel 22 , Map No. C2
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Wheelchair accessible
Wifi available
Dogs allowed
Toilets available