The Designosaur Story

06: Entanglement and Scale

After staring into the tree for a while, I had to admit that I would most likely not be able to see photosynthesis. But I knew that carbon dioxide is converted into oxygen right there.... and that water and sunlight are also involved. And what happens up there affects the soil, the atmosphere and other living things.... and me. But we also have an impact on the tree.... oh dear... so many entanglements! 

I wondered if the Designosaur felt entangled with anything. Other localities or temporalities did not seem to be part of its self-perception. So, the Anthropocene was just another place to do the same thing as before - some new jewellery and make-up seemed sustainable enough. Next attempt. I asked:

Me: Okay. If you are for eternity, then people will be looking at you for quite a while?

Designosaur: Yes! The future generation will marvel at me. Impressed by my design and the high-quality, exposed concrete facade made of recycled concrete. They will look through my large window to catch a glimpse of my massive reinforced concrete construction. With the wood-concrete composite ceiling and...

Me: ...and, wondering why the global temperature is about +2.8°C above pre-industrial levels.... or, perhaps pointing to the cement facade. Because they won't see your supporting structure through the the solar shading will be down all the time. Because of the +2.8°C.

Designosaur: Why do you keep talking about climate change? Creative drive. Culture. Innovation. Contemporary design. That's what we should be talking about!

That was a difficult case. I hesitated for a moment whether I should tell him that I now call him Designosaur.  - But we were not ready for that discussion. So, I just pretended I overheard "contemporary" and agreed and moved forward:

Me: I totally agree design has to do with culture! So, let's talk about culture.

Designosaur: Yes! Now we're talking!

Me: Okay - I think it's crazy how intertwined our culture is with the planet. Since humanity has become the dominant geological force on the planet - one could say - our culture is a geological force. No?

Designosaur: Eeee... what are you talking about? Look. What's really interesting is this new interpretation of the cornice here. It's a reinterpretation of the Renaissance idea and transforms it into a contemporary expression of tectonics. I'm in dialogue with that other building over there....

The Designosaur gestured towards the other building: Yoo-hoo... other building?!

The other building did not respond. I gave up talking about entanglement and while the Designosaur tried to get the attention of the other building, I took my sketchbook
and tried to draw the new relationship between culture and planet - between science and humanities.