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Embroidered Digital Commons

A distributed embroidery of ‘A Lexicon of / for the Digital Commons’ Raqs Media Collective, 2003. Facilitated by Ele Carpenter 2008 - 2013

The Commons A principle of common ownership, access, protection and use: •

Common Land: Diggers, 1649

Global Commons: Antarctica, the high seas and deep seabed minerals, the atmosphere and space (Buck, 1998)

Commons, multitude and globalization (Hardt & Negri, 2000)

Culture is something you do, not something you buy.

Digital Commons The Digital Commons invites open participation in the production and distribution of tools, culture and ideas / knowledge. •

The Internet is a distributed network On distributed Communications (Paul Baran, 1964). Rhizomatic network (Deleuze & Guattari, 1980)

Digital Tools can be collectively developed and maintained GNU / GPL (1984), Open Source Software, FLOSS, FLOSSIE.

A challenge to property and territorial rights Homesteading the Noosphere (In: The Cathedral & The Bazaar, Raymond, 1999)

Digital formats are inherently reproducible. Remix Culture, Lessig. Creative Commons: Copyright to share (est 2001)

Networks Paul Baran, 1964

EDC is a combination of decentralised groups participating in a centralised project using a distributed network.

A Concise Lexicon of / for the Digital Commons Raqs Media Collective, 2003

Access Bandwidth Code Data Ensemble Fractal Gift

Heterogeneous Iteration Journal Kernal Liminal Meme Nodes

Orbit Portability Quotidian Rescension Site Tools Ubiquity

Vector Web Xenophilly Yarn Zone

‘A Lexicon of / for the Digital Commons’ Raqs Media Collective, 2003.


Access Space, Sheffield, 2010


National Museum of Computing, Bletchley Park, 2011

Ensemble "The conceit or delight in togetherness in an increasingly anomic, fragmented world. Playing or working together to create finished or unfinished works. Chamber musicians, criminals, code-hackers and documentarists form ensembles. Artists try to. Effective ensembles are high bandwidth assemblies that build into their own architecture portals for random access into themselves. They are, when they are at their best, open systems that place a premium on shared information within them. They can at times maintain high levels of secrecy while seemingly appearing to be transparent. Here, confidentiality is an index of practices in gestation. Mined data is, sometimes, restored to natural states of information entropy in data dissembling ensembles, which have been found to work best at night in media labs. The Raqs Media Collective is an ensemble and everything it does is an ensemble of existing or anticipated practices."


Co-ordinated through the Mr X Stitch blog.


Öppen Syjunta, Handarbetets Vänner Galleri, Stockholm, September 2010 & Konsthochschule Berlin-Weisensee, May 2012

Heterogeneous "That which begins in many places, like the story of a person's life. Diverse, dispersed, distributed, as in the authorship of culture, and in the trajectories of people who come to a site. Interpretations and ideas embrace greater freedom only when they encompass heterogeneity. In this, they are like most intimacies and some kinds of fruitcake. The richer they are, the more layers they have."

All My Independent Women, VBKĂ–, Vienna, Austria, November, 2011


Access Space, Sheffield, 2011 - 2012

Meme with MzTEK

‘Being Social’ Furtherfield Gallery & FLOSSIE Conference, London, 2012


European Women Writers' Network Belgrade University Serbia & Chawton House Library, Hampshire 2011



Digital Humanities Conference, Kings College London, July, 2010


Radical Cross Stitch (Rayna Fahey) and Public Assembly (Lynda Roberts), Sculpture Now!?! Yarra Sculpture Gallery, Melbourne, Australia.


Analogue is the New Digital, Art Yarn, MadLab, AND Festival, Manchester 2010


Open Design / Open Creativity. Fad Fest, CCCB Barcelona, July, 2012.


V&A Museum, Power of Making Exhibition, Digital Drop-in, London, 2011


Face Book Group, Embroidered Digital Commons, 2011-12


HumLab & Bildmuseet, Umea University, Sweden, 2009


Analogue is the New Digital, Art Yarn, MadLab, AND Festival, Manchester 2010

Proximity of craft and code • Exists in the everyday and within the political history of craft mechanisation and computing. • Open source and open processes are always unfinished, evolving and unraveling. • Therefore documentation has to be ongoing. • Objects and their processes are symbiotic. • Producing a series of works from each stage of the production process. • The work is an excess of documentation and maps the evolution of ideas over time. • Distributed works are produced through a variety of socio-economic contexts and professional / amateur roles. • Complex authorship and ownership issues.

Embroidery Writing and literacy Close reading and stitching Public space - public discourse Reclaimed skill - sustainable Like all collaboration - it is not compulsory Collective production Nonviolent Direct Action


Manchester Science Festival, September 2012.

Ele Carpenter  
Ele Carpenter  

"Open Source Embroidery and Embroidered Digital Commons: Participatory Prodution and Distribution" - Open Design / Shared Creativity Confere...