continent., 2012
continent., 2012

continent., 2012

link to journal
link to article PDF


Letter from the Editors
Paul Boshears, Jamie Allen, Nico Jenkins
continent. 2.3 (2012): 159

Since we last checked-in with you, dear readers, there has been a tremendous amount of activity among the continent. crew. In September, we joined the Editors of Speculations at the University of Basel to discuss the aesthetics of para-academic publishing during the Aesthetics in the 21st Century conference. Just the following weekend, we were on the campus of Northeastern University in Boston, to discuss similar matters during the Biennial Meeting of the Babel Working Group. An inspiring set of discussions, and some meetings with friends we'd only theretofore encountered through somewhat less fleshy networks and communiques.

Also, and only a few weeks after Basel and Boston, we found ourselves in Stockholm, at the invitation of Publish and Be Damned, for an alternative publishing book fair hosted by the Swedish Contemporary Art Foundation. Although continent. is, emphatically, an online publication, it is also concerned with its own material—digital or otherwise. The opportunity to engage with such an excellent group of 'zine and book creators was a thrilling opportunity for us.

Given all the conversations we've been having with some of you at these events, we have been coming back to our dispersed HQ with lists of exciting ideas and pernicious questions. This issue reflects many such conversations, and this reflection helps us underline, at least in part, what makes continent. continent. That is, a landscape of encounters, openings and traveling vessels of thinking. This summer, we will also be working with our friends to publish an exciting continent. alternative platform called “drift,” actualizing this traversal of thought. You can read about “drift” in this issue.

Where will these conversations take us in 2013, and beyond? We are planning to publish another issue of continent. in December, while we also put the finishing touches on a volume of selections and contributions from our first year. Thanks to the wonderful folks at punctum books, we will be exploring another medium through which thinking is broadcast: our first book. We are also planning our first conference, to be held in Tirana, Albania in June, 2013 (our call for papers is here). Thanks to you, as ever, for your support, consideration, and for traveling with us to this, our autumnal seventh issue of continent.!


Deep Time Contagion
Andy Weir
continent. 2.3 (2012): 167–169

An artist from London researching the effects of deprioritised subjectivity and contemporary art, Weir presents acoustic recordings made in deep geological repository sites. Repurposing these sites from their typical use as storage space for nuclear waste, Weir addresses the extra-human scale of Deep Time through sonic-fiction. Inhumanly enduring and impinging upon humanity largely imperceptibly, what agency—at what scale—is present?

Jamie Allen

Time, of all the dimensions readily presented to experience, seems to do so most readily through things. Stuff, in supposed counter-valence to the negentropic resilience of living things, appears to us as that which degrades through time, and demarcates a more technical chronometry of sequential events. Situated outside the rotting of fruit and the ticking of clocks, a “deep time” persists. Like the ultra-hearing of the bat, and the infra-vision of the boa-constrictor, there exist living and non-living agents and entities capable of revealing the fixity and finitude of our own perceptual frames for thinking and understanding.

The recordings presented here consist of four extracts of documents made in deep geological repository sites (for the storage of nuclear waste). Here re-presented are the Yucca Mountain Repository; HADES, in Mol, Belgium; Gorleben in Germany and a further recording from Forsmark in Sweden (pretty much inaudible behind a loop of a pop song). These recordings are imagined acoustic amplifications of deep time, just as the astronomer’s telescope is (thought of a certain way), also a time machine. Stars and nuclear waste are unapparent objects of temporal thought.

Andy Weir is an artist from London researching effects of deprioritised subjectivity and contemporary art. This project draws on work developing sonic fictions, stealthy earworms, and micropolitical agencies. Prompted for further thoughts about the recordings presented here, he offered up the interspersed discussion included.