Tools for the Anthropocene.

Glaciers are melting, seas rising, and climates changing. Civilizational baselines are also shifting, including what is true, what being human means, as well as who answers those questions and in what ways. Safe operating space is unraveling as we enter the Anthropocene back loop, a time of chaotic fracture and confusion, experimentation and potential.

For resilience ecologists, a front loop is a system's 'safe operating space,' when everything is (seemingly) ‘in its place.’ But a back loop is a time when those structures come undone: a period of destabilization and fracture, confusion and release, but also deep potential for experimentation and transformation. When one order comes apart and signals are scrambled, space is cleared for others to form. To inhabit and thrive in these unsafe operating spaces, new models and new tools are needed.

Based in Miami Beach, Florida—considered sea level rise “ground zero”— but grounded globally and historically in the Anthropocene, BACK LOOP TV explores experimental tools and strategies emerging from within the fault lines / at the front lines of the epoch.  BACK LOOP TV covers experiments both 'high' and 'low,' featuring both the pragmatic and poetic, divergent and concrescent. Taking a step back from the polished aesthetic of current web design, BACK LOOP TV curates simple, rough video and images in order to document a moment in process.

BACK LOOP TV's hypothesis: Today talk of humbling human being and surviving in the ruins is common. But pathologizing human power and naturalizing dispossession within a catastrophic world of supposedly inevitable, endless disaster is not an acceptable response to the Anthropocene. Instead BACK LOOP TV is driven by the belief that the ability to contest existing conditions and create better ones is not an outdated relic of the Holocene to be discarded. No: this technical hubris is a unique human capacity in need of rejuvenated exploration today more than ever. The history of the human species is full of incredible --creative, destructive, evasive-– tools devised by humans to live against all odds on a planet of powerful forces and matter.  We stand upon a great archive of such tools: for fire, water, shelter, food, thought, art, war, and beyond. So many of these were developed not just to survive but to live free. 

But ours is unique time, shaped by the breaking down of modern society's basic structures: political, environmental, and philosophical. Going back is not an option. Old models no longer fit our mutating realities. So BACK LOOP TV believes we need to experiment relentlessly with new tools, strategies, and forms of thought appropriate to the now. This intuition, now common sense, is shared widely by designers, engineers, planners, philosophers, artists, and millions of ordinary people world wide. If we weave the tools emerging from this shared insight together right, we can remake revolution for the 21st century. A civilization in experimentation mode, with the material means to finally exit the loop. 

Founded and run by urban geographer Stephanie Wakefield, BACK LOOP TV is an experimental work-in-process. Podcast coming soon. For updates follow on Instagram and @stephwakefield_ on Twitter

LIVE: Sea level rise flooding, Miami, 9/30/2019

TOOLS: Amphibious architecture: Old River Landing, Louisiana

TOOLS: SUP fishing

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TOOLS: Chronixx

ESSAY: Wakefield x New Models: Living in the Back Loop

TOOLS: Buddy Blalock's amphibious architecture

LIVE: #kingtide flooding this morning in Shorecrest, Miami #sealevelrise

MIAMI: Natalia Zuluaga

TOOLS: Fitness experimentation

TOOLS: Orchid rewilding

TOOLS: NYC Prepper Jason Charles

TOOLS: Living with water (Batayan Island, Philippines)

TOOLS: Serious Games hurricane scenario training simulation

LIVE: Sea level rise front lines

LIVE: King Tides Schedule

LIVE: Tropical Storm Gordon

LIVE: Visiting Miami Beach Urban Studios (coming soon)

New Models Podcast