After humans destroy the world we have created for ourselves, what will be left are the jellyfish. At least, this is the suggestion of the biologist Jeremy Jackson, who argues that the synergistic effects of mass extinction lead to the flourishing of some species – such as jellyfish – over others. Such thriving under the conditions of mass extinction is almost certainly not what Joseph Beuys had in mind when he argued that we are creating the “total artwork of the future social order”. But what would happen if we held these provocations together? Artworks for Jellyfish collects writings from artists, theorists and scholars of science on the question of how art mediates and mitigates our imagination of the future in the wake of an extinction event—or, to put it a little bit differently, how to make artworks for jellyfish.
With contributions by Amanda Boetzkes, Bug Carlson, Nicole Clouston, Marc Couroux, Silas Fischer, Ted Hiebert, Terrance Houle, Jessica Jacobson-Könefall, Ryuta Nakajima, Sky O’Brien, Julian Pivato, and Amanda White.