concepts of self-organization, which by that time had already been well formulated.56
Both have since written many papers elaborating their approach, separately as well as
jointly, the key aspects of which are ably summarized by John Mingers57 in his study
of self-producing systems. Aside from explaining Maturana and Varela’s thought on
the subject, Mingers’ work is especially useful for his insights into what has become
a fertile field of research in its own right, covering human social systems as well as
the biological organisms and other living
Precarious objects is a book about activism and design. The context is the changes in work and employment from permanent to precarious arrangements in the twenty-first century in Italy. The book presents design interventions that address precarity as a defuturing force affecting political, social and material conditions. Precarious objects shows how design objects, called here ‘orientation devices’, recode political communication and reorient how things are imagined, produced and circulated. It also shows how design as a practice can reconfigure material conditions and prefigure ways to repair some of the effects of precarity on everyday life. Three microhistories illustrate activist repertoires that bring into play design, and design practices that are grounded in activism. While the vitality, experimental nature and traffic between theory and praxis of social movements in Italy have consistently attracted the interest of activists, students and researchers in diverse fields, there exists little in the area of design research. This is a study of design activism at the intersection of design theory and cultural research for researchers and students interested in design studies, cultural studies, social movements and Italian studies.
); Izabela Kowalczyk, Podróž do przeszłości: interpretacja najnowszej historii w polskiej sztuce krytycznej (Warsaw: SWPS Academica, 2010).
11 Jelena Vesić, ‘SKC (Student Cultural Centre) as a site of performative (self)production, October 75 – institution, self-organization, first-person speech, collectivization’, in Ž ivot umjetnosti / [ Magazine for Contemporary Visual Arts ], 91 (2012), 43.
12 Jelena Vesić, ‘“New Artistic Practice” in Former Yugoslavia: From Leftist Critique of Socialist Bureaucracy to the Post-Communist Artifact of Neo