Anna Beatrice Scott: tekhnasthai

Published 06 Nov 2013

xkcd book

After getting my goodiebag (containing a copy of xkcd volume 0!) and watching a rather fun introduction about why we are here and why the theme of the year is The Arts, it was time for Anna to kick-start Øredev 2013.

Being a dancer, professor and writer, Anna had been asked to bring some sunlight with her from California, to this dark part of the world. Instead, she did bring quirky moves, constantly practiced throughout her keynote. She just insisted on constantly moving, twisting, moving like a reptilian shape shifter, dancing-like to music streaming out of her unplugged laptop.

Eventually, a guy came up on stage and plugged in the computer, sending music out into the room and restoring order and balance to the universe.

Anna then talked about art. Has art been hijacked? Today, anyone can be an artist. What is the definition of art? What does the dictionary say? She went through all definitions available, while mixing it up with more music, neverending “everybody please stand” orders, to which everyone naturally obeyed…who says no to a guest from AMERICA? All in all, it was about as focused as this last paragraph.

The big theme of Anna’s keynote was disruptance, and it sure was disruptive. She dissected change, which was interesting, and she had some really nice lines (The problem with keeping your head down, is that you’re stuck navel gazing). But all this jumping back and forth between art, disruptance, dancing, art, disruptance, change, moving, bending backwards etc. etc., was impossible to take seriously. I found it unfocused and plain bad. I would dare to claim that no Swede would ever step up on stage, doing what Anna did…

…and quite frankly, I am not sure that it is such a bad thing that we don’t.