The ideas of Vitruvius have been questioned for some time. The figure inscribed within a perfect geometry sums up the worldview that since Leonardo has kept the human being at the center of existence, but on a planet of increasing degradation and inequality, steep in technological transformation and a crisis of principles, it is seriously called into question.
From science to philosophy or literature, many disciplines seek to reach beyond the anthropocentric outlook. This shines through in the 34 articles that make up More-than-Human, a fruit of joint efforts to “go beyond the confines of conventional academic research,” published by Het Nieuwe Institut, the Serpentine Galleries, Office for Political Innovation, and the Manifesta nomadic biennial.
Otero, Jaque, and Pietroiusti gather pieces written between 1990 and 2020 in different circumstances and media, giving form to a conceptual framework for the broad spectrum of posthumanist reflections. A ‘copy and paste’ where the editors’ work is reduced to the minimum: the articles are reproduced as they were published. The only variation is a play of fonts in key words, to emphasize how they recur throughout the book despite the heterogeneous sources of the essays.
An ambiguous taxonomy “dis-organizes” the articles in parts that explore our evolution as individuals and as a species through multiple approaches. While we wait for an image to replace that of the man trapped in a circle and square, we can settle for the words that come before it.