Last year I spent few days at Nø School Nevers, a summer school about “critical research around the social and environmental impacts of information and communication technologies”. This was the occasion to spend some time participating in various activities and discover the work of Gambiologia… a collective that “exploram peculiaridades da cultura brasileira no contexto eletrônico, especialmente relacionadas à tradição da ‘gambiarra'”:
“Gambiarra is a word that only exists in Brazilian Portuguese. It indicates informal uses and technological solutions to everyday life and infrastructure problems. (…) The Gambiologia Collective transforms this repertoire into a science of combat. It promotes workshops, urban interventions, debates and exhibitions that stimulate the use and the reinvention of obsolete, broken or discarded devices. The jury recognizes its work and action methodology, directed at the critical and creative use of media, and decided to award Gambiologia as a process and strategy rather than as specific artworks.” (Prix Ars Electronica 2011 – Statement do júri)
Why blogging this? Gambiarra looks like an interesting variation of the practices we are interested in this project. The way it’s framed in Brazilian culture makes it quite relevant to investigate.