Published August 20, 2020

Distributed Technology for Digital Cooperation

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Online Event: Wednesday, August 26, 2020, 7 pm ET

How do distributed technologies, peer-to-peer, and blockchain-based currencies provide corrective measures to ailing economic and political systems? To what extent do these new technologies re-inforce the same power dynamics and abuses as our current systems?

Skill-Share with Eric Barry Drasin

In this skill-share, Eric Barry Drasin will introduce projects that use decentralized technologies to affect progressive social change. Drasin will discuss projects such as Bailbloc, which mines cryptocurrency to pay for bail funds; CirclesUBI, which attempts to create a mutual credit solidarity economy; and discuss how blockchain technology has exacerbated the economic and political conditions it was supposed to disrupt.


  • After his introduction, audiences will be randomly set in two Zoom breakout rooms to discuss the potential of such technology. Upon the end of the discussion, Drasin will lead a participatory demonstration of quadratic voting through Google Sheets. Audiences are welcome to participate or simply attend.
  • This skill-share is open to all interested in blockchain as a collaborative tool. Want to learn more about blockchain before the skill-share? Click here for an introductory lecture by the artist.
  • The workshop will be held over Zoom and utilize Google Sheets, which requires a Google account. If you are encountering any issues accessing the event, please send us a text message at 716-427-4125.

About the Artist

Eric Barry Drasin is a research-based artist exploring the relationship between art and systems of value. Through emerging blockchain technologies, his current research explores “distributed” processes, objects, and organizations that problematize and reprogram fundamental assumptions about how value is constructed and disseminated. Using contracts and legal frameworks as a platform for enacting collectivity, his work injects cooperation and utopian absurdity into systems designed to consolidate power. The notion of the art object is rematerialized in digital space and expanded to engage notions of cultural production and collective agency. Value is thus performed as a form of disruption, and capitalism itself is the terrain for the refiguration of the economic landscape.

About the Program

Squeaky Wheel’s Workspace Residency is a bi-yearly residency open to artists and researchers working in art and technology. The program is supported by generous support by the County of Erie and County Executive Mark Poloncarz, the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, the Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts, and individual members, businesses, and supporters. For more information about the program, click here.