Human history is a long narrative of the conquering, appropriating and segmenting of land, with the result that today only two small areas of the world are not legally claimed by a state. The remaining 150 million square kilometers of the earth are either possessed or obsessively fought over.
Simultaneously, there is enormous movement across the land. A billion people worldwide are currently considered to be migrants. Transnational movements like work and care migration, flight, shuttle and education migration characterize our present-day world and the foreseeable future, challenging our political and social systems across the board. Who does the land belong to? The members of a state entity? Governments? Capital? Can the land actually belong to anyone and what happens when it belongs to no one?
The Oldenburg Blackmarket for Useful Knowledge and Non-Knowledge opens a temporary no-man’s-land and space for a four-hour exploration of the “in-between”: between the validity of existing social orders/political borders and the growing modern awareness that, in a fundamental sense, human beings should be capable of and have the power to shape their own fate and accordingly determine where they live. Between the flourishing, customs-free marketplace on the high seas and up in the air and the legal and moral thicket where rescue ships are currently anchored, human life traded and negotiated. Between the possibilities opened up by digitalization and the question who actually owns multinational corporations like Google, or the least explored of all no-man’s-lands, outer space. Between everyday life and work in the death-strip along the former German border and the nether land that appears as a motif in fairytales, myths, science fiction and computer games.