Miniworkshop: How to brick your phone in cement: Vacuum seal your phone in plastic and bury it in quick cement

Speculative Privacy

lecture performance / stage workshop

Speculative Privacy: Practical and impractical things you can do to your phone

“Speculative Privacy: Practical and impractical things you can do to your phone” is a lecture-workshop-performance format I presented at the Datapolitics conference track during the annual International Summer festival, Kampnagel, Hamburg on August 20th 2016.

At the entrance the audience got stickers on their smart phone cameras (in true Berghain manner) to ‘disable’ the camera feature. In further social experiments they were instructed to look up privacy settings on their devices. After the talk everyone was invited to the stage to test different tools and materials on their phones while we kept discussing todays privacy questions. Some of the ‘mini workshops’ are useful others don’t really make sense but offer a strong therapeutic moment to ‘grill’ your mobile phone in a non destructive way. You always wanted to flush your phone in the toilet or bury it in cement? This is your chance! Have it vacuumed in a plastic bag and dip it in paint or through it in other actions!

Aram Bartholl, 2016

All slides of the talk and related links here! :

Kampnagel Program:

Aram Bartholl: Speculative Privacy

Aram Bartholl ist Konzept- und Medienkünstler. Im Mittelpunkt seines Interesses steht die kritische Auseinandersetzung mit der zunehmenden Digitalisierung unseres Alltags. In seinen oft humorvollen Arbeiten überführt er Items aus der Netzwelt ins Analoge, um bspw. die Allgegenwärtigkeit von Internetunternehmen wie Google sichtbar zu machen. In seinem performativen Workshop ‘Speculative Privacy’ zeigt er welche digitalen Spuren bei der Benutzung von Smartphones entstehen und welche Möglichkeiten es gibt, diese zu verwischen.

20. August 2016, 18:00 – 19:30 (Halle P1) Kampnagel,

Thanks to the Kampnagel team for making all this possible!


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A non destructive way to act out on your ‘loved’ phone. One of five mini workshops as part of Speculative Privacy lecture performance.

You ever wanted to flush your phone in the toilet?

Speculative Privacy lecture performance at Kampnagel Theater, Hamburg 2016

Social experiment. Camera stickers prevent the audience to take pictures at the entrance of Kampnagel auditorium. (Berghain-style)

Lecture and presentation of a series of mini workshops. Dip you phone in paint and hang it on a rack to dry!

Audience participation.

Kitchen vacuum machine to seal off the phone water resistant.

Quick cement mixed and poored in small plastic boxes.

Sealed phones added…

… and covered with another layer of cement.

Deafen your phone so it can t listen on you.

Dip your phone in paint!