Written by Whess Harman, Spark Talks curator 2018/2019
There’s a slight anomaly (not mistake) on our Spark Talk page that says our first talk was held on January 21, 2106. There are two ideas around this and whichever one is true we will know when we reach that aforementioned date.
Theory one: we are retroactively at the start of the 87th iteration of the series; if time is to be understood as linear points, but each point is an event that happens in a forward track, then once completed the next point is to hop back and not forwards (backstitched), the series is nearing the end of its existence, and the first talk we experienced was actually Mark Igloliorte’s on February 18, 2016 but was the last one of the 90th iteration of the series. Why our experience of time is layering over that track of time is not yet known to us but we assume there have been technological advancements or certain previously paranormal phenomena have been explained and harnessed.
The date of Castillo’s talk is the only one known to us from that time period and was placed at the end of the page so that it wouldn’t appear that we were only ever perpetually waiting for his talk on January 21, 2106, because we’re not waiting, it’s already happened and we’d prefer not to receive phone calls about it.
The second theory: Osvaldo Ramirez Castillo did, in fact, give his talk on January 21, 2106 and it was the first one and the second one followed February 18, 2016 with Mark Igloliorte, meaning that Castillo has (thus far) been the only participant who’s been displaced along this particular stream of time and we are at the end of the third series of Spark Talks, not at the start of the 87th.
Neither theory can be rejected because if Castillo’s roiling liminal narratives are to project possibility, it’s to project the possibility that time collapses, folds, layers, tears, melts, etc.
The third theory of errantly keyed keyboards and fingers possibly tripping over top themselves is not to be considered and no adjustments will be made to the page. We know what we mean when we say the talk happened on January 21, 2106; we just don’t know how we mean it.
What we also know regardless of this time-spatial distortion or cracked vortex in the event horizon or whichever techno-babble jargon applies, is that the Spark Talks, whether they are igniting backwards or forwards or in and out of time are existing in a state of curated chaos and hopeful galactic tidings. Each talk is a point in a constellation and in each iteration is an unpredictable mass of potentiality in ingenious expressions of Indigeneities that can flare, catch fire and sustain new life through and in spite of the vacuous vacuums and voids of academic drudgery and artscaped diasporas; we’ve seen Star Wars and we know you can have explosions in space and we know that an explosion need not herald the encroachment of inter-galactic despots but can be radiant expressions of our pluralities as resistant beings pulled together from the dreams of stars.
We Indigenous folk are habitually and persistently resistant to silence and the silence of spaces we are forcibly vacated from is no exception, be that the literal terrestrial spaces on which we reside or the erasures of space in the slipstreams of archival time. Reason being: we know that communities don’t evolve or adapt to each other through silence. So, bring on the cosmic light show.