Cloud Writing: Describing Soft Architectures of Change in the Anthropocene

The Blur Building

In Cloud Writing: Describing Soft Architectures of Change in the Anthropocene, Ada Smailbegović grapples with the temporality of weather, on one hand, and the climate change, on the other. The changing cloud architecture of the Blur Building defies easy description, as it changes continuously and languidly. The rates of change caused by anthropogenic climate change are idiosyncratic with humanity’s ability to observe. For one, the changes may be hidden away, say, in a seed responding to warmer temperatures. For others, there may be a threshold at which dramatic change occurs, obscuring change until it happens all at once. For still more, change happens on a scale too slow or too large for us to really see. Smailbegović argues that the act of description can be a sort of time-augmenting methodology, “….description can act as a technology of amplification, flooding the delineated frame of the present with luminous grain of detail, in turn rendering perceptible a more variegated sense of the kinds of change that dynamically constitute the presence… In other words, through this amplification in “detail of sensing,“ differentiated rhythms of change become evident…“.


  • Read through the essay and a few journal excerpts of Dorothy Wordsworth’s
  • Look up the weather for upcoming week on, and screenshot those predictions.
  • For the next seven days, fill out one Weather Journal every day. You will have seven journals by the end of the week. Please turn at least one of them in by scanning/photographing, or as a hard copy.
  • At the end of those seven days, write 500 words reflecting on a) the process of observing the weather, and whether it changed over the course of the week, b) any coherence or dissonance between the weather predictions and your observations, and c) the weather you experienced and its relationships to the clouds you observed. Include the names of the clouds you observed, and the weather often associated with these clouds.

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