herramienta.digital | Pablo Somonte Ruano


Pablo Somonte Ruano


Pablo Somonte Ruano (Mexico City, 1992). Multimedia worker, filemaker and cryptoexplorer.

I'm interested in topics in the intersection of technology, design and society: generative systems, moving images, participation, free software, cryptography and p2p networks.

Right now I'm working in deriva.mx a transmedia project approaching structural violence in Mexico through cinema and interaction. I also teach a university course at CENTRO, Networks and Systems: Politics and Economics. Download the study plan and the class presentations (in spanish).

I also make music, for my personal project Párvulos and sometimes for commissioned work. Download my EP: Palabra, recently released in VAA (Varios Artistas).

Social networks: personal instagram, instagram for herramienta.digital, twitter, github.

Download my CV.

Write me at x@pablo.sx

DERIVA.MX | 2015 - 2018

Transmedia documentary project about structural violence in Mexico.

Visit deriva.mx's website

Video and photography: Santiago Mohar and Nicolás Gutiérrez.
Montage: Analía Goethals
Design and programming: Pablo Somonte Ruano

Project with a grant by: FONCA Jóvenes Creadores (National Fund for Culture and the Arts - Young Creators) Multimedia category. (2016)
Fundación Jumex de Arte Contemporáneo (Jumex Foundation of Contemporary Art). For research in a transmedia project(2016).

DERIVA.MX has been presented at:

Photojournalism festival Mirar Distinto, Xalapa Veracruz (2016).
Museo de la Ciudad (City Museum), Queretaro (2016).
Casa del Lago UNAM, Mexico City (2017).
Semana de documental Contemporáneo (Week of contemporary documentary) : FARO Aragón, Mexico City (2017).
Tamayo Museum, Mexico City (2017).
Festival Internacional de Cine de Morelia (Morelia International Film Festival, Michoacán México) (2017).
Foto Museo Cuatro Caminos, CDMX (2018).
Ciclo: "Los nuevos atuendos del documental" (The new shapes of documentary) Universidad de la Comunicación, Mexico City (2018).
International workshop "Public Space, Transgression y Youth", Geography Institute UNAM, Mexico City (2018).
AMBULANTE (Documentary Festival) Salón Transmedia, Center for Digital Culture, Mexico City (2018).

DERIVA.MX is composed of an interdisciplinary group of young mexican filmmakers and interaction designers. We believe violence is a complex phenomenon that acts at many different levels, involving a sum of economic, political, social and cultural factors. To generate a constructive analysis, it’s important to understand its multifaceted nature. Therefore, we propose an interdisciplinary approach toward examining the definition and impact of structural violence in Mexico. We don’t believe there’s a single answer, but rather that there are a variety of ways to understand it.

The team has travelled along the mexican national territory, filming video capsules that make-up an archive of documentary capsules and interviews. In addition, we are also collecting objects, images, sounds, and music. With this multimedia archive we seek to document Mexico’s diverse realities. The project takes on subjects such as national identity, power relations, work culture, and traditions. With the use of cinema and an array of digital tools, we seek to broaden the concept of violence by focusing on its structural nature.

In order to approach violence in new ways, a subjective computational approach is necessary. The use of different data analysis tools serves to reveal the complex relations involved in structural violence. This analysis enables an algorithmic approach to cinematic montage that helps constructs coherent sequences based on the subjective classification in relation to the audience’s participation. We believe this exercise approaches a rhizomatic structure through the embrace of emergent database narratives on cinema, exploring the subject of violence through associations of themes and subjects that may be unknown to ourselves and the audience.

DERIVA.MX can be experienced iin three main outputs: web, traditional cinema spaces, and exhibition spaces such as museums and galleries.
In traditional cinema spaces, DERIVA.MX becomes a participatory projection experience. Each screening is differently unique, its shape and content are partially determined by the public’s previous interaction with a web based questionnaire.

The participatory cinema experience can take place in any traditional projection space and it’s composed by four moments:

1 | An open web questionnaire.

2 | The data analysis of the answers that determine the themes and subjects of the movie.

3 | The algorithmic montage of this material in the form of a unique film.

4 | The projection of the film intended for (but not limited to) the audience that participated.

Visit an example of a web questionnaire (in english).

This movies are the result of the interaction between our own subjective vision embedded in the material’s selection, picture framing, classification and tagging and the audience’s interests, passions, fears and unknowns expressed in the questionnaire. These two data structures interact through a selection algorithm that populates a modular semi- predefined structure. Our intention is to generate full-featured 70 minute films with story-arcs that evolve throughout the film, symbols that transform in meaning, and moments of intensity that build-up and release, all while maintaining the themes, subjects and their interactions open to the input of the audience.

Through the interface and algorithms, the audience not only interacts with the database, but indirectly the individuals interact among themselves. How each person relates to a group in terms of their shared interests and their different reactions to the same material reveals positions of common principles, minorities, taboo subjects and opinion diversity that ultimately determine the discourses and narrative tensions in the film. This experience takes advantage of cinema’s collective nature to address issues of group relations, democracy, representation, and social conflicts. To accompany the film, a complementary website with additional information and graphics is uploaded to the site where that projections’ questionnaire previously was, leaving a trace of past projections and their results.

Visit an example of the website that comes after a projection.

The theoretical development of DERIVA.MX was my undergraduate tesis, download it here (in spanish).

Visit deriva.mx's website.

Download a pdf with more information (in english).