Posts tagged Ballard
Science Fiction Study Day
British Library, London
Friday 16th September 2011, 9.30am – 5.30pm
Both David Cunningham and Chris Daley will be participating in a panel on J.G. Ballard as part of the British Library’s Science Fiction Study Day, accompanying the exhibition Out of this World, on Friday 16th September. Other speakers include Mark Bould, Roger Luckhurst and John Milner.
From utopian to dystopian visions, Futurism to Futurology, the participants will talk about recent projects that feature various aspects of science fiction discourse. Learn about the most recent research trends, methodologies and applications, and get inspired by the ideas and questions examined during the day.
Details and booking here.
Wednesday 10th November, 1.15-2.30pm
Room 106, University of Westminster, 32-38 Wells Street, W1T 3UW
Joanne Murray (Birkbeck College, University of London)
“JG Ballard and New Brutalism”
Further details on the English Literature and Culture seminar series at Westminster here.
Videos from the Royal Academy event Ballardian Architecture in May, including David Cunningham’s talk on Pop art, Brutalism and Ballard’s prose of space, have now been posted online.
You can watch the videos here.
You can now listen to the talks at the Royal Academy Ballardian Architecture symposium last month, including those of IMCC Deputy Director David Cunningham, John Gray, Nigel Coates and Nic Clear.
Audio files are up on the RA site here.
David Cunningham, Deputy Director of the IMCC, is, along with John Gray and Nic Clear, one of the participants in the symposium Ballardian Architecture: Inner and Outer Space to be held at the Royal Academy of Arts on Saturday 15th May, 2-5pm. The event will trace several themes in Ballard’s literary analysis of the contemporary built environment, including the concept of spectacle and role of the media in contemporary society, and how Ballard’s fascination with so-called “invisible literatures”, such as scientific journals, technical manuals and advertising copy, can be seen as a literary counterpart to pop art and the “brutalist” aesthetic of modernity.
Tickets: £25/£16 reductions* (includes a drink)
Further details here.
As promised, we present here the first in a short selection of transcriptions of talks from the recent series on ‘The Future’ at the David Roberts Art Foundation. In the following post we have David Cunningham’s introduction to the series along with Ben Noys’s Ballard paper (which can be found up on his own blog). Further papers by Stephen Melville and Garin Dowd will be posted soon. Enjoy.
1. ‘Introduction: The Tomorrow That Never Was’
I want to begin with a short story by the writer William Gibson, entitled ‘The Gernsback Continuum’ and published in 1981. You can read it here. In the story, Gibson’s narrator (a hack photographer) is engaged to work on an illustrated history of ‘American Streamlined Moderne’, with the working title The Airstream Futuropolis: The Tomorrow That Never Was: ‘“Think of it … as a kind of alternate America: a 1980 that never happened. An architecture of broken dreams”,’ one of the story’s characters tells him. ‘And as I moved among these secret ruins’, the narrator continues, ‘I found myself wondering what the inhabitants of that lost future would think of the world I lived in.’ Thus progressively propelled into a state of half-paranoiac and half-melancholic delirium, accompanied by hallucinations of a ‘dream Tucson thrown up out of the collective yearning of an era’ – a city ‘soaring up through an architect’s perfect clouds to zeppelin docks and mad neon spires’ – the narrator is only finally returned to the sanity of the present by an immersion in the very seediest aspects of a very contemporary reality.
The first in the IMCC’s series of events on The Future at the David Roberts Art Foundation took place on November 5th, with talks on, among other topics, J.G. Ballard, imaging climate change, William Gibson and the 1956 This is Tomorrow exhibition leading to a vigorous discussion of science fiction and environmental politics. The next event is on November 12th, when susan pui san lok, Uriel Orlow, Sally O’Reilly and Niru Ratnam will debate whether ‘The Future is History’.
The Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture
University of Westminster Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies
32-38 Wells Street, London W1T 3UW. United Kingdom.