Conference

Reminder: Sexual Violence Against Women symposium, Friday 17th June

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Friday 17th June 2016
St Pancras Room, King’s Place, 09:30-17:00

Sexual Violence Against Women: Voice and Representation

This one-day symposium organised by the IMCC’s Dr Georgina Colby with Hannah Camplin aims to bring keynote academics and practitioners in the fields of law, politics, and charities into dialogue with writers, artists, and filmmakers who take up the issues surrounding sexual violence against women in their works.

The symposium will open with a keynote address by Professor Jacqueline Rose (FBA, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, University of London), entitled ‘Feminism and the Abomination of Violence.’ Professor Rose’s keynote address will be followed by a lunchtime keynote paper by Keir Starmer MP, Holborn and St Pancras. There will be two afternoon panels on ‘Sexual Violence, Belief, and Credibility’, and ‘Voice and Representation: Empowering Voice and Enacting Change Through the Arts and Humanities’.

Tickets are priced at £6.00, excluding booking fee (£1.52). All proceeds from tickets sales will go to the Women’s Project at Asylum Aid. Tickets include coffee and refreshments throughout the day.

Tickets are available through Eventbrite.

Contact Georgina Colby for further information: g.colby@westminster.ac.uk.

Marshall McLuhan’s Media Practice, Monday 20th June

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James-Joyce-note-2 (2)

Monday 20th June, 10.30 am – 4.00 pm
The Boardroom, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1

McLuhan’s Media Practice: Literature and Communication

Marshall McLuhan is a central and provocative figure in early media discourse – some of his pronouncements shaped the subject while others were divisive or obscure. However, his wide-ranging literary research, teaching and ground-breaking contributions to publishing still require detailed attention – for example, recent accessibility to his own richly annotated library presents a remarkable new research resource, while his collaborations with book designers remain hugely influential if inadequately understood. This symposium addresses McLuhan’s media practice from the dual perspectives of communication and literature, and introduces a new digital resource of archival McLuhan materials gathered from seven independent institutions and scholars during the last twelve months.

Discussing McLuhan’s contributions to our understandings of media practices, the history and futures of the book, and literary modernism, not least through his own annotations on texts by Joyce and others, the symposium welcomes participants from the Marshall McLuhan Estate, Canadian Embassy, Berlin and the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, as well as academics, curators and publishers with a special interest in McLuhan.

Speakers include: Andrea Boegner (McLuhan Salon, Canadian Embassy, Berlin), Peter Cornwell (Data Futures, IMCC), David Cunningham (IMCC), Duncan Forbes (Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland), Doris Gassert (Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland), Jon Goodbun (Architecture, Westminter), Tom Lamberty (Merve Publishing, Berlin), Graham Larkin (art historian, Ottawa), Andrew McLuhan (McLuhan Estate), John Shoesmith (Director, Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, Toronto), Leigh Wilson (IMCC), and Simon Worthington (Mute, Berlin)

Register for a place here.

Forms of Criticism

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DerekBeaulieuFlatland

Image courtesy of Derek Beaulieu

Thursday 30 June 2016
Parasol Unit, 14 Wharf Road, London N1 7RW

In the Editorial for the first issue of Art-Language (1969) Terry Atkinson raised questions about a possibility of combining creative and critical practice: ‘can this editorial,’ Atkinson wrote, ‘in itself an attempt to evidence some attributes as to what “conceptual art” is, come up for the count as a work of conceptual art?’ Forms of Criticism takes Atkinson’s idea as its starting point to engage with issues of criticism and form and interrogate limits between creative and critical practice.

In poetry, fine art, film making, performance – in the creative sector – we are familiar with and applaud – or tolerate, in the very least – experiments which blur or transgress boundaries of genre, form, or creativity. Similar possibilities of formal experimentation remain significantly underexplored with respect to critical practice, although a growing interest in probing the limits of criticism can currently be observed. Forms of Criticism proposes to think about critical practice as a creative experiment with form in its own right and invites a re-examination of the relationship between research and forms adopted for presenting, communicating, and disseminating it. By considering diverse sites of critical and creative production the project focuses on experimenting with modalities of criticism and ways of addressing formal critical-creative hybridity.

The event brings together artist, curators, writers, critics and scholars addressing questions of hybrid creative-critical forms in theory and practice though talks, performances, screenings, readings and installations. Speakers include: John Beck (IMCC), Kate Briggs (American University in Paris), Eric Cazdyn (University of Toronto), Ducks!, Gary Hall (Coventry University & Open Humanities Press), Peter Jaeger (poet and critic, Roehampton), Kristen Kreider (poet and artist, Royal Holloway), Richard Misek (filmmaker), Simon Morris (Leeds Beckett University), Jo Collinson Scott (musician and musicologist), Marquard Smith (Journal of Visual Culture and Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam), and Nick Thurston (artist, University of Pennsylvania and Leeds).

The event is free and open to all but places are limited and booking is essential. For more information about the event and to reserve tickets please go to: http://www.formsofcriticism.net/

For more information, please contact Kaja Marczewska: k.marczewska@westminster.ac.uk

Conference: The Hypothetical

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Saturday 25th-Sunday 26th June 2016
Room UG04, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

The Hypothetical: Institutions, Fictions, Environments

A hypothesis is literally a placing under, and thus a foundation or basis for an argument. As a foundation, though, a hypothesis is less than concrete; it is a starting point, a premise, a conjecture, a supposition. A hypothesis stands in a provisional relation to the known facts — may, indeed, fly in the face of the facts — and at worst can be described as a mere assumption or guess. A hypothesis, then, is a provocation. It demands investigation, testing, evaluation, perhaps refutation. A hypothesis has expectations.

The purpose of this conference is to interrogate the ramifications of the hypothetical in its philosophical, scientific, technological, historical, literary and artistic forms. How do the fictional, the conjectural, or the notional provide the operational conditions for new knowledge, new social and political forms, and new modes of describing the world? What are the temporalities that govern the hypothetical? How does the hypothetical put pressure on existing forms and practices, within and across the arts and the sciences? Are there limits — organisational, structural, ideological, disciplinary — beyond which the hypothetical collapses into the simply impossible? Or is the impossible an ideological bracketing of the emancipatory potential of the hypothetical? Alternatively, does the hypothetical run the risk of producing hypocriticism, a mode of reflexive and opportunist self-interest that merely reinscribes the position of the hypothesist?

Speakers: Claudia Aradau (King’s College London); Mark Currie (Queen Mary, University of London); Elizabeth Ellsworth & Jamie Kruse (by video link) (The New School, New York City); Mikhail Epstein (Durham University); Greg Garrard (University of British Columbia); John Richard Sageng (University of Oslo); David Wittenberg (University of Iowa).

View the conference programme here

Contact: John Beck j.beck@westminster.ac.uk
The conference is free but it is essential to register via Eventbrite

Sexual Violence Against Women: Voice and Representation

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Friday 17th June 2016
St Pancras Room, King’s Place, 09:30-17:00

This one-day symposium organised by Dr Georgina Colby and Hannah Camplin aims to bring keynote academics and practitioners in the fields of law, politics, and charities into dialogue with writers, artists, and filmmakers who take up the issues surrounding sexual violence against women in their works. The symposium will open with a keynote address by Professor Jacqueline Rose (FBA, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, University of London), titled ‘Feminism and the Abomination of Violence.’ Professor Rose’s keynote address will be followed by a lunchtime keynote paper by Keir Starmer MP, Holborn and St Pancras. There will be two afternoon panels on ‘Sexual Violence, Belief, and Credibility’, and ‘Voice and Representation: Empowering Voice and Enacting Change Through the Arts and Humanities’.

Tickets are priced at £6.00, excluding booking fee (£1.52). All proceeds from tickets sales will go to the Women’s Project at Asylum Aid. Tickets include coffee and refreshments throughout the day.

Tickets are available through Eventbrite.

Contact Georgina Colby for further information: g.colby@westminster.ac.uk.

TRACES conference, June 8th 2015

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Monday 8 June, 9.00 – 19.00
The Pavilion, University of Westminster, New Cavendish Street, London

TRACES
3rd Joint Researching the Arts, Social Sciences & Humanities Conference

A Postgraduate conference, co-organised by Brunel University London and the University of Westminster

9:15 – 10:30  Ineffable Representations and Potentiality of Voice
Jaice Sara Titus, Sebastian Jenner, Jessica Worden

10:45 – 12:00  Unraveling Traces of Power and Conflict
Miriam Tedeschi, Simon Mcleod, Alejandra Perez

12:00 – 13:30  Vestiges and Reinterpretations of Marginalization
Lewis Church, Haein Song, Uyoyo Onemu, Gift Nyoni

13:30 – 14:30  Lunch

14:30 – 15:45  Retracing Accounts for Womanhood
Pernille Rubner-Peterson, Sarah Ann Milne, Suneel Mehmi

15:45 – 16:45  Tracing Aesthetics and Ethics
Marijana Nedeljkovic, Alice Tuppen

17:00 – 18:00  Keynote: Dr David Cunningham
“Traces of Capital, or, Are Some Things Unrepresentable?”

18:00 – 19:00  Prize Giving and Reception

Full programme here: Traces_Programme_1.

Mnemonics Network Summer School, September 2015

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Mnemonics 2015: Memory and Materialism
London, September 8 – 10, 2015

The IMCC is delighted to announce its participation in both the Mnemonics: Network for Memory Studies and (with colleagues at Goldsmiths and Kings) the London Cultural Memory Consortium with the following Call for Papers for the Mnemonics summer school to be held in London this September.

Call for papers: For the fourth edition of its annual summer school, the Mnemonics network, an international collaborative initiative for graduate education in memory studies, invites paper proposals that address the relations between materialities and cultural memory. The study of cultural memory is well versed in analyzing the material traces of the past. From the manifold historical objects that continue to inhere in the present as artifacts, ruins, traces, or even present absences, to the ways in which different representational media frame contemporary understandings of particular events through those objects, the discourses of memory studies have proven adept at investigating the use, circulation, value, and affect of historical remnants in processes of cultural remembrance. However, memory studies has so far been less attentive to the actual materiality of these objects. Accordingly, Mnemonics 2015 seeks to unearth the materials and matter that have been overlooked by present regimes of cultural memory, in theory and practice. By tracking their historical and cultural trajectories, we aim to chart the ways in which materials change over time and usage, examining the processes through which matter may be made to assemble, disassemble, metamorphose, and even disappear, to reinforce or challenge hegemonic constructions of memory and history.

Full Call for Papers can be downloaded here: Mnemonics 2015 cfp

Confirmed keynote speakers: Professor Stef Craps (Ghent University); Dr Joanne Garde-Hansen (University of Warwick); Professor Ursula Heise (UCLA); Professor Alex Warwick (University of Westminster)

Fees: £250 including accommodation in central London; £100 excluding accommodation.
All fees cover: attendance; all breakfasts, lunches, refreshments, and conference dinner.

Send: A 300-word abstract for a 15-minute paper (including title, presenter’s name, and institutional affiliation), a description of your graduate research project (one paragraph), and a short CV (max. one page) as a single Word document to:  r.crownshaw@gold.ac.uk

Deadline: 1 April 2015.
Notification of Acceptance: 1 May 2015

The Mnemonics summer school serves as an interactive forum in which junior and senior memory scholars meet in an informal and convivial setting to discuss each other’s work and to reflect on new developments in the field of memory studies. The objective is to help graduate students refine their research questions, strengthen the methodological and theoretical underpinnings of their projects, and gain further insight into current trends in memory scholarship. Each of the three days of the summer school will start with a keynote lecture, followed by sessions consisting of three graduate student papers, responses, and extensive Q&A. In order to foster incisive and targeted feedback, all accepted papers will be pre-circulated among the participants and each presentation session will be chaired by a senior scholar who will also act as respondent.

Mnemonics: Network for Memory Studies is a collaborative initiative for graduate education in memory studies between the Danish Network for Cultural Memory Studies; the Swedish Memory Studies Network; and programs at Ghent University (Belgium); Goethe University Frankfurt (Germany); The London Cultural Memory Studies Consortium (IMCC, Westminster; Goldsmiths; Kings); the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (USA); and Columbia University (USA, associate partner).

Further information about the network is available from the Mnemonics website at http:// mnemonics.ugent.be/.
Mnemonics on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/groups/mnemonics.network/
Mnemonics on Twitter: @mnemonics_net

For more information on Mnemonics 2015, contact Lucy Bond at l.bond1@westminster.ac.uk

A more detailed Call for Papers is attached here: Mnemonics 2015 cfp.

Reminder: 5 4 3 2 1 … Berlin RP conference, Jan 16-17

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Radical Philosophy Berlin Conference 2015
5 4 3 2 1…

Friday 16 – Saturday 17 January
Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin

Die Radical Philosophy Conference, 2015 erstmals in Deutschland, widmet sich zentralen Themen unserer Zeit. Am Freitag, dem 16. und Samstag, dem 17. Januar diskutieren internationale Vortragende mit verschiedenen disziplinären Hintergründen die Themen Acceleration & the New, Artistic Strike, Secrecy & Surveillance, Queer Theory & Geopolitics, Pedagogization, Philosophy of the Essay-Film, Animalities, On Organization.

With Fahim Amir, Claudia Aradau, David Blacker, Christa Blümlinger, Victoria Browne, Gregoire Chamayou, Matthew Charles, Claire Fontaine, David Cunningham, Antke Engel, Frank Engster, Arianna Ferrari, Peter Hallward, Gertrud Koch, Esther Leslie, Stewart Martin, Mark Neocleous, Peter Osborne, Silvia Posocco, Nina Power, Rahul Rao, Frank Ruda, Nora Sternfeld, Hito Steyerl, Chris Wilbert, and Burkhardt Wolf.  More…

Free download of the Radical Philosophy iOS app is available at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt until the 1 February. More…

Radical Philosophy in Berlin, Jan 16-17 2015

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Radical Philosophy Berlin Conference 2015
5 4 3 2 1…

Friday 16 – Saturday 17 January
Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin

For our German friends, the journal Radical Philosophy will be holding its regular mega-conference in Berlin next year, with speakers including the IMCC’s own Matt Charles and David Cunningham. Other participants include Christa Blumlinger, Gregoire Chamayou, Claire Fontaine, Peter Hallward, Gertrud Koch, Esther Leslie, Mark Neocleous, Peter Osborne, Nina Power, Frank Ruda, Hito Steyerl, and many others.

Further details on the HKW website at:
http://www.hkw.de/en/programm/projekte/2015/radical_philosophy/radical_philosophy_start.php

Final Reminder: Educational Eliminationism symposium, Nov 7th

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Educational Eliminationism & Cultural Colonization
Friday 7th November, 2pm – 6pm (followed by drinks reception)
Westminster Forum, 5th Floor, University of Westminster, 32-38 Wells Street, London W1T

A HEAT (Higher Education & Theory) Symposium, co-hosted by Institute for Modern & Contemporary Culture (IMCC) and the Higher Education Research Centre (HERC) at the University of Westminster.

David J. Blacker, author of The Falling Rate of Learning and the Neoliberal Endgame, defines educational eliminationism as a state of affairs in which elites no longer find it necessary to utilize mass schooling as a first link in the long chain of the process of the extraction of workers’ surplus labour value but instead cut their losses and abandon public schooling altogether. In The Art School and the Culture Shed, John Beck and Matthew Cornford have charted the decline of local art schools and concordant rise of the ‘destination’ art gallery, and asked what this tells us about the changing relationship between the function of education and art in the new creative economy. Nina Power (One-Dimensional Woman) argues that current attacks on the education system are part and parcel of a broader war on cognitive and immaterial labour, upon which the art world provides a peculiarly privileged vantage point.

Drawing on the etymological and political association between culture and colonization, this symposium seeks to investigate the currently shifting relationship between education and culture through the themes of eliminationism and colonization.

rsvp to the organizer: M.Charles1@westminster.ac.uk

Educational Eliminationism & Cultural Colonization, Nov 7th

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Educational Eliminationism & Cultural Colonization
Friday 7th November, 2pm – 6pm (followed by drinks reception)
Westminster Forum, 5th Floor, University of Westminster, 32-38 Wells Street, London W1T

A HEAT (Higher Education & Theory) Symposium, co-hosted by Institute for Modern & Contemporary Culture (IMCC) and the Higher Education Research Centre (HERC) at the University of Westminster.

David J. Blacker, author of The Falling Rate of Learning and the Neoliberal Endgame, defines educational eliminationism as a state of affairs in which elites no longer find it necessary to utilize mass schooling as a first link in the long chain of the process of the extraction of workers’ surplus labour value but instead cut their losses and abandon public schooling altogether. In The Art School and the Culture Shed, John Beck and Matthew Cornford have charted the decline of local art schools and concordant rise of the ‘destination’ art gallery, and asked what this tells us about the changing relationship between the function of education and art in the new creative economy. Nina Power (One-Dimensional Woman) argues that current attacks on the education system are part and parcel of a broader war on cognitive and immaterial labour, upon which the art world provides a peculiarly privileged vantage point.

Drawing on the etymological and political association between culture and colonization, this symposium seeks to investigate the currently shifting relationship between education and culture through the themes of eliminationism and colonization.

rsvp to the organizer: M.Charles1@westminster.ac.uk

Educational Eliminationism and Cultural Colonization seminar, Nov 7th

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HEAT Flyer

 

Educational Eliminationism and Cultural Colonization
Friday 7th November, 2-6pm
Westminster Forum, University of Westminster, Wells St., London W1T 3UW

John Beck and Matthew Cornford (The Art School and the Culture Shed)
David J. Blacker (The Falling Rate of Learning and the Neoliberal Endgame)
Nina Power (One-Dimensional Woman)

Co-organised by the IMCC and the Higher Education Research Centre (HERC)

Photography and Abstraction May 9th Programme Announced

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Photography and Abstraction: A Symposium

REGISTRATION NOW CLOSED. Apologies – we have been inundated with an unexpectedly large number of RSVPs and can no longer fit in any further attendees.

Friday 9 May 2014, 10.00 – 6.00 (followed by drinks)
Room 501, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2UW

PROGRAMME:

10.00 Coffee

10.30-12.30 Panel 1

Mark Dorrian (Edinburgh), “Medium/Violence/Abstraction”
Andy Fisher (Goldsmiths), “On the Scales of Photographic Abstraction”
David Bate (Westminster), “Daguerre’s Abstraction”
Chair: David Cunningham (IMCC)

12.30-1.30 Lunch

1.30-3.30 Panel 2

Clare Birchall (King’s, London), “Aesthetics of the Secret”
Peter Adey (Royal Hollway), “Capture and Testimony in the Art of Levity”
Ella Chmielewska (Edinburgh), “Writing Between the Photograph and Abstraction”
Chair: John Beck (IMCC)

3.30 Coffee

4.00-6.00 Panel 3

Joanna Zylinska (Goldsmiths), “Photography After the Human”
John Roberts (Wolverhampton), “Ideation and Photography: Critique of Laruelle’s Concept of Abstraction”
Chair: Sas Mays (IMCC)

6.00 Drinks

Free Entry. All Welcome. RSVP: cunninda@wmin.ac.uk

Natural History of Memory Inaugural Seminar

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The Natural History of Memory Inaugural Seminar (hosted by the Cultural Memory Seminar Series, sponsored by the Department of English, Linguistics, and Cultural Studies, University of Westminster)

17th May, 11 am – 4 pm. Room G37, Senate House, University of London.

Speakers:

Professor Anna Reading (King’s College London), ‘Where Do Clouds Come From? A Natural History of Digital Memory’

Dr Frank Uekoetter (University of Birmingham), ‘The Boll Weevil, the Post-Slavery Plantation, and the Global World of Monoculture’

Dr Jakob Stougaard-Nielsen (UCL), ‘London Submerged: Eco-Fictions of a Vanishing Present’

Chairs: Drs Lucy Bond (Westminster), Rick Crownshaw (Goldsmiths), Jessica Rapson (King’s)

The Natural History of Memory explores the ways that environments register and mediate the memories of catastrophe and injustice. Moving beyond Walter Benjamin’s conception of natural history as the naturalization of historical events and their representation in teleological fashion, the project examines the manifold imbrications of landscape and the lived experience of violence over time. While memory studies typically positions historical sites and landscapes as the places where past catastrophes unfolded, this project understands these environments as the very media through which these disasters took place, lent agency and co-opted by the perpetrators of those events, thereby enabling their occurrence. Challenging the construction of ‘nature’ as a passive canvas for the inscription and organization of history, this research seeks to develop an environmental literacy for reading (or reconstructing) memory where landscapes and experiences have become indistinct. The Natural History of Memory thus frames strands of research that seek to examine environmental agency in both catastrophic events and their remembrance.

The Natural History of Memory Partner Institutions: Goldsmiths University of London, King’s College London, University of Westminster, and University of Ghent.

Photography and Abstraction: A Symposium, May 9th

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Photography and Abstraction: A Symposium

Friday 9 May 2014, 10.00 – 6.00 (followed by drinks)
Room 501, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2UW

Participants include:
Peter Adey (Royal Holloway)
David Bate (Westminster)
Clare Birchall (Kings)
Ella Chmielewska (Edinburgh)
Mark Dorrian (Edinburgh)
Andy Fisher (Goldsmiths)
John Roberts (Wolverhampton)
Joanna Zylinska (Goldsmiths)

Hosted by:
John Beck, David Cunningham, Sas Mays (IMCC, Westminster)

There are at least two ways in which photography might be said to address abstraction. The first is at the level of appearance: photographs that are not recognisable as straightforward representations. This mode of abstraction might include the deployment of modernist strategies of abstraction; photographs that appear to be abstract due to issues of scale, such as aerial or microscopic images; the direct capture of light without a camera; the combination of photographic images with other media; the use of found images; the manual or electronic manipulation of images; the framing of images to stress formal arrangement.

Alongside this category of abstract photographs or photographs that depict abstract form, a second dimension to the relationship between photography and abstraction is associated with issues of the visible and the invisible. This involves photography’s capacity to give form to unseen relationships and to register otherwise undetectable currents, flows, and networks. How does photography visualize the real abstractions of capitalism? In what ways are photographic images deployed to capture and control data through, for example, electronic monitoring devices? How is the indexical function of the photograph mobilized in order to serve as evidence across a range of scenarios, including military and police action, juridical, biopolitical, and radical political modes of representation? Can, then, photography address and give visible form to the quasi-ontological abstractions that structure economic and social relations? Finally, is there a relationship between the two scenarios outlined above? In other words, what, if any, is the relationship between non-figurative images and photography’s political, institutional, or theoretical histories?

Archives for the Future: An Art and Visual Culture Conference, March 29

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Saturday 29th March 2014, 9.00-5.00
Fyvie Hall, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Organised by Mnemoscape with the support of the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture and the International Association for Visual Culture.

Keynote Speakers: Francis Gooding (Birkbeck) and Uriel Orlow (Westminster)

Archives are becoming increasingly fetishized and (an)aestheticized in contemporary art practice and academic discourse. Archives have generally been considered as conservative institutions aimed at preserving the past in the present – and so perpetuating the traditional structures of power. In contrast, this conference is interested in bringing to light the generative and creative side of the archive. How can archives be used to generate the ‘new’ and to convey possible alternatives to the present status quo? How can we turn archives from historical records into instruments of future planning and agencies of radical thinking?

Full programme now available at: http://archivesforthefuture.wordpress.com/programme/

For any further information about the conference, please contact the conveners, Elisa Adami and Alessandra Ferrini at mnemoscape@gmail.com

Reminder: Cold War Systems Symposium, Feb 27th

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The Continuities of Cold War Systems: A Symposium
Thursday 27th February 2014, 9am-6pm.
The Boardroom, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street

Hosted by John Beck (Westminster) and Ryan Bishop (Winchester School of Art), participants include Ele Carpenter (Goldsmiths), Fabienne Collignon (Sheffield), Mark Coté (King’s), Dan Grausam (Durham), Ken Hollings (Middlesex), Adrian Mackenzie (Lancaster), Jussi Parikka (Winchester), John Phillips (Singapore), Adam Piette (Sheffield), Jennifer Pybus (Winchester), James Purdon (Cambridge), Aura Satz (London Consortium), Neal White (Bournemouth).

From the late 1940s through the 1980s systems analysis, cybernetics, and information theory came to shape military, business, government and academic thinking on a wide array of subjects. The influence of such thinking is also evident in the arts, from the so-called systems novels of the 1960s and 70s, to minimalist and electronic music, conceptual art, and the emergence of electronic media. The end of the Cold War did not end systems thinking; indeed, given the phenomenal expansion of computer technologies into every aspect of contemporary life it is fair to say that we are now living in a world imagined and engineered during the Cold War. This event seeks to address the ways the Cold War, particularly through a consideration of systems thinking, continues to shape the contemporary.

RSVP John Beck: j.beck@westminster.ac.uk.

Reading and Exhibiting Nature: An International Conference, Feb 7-9

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February 7-9 2014
University of Westminster, 35 Marylebone Road, London NW1 5LS

Reading and Exhibiting Nature: An International Conference

In January and February 2014 Ambika P3, the flagship exhibition space at the University of Westminster, will present Out of Ice by visual artist Elizabeth Ogilvie. This new commission will involve environments created with ice and ice melt, constructions, films of ice systems, film of scientific expedition from Antarctica, and poetic film, much of it created through collaborations with Inuit in Northern Greenland, and reflecting on their deep and sustaining relationships with ice. The exhibition will portray the psychological, physical and poetic dimensions of ice and water and draw attention to ice processes. It will describe the presence of ice in the world from a human perspective in which the observational traditions of fieldwork will be combined with the artist’s trademark visual splendour.

In concert with the exhibition, the University of Westminster is convening ‘Reading and Exhibiting Nature’, a three-day conference examining how nature is being understood in contemporary cultural and artistic production. With a focus both in and beyond the polar regions, we will explore how artists and scientists are apprehending and representing natural phenomena, engaging with emerging non-human materialities and translating environmental data into aesthetic experience. The conference seeks to explore the shifting definitions of nature and how nature, including plants, animals, land, water/ice and weather inserts itself into human affairs and is represented culturally.

The ‘Reading and Exhibiting Nature’ conference is planned in association with the University of Westminster and co-hosted by Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh and Anchorage Museum, Alaska.

Keynote Address will be by Professor Tim Ingold, Chair of Social Anthropology at the University of Aberdeen

Full conference: Standard rate £200. One day rate £110; Student rate £90. One day rate £65.

Please see the draft programme and some hotel suggestions.

Archives for the Future conference, March 29th

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Archives for the Future: An Art and Visual Culture Conference
Saturday 29th March 2014, 9.30-5.00
Fyvie Hall, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2HW

Organised by Mnemoscape with the support of the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture.

Keynote Speakers: Francis Gooding (Birkbeck) and Uriel Orlow (Westminster)

Archives are becoming increasingly fetishized and (an)aestheticized in contemporary art practice and academic discourse. This conference comes out of a shared sense of frustration at this. In response, it intends to explore the present and futuristic potential embedded in the archive. Archives have generally been considered as conservative institutions aimed at preserving the past in the present – and so perpetuating the traditional structures of power. In contrast, we are interested in bringing to light the generative and creative side of the archive, what Derrida has defined as its ‘institutive’ power. How can archives be used to generate the ‘new’ and to convey possible alternatives to the present status quo? How can we turn archives from historical records into instruments of future planning and agencies of radical thinking? Is it possible to build an archive which works as an open space of imagination and a mean of projection into the future? Is it possible to archive the future to come and, at the same time, to remain open to the unpredictable and the unknown?

Further details and programme at: http://archivesforthefuture.wordpress.com/

For more information about the conference, please contact the conveners, Elisa Adami and Alessandra Ferrini at mnemoscape@gmail.com

Call for Papers: Football, Fiction, and Culture, June 2014

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Call for Papers: Football, Fiction, and Culture
Kingston University, June 19-20 2014

The aim of this event is to examine the culture that develops around football, with particular focus upon the influence of the sport on other cultural media. Football is a prominent part of contemporary culture, and the strong influence that it has on social and political identities is often reflected in wider cultural production. Despite this, it is sometimes argued that football is an example of low or “mass” culture, removed from “high” cultural forms. This event will interrogate this viewpoint and attempt to demonstrate the sport’s influence upon a wide variety of cultural forms. We welcome abstracts examining any aspect of the role that football plays in cultural production.

Conference fees are yet to be decided, but our aim is make this an affordable event. We also hope that presenters will join us afterwards to watch a World Cup match or two.

Please send abstracts to the event organisers, Dr Anthony May (Kingston University) and Dr Christopher Daley (University of Westminster) at: footballfictionandculture@gmail.com.

The deadline for abstracts is 28th February 2014. Papers should be the standard 20 minutes and panel proposals should consist of three speakers.