Critical Media in the Arts: Time, Materiality, Ecology
Featuring art historians, media theorists and creative practitioners, this event seeks to build a better understanding of sound and new media art as critical disciplines
19th June 2018
Start time: 10.30am
Arts Lecture Room 3, University of Birmingham
Recent years have seen approaches associated with German Media Theory and Media Archaeology draw particular attention in Anglophone art history. The ideas of Luhmann, Kittler, and Siegert are regularly enrolled to support post- and anti-humanist accounts of art-historical and epistemic shifts and their relationship to changes in technological infrastructures; to sketch out alternative or counterfactual art histories through the recovery of dead, forgotten, or imaginary media; or to better understand the chemical and material bases of storage media so as to critically evaluate their cost to the environment. Yet these critical analyses of media are not only the preserve of theoretical writing about art but take place within art practice itself. Through artefacts, sounds and experiences, new media and sound artists have frequently posed questions about what media ‘are’: what they are made of, materially; what logics govern their development, and what histories these tell; what resources they consume; what ideas they bring into the world and materialise; how they configure subjects; and which skills and knowledges – discursive, theoretical, practical – are required to analyse media. Drawing together art historians, media theorists and creative practitioners, this event will ask: can attending to artistic engagements with media help support a better understanding of sound and new media art as critical disciplines?
Speakers will include:
(Keynote Speaker) Douglas Kahn, Survivable Communication: Trees
Michael Goddard, Synaesthesia, Ritual, and Psychedelia in the Music of Coil
Annie Goh, GendyTrouble: Cyber*Feminist Computer Music
Matthew Hayler, Wandering Bodies – Ambient Literature, Cognition, and Technology
Eleni Ikoniadou and Alastair Cameron, Sound, Art and Vibrational Technologies of Disruption
Thor Magnusson, Ergodynamics: Towards a Terminology Beyond “Guitarplay”
Patrick Valiquet, An Ear for Liberalism: Experimental Music Research and Mass Media Education, 1973-1990
Valentina Vuksic, Thermal Tripping Through Runtime
More speakers TBA
This Symposium is co-organised by Christopher Haworth and Valentina Vuksic.
Photo credit: ‘Still from Harddisko’ (2007) by Valentina Vuksic
The Symposium is supported by The School of Languages, Cultures, Art History and Music (LCAHM) and the Contemporary Philosophy of Technology Research Group.