MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology: Fall 2010 Monday Night Lecture Series

MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology: Fall 2010 Monday Night Lecture Series

School of Architecture + Planning at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Lucy Orta
Refuge Wear Intervention London East End 1998, 1998
Photographer John Akehurst
Courtesy Galleria Continua San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin
August 31, 2010
MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology: Fall 2010 Monday Night Lecture Series

Mondays 7:00-9:00 pm

MIT Bartos Theater
Wiesner Bldg (E15) Lower Level
20 Ames Street
Cambridge, MA USA
[email protected]

Give Me Shelter:
Second Skin for Extreme Environments?

Give Me Shelter draws together speakers from different disciplines to discuss questions such as: How can bodywear function as an extension of the human body and support it under unusual conditions such as hot and cold climates? How can we expand our thinking about the boundary between body and environment? What kind of second skin would be required to survive walking through a volcano, or for living under water or visiting outer space? When does clothing become a contested cultural arena for endangered peoples and their environment?

The lecture series will be held Monday nights from 7:00 to 900 pm at MIT’s Bartos Theater and is free and open to the public.

September 13, 2010
Elke Gaugele — Climate Changes in Science Fashion

As future technologies of the modern augmented self and its geopolitical extensions, proactive clothing was first anticipated at the turn of the century in popular culture, science fiction and art. Since the 1960s, this question has become a fixed part of the cyborg discourse while “science fashions” were shifting from astronautics and military research to wearable computing and smart clothes. The political climate also changed since the Cold War. Artists, architects and fashion designers started to create climate capsules, green wearables and interactive research and communication tools for climate activists. Elke Gaugele will reflect upon these climate changes in “science fashion” and discuss different points of departure for its contemporary artistic research.

Elke Gaugele is a cultural anthropologist and professor of Fashions and Styles at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, Austria.

September 20, 2010
Regina Maria Moeller — com(ment)ic: wondersuits, fast skin, Poison Ivy

Comic superheroes dress in high-tech suits with magic powers. Are these “wondersuits” fictional? Or have they become models for current “second” skin developments, including survival and performance enhancement suits worn by astronauts, athletes, and others? Regina Maria Moeller will also discuss the power of nature as personified by the DC Comics supervillainess Poison Ivy, a key figure in her exhibition embodiment – dress plot.

Regina Maria Moeller is a German artist, author, founder of the magazine regina, and creator of the label “embodiment.” She is a professor at the Trondheim Academy of Fine Art / Faculty of Architecture and Fine Art at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

September 27, 2010
Laura Anderson Barbata —
Twenty-First Century Living in the Amazon: In the Order of Chaos

Laura Anderson Barbata worked with the Yanomami people of the Venezuelan Amazon Rainforest. Barbata taught them to make paper and books so they could write their own history. Their first book Shapono tells the story of the gods Omawë and Yoawë who taught the Yanomami how to build their home as a communal dwelling. In her work with the Yanomami people, she was witness to the fact that contact with outsiders brought challenges and problems for their traditional tight-knit communities. Barbata will also discuss Moko Jumbies. This project engages Haiti’s at-risk youth in the ancient tradition of stilt walking in community-driven cultural activities that support a strong sense of identity.

Barbata is a professor at the Escuela Nacional de Escultura, Pintura y Grabado La Esmeralda of the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes, México.

October 4, 2010
Bulbo — Tierra Brillante

Bulbo, a Tijuana- and Los Angeles-based media collective, explores cultural, artistic and everyday themes often overlooked or under-represented in mass media. Their documentary Tierra Brilliante spotlights lead poisoning suffered by practitioners of traditional ceramics in Mexico.

October 18, 2010
Dava Newman — Second Skin Bio-Suit

The BioSuit was developed to provide “second skin” capability for astronaut performance (developed with the support of the NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts and Trotti & Assoc. Inc., Cambridge, Mass.). The current iteration uses nylon, spandex and urethane layers along with electronics. The helmet uses materials with “smart textile” capabilities for comfort, communications and spatial orientation. This research can also lead to improvements in our quality of life through advances in orthotics.

Dava J. Newman is a professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Engineering Systems at MIT. She assisted NASA in developing the Bio-Suit.

November 8, 2010
Lauren Bon – Metabolic Studio

Lauren Bon will talk about her current projects with her Metabolic Studio, including Silver and Water, a film made out of the silver and water historically mined out of the Owens River Valley. The film—to be released in November 13, 2013, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Los Angeles River pipeline—is physically made out of the materials of the valley and developed with the trona excavated from the dry lakebed. She will also discuss The Anabolic Monument. The monument is at the site where Notacornfield was located—at the other end of the L.A. River, some 240 miles away. Her talk will address how these metabolic works use creative endeavor to galvanize social and political transition within complex bureaucracies such the Department of Water and Power and the State Park System.

Lauren Bon is an artist and MIT alumna. Her Metabolic Studio is based in Los Angeles.

Additional speakers to be announced.

The series is part of the MIT course, Second Skin / Bodywear: Advanced Workshop in Artistic Practice and Transdisciplinary Research taught by Professor Ute Meta Bauer and the Performance Workshop of Professor Joan Jonas.

Mondays 7:00-9:00 pm
MIT Bartos Theater
Wiesner Bldg (E15) Lower Level
20 Ames Street
Cambridge, MA USA

[email protected]


The Wiesner Building is located in Kendall Square, Cambridge.

Take the MBTA red line to the Kendall/MIT stop. Follow Main Street west to Ames Street, turn left, and walk one block.

Ames Street has limited on-street parking. Visitors may park in MIT campus lots after 5PM. (The MIT Hayward Lot is on Hayward Street, off of Amherst Street.)

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School of Architecture + Planning at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
August 31, 2010

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