50th Anniversary of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies

50th Anniversary of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies

Art, Culture, and Technology Program at MIT

György Kepes with William Wainwright, Photoelastic Walk interactive walkway, 1969. Photo: Nishan Bichajian.

March 9, 2018
50th Anniversary of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies
Art, Culture, and Technology Program at MIT
77 Massachusetts Avenue E15-212
School of Architecture + Planning
Cambridge, MA 02139

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Throughout its history, CAVS was known for its emphasis on environmental art and art at the civic scale. These themes remain central to the work of ACT. The 50th anniversary program will stretch and extend the ideas and dynamics of CAVS via current and recent work of contemporary artists, thereby creating new spaces for action, recognizing historical echoes of specific sites of knowledge production, and investigating material energies through symposia, exhibits, performances, publications, and radically experimental artistic interventions and practices.

Current and upcoming events:

In Our Present Condition…
recent work by visual art alumni
SA+P Dean’s Gallery, on view through May 2018

This exhibit includes artists Jennifer Allora, who represented the US in the Venice Biennale (2011); Jill Magid, whose work is on view at the Hammer Museum, LA; Michael Rakowitz, recipient of the 2018 Trafalgar Square (London) Fourth Plinth Prize; Harvard Loeb Fellow Matthew Mazzotta; and artists Pia Lindman and Alia Farid, whose work was shown in the 2016 São Paulo Bienal, as well as other prominent alumni whose work engages with civic life and creates alternative models of contemporaneity.

In Our Present Condition (N-Z) 
Gallery 9, on view through May 2018
Exhibition of student work from 4.314/5 ACT Advanced Workshop in Artistic Practice and Transdisciplinary Research: Porous Boundaries, Shifting Borders, and Fertile Edges, co-taught by the CAVS 50th Curatorial Team of Laura Knott, Lars Bang Larsen, and Gediminas Urbonas.

March 6–29
Wind Egg
Keller Gallery
Screening of a film by ACT Alumnus Haseeb Ahmed, that conjured the face of the wind to test the ancient Greek theory that animals could be fertilized in the same way that plants reproduce. After using the wind and a vulture to prove that this is possible, the experiment turned towards the Astrobiological implications of this coupling.

March 7
Dragonfly Eyes
Bartos Theatre
A screening of Xu Bing’s Dragonfly Eyes,the first feature film ever made using only surveillance footage, with artist talk to follow.
Respondent: Eugenie Brinkema

April 3
The Wind Tunnel Model
The ACT Cube

Florian Dombois and Haseeb Ahmed present their individual and collaborative artistic practices and research on wind tunnels. Together with the Research Focus in Transdisciplinarity Zurich, led by Dombois, they edited the “Wind Tunnel Bulletin.” Dombois will present last year’s project Galleria del Vento in Venice, while Ahmed presents excerpts from Wind Egg, a film shot during an intervention at the von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics in Belgium.

April 27–28
International Symposium on Zooetics+
The Zooetics+ Symposium invites renowned scholars, artists, philosophers, scientists, anthropologists and cultural theorists to address cohabitation of human and other forms of life as an urgent issue that unfolds through a variety of discourses: indigenous and vernacular knowledge, biosemiotics, posthumanism, and human-animal studies, among others. Zooetics proposes re-imagining the role of ecosystemic thinking and artistic imagination in this context. In looking toward possible futures, the symposium asks, “How can the work of Zooetics help us to explore and define new habits of thought that allow us to think sympoietically?”

May 2018
Campus-wide events and exhibits continue, including works by ACT students, and the opening of a “campus extension” at the Venice Biennale of Architecture: The Swamp Pavilion, organized by Urbonas Studio.

The CAVS 50th Anniversary Program is conceived by the curatorial team led by Gediminas Urbonas, associate professor at ACT, visiting curator Lars Bang Larsen and  Laura Knott, ACT Consulting Curator. It is coordinated by Laura Serejo Genes, graduate student and research assistant, and supported by ACT’s Director, Judith Barry. 

This program is made possible with the generous support from the MIT School of Architecture and Planning, MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology, The Council for the Arts at MIT, the Nordic Culture Fund, swissnex Boston and Goethe-Institut Boston.

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Art, Culture, and Technology Program at MIT
March 9, 2018

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