Fall 2020 Lecture Series: The Allegorical Resonance of Alchemical Affect

Fall 2020 Lecture Series: The Allegorical Resonance of Alchemical Affect

Art, Culture, and Technology Program at MIT

October 16, 2020
Fall 2020 Lecture Series: The Allegorical Resonance of Alchemical Affect
Virtual lecture series
October 26–December 7, 2020

Allegory as allowing interpretations that have the possibility of giving form to the immaterial while revealing hidden meanings.

Alchemy as a forerunner of chemistry, encompassing the recognition that serendipity as a chance operation can lead to unforeseen outcomes.

Affect as a verb generative of an experience, feeling, or emotion often in relation to compassion and empathy.

Resonance as the quality of being resonant, which creates a lasting effect and might be productive of transformation.

Barbara London: What’s Technology Got to Do with It?
Monday, October 26
Speaker: Barbara London
Respondent: Caroline Jones

Barbara London will investigate how media art is shaped by its DNA: technology, real-world politics, and art’s mutability. She will focus on how early pioneers and today’s young innovators combine forms, and along the way revise the definitions of such categories as single-channel, installation, performance, painting, photography, and interactivity. Most aspects of daily life are touched today by the Internet and social media’s broad reach. Now since COVID-19, artists are forging inventions that go beyond conventional gallery spaces. To make her points, London will discuss the work of artists Julia Scher (surveillance), Zhang Peili (installation), Teiji Furuhashi (performance and installation), Zina Saro-Wiwa (documentary and installation), Cao Fei (Second Life), and Rachel Rossin (VR).


Cesare Pietroiusti: Economic Principles and Artistic Use of Paradox
Monday, December 7

Speaker: Cesare Pietroiusti 
Respondent: Jesal Kapadia

Cesare Pietroiusti started his career in Psychiatry in 1979. He focused his early work as an artist on social psychology in relation to art. His work progressed into social projects that examined problematic and paradoxical situations that are hidden in common relationships and in ordinary acts—thoughts that come to mind without a reason, small worries, quasi-obsessions that are usually considered too insignificant to become a matter of discussion, or of self-representation. He teaches at the Laboratorio delle Tecniche e delle Espressioni Artistiche, IUAV University, Venice.


About the ACT Lecture Series:
ACT’s lecture series draws together artists, scholars, and other cultural practitioners from different disciplines to discuss artistic methodologies and forms of inquiry at the intersection of art, architecture, culture, science, and technology. Each spring and fall semester brings a different thematic focus and the format for each event shifts depending on the visitor(s) and the nature of their presentations and performances.

ACT’s fall 2020 lecture series is conceived by Judith Barry, ACT Director, and made possible with the generous support of our partners and collaborators: The Council for the Arts at MIT (CAMIT), MIT School of Architecture and Planning, and MIT Department of Architecture.

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Art, Culture, and Technology Program at MIT
October 16, 2020

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