SUPERHUMANITY TALKS at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial

SUPERHUMANITY TALKS at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial

SUPERHUMANITY TALKS at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial
October 20, 2016

On October 20, e-flux Architecture will present SUPERHUMANITY TALKS, a panel event at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial. Join Superhumanity editors Nick Axel, Beatriz Colomina, and Mark Wigley along with special guests Keller Easterling, Anselm Franke, Francesca Hughes, Lydia Kallipoliti, Laura Kurgan, Lesley Lokko, Spyros Papapetros, Felicity D. Scott, Pelin Tan and Eyal Weizman for a series of presentations and conversations.

Introductory remarks on the project and theme by the editors.

Thresholds of the Human
Eyal Weizman, Spyros Papapetros, Anselm Franke, Lesley Lokko

Science, Between Reality and Fiction
Lydia Kallipoliti, Felicity D. Scott, Pelin Tan

Epistemic Supports
Francesca Hughes, Keller Easterling, Laura Kurgan

Drawing from “The Obligation to Self-Design” (e-flux journal 0), a text by Boris Groys in which a genealogy of design is traced from the design of the soul and the design of the self to “the design of life as a whole,” Superhumanity responds to the Biennial’s theme—Are We Human?—by engaging with and departing from the concept of the “self.” Superhumanity aims to explore and challenge our understanding of “design” by probing the idea that we are and always have been continuously reshaped by the artifacts we shape, to which we ask: who designed the lives we live today? What are the forms of life we inhabit, and what new forms are currently being designed? Where are the sites, and what are the techniques, to design others?

Over 50 invited writers, scientists, artists, architects, designers, philosophers, historians, archeologists and anthropologists will continue to bring new insight to these and related questions over the coming months. Contributions will be published on the e-flux website and dispatched as emails. To join the Superhumanity mailing list, please subscribe to e-flux Architecture here.

In addition to online publication, a Superhumanity reading room will be exhibited as a part of the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial from October 22 to November 20 at DEPO (Tütün Deposu Lüleci Hendek Caddesi No.12, Tophane 34425 İstanbul).

Keller Easterling is an architect and writer from New York City and a professor at Yale University. Her most recent book, Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space (Verso, 2014) examines global infrastructure networks as a medium of polity. Her essay “No You’re Not“ was published on September 26, 2016.

Anselm Franke is a curator and writer based in Berlin, Germany. He is head of the Department of Visual Arts and Film at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, where in 2015 he curated Ape Culture with Hila Peleg, and in 2012, Animism.

Francesca Hughes is an architectural theorist and educator who teaches at the AA, London. Author of The Architecture of Error: Matter, Measure and the Misadventures of Precision, she is currently working on a pre-history of the Universal Discrete MachFrancesine.

Lydia Kallipoliti is an architect, engineer and scholar, currently an Assistant Professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She is the author of the forthcoming book Closed Worlds, Or, What is the Power of Shit? Her essay “Masters and Slaves“ was published on October 19, 2016.

Laura Kurgan is an Associate Professor of Architecture and director of the Center for Spatial Research at GSAPP Columbia University and the author of Close Up at a Distance: Mapping, Technology, and Politics (Zone Book, 2013). 

Lesley Lokko is an architect and academic, and the author of nine best-selling novels. She is Associate Professor at the University of Johannesburg where she heads the Graduate School of Architecture.

Spyros Papapetros is Associate Professor of History and Theory in the School of Architecture and the Program in Media and Modernity at Princeton University. He is author of On the Animation of the Inorganic: Art, Architecture, and the Extension of Life (Chicago University Press, 2012).

Felicity D. Scott is Associate Professor of Architecture, Director of the PhD program in Architecture (History and Theory), and Co-director of the Critical, Curatorial and Conceptual Practices in Architecture (CCCP) program at Columbia GSAPP. Her most recent book is Outlaw Territories: Environments of Insecurity/Architectures of Counter-insurgency (Zone Books, 2016). 

Pelin Tan is a sociologist and art historian based in Mardin, Turkey. She is an Associate Professor of Architecture at Mardin Artuklu University, contributor to The Silent University, Visiting Associate Professor at the School of Design, Hong Kong PolyU, and a fellow of the ACT Program at MIT. 

Eyal Weizman is an architect, Professor of Spatial and Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London, and Director of Forensic Architecture. His essay “Are They Human?“ was published on October 10, 2016.

Superhumanity is a project by e-flux Architecture at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial, produced in cooperation with the Istanbul Design Biennial, the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Zealand, and the Ernst Schering Foundation.

Architecture, Design

Nick Axel is an architect, editor, educator, and curator. He is Deputy Editor of e-flux Architecture and Head of the Architectural Design department at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie.

Beatriz Colomina is an architecture historian, theorist, and curator. She is the founding director of the Program in Media and Modernity at Princeton University, the Howard Crosby Butler Professor of the History of Architecture, and Director of Graduate studies in the School of Architecture.

Keller Easterling is a writer, designer, and professor at Yale University.

Francesca Hughes is an architectural theorist and educator who works at the feminist intersection of architecture, history of science and technology. Having taught for over two decades at the AA and the Bartlett, she was recently Head of School at UTS, Sydney.

Lydia Kallipoliti is an Assistant Professor of Architecture at The Cooper Union in New York and the author of The Architecture of Closed Worlds (2018). She is the principal of ANAcycle thinktank.

Laura Kurgan is Professor of Architecture at the Graduate School of Architecture Planning and Preservation at Columbia University, where she directs the Center for Spatial Research (CSR) and the Visual Studies curriculum.

Lesley Lokko is a Ghanaian-Scottish architect, academic, and novelist. She is the founder and director of African Futures Institute, Accra, Ghana and was Dean of the Bernard & Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, CCNY from 2019–2020. She was the founder and director of the Graduate School of Architecture at the University of Johannesburg from 2014–2019.

Spyros Papapetros is Associate Professor of History and Theory in the School of Architecture and the Program in Media and Modernity at Princeton University.

Felicity D Scott is a scholar based in New York, where she teaches at Columbia University. She writes on architecture, art, and media, often articulating their mutual entanglements, and their inscription within genealogies of techno-scientific, institutional, and geopolitical transformations. Her books include Architecture or Techno-Utopia: Politics After Modernism (MIT Press, 2007), Ant Farm (Actar, 2008), Outlaw Territories: Environments of Insecurity/Architectures of Counter-Insurgency (Zone Books, 2016), and Disorientations: Bernard Rudofsky in the Empire of Signs (Sternberg Press, 2016). Her current work focuses on architecture’s relation to mechanisms of global environmental governance in the 1960s and 1970s, and the developmental and media regimes that informed the shifting topology of the so-called Global North and Global South.

Eyal Weizman is Professor of Spatial and Visual Cultures and founding director of the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London. In 2010 he founded the research agency Forensic Architecture and directs it ever since.

Mark Wigley is Professor and Dean Emeritus at Columbia GSAPP. His most recent book is Konrad Wachsmann’s Television: Post-Architectural Transmissions (Sternberg Press, 2020).

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