in the arts, sciences, & technology from the 1960s to today
As part of the Arts Research Collaboration initiative sponsored by the University of Kansas Research Investment Council, the Spencer Museum of Art is organizing an international conference on hybrid research practices. We seek to broaden our understanding of a pivotal period in America’s history and art and gain a deeper understanding of why collaborative work is undertaken less frequently today and how such work might be stimulated and sustained.
The conference—which will be March 10–13, 2015, at The Commons at KU—will explore three major aspects of hybrid artistic research including key hybrid projects from the past 50 years; shared vocabularies and the role of language in cross-disciplinary collaboration; and the impact of interdisciplinary work on the identity of the hybrid practitioner.
Together with papers and keynote presentations, the conference will incorporate performative and event-based creative projects grounded in hybrid art-science-technology research. Thanks to generous support from the Terra Foundation for American Art and the Kress Foundation Department of Art History at KU, this conference is free and open to the public.
Although there is no fee to attend the conference, we ask all participants and attendees to register using our online form, allowing us to better plan seating, catering, etc.
Anne Collins Goodyear
Launching ‘Hybrid Practices’ in the 1960s: On the Perils and Promise of Art and Technology
The 1960s witnessed an exciting explosion of collaborations among artists, technologists, and scientists. Among these experimental partnerships were projects carried out under the sponsorships of Experiments in Art and Technology, “Art and Technology” at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT, and even NASA. Goodyear’s presentation examines the cultural and political environment that helped spawn, and later challenged, these undertakings—an environment that ultimately prepared the ground for today’s fertile field of hybrid practices.
Anne Collins Goodyear is co-director of the Bowdoin College Museum of Art and past president of the College Art Association. Prior to her work at Bowdoin, she served as a curator of prints and drawings at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery. Goodyear co-edited Vol. 9 of Artefacts: Studies in the History of Science and Technology (Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press, 2013) and has authored several essays on art-science-technology collaboration.
Dion’s large-scale installations, which often incorporate scientific methodologies for collecting and organizing objects, address how contemporary society engages with history and the natural world. His work challenges the ways public institutions and dominant ideologies shape the popular understanding of scientific knowledge. In this presentation Dion will give an overview of his artistic practice, covering a number of projects that touch on archaeology, public art, and various other endeavors.
Mark Dion is an internationally recognized artist based in New York City. He recently completed a major installation at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts in Germany, and he has also exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Tate Gallery in London. Dion’s numerous awards include the ninth annual Larry Aldrich Foundation Award (2001), the Joan Mitchell Foundation Award (2007), and the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Lucelia Art Award (2008).
The general problem of deriving information (intelligence, actionable data, orienting indices) from “objects” has long preoccupied scientists, philosophers, and members of the clandestine services. There are now reasons to believe that individuals apparently associated with the CIA may well have embarked in the early 1960s on a notably non-traditional program of interrogatory investigations into the secret life of brute matter. Were these experiments conducted in association with associates of the Order of the Third Bird? It seems likely. Further work is needed, but on the evening of March 13, members of the Editorial Committee of ESTAR(SER) will provide a preliminary research report.
ESTAR(SER): The Esthetical Society for Transcendental and Applied Realization (now incorporating the Society of Esthetic Realizers) is an established body of private, independent scholars who work collectively to recover, scrutinize, and (where relevant) draw attention to the historicity of the Order of the Third Bird.
On the morning of Saturday, March 14, the Spencer Museum of Art will host a related event from 10 am to 12:30 pm. Registration is required. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
John Latham’s (1921–2006) legendary “monuments to the period we live in”—two partially preserved groups of oil shale bings, initially the waste product of redundant energy industries in Scotland—are a synthesis of methods developed by the Artist Placement Group. Richardson’s presentation will explore why Latham’s reimagination of these sites—which he renamed Niddrie Woman and Five Sisters—as “monumental process sculptures” has such resonance, and why the works remain inherently unrecognized.
Craig Richardson is a professor of fine art at Northumbria University (UK), where he serves as the principal investigator for the Centre for Doctoral Training (awarded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council in 2013), which aims to forge new cross-disciplinary collaborations in art and design. Richardson’s theoretical work focuses on the legacy of minimal and conceptual art in Scotland and England; he is the author of Scottish Art since 1960 (Ashgate, 2011).
Cristina Albu Abraham Avnisan Ingrid Bachmann Zandie Brockett Andrew Carnie David Cateforis Caitlin Cherry Anna Dot Steven Duval Susan Earle Kris Imants Ercums Christine Filipone Liss La Fleur Elsa Garmire Saralyn Reece Hardy Robert Hovden Erica Levin Jane Livingston Robin Lynch Julie Martin W. Patrick McCray James Moreno Maya Oppenheimer John Pearce, Jr. Catherine Richards Alessandro Rolandi Benjamin Rosenthal William Ruggiero Dawna Schuld Sandra Skurvida Tyler Stefanich Shepherd Steiner Maurice Tuchman John A. Tyson Ryan Waggoner Taylor Walsh Robert Whitman Matthew Wisnioski Dane Worrallo Alexa Wright Kari Zacharias
Dawna Schuld is an assistant professor in the Department of the History of Art at Indiana University, Bloomington, where she specializes in contemporary art with an emphasis on the situated spaces of 1960s and 1970s minimal and installation art and on the intersections of art and scientific research. Her latest book project, entitled The Conscious Medium and the Phenomenal Minimal, explores the dynamics of subjecthood in California Light and Space art.
Robin Lynch is an emergent curator and writer from Canada. She is currently an MA candidate at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, New York. Her thesis examines the dematerialization of art in the 1960s and ’70s in systems aesthetics and mail art practices as the starting point for the elasticity of contemporary artistic subjectivity within communications technology networks. In the summer of 2015, Lynch will be a research fellow at Henie Onstad Kunstsenter, Norway, where she will be looking at the early electronic arts and internet art show, Electra.
W. Patrick McCray is a professor in the History Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara; his research is on science and technology after 1945. The author of four books, he is currently working on a new project that explores collaborations between artists and engineers primarily from the perspective of the latter community.
Cristina Albu is an assistant professor in the Art and Art History Department of the University of Missouri–Kansas City. She has published articles on art and technology projects, new media, and sculpture in such journals as Artnodes, Athanor and Kritikos. Her writings have also appeared in several exhibition catalogues and edited volumes, including Eveline Bernasconi ed., Isaac Julien (Hatje Cantz, 2006); Jaynie Anderson ed.,Crossing Cultures (Melbourne University Press, 2009); and Caroline Menezes and Camila Maroja eds.,The Permanence of the Transient: Precariousness in Contemporary Art (2014). She is currently completing a book manuscript entitled Seeing Self, Observing Others: Mirror Affect in Contemporary Art.
Christine Filippone is an assistant professor of art history in the Department of Art and Design at Millersville University, specializing in contemporary art. Her research examines feminist aesthetic approaches to science and technology during the Cold War. For artists working in this period, military, domestic, and communication technologies represented a conceptual realm of investigation replete with negative associations in the wake of the Vietnam War, but new discoveries in these fields simultaneously suggested alternative social and environmental relationships in the context of the American women’s movement. Filippone’s research has been supported by a Mellon postdoctoral fellowship, an American Fellowship from the American Association of University Women (AAUW), and a Guggenheim Fellowship from the National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution. Her book manuscript, Science, Technology and Utopias in the Work of Contemporary Women Artists, is under contract with Ashgate Press. Prior to returning for her doctoral degree, she served as executive director of The Print Center in Philadelphia (founded in 1915 as The Print Club), an art gallery and store dedicated to contemporary printmaking and photography. She has also worked in curatorial departments at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Brooklyn Museum of Art, International Center of Photography in New York, and the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University.
Dane Worrallo is a research assistant and PhD candidate at the Centre for Fine Art Research (CFAR), based at the Birmingham School of Art, UK, where he is also a course tutor for contemporary philosophy and aesthetics. His research focuses on the nature of real-time systems and developing a “materiality of temporality” that allows artistic practices and artworks utilizing real-time technologies and feedback to develop an alternative method of identity and duration by understanding the role of undecidability in mathematics.
Anna Dot is a Barcelona-based visual artist and art critic with a BA in fine arts (Universitat de Barcelona) and an MA in digital art curatorship (Escola Superior de Disseny). For the past two years she has been exploring the potential of language in the field of visual arts. In September 2013 she turned the focus of both her theoretical and artistic practice on studying the possibilities of machine translation in contrast to the theories developed by many translation studies theorists.
Maya Oppenheimer is a design writer, tutor and researcher based in London and holds a PhD in Humanities and Cultural Studies from the London Consortium. Her work currently explores object-centred transactions across art, science and design, particularly laboratory instrumentaria and methodologies of experiment. Her teaching reflects this interest: she is a visiting tutor in the School of Design at the Royal College of Art and lecturer in Critical Studies and Visual Culture at the Cass School of Design and Imperial College London, retrospectively. Maya is an Executive Trustee of the Design History Society and also co-convenes a collaborative practice called Metalab that explores conceptual and haptic processes of research.
Sandra Skurvida is an adjunct assistant professor at the Fashion Institute of Technology–SUNY and a New York City-based independent scholar, curator, and art writer. Her research into interdisciplinary practices of the mid-twentieth century (John Cage and his circles) extrapolates to global contemporary performative and data-based art. Her current curatorial practice explores transnational exchanges of art and information (www.otheris.com). In 2013–14, her writings appeared in Interventions, Art Papers, Ibraaz, Mousse, and The International Journal of Islamic Art and Architecture. She lectured at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College; Parsons The New School University; School of Visual Arts; and the Museum of Modern Art. She holds a PhD in art history from Stony Brook University.
Alexa Wright is a British artist whose practice exists at the intersection of art and medical science. Her photography, video, sound, and interactive digital works have been shown widely, both nationally and internationally. Exhibitions include: The Naked Portrait, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh; El cuerpo (con)sentido, Centro de Historia, Zaragoza, Spain; BM Suma Gallery, Istanbul; International Symposium of Electronic Art, Ormeau Baths Gallery, Belfast; The Definition of Self, 21_21 Design Sight Gallery, Tokyo; Born in 1987: the Animated Gif, The Photographers Gallery, London; and Hybrid Bodies, PHI Centre, Montreal. Alexa is a reader in photography and visual culture at the University of Westminster, London.
Ingrid Bachmann is a multidisciplinary installation artist whose interests span obsolete technologies and digital media. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally in exhibitions and festivals in Canada, Europe, the United States, Asia, and Latin America, including the 11th Havana Biennial; Manifestation International d’art 6, Québec; Lab30, Augsburg, Germany; and the Southern Alberta Art Gallery. She is the co-editor of Material Matters (YYZ Books, 1998, 2000) and has contributed essays to several anthologies and periodicals, including The Object of Labor (MIT Press, 2007). She is currently an associate professor in the Studio Arts Department at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada.
Andrew Carnie is an artist and academic working in Winchester, UK. His artistic practice involves meaningful interaction with scientists in different fields. The work, which is frequently based around neurology at an early stage in its development, is often time-based in nature, involving slide projection using dissolve systems or video projection onto complex screen configurations. Recent exhibitions include SPLICE: At the Intersection of Art and Medicine, Pratt Gallery, New York; Brains: Mind As Matter, Science and Industry Museum, Manchester, UK; Subjective Resonance Imaging, Human Brain Mapping, Seattle; and Images of The Mind, Moravská Galerie, Brno, Czech Republic.
Catherine Richards is a Canadian artist who works with old and new media. Her work explores the volatile sense of ourselves as we are shifting our boundaries—a process in which new technologies play a starring role. She has an extensive history of working with scientists and research labs. Recent exhibitions includeHybrid Bodies, PHI Center, Montreal; Transitio_MX 05: Biomediaciones, Mexico City; Patent Pending, ZERO1 Garage, San Jose, CA; SPLICE: At the Intersection of Art and Medicine, Blackwood Gallery and the University of Toronto Art Centre, Toronto; Mirror Neurons, part of AV Festival 2012: As Slow as Possible, National Glass Centre, Sunderland, UK.
Taylor Walsh is a PhD candidate at Harvard University and a fellow at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, writing a dissertation on Bruce Nauman’s late-1960s experiments with unusual media. Her chapter on holography offers the first focused examination of Nauman’s vivid 3D portraits and provides a rigorous art-historical account of a format that has previously been ignored or maligned. She delivered a paper on Nauman’s forays into sound art at the Whitney Museum in May 2014 and will give invited lectures on the artist’s films at the Smithsonian and Dia:Beacon in 2015.
Erica Levin is currently an assistant professor of film and art history at the Cleveland Institute of Art. She has a PhD in film studies from the University of California–Berkeley. Her research focuses on the intersection between film, performance, and politics, with a particular focus on the social dimensions of experimental media practices of the 1960s. She is currently working on a manuscript that situates Carolee Schneemann’s work (among others) within an expanded history of the aesthetics of social media. Her writing on Schneemann has been published in the journal World Picture and is soon forthcoming in a collected volume entitled Carolee Schneemann: Unforgivable, published by Black Dog Press. Other recent publications have appeared in Millennium Film Journal and Discourse.
William Ruggiero is an art historian and curator based in Chicago, where he attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago as a graduate student in modern art history, theory, and criticism. His research interests range from socially engaged art practices to modern and contemporary Latin American art and urban histories. He is currently a HATCH Projects resident curator at the Chicago Artists Coalition as part of JGV/WAR, a curatorial creative and collaborative with J. Gibran Villalobos. In the fall of 2014 he co-organized Cuban Virtualities: New Media from the Island at the Sullivan Galleries. Additionally, he will be participating in a collaborative project with the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de San Agustin as part of the 2015 Havana Biennial. In the future, he hopes to pursue doctoral studies to continue his research on Latin American modern and contemporary art and architecture.
Liss La Fleur is a nonfiction new media artist and scholar, named one of 10 to Watch in 2014 by Independent Magazine. Her work investigates gender + sexuality, identity, and historic parallelism to challenge the interaction of subject: viewer: maker. She is currently the visiting artist and assistant professor of digital/new media at Davidson College. She earned her MFA in media art as a Digital Fellow at Emerson College and received a BFA in photography and a BA in art history with honors from the University of North Texas.
John A. Tyson teaches at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York and is a PhD candidate (ABD) at Emory University. He is presently completing his dissertation, Hans Haacke: Beyond Systems Aesthetics, which contains an extended discussion of Haacke’s artworks in relationship to emerging trends in art, technology, performance, and politics. Tyson is the recipient of a Henry Luce Foundation/ ACLS dissertation fellowship in American art (2014–15). In 2011–12 he was a Helena Rubinstein fellow of critical studies at the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program. He recently presented a paper at the Southeastern College Art Conference focusing on Haacke’s artworks made with live animals.
Kari Zacharias is a PhD student in science, technology, and society and human-centered design at Virginia Tech. She is a graduate assistant at the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology, where her work combines ethnography, historical research, and critical analysis with active participation in education and outreach programs. Zacharias’s research interests lie in interdisciplinary arts-technology institutions and their relationships to technical education and professional identity. She is a former practicing engineer and holds an MA in STS from the University of Vienna.
Matthew Wisnioski is an associate professor of science, technology, and society and a senior fellow of the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology at Virginia Tech. The author of Engineers for Change (MIT Press 2012), he has written about E.A.T., MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies, the origins of the Media Lab, and their institutional legacy on today’s explosion of art/sci/tech programs in Configurations, A Second Modernism (MIT Press 2013) and ARPA Journal (with Kari Zacharias). His work on hybrid practices is connected to a project on the history of “innovation expertise” supported by an NSF Scholars Award.
Tyler Stefanich was born and raised in Minnesota; he received his BFA in web+multimedia environments from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. His works encompass performance, installation, sculpture, computer software, hardware, and both digital and analog modified/hacked devices. He was a co-founder of Work Room, a group of designers who offer their talent to the creative community. Since receiving his MFA in design | media arts from the University of California–Los Angeles, he works as the lead developer for Northern Lights.mn, a roving media arts organization, as well as at the UCLA Game Lab.
Caitlin Cherry is an artist born in 1987 in Chicago, IL, who now lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Cherry received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2010 and her MFA from Columbia University in 2012. In 2009 she received the Ellen Battell Stoeckel Fellowship to attend Yale University’s Summer School of Art in Norfolk, CT. Her debut solo exhibition, Hero Safe, was presented at the Brooklyn Museum in summer 2013. She has also participated in group exhibitions at Postmasters Gallery, Zach Feuer Gallery in NY, The Studio Museum of Harlem, and Brett Shaheen Gallery in Cleveland, OH.
Abraham Avnisan is an experimental writer whose work is situated at the intersection of image, text, and code. Each of his projects seeks to appropriate and reinterpret a particular thinker, idea, or theoretical field that challenges us to reconsider the most fundamental ways in which we understand ourselves and the world around us. He has presented his work at the Electronic Literature Organization’s 2014 Hold the Light conference, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago’s “Word Weekend” event, and at a symposium at Columbia College Chicago titled “Radical Publishing.” His work has been published in Stonecutter, the Poetry Project Newsletter, Drunken Boat, New Delta Review, Rain Taxi, and others. He holds an MFA in poetry from Brooklyn College and is currently pursuing an MFA in Art and Technology Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Alessandro Rolandi is a native of Pavia, Italy. He studied chemistry at the universities of Pavia and Siena; experimental theatre in Milan, Rome, and Paris; and history of art and the market at Christie’s Education Paris. He has been living and working in Beijing since 2003 as a multimedia and performance artist, director, curator, researcher, writer, and lecturer. His work focuses on social intervention and relational dynamics to expand the notion of art practice beyond existing structures, spaces, and hierarchies and to engage directly with reality in multiple ways. His work has been shown, among other venues, at the Venice Biennale in 2005 and 2011; the WRO Biennale (Wrocław, Poland) in 2011; and the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (Beijing) in 2012.
Robert Hovden began his exploration of digital information during his undergraduate summers at Jet Propulsion Labs, NASA. Later, while studying physics at the Georgia Institute of Technology, he began to explore the science behind materials, which eventually led to his pursuit of graduate studies in nanoscience at Cornell University. Hovden’s current research can be broadly described as analogous to the photography of atoms.
Zandie Brockett is a Beijing-based independent curator, collaborator and project consultant from Los Angeles. She is the co-founder and chief curator of Bactagon Projects, a China-centric experimental curatorial platform dedicated to theoretical and practice-based investigations of interdisciplinary creative methodologies. The platform serves as a tool for the collective production and dissemination of research from Beijing-based creatives, with a monthly conversation series, curated experiential exhibitions and an independent publication. Graduating with a BA in sociology and photography from Duke University, she also holds her MA in management from the Fuqua School of Business. With essays published in a variety of Chinese periodicals, artist catalogs and journals, Zandie also has translated several Chinese texts and additionally works as the international project liaison for Chinese painter, Liu Xiaodong.
David Cateforis is a professor of art history at the University of Kansas, where he teaches American art as well as modern and contemporary art. He has lectured and published widely on 20th-century American art and international contemporary art and has contributed essays to numerous museum exhibition and collection catalogues; publishers include the Des Moines Art Center, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery, Spencer Museum of Art, and Wichita Art Museum. He is the editor of Rethinking Andrew Wyeth, published in June 2014 by the University of California Press.
Steven Duval is the post-doctoral researcher for the Arts Research Collaboration initiative at the Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas. He serves as the project director for Hybrid Practices. Duval earned a PhD in fine art practice from Oxford Brookes University, an MFA from the Edinburgh College of Art, and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Prior to his arrival at the SMA, Duval worked as coordinator of Protoacademy, a research project hosted by the Edinburgh College of Art. He has a strong interest in games, discourse & conversation analysis, environmental & architectural psychology, and environmental politics.
Susan Earle serves as curator of European and American Art at the Spencer Museum of Art. She has curated or organized more than fifty exhibitions and commissioned major works of art from both local and international artists, including, most recently, the exhibition and book An Errant Line: Ann Hamilton & Cynthia Schira (2013). Earle has a PhD in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. She holds appointments as courtesy assistant professor in the Kress Foundation Department of Art History and as affiliate faculty in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, both at the University of Kansas.
Kris Imants Ercums is curator of Asian and global contemporary art at the Spencer Museum of Art. Prior to joining the Spencer, Ercums resided in Beijing, where he conducted research as part of a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Research Abroad Fellowship. In 2009 he was awarded a Curatorial Research Fellowship from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts to investigate the interface between technology and contemporary artistic practice across Asia. Building on that research project, Ercums has organized six international artist-in-residence projects at the Spencer, with artists from China, Japan, Korea, and Mexico. He holds a PhD in Chinese art history from the University of Chicago.
Elsa Garmire is the Sydney E. Junkins Professor of Engineering Sciences at Dartmouth College. She received her A.B. at Harvard and her Ph.D. at M.I.T., both in physics. In her technical field of quantum electronics, lasers and optics, she has authored over 250 journal papers, obtained nine patents, and been on the editorial board of five technical journals. She was part of the team of 63 American and Japanese artists, engineers, and scientists who worked on the Pepsi Pavilion at the Osaka World Exposition in 1970. Garmire is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Saralyn Reece Hardy is Marilyn Stokstad Director of the Spencer Museum of Art and principal investigator for the Arts Research Collaboration initiative. She played a major role in developing The Commons, a partnership with the Biodiversity Institute and the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas. Hardy’s research focuses on modern and contemporary American art; she is currently conducting interviews on aging and legacy with artists represented in the Museum’s permanent collection who are 70 years of age or more. Before coming to the Spencer, Hardy served as director of Museums and Visual Arts at the National Endowment for the Arts.
Jane Livingston is an American art historian, writer, and curator. From 1967 to 1975 she served as curator of twentieth-century American art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), where she worked with Maurice Tuchman to oversee the Art and Technology program. Following her tenure at LACMA, Livingston was the chief curator and associate director at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Her publications include The Paintings of Joan Mitchell (University of California Press, 2002), The Art of Richard Diebenkorn (University of California Press, 1997), and Evidence 1944–1994 (Random House, 1994), the definitive account of the life and work of Richard Avedon.
Julie Martin has been active in the New York art scene since the 1960s. She worked with Robert Whitman on theater pieces before joining the staff of Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.) in 1966. With Billy Klüver and Barbara Rose, she co-edited Pavilion, a book documenting the design and construction of the Pepsi Pavilion for Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan. Martin currently serves as director of E.A.T. and executive producer of a series of films documenting the 1966 performance series 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering. She is also editing a book on the art and technology writings of Billy Klüver for the University of California Press.
James Moreno is an assistant professor of dance at the University of Kansas, where he teaches critical dance studies, modern dance technique, choreography, and dance and technology. Moreno holds a PhD in performance studies from Northwestern University, is a Fulbright Scholar, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Congress on Research in Dance (CORD). In 2011–12 he was visiting professor of dance at the University of Panamá in Panamá City, Panamá, and visiting guest artist at the National Dance of Panamá. His research, which he has presented nationally and internationally, investigates stagings of race, nation, and gender in mid-century U.S. modern dance with a focus on José Limón, Erick Hawkins, and Charles Weidman. Moreno is published in Dance Chronicle: Studies in Dance and the Related Arts and Conversations Across the Field of Dance Studies.
John Pearce, Jr. retired as university architect for Duke University in 2010. He holds a BA and MArch from Yale University. Pearce is known for his commitment to sustainability and green energy in his work. In the late 1960s, he designed several houses in Colorado that tapped into geothermal power and incorporated new energy efficiency technologies. He served as the lead architect for the Pepsi Pavilion created by Experiments in Art and Technology for the Osaka World Exposition in 1970. One of his notable achievements was devising a way to fit a spherical mylar mirror into the air-tight cage structure of the pavilion.
Benjamin Rosenthal holds an MFA in art studio from the University of California–Davis and a BFA in art (electronic time-based media) from Carnegie Mellon University. His work has been exhibited internationally in such venues as the Stuttgarter Filmwinter (Stuttgart, Germany), FILE Electronic Language International Festival (São Paulo, Brazil), Vanity Projects (New York, NY), the Museum of Contemporary Art of Vojvodina (Novi Sad, Serbia), and online via the Istanbul Contemporary Art Museum (Is.CaM). Pulling from a variety of fields in the humanities and sciences, he questions the authenticity of our physical experience in an age where the boundaries between reality and the virtual become indistinguishable. Rosenthal is an assistant professor of expanded media in the Department of Visual Art at the University of Kansas, where he teaches video art, performance art, and interdisciplinary practices.
Shepherd Steiner is an assistant professor of contemporary art history and theory at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada. His research involves the intersection between practice and theory in contemporary art, especially the ways in which interpretative dynamics encountered on the micro level of the work of art are mediated by larger issues in the political crucible. Steiner’s recent books include Rodney Graham: The Phonokinetoscope, (London: Afterall Books: One Work Series, 2013) and The New Criticism: Formalist Literary Theory in America, co-edited with Rick Armstrong and Alfred J. Drake (London: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2013).
Maurice Tuchman served as the first curator of twentieth-century American art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). He organized several exhibitions and projects that were influential in the development of the Southern California art scene, including Art & Technology, a four-year program introduced in 1966 to promote exchange between artists and the corporate world. Several major figures in the art world took part in the program, including James Turrell, Robert Irwin, and Andy Warhol. The program culminated in a pavilion at the 1970 Osaka World Exposition and an exhibition at LACMA the same year.
Ryan Waggoner graduated from the University of Kansas in 2011 with a BFA in photomedia and a minor in art history. While in college, Waggoner worked as a photojournalist for three years for the award-winning daily newspaper The University Daily Kansan, including one year as photo editor. He completed several large bodies of work during this time, including An Appetite for Energy, focusing on energy consumption in the United States. This work was exhibited several times in 2011, including a solo show at the Lawrence Public Library, as well as at the inaugural KU Energy Conference. In addition to his work as the collections photographer at the Spencer Museum of Art, Waggoner continues to pursue fine art and documentary photography as an avocation.
Robert Whitman is an American artist best known for his seminal theater pieces of the early 1960s combining visual and sound images, actors, film, slides, and evocative props in environments of his own making. Since the late 1960s he has worked with new technologies, and his most recent work incorporates cellphones. Whitman was one of the 10 New York artists who worked with Billy Klüver and more than 30 engineers from Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1966 to create the series of performance artworks known as 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering. Whitman was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1976.