CuMMA Discourse Series #41
8th of November 2017, 19.15
Museum of Impossible Forms,
Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki
Materials, whether naturally occurring, industrially manufactured, or computationally derived behave in essence as mediatic sensors that archive their complex interactions with the world, producing ontological transformations and informatic dispositions that can be forensically decoded and reassembled back into a history. I call these non-human entities and machinic ecologies material witnesses. Through the presentation of a series of cases and screening of clips this public lecture tries to account for the myriad ways in which the responsiveness of matter to external forces demands an acute and renewed sense of material and technical specificity in order to grasp the full political implications that such ongoing changes or interactions might yield.
Susann Schuppli is an artist and researcher based in the UK, whose work examines material evidence from war and conflict to environmental disasters. Current work explores the ways in which toxic ecologies from nuclear accidents and oil spills to the dark snow of the arctic are producing an “extreme image” archive of material wrongs. Creative projects have been exhibited throughout Europe, Asia, Canada, and the US. Forthcoming and recent commissions include Slick Images, SculptureCenter, NY, Trace Evidence, Arts Catalyst UK & Bildmuseet, Sweden, and Atmospheric Feedback Loops, a Vertical Cinema commission for Sonic Acts, Amsterdam. Current exhibitions include Bonniers Kunsthall, Stockholm, Artspace, Auckland, Ural Biennale, Moscow Biennale, and Z33, Belgium. She has published widely within the context of media and politics and is author of the forthcoming book, Material Witness (MIT Press 2018). Schuppli is Reader and Director of the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London and was previously Senior Research Fellow on the Forensic Architecture project. In 2016 she received the ICP Infinity Award for Critical Writing and Research.