Diffraction, Entanglement and the Sensuous Unnatural Act (called Art)

Liberal Arts and Natural Sciences Distinguished Lecture

  • Professor Johnny Golding
  • Professor of Philosophy and Fine Art, School of Arts and Humanities (SOAH), Royal College of Art, London.
  • Friday 20 October 2017 at 18:00
  • Venue: Arts Building, Main Lecture Theatre (120), University of Birmingham
  • All welcome
  • There will be refreshments and nibbles after.
  • Register for this lecture (Eventbrite, free)

Not for the first time in the history, theory and practice of art has the influence of science taken on the role of a strong though usually silent partner in the development of arts' material expressions, logics, representations, stylistics and/or practical-political pathways.

Johnny GoldingProfessor Johnny Golding

But today something ground-breaking and certainly compelling in its raw intensity is occurring across and through the discipline, disrupting in its wake the very meaning of materiality, philosophy, aesthetics and indeed contemporary art practice itself.  

In direct opposition to Newtonian physics and its insistence on a conception of absolute space as inseparable from dialectical development, Diffraction, Entanglement and the 'Sensuous Unnatural’ Act(s) of Art seeks to explore the ephemeral skins of radical matter and its consequent requirement to re-stage aesthetics and contemporary art practices away from simplistic  "scientistic 'rationality' v artistic 'irrationality'” binarisms, where either art acts as the handmaiden to science or science is used as the metric for art research.  

What is proposed, instead, is a walk on the wild side of science and its impact for redressing not only the tedium of a binaric divide, but propelling us toward, post-postmodern Enlightenment: one that not only re-thinks the very  ‘matter’ of contemporary art, but also impacts on the question: what does it mean, in the 21st century to be or to become ‘human'.

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