The 2015 Goldfarb Summer Institute - SIGHTS + SITES: MEMORY, MONUMENTS and PLACE AFTER THE DIGITAL TURN

 

SCHOOL OF THE ARTS, MEDIA, PERFORMANCE AND DESIGN
YORK UNIVERSITY

GS/ARTH6020 A

PROFESSOR SHELLEY HORNSTEIN
Room: GCFA tbd

The annual Joan & Martin Goldfarb Summer Institute in Visual Arts, now in its seventh year, offers York University graduate students and the wider community the opportunity to engage with prominent international theorists, artists, curators and critics through seminars, workshops and public lectures. This intensive format is an opportunity for graduate students to engage deeply with each other, Professor Hornstein, and international guest faculty for a two-week period from May 4 - May 15, 2015. This course will explore the writings of our distinguished speakers to investigate the assumed invisibility or heightened visibility of the material and digital presence of communities, performers and things, and the inevitable and multiple interfaces between them.

The theme of this summer institute will explore the pervasiveness and shifting landscape of screen-based images in our everyday lives and the feverish pace at which we create, disseminate, upload, download, remember, forget, save and delete them. Concurrently, we will examine what monuments, memorials and public art mean as material objects in urban and rural space. Can we seek new identities and cultural contexts through mediated images on screens? What does it mean to recognize the mobility of the image and its autonomy from physical place and material culture? How does a digital or virtual image situate people and place: networks, context, cities, and geographies? What is the relationship between an ephemeral image and a material one? When images disappear, what do we remember? Are we and our images and places, truly mobile and connected? What is the enduring relationship of tangible to intangible heritage? And what constitutes our cultural and collective memory? Can digital images trigger memory as effectively as physical objects in land- and cityscapes?

The reading list will draw largely from texts written by our esteemed guests. Students will be required to produce written responses to the readings and to take turns presenting in class. Dialogue among seminar participants will continue online through Moodle after May 10 in part to provide support as students develop their own research papers that will be due at the beginning of June.

Visiting Guest Speakers:
• James Young
• Marita Sturken
• Melissa Shiff & Louis Kaplan
• Paula Amad and Nick Yablon
• Additional possible site visits with: Scott Weir; and the RAD lab (Responsive Architecture at Daniels)

PRELIMINARY EVENT:
MARCH 12, 5PM – SHIMON ATTIE
Goldfarb Annual Lecture - Room 312 GCFA

Sites Unseen
Shimon Attie, a New York-based, internationally renowned visual artist, will present and discuss selected art projects, including early site-specific installations across Europe and the United States, as well as more recent works that involve multiple-channel immersive video installations. He will also show images from his most recent project, “Facts on the Ground”, a series of site-specific installations that he created across Israel and Palestine.

In many of these projects, Attie draws upon a wide variety of media to re-imagine new relationships between space, time, place and identity. He also often engages local communities in the creation of these works. Attie is particularly concerned with issues of loss, communal trauma and the potential for regeneration.

In addition to presenting his works, Attie will touch upon themes related to ephemeral versus material images, and how this relates to the process of remembering and forgetting. He will also through his presentation suggest broader parameters of what constitutes “site”, context, culture and politics.