Delighted and honoured to be invited as a speaker
Nonhuman Agents in Art, Culture and Theory
24-26 November, 2017
Art Laboratory Berlin
Prinzenallee 58, 13359 Berlin-Wedding (Across the street from the Art Laboratory Berlin exhibition space)
*image credits below
Nonhuman Agents takes into account recent philosophical approaches which question anthropocentrism. These discourses emphasise nonhuman perspectives through object-oriented ontology (Harman and Meillasoux); discuss nonhuman / human encounters (Haraway); postulate a posthumanism (Braidotti); and examine various posthuman performative strategies such as intra-acting (Barad). A new ‘de-centring’ lets us draw our attention to a reality that can no longer be described in purely anthropocentric parameters.
As a theoretical addition to our ongoing series Nonhuman Agents (June – December 2017) Art Laboratory Berlin – along with our partners, The Institute for Arts and Media, University of Potsdam – has brought together international artists, scholars, and scientists from different disciplines to discuss artistic, philosophical, ethical and scientific approaches to nonhuman agency. Previous positions from our Nonhuman Subjectivities series (2016-17) were also be included.
The conferencestarted with a reflection on post-anthropocentrism by redefining intelligence (human, animal and plant intelligence), agency and sentience. An in-depth consideration included the role of fungi: mycelium, the Internet of trees and yeasts. Microbial agency was explored via the phenomenon of quorum sensing and biofilms, proposing a micro-subjectivity. There were contributions on the microbiome and holobiome, taking into consideration the human as nonhuman. We sought to open up a discussion to endosymbiosis and sympoiesis, reflecting symbiotic relationships, horizontal gene transfer and the role of Lynn Margulis in 21st century Biology and Science and Technology Studies. Finally, the conference discussed nonhuman perspectives under threat and proposed an ethology for the techno-scientific era.
-Regine Rapp & Christian de Lutz