Symposium: Rethinking Robert Smithson

Art and Ecology related symposium at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague on Friday 30 March:

In many ways, the artistic debates prevalent in the 1970s are recurring in our time: the relation between art and ecology, the position of the artist within a information and media society and the crisis of (neo)liberalism. Although the societal context and diameters of these discussions have changed profoundly, their basis can be found in the period from 1965 to 1975, considered a paradigmatic shift in art and society. But how well do we actually know our immediate past and what can we learn from it? Smithson’s artistic heritage provides an interesting and relevant case study in this respect. Rethinking Robert Smithson aims to open up a discussion about current concerns in art and theory at the intersection of art historical debate and contemporary art practice. Along the line of two thematic approaches related to Smithson’s work, Art and Ecology and The Cinematic Condition, topical concerns in artistic practice are reconsidered by internationally renowned theorists and artists.

For more details see:
Rethinking Smithson Symposium




The Animal Gaze Returned

This should be good…
Following the success of the first Animal Gaze symposium three years ago, London Metropolitan University presents The Animal Gaze Returned – a second symposium on contemporary art and animal-human studies to take place 27-28 October 2011 at the university’s School of Fine Art, Sir John Cass Faculty of Art, Media & Design, in Whitechapel, London (UK).

Animal Ecologies Symposium


8th of October 2011
UCL, London

The symposium proposes an exploration of artistic practices involved with animals and environments.  In the recent re-surfacing of the animal in contemporary art, emphasis has been given to mammals, mainly because of the most immediate relational opportunities that these animals offer to us.  However, a number of very interesting artists has been recently trying to bridge the abyss between ‘us’ and more ‘taxonomically remote’ creatures through the use of art and science as active interfaces.  This new focus reveals the interconnectedness between humans, amphibians, reptiles and insects, and the environments in which we all live.  Through a multidisciplinary approach, the symposium aims at facilitating a dialogue between artists, scientists and academics interested in informing wider audiences through visual communication.

Speakers Include: Heather Ackroyd and Dan Harvey / Ron Broglio / Maja and Reuben Fowkes /Rikke Hansen / London Fieldworks / Joyce Salisbury / Linda Williams

For tickets are further details see:

Sustainability and Contemporary Art

Sustainability and Contemporary Art:
Art, Post-Fordism and Eco-Critique

International Symposium at Central European University Budapest
19-20 March 2010

Ralo Mayer, Multiplex Fiction, 2008

This symposium focuses on the intersections between globalisation, ecology and contemporary art and examines the relevance of post-Fordist theory for both environmentalism and artistic practice.

The symposium is organised as a series of critical conversations between speakers from the fields of art, philosophy and environmental science that respond to urgent questions such as:

What is the way forward after the failure of the Copenhagen Summit and in the face of growing public scepticism about the science of climate change?
How has the spread of flexible post-Fordist practices effected the way artists, cultural producers, academics and environmentalists work?
How might artists develop ways to critique capitalism with an awareness of ecology and the complexity of globalisation?

With Stephen Wright (art theorist, Paris), Igor Stokfiszewski (curator/critic/playwright, Warsaw), Branka Cvjeticanin (multimedia artist, Zagreb), Ralo Mayer (artist, Vienna), Maja and Reuben Fowkes (, Ruben Mnatsakanian and Alan Watt (CEU Department of Environmental Science and Policy).

For more information see: