"The Arts of Memory" – NSSR Interdisciplinary Memory Conference, The New School – April 26, 27

This Thursday and Friday! Join us for:

The Arts of Memory

The Fifth Annual Interdisciplinary Memory Conference
The New School for Social Research, NYC
Thursday and Friday, April 26-27, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 6:30 p.m.
(Orozco Room, 66 West 12th St, 7th Floor)

“An Archive of Threat”

Peter C. Van Wyck 
Graduate Media Studies Program Director
Associate Professor in Communication Studies
Concordia University
Drawing from an archive of images arising from two book projects – Signs of Danger: Waste, Trauma, and Nuclear Threat and The Highway of the Atom – this text will trace a route from Canada’s far north, to Japan, Finland and New Mexico. Its itinerary concerns the constellation of effects – with respect to memory in particular – wrought by atomic and nuclear threats and disaster.  
Keynote followed by a reception.

Friday, April 27, 6:30 p.m.
(Wolff Room, 6 East 16th St, 11th Floor)

“Memory Palaces — the Renaissance and the Contemporary World”

Lina Bolzoni Global Distinguished Professor of Italian Studies
New York University
An ancient tradition teaches the art of memory. This art builds palaces in the mind in which to place images that help us to remember. While this tradition may at first sight appear radically remote from the world we live in today, it nevertheless regularly resurfaces in different forms. This talk describes the most famous “theatre of memory” of the Renaissance, the magical-hermetic Theatro of Giulio Camillo, and draws comparisons with the Encyclopedic Palace of the World (now in the American Folk Art Museum of New York), the brainchild of an Italian emigrant who developed this project for Washington Mall in the 1950s. Further contemporary employments of the ancient memory techniques may be observed in the life and works of historian Tony Judt and writer Siri Hustdvedt, opening up intriguing questions as to why such reemergence should occur at this particular historical juncture.
Keynote followed by a reception.


Thursday, April 26, panels begin at 2:00pm and end at 6:00pm at 66 West 12th St:

  • Discourses of Memory: Scientific, Historical, Popular
  • Socialist & Post-Socialist Memory Shifts: Public and Private Records
  • Philosophy & Theory
  • Digital Memory

Friday, April 27, panels begin at 9:00am and end at 6:00pm at 6 East 16th St.:

  • Architecture & Built Environment
  • Bodies, Burials, and Graves
  • Senses and Experience
  • Relocated Memory
  • Countermemories
  • Performing Public History
  • Memory in Movement: Translating & Reimagining Social Relations
  • Concrete, Leather, & Other Mnemonic Objects

The 2012 Interdisciplinary Memory Conference focuses on contemporary arts of memory, playing on the title of Frances Yates’ influential text The Art of Memory (1966), in which she traces mnemonic techniques from the classical age to the Enlightenment. 

Participants will discuss the arts and artifices of memory practice, including those embedded in physical forms, such as photographs and memorials, as well as in actions, such as exhumations, walking tours, and online interaction. Interdisciplinary in scope, the conference reaches for new ways to conceptualize the arts of memory through the visual, tactile, textual, and synesthetic expressions of the past. 

The full conference schedule is available online:http://www.newschool.edu/nssr/subpage.aspx?id=78306

For more information: www.nssrmemoryconference.com

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