SARA MAMENI: ‘Fire, a Deconstruction’, with response by Edgar Schmitz, and plenary  

[in progress]


Photo: Screenshot from Werner Herzog’s Lessons of Darkness (1992)  

This talk considers the energetic force of fire as it erupts from volcanoes or oil wells. It reads its sonic and vibrational movement through the earth in the form of earthquakes and other energetic affects. Drawn from her book manuscript, Crude AestheticsMameni examines the animate and deconstructive vitality of fire within multiple sites, from Iran to Kuwait to the island of Hawai’i.  

Sara Mameni is the director of Aesthetics and Politics program and faculty in the school of Critical Studies at California Institute of the Arts. She received her PhD in Art History from University of California San Diego in 2015 and was a UC President’s Postdoctoral Fellow in Feminist Studies at UC Santa Cruz in 2016/2017. Her specialization is contemporary art in the Arab/Muslim world with a focus on queer of color theory. Her current research explores biopolitics, racial discourse in the Anthropocene, post-humanist aesthetics and the geo-ecological age of petroleum.