Goldsmith’s Art PhD Symposium
27-29 January, 2014
What does the political, legal and economic world-of-thought of the Middle Ages have to offer as a means of unpicking the founding rituals of late capitalism, its technologies and attendant flow of images?
Neo-medievalisms are becoming more commonplace in contemporary culture. Some critics have linked Neo-Medievalism to the current global political context of collapsing sovereignty and ‘divided loyalty’ (Bruce Holsinger and Hedley Bull).
Others have used the term to discuss a renewed interest in Marxist critique, perhaps as a way of understanding the late capitalist conditions of precarity and immaterial labour that have infused our lives (Hardt and Negri).
Objects and their networks are also linked to Neo-medievalist ideas. The Speculative Turn of philosophy opens up spaces for ‘future pre-moderns’.
References have also appeared within pop culture such as the recent album by the Kaiser Chiefs titled ‘The Future is Medieval’. We now seem to have a collective obsession with medieval role-playing games online (Erik Davis) and many of our mythic avatars are no longer left in the virtual realm (the high street fashion for the ‘onesie’).
This symposium showcases a mixture of performance, readings, lectures, art objects and video works by artists, curators and critics who in varied ways touch on the theme of neo-medievalism.
- Erik Davis- Cultural critic and author of Techgnosis. http://www.techgnosis.com/
- Sarah Lambert – Academic at Goldsmith’s in the History Department, specialising in medieval studies, with a focus on gender, ethnicity and identity, teaching latin language, the crusades, and the idea of ethnicity and humanity in medieval europe. http://www.gold.ac.uk/history/staff/s-lambert/
- Robert Leckie – Curator, Gasworks, London. Forthcoming year long curatorial project: The Civilising Process . Medieval Courtly ritual and the development of the bourgeoisie. http://www.gasworks.org.uk/events/detail.php?id=895
- Neil Mulholland & Norman James Hogg (Hogg via Skype) – Forthcoming publication on Neo-Medievalism; http://www.inthemedievalmiddle.com/2013/10/an-object-oriented-ontology-on.html
- David Burrows and Simon O’Sullivan – Plastique Fantastique
- Researchers – Ramon Bloomberg Alex Pollard, Roman Vasseur, David Ferrando Giraut.
27-29 January, 2014
155 Vauxhall Street
London SE11 5R
Vauxhall: Victoria line and National rail
Oval: Northern line
Gallery visit to Late Barbarians the second exhibition of The Civilising Process, a year long programme of exhibitions and events at Gasworks inspired by Elias’s eponymous 1939 book, which looks at the development of the tastes, manners and sensibilities of Western Europeans since the Middle Ages.
1.00 – 4.00
Chair – Robin Mackay
Intro to symposium by Roman Vasseur
Introduction to NeoMedieval themes by Neil Mullholland.
David Burrows and Simon O’Sullivan – Plastique Fantastique
5.00 – 8.00
5.00 Neil Mulholland & Norman James Hogg (Hogg via Skype)
In conversation with Alex Pollard.
6.30 Erik Davis- Cultural critic and author of Techgnosis. (via Skype)
Chair – John Chilver
Robert Leckie – curator Gasworks Gallery – the Civilizing Processs
Sarah Lambert – Goldsmith’s History Department
2.00 – 5.00
Individual Video works and discussion:
Ramon Bloomberg – Glacis
David Ferrando Giraut – CATOPTROPHILIA
5.00 – 7.00
Compiled video excerpts and drinks.
Artwork installed for duration of symposium:
Alex Pollard – ‘Chrome Poulaine’ – 2010