Author Archive | Haidy Geismar

The indigenous map: native information, ethnographic object, artefact of encounter

Via Felix Driver
AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award
Applications are invited for a fully-funded PhD studentship on indigenous maps within the collections of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).
This award is made by the Science Museums & Archives Consortium under the AHRC’s Collaborative Doctoral Partnership scheme. The project, due to begin in September 2016, will be supervised by Professor Felix Driver (at Royal Holloway, University of London) and Dr Catherine Souch (RGS-IBG).
The project will consider the significance of indigenous maps within the RGS-IBG collections. Such maps were typically acquired, commissioned or co-produced in the process of exploration and territorial expansion preceding the imposition of formal colonial rule. Similar materials in comparable collections have been treated variously as sources of geographical information for the use of western cartographers; as ethnographic objects to be studied in their own right; or as hybrid documents of cultural exchange and encounter.
Continue Reading

The Lunar New Year Gift Index 2.0

Members of the Emerging Subjects project at UCL and the National University of Mongolia contributed to this post.

 What does focusing on gifts given and received during the Lunar New Year tell us about the general economy in Mongolia? Last year we posted our first Lunar New Year Gift Index (LNYGI) and found that the slowing economy shaped how Mongolians celebrated the holiday, with people confining the celebrations to fewer days and opting for more useful gifts (like socks) that support Mongolian businesses. This year, Mongolia’s economy has been shaken further with pressures of increasing public and private debt and the slowdown of commodity prices globally. We found that people bought less over-all in preparation for the Lunar New Year. While prices have decreased (especially the price of meat), the cost of this year’s celebration was very straining. …

Continue Reading

The John Collier Jr. Award for Still Photography

is awarded periodically to an author or photographer whose publication, exhibit, website, or other multimedia production exemplifies the use of still photographs (both historical and contemporary) for research and communication of anthropological knowledge.  The submission must have a strong visual research perspective along with being good documentary photography and be within five years of the original publication date. Details of the prize and past winners can be found here.

The project must be nominated by a current SVA member and include the consent of the person nominated. A letter of nomination from the SVA member and the supporting material (including name, book title or exhibit, website or multimedia production, publisher, author’s mailing address, phone and email) should accompany three copies of the creative work and be sent to the Committee Chairperson, which must be received by the deadline below. …

Continue Reading

The Absent Stone

Sandra Rozental, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Cuajimalpa,
Mexico City
La Replica
The Absent Stone (2013) is a documentary film that combines contemporary ethnographic filmmaking, animation and a wide range of found footage and archival visual materials to tell the story of the largest single-stone sculpture in the Americas, and how it was transported from a village in the Texcoco area to one of Mexico City’s busiest streets. In 1964, the sculpture, which archaeologists believe to be a pre-Columbian rain deity, was forcefully removed from Coatlinchan following military intervention. Using national patrimony laws to justify the extraction, the state repurposed the 167-ton carving as a monument marking the entrance of the newly-built National Anthropology Museum. The engineers and architects in charge of the feat were stunned when the sculpture’s arrival resulted in one of the most abundant rainfalls the city has ever seen during its alleged dry season.…
Continue Reading

Charlotte’s stockings, Emily’s walking stick, Anne’s handkerchief

Samantha Ellis at the Times Literary Supplement reviews a new book by Deborah Lutz, The Brontë Cabinet: Three Lives in nine objects. 

This book is partly an attempt to talk to the dead, by looking at (and holding, sniffing, weighing) the Brontës’ things. Fans of the writers who cross the world to gaze at Charlotte’s stockings and Anne’s bloodstained handkerchief, sequestered behind glass, might envy Lutz’s intimacy with these objects. They sometimes speak as eloquently about their owners as the books, maybe because although we may not have written great novels, we all have stuff. We have also all watched CSI, so there is something familiar about Lutz, hunched over a scratch on Emily Brontë’s desk, as she says herself, “Was this a message from the dead, or just the results of a bump into a table?

Continue Reading

The Anti-Camera

Christopher Pinney, UCL Anthropology

I recently came across M.N. Srinivas’ observation that his enthusiastic engagement with photography, during his fieldwork in Mysore in the late 1940s, earned him the nickname “chamara man”. He notes that in Kannada chamara denotes whisks made of the long hair from a yak’s tails used by servants to keep flies away from Rajas and by priests to preserve the purity of icons.

In the Madhya Pradesh village where I have worked intermittently since 1982 you will hear echoes of the metaphor that informs the South Indian description of Srinivas as “chamara man”. For instance, Jagdish Sharma, the pujari of the Krishna temple once joked that my video camera embodied “yantra, mantra, [and] tantra”, yantra being the design (“made in Japan”), mantra being the information it stored, and tantra being the magic of technology (its “mashinari”).…

Continue Reading

New Open Access Series: Anthropology and Photography and open access initiatives from the Global Social Media Impact Study

Haidy Geismar, UCL

The movement towards open access has continued to gain momentum in the social sciences, and in anthropology, with important new journals such as Hau; and new movements to develop alternative publishing collectives afoot. I have just stepped down as editor of the Journal of Material Culture where we are moving a little slower. We have committed to ensuring that there is at least one open access article per issue, and Sage has a very generous Green archiving policy which allows the accepted version of an article to be made available immediately. However, Sage owns both the title and the back issues of the journal which makes a transition to fully open access more of a decision to form a completely new title.…

Continue Reading

Some thoughts about the 9/11 Memorial and Museum

Haidy Geismar, UCL

I recently spent an afternoon at the site of the former twin towers, where now there lies, imprinted on the foundations, one of the largest memorials I have visited, and underneath that a cavernous museum, both dedicated to memorializing the events of September 11, 2001. This review has emerged out that experience and from a conversation with Harvey Molotch who recently wrote a review of the 911 museum at Public Books. Called “How the 9/11 Museum Gets Us” Molotch reflects on the affective qualities of the museum, pulling together a powerfully christian iconography, personalizing the experience by exploring the victims in material detail through their possessions, and whitewashing historical context.

Photography was not allowed inside the main exhibit so the images I present show the memorial, and the outer areas  of the museum which allow the visitor to traverse the spectral foundations in the former basement of the building, punctuated by large remnants of the day, such as the Vesey street stairs, one of the few pieces of architecture left in one piece which has been relocated here through to fire trucks and steel girders.…

Continue Reading

Australian National University is hiring three Lecturers in museum anthropology

The School of Archaeology and Anthropology, Centre for Heritage and Museum Studies, and Centre for Digital Humanities Research at the ANU has recently advertised three positions for which we are seeking outstanding and dynamic applicants.

Lecturer, Level B, Museum Anthropology, ongoing appointment, applications close on 15 November

Lecturer, Level B, Museum Studies (Museum and Collections), 5 year appointment, applications close on 17 November

Lecturer, Level B, Digital Humanities, 3 year appointment, applications close on 2 November

jobs.anu.edu.au/cw/en/job/507159/lecturer-museum-anthropology

jobs.anu.edu.au/cw/en/job/507163/lecturer-museum-studies-museums-and-collections

jobs.anu.edu.au/cw/en/job/507033/lecturer-digital-humanities

Continue Reading

Media in Transition

A major international conference focused on the intersection of media art and technological change over time. How is this shifting the way museums operate and how conservation works?  

Tate Modern
Julia Scher Interviewed at SFMOMA as part of the Artist Initiative. Courtesy of SFMOMA.

Julia Scher Interviewed at SFMOMA as part of the Artist Initiative. Courtesy of SFMOMA.


18, 19 & 20 November 2015
Adult £180
Concession £120

Three artists, Susan Hiller, Runa Islam, and Hito Steyerl will launch Media in Transition with their keynote presentations. The conference will promote interdisciplinary in-depth discussions and lively debate about specific works of art including those by Joseph Beuys, David Lamelas, Gustav Metzger, Nam June Paik, Bruce Nauman, and Julia Scher
 
Hosted by the Getty Conservation Institute, Getty Research Institute and Tate, this landmark event brings together the major institutions and thinkers at the forefront of responding to the needs of an important group of contemporary artworks.
Continue Reading

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes