Author Archive | Haidy Geismar

Sonically Transforming Washi Paper

Jessica Knights, Material and Visual Culture MA, UCL Anthropology

 

While undertaking my Master’s in Material and Visual Culture in UCL’s anthropology department last year, I received a Heinz Wolff Materials Bursary to carry out a project at the University’s Institute of Making. My proposal was to explore the properties of Washi paper, a type of handmade paper made in Japan. Washi is made predominantly from the paper mulberry (kozo) tree by traditional methods, and has been used for diverse purposes; from raincoats to kimonos, aerial bombs to toilet paper (Barrett 1983). I first became interested in this material through bookbinding, and was struck by its strength and durability as much as its tactility, delicacy, and softness.

My approach was largely influenced by our course literature, in particular the work of Tim Ingold.…

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Digital Utopias

Digital_Utopias_banner

 

Date: Tuesday 20 January 2015

Time: 10am – 7pm

Venue: Hull Truck Theatre, HU2 8LB

Book your place now

Digital Utopias is a one-day conference which will inspire and incite debate about how new technologies are enabling creativity across the arts. The conference aims to capture topical and diverse approaches to curation, archiving, collecting and creating from a range of art forms, from the visual arts to theatre.

The event will provide an opportunity to discuss new tools and emergent practice, whilst delegates will connect with international arts organisations and specialists in the field to unpick the creative and critical challenges facing organisations today.

Full programme now confirmed

Digital Utopias has an exciting programme that activates various spaces throughout Hull Truck Theatre.…

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Trees and Fairy Lights

Timothy Carroll, UCL Anthropology

Source: http://www.london-attractions.info/trafalgar-square-christmas-tree.htm Source: www.london-attractions.info/trafalgar-square-christmas-tree.htm

London’s Trafalgar Square holds a rather central spot in the festival seasons of the city. Early in December, as it has since 1947, it again played host to a towering conifer gifted to the people of Britain by the city of Oslo, Norway, in appreciation for their help during World War II. With some press announcement about the tree fresh in my head, I left London to attend the Anthropological Association in America, held this year in Washington D.C. There, by matter of course, I happened upon an other Norwegian Christmas Tree, this one tucked in corner near the Metro entrance (the West Carriage Porch, to be exact) of Union Station. This one is given by the people of Norway to the United States as a gift of appreciation for the assistance given to Norway during and after World War II, a long established tradition going back, the Union Station says, to 1996.…

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Call for Papers: Homes Under Pressure

The Geffrye Museum would like to share details of the Histories of Home Subject Specialist Network Call For Papers for 7th Annual Conference Homes Under Pressure.

Please forward to any staff and students.
This conference will explore how museums and researchers can document homes under pressure across the world in both contemporary and historical contexts. Homes can come under pressure from a variety of forces or influences, such as social change, economic hardship, politics and the law, or personal difficulty. This pressure is felt in homes in a wide variety of ways, and can create or entrench inequalities based on gender, class, race, sexuality, and ability. At the same time, pressure on homes creates or calls for responses, alternatives, and new forms of homes: these can range from the very personal and individual, to more collective responses rooted in or inspired by activism.…

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Exploring Digital-Visual Anthropological Research Methods: www.photoblogsiran.com

[This is an invited post from a PhD student working at Oxford University, accompanied by a series of comments about visual methods from PhD students working at UCL]

Shireen Walton, PhD candidate in Anthropology, Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Oxford

shireen.walton@sant.ox.ac.uk

Oxford Digital Ethnography Group (OxDEG)/www.facebook.com/groups/OXDEG/

 

In June 2013, after nine months of ethnographic fieldwork researching Iranian popular photographic practices in Iran, the UK and online, my principal participants (Iranian photobloggers, based inside and outside of Iran) and I discussed the idea of co-curating a digital photography exhibition of their work. The idea of developing an innovative, site-specific methodology emerged during the research process, but seemed appropriate given that a) it reflected what photobloggers do – they create digital exhibition spaces in the form of photoblogs to share their photographs with viewers across the world – and b) it would establish a relevant digital environment in which to participate and observe their practices.…

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Disobedient Objects

Hannah Knox, Lecturer in Digital Anthropology and Material Culture, UCL Anthropology

Zapatistas. Attribution: Nathan Gibbs https://flic.kr/p/3eMx1h Licensed under Creative Commons.

Zapatistas. Attribution: Nathan Gibbs
flic.kr/p/3eMx1h
Licensed under Creative Commons.

 

In 1996 I worked in Mexico for eight months and during my time there visited the famous village of San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas. One of my abiding memories of San Cristobal was of the women from the village who were selling artisanal products to tourists on cloths laid out on the floor in the square in front of the church. Whilst the sale of artisanal objects was commonplace in Mexican villages, in amongst the traditional traditionally dressed dolls I had been surprised to see dolls sporting cloth balaclavas and guns. The dolls were a homage to Subcomandante Marcos and the 1994 uprising of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) against the Mexican government and its signing of the NAFTA free trade agreement with the United States.…

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London Conference in Critical Thought – Call for Stream Proposals

UCL, University of London, 26-27 June 2015

Call for Stream Proposals

We’re pleased to announce that LCCT 2015 will be hosted by the UCL department of Anthropology and supported by the UCL Joint Faculty Institute of Graduate Studies, the UCL department of Geography and the London Contemporary Dance School.

The call for streams is now open for the 4th annual London Conference in Critical Thought (LCCT). The conference is a space for those who share theoretical approaches and interests, but who frequently find themselves at the margins of their department or discipline. LCCT is an inter-institutional, non-hierarchical, and accessible event which makes a particular effort to embrace emergent thought and foster new avenues for critically orientated scholarship and collaboration.

There is no pre-determined theme for the conference.…

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Mellon Emerging Curatorial Postdoctoral Fellowship (Asia), UBC

The Museum of Anthropology (MOA) and the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory (AHVA) at the University of British Columbia invite applications for an Emerging Curatorial Postdoctoral Fellowship with a focus on Asia to begin May 1 or June 1, 2015. The fellowship, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is open to recent doctoral graduates for one year, with possibility of renewal for another year. Salary for this position is expected to be $45,000 per year plus benefits, but may vary, commensurate with qualifications and experience.  In addition, the postdoctoral fellow will be provided with some travel/research funds. This position is subject to final budgetary approval.

This postdoctoral fellowship opportunity will afford a unique curatorial and research experience for an emerging curator, providing him/her with invaluable, hands-on curatorial experience.…

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Changes afoot at Material World Blog

Some of you more regular readers may have noticed that we’ve been posting less at material world blog of late. When Danny Miller and I started the blog in 2006 the blog was a way for me to keep my connection to the vibrant material culture group in the Anthropology Department at UCL where I had been a doctoral student as well as to connect UCL to the broader interest in material culture developing in the US. Since 2006 we have had a series of dedicated editors and editors-at-large, based all over the place, who have regularly provided content ranging from exhibition and book reviews through to notes from the field and good links. One of the things I’ve liked most about the site is that is its commitment to many voices and the space it has given to students and to scholars whose first language is not English to present their ideas.…

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Civilisation, Infrastructure and the City

Friday 7th Nov, 9:45-15:00
UCL Taviton 433, 16 Taviton Street, London WC1H 0BW

civcity.wordpress.com/

The world is concurrently urbanising and digitising, and both phenomena are routinely admitted amongst the most important drivers of change in the 21st century. Yet, how do processes of urbanisation and digitisation affect the creation and perpetuation of everyday local culture? Are they mechanical drivers which deterministically imprint themselves on society or is the question of their efficacy a more complicated matter?

 This one-day workshop will explore these questions, contextualising them with recent research from the field. Held with the generous support of the UCL Centre for Research into the Dynamics of Civilisation (CREDOC), it will bring together researchers from the fields of urban studies, human geography, digital anthropology, finance and ICT for development. The workshop will be held at UCL on November 7th.

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