Author Archive | William Thomson

Job Posting: Research Officer, Melanesia Art Project

melartp.jpgThe Melanesia Art Project(a joint initiative of Goldsmiths College, University of London and the British Museum) is advertising for a postdoctoral position, for details see: RESEARCH OFFICER – Melanesian Art (PDF Format)
Based in the Anthropology department, the researcher will work on a major new analysis of the art of Melanesia, based on the highly significant collections in the British Museum and through archives, fieldwork visits, and organizing visits of indigenous individuals to the collections. The researcher is responsible for research liaison with indigenous communities, the practical organization of the project, video and/or audio documentation, and particularly for editing project publications.
Requires: PhD in anthropology or a related discipline, and research experience in the Pacific, preferably in island Melanesia.…

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Announcement: Oslo Summer School in Comparative Social Science Studies

Contemporary Art and Anthropology: Challenges of Theory and PracticeLecturer: Associate Professor Arnd Schneider, Department of Social Anthropology, University of Oslo
Dates: 30. July – 3. August 2007 Course Credits: 10 pts (ECTS) Limitation: 30 participants
Application details:
This course will look at recent border crossings between art and anthropology, and explore the epistemological challenges arising from it. Following the so-called ‘ethnographic turn’, contemporary artists have adopted an ‘anthropological’ gaze, including methodologies, such as fieldwork, in their appropriation of other cultures. Anthropologists, on the other hand, in the wake of the ‘writing culture’ critique of the 1980s, are starting to explore new forms of visual research and representation beyond written texts.
»Main disciplines: Anthropology, Fine Arts, Media Studies
Secondary disciplines: Art History/Criticism, Cultural Studies

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Tasveer Ghar: A Digital Network of South Asian Popular Visual Culture

Chris Pinney of UCL informs us at MaterialWorld that Tasveer Ghar has announced a short-term fellowship for collecting and documenting popular visual arts in South Asia. The focus is on “Gender, Nation and Spaces for the Everyday.” Tasveer Ghar is a transnational virtual home for collecting, digitizing, and documenting various materials produced by South Asia’s exciting popular visual sphere. Visual materials include posters, calendar art, pilgrimage maps and paraphernalia, cinema hoardings, advertisements, and other forms of street and bazaar art.
This fellowship is ideally meant for individuals or groups who already have an important collection of popular arts that needs to be archived, digitized, or restored, but may not have the resources or technical know-how. Tasveer is also open to proposals to start a new collection or document/photograph something that is available in a public space and needs urgent attention.…

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African Memories

Marta Rosales ESCS and CEMME FCSH/UNL, Professor Filomena Silvano CEMME FCSH/UNL (scientific coordinator)
Domestic consumption practices, colonialism and transcontinental migration experiences of a group of Portuguese and Goan families.
This project aims the study of the domestic consumption practices of a restrict group of families of Portuguese and Goan origins that share a common biographical past: an inter-generational lived experience in Mozambique (during the colonial period) and a forced migration out of Africa to Portugal and Brazil after de Mozambican independence. Theoretically, the research intends the development of an approach that allows the integration of material culture and consumption studies to the discussion of a significant phenomenon that had a critical impact on the Portuguese recent social history – the forced migration of diverse social groups out of the Portuguese former African colonies.…

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Material Visualization of Sustainability

Christine Chastain, UCL

In the 1970s, in the small town of Falmouth, Mass., USA, an experimental, sustainable
community was formed called Alchemy. This project was funded by government grants
and allowed its members to explore such exotic concepts like hydroponic vegetable
growth, composting, contained, sustainable systems, etc. Members were so busy
and engaged that someone forgot to submit a government grant and the community
folded without the necessary financial backing.

good-works-greenhouse2.jpg good-works-baboo-fencing.jpg

Hilda and Earle bought one of the remaining dilapidated greenhouses from this
project and decided to revive the vision their own way. Both Hilda and Earle
are landscape architects and proud owners of the thriving business, Good Works.
They have managed to create a delectable visual feast of their sustainable lifestyle
aspirations using materials they either create, grow or that are indigenous
to the area of Cape Cod.…

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Judy Attfield

It is with great sadness that we have to announce the death of Judy Attfield, one of the pioneers of contemporary material culture studies who did so much to demonstrate the value of this approach. Judy started her academic career within a discipline called design history that was largely devoted to hagiographic accounts of great designers and the history of great designs, both of which almost entirely ignored the wider context of understanding the form and style of the world of goods most people lived with. Thanks to her textbook Wild Things and a series of exemplary studies she transformed Design History into a study of the intimate relationship between populations and the common form and design of mundane material culture.…

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