Relational soup — philosophy, art, and activism | Brian Massumi and Erin Manning | TEDxCalArts

This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. TEDxCalArts: Performance, Body and Presence

Brian Massumi is a Canadian social theorist. Massumi’s research spans the fields of art, architecture, political theory, cultural studies and philosophy. He received his Ph.D in French Literature from Yale University in 1987. His publications include Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation and Semblance and Event: Activist Philosophy and the Occurrent Arts. He is also known for English-language translations of recent French philosophy, including Jean-François Lyotard’s The Postmodern Condition (with Geoffrey Bennington), Jacques Attali’s Noise and Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s A Thousand Plateaus.

Massumi collaborates with Erin Manning, director of the Sense Lab, a research-creation laboratory affiliated with Hexagram: Institute for Research/Creation in Media Arts and Technology in Montreal. They co-edit a book series at MIT Press entitled Technologies of Lived Abstraction and are founding members of the editorial collective of the Sense Lab journal Inflexions: A Journal for Research-Creation.

Massumi is currently teaching at Université de Montréal, in the Communication Sciences Department.

Erin Manning holds a University Research Chair in Relational Art and Philosophy in the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia University (Montreal, Canada). She is also the director of the Sense Lab (www.senselab.ca), a laboratory that explores the intersections between art practice and philosophy through the matrix of the sensing body in movement. Her current art practice is centred on large-scale textile installations that facilitate emergent collectivities. She presented Stitching Time at the 18th Biennale of Sydney in 2012, will present Stitching Time – Traces at the 5th Moscow Biennale in 2013 and is preparing a work entitled The Knots of Time for the opening of the new Flax Museum in Kortrijk, Belgium. Publications include Always More Than One: Individuation’s Dance (Duke UP, 2013), Relationscapes: Movement, Art, Philosophy (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2009), Politics of Touch: Sense, Movement, Sovereignty (Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press, 2007) and Ephemeral Territories: Representing Nation, Home and Identity in Canada (Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press, 2003). Her forthcoming co-written manuscript (with Brian Massumi) is entitled Thought in the Act: Passages in the Ecology of Experience (Minnesota UP).

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