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BxNU Symposium:
Fri 6 Jun 2014

PRESENTATION: Richard Kötter, How Should I Know Who I am, If I can’t be with a Past that is only of Myself, and a Future Just for Me? The talk will deal with biographical research in the social sciences, and personal and group identities shaped in part by war, conflict and trauma, as well as perspectives of agency, reconciliation and hope.

In a body of work spanning three decades, Lorna Simpson evokes memory in the relationship of text to image, in the repeated performative gestures and re-enactments of her large-scale video works and in her use of thrift shop props and costumes. Simpson’s is not a collective but a collected memory, not autobiographical but anonymous. Conversations reverberate back and forth in time, creating a space for reflection and transformation in the critical gap between an original event and its simulation.

In response to Simpson’s relationship with memory, trauma and the body, this symposium will bring together eminent practitioners, artists and theoreticians in this field. Emerging from the research, practice and interests of three artists based at Northumbria University: Jane Arnfield, Christine Borland, and Sandra Johnston, and working with GemArts, a leading diversity arts organisation based in the North East, the symposium connects disciplines of visual, live and performing arts. This dynamic event will foreground new and critically acclaimed performances alongside presentations and panel discussion, interfusing live experience with critical dialogue, to consider ethical questions of representation and responsibility in histories re-told.

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