Addressing the Future: The Tactics of Uncertainty

Attractor: Claudia Westermann

More than 30 years ago, Michel de Certeau suggested that a shift in methodologies was necessary from strategies that operate on the basis of planning and prediction to tactics that operate on the basis of appropriation. Within this context, competition for the best prediction is substituted for a search for authorities that create the places that give space. This stream of interest with the title ‘Addressing the Future – The Tactics of Uncertainty’ suggests that even though Utopia has not been valued recently, it is nevertheless the actual turn towards the future – this radical uncertainty – that allows for a profound re-questioning of our methodologies. How do the sciences and the arts address the future? Can we speak to it, and in doing so, can we create openings in the present?

Methodology: The main intention of this suggested stream of interest is to provide for a ‘good’ start question from which the theme of uncertainty could be addressed in a rather radical way. I am interested in viewpoints from all areas of the sciences and arts. In addition to presentations, there could be conversational panels and workshops. The latter could also be contextualized within the city of Prague. Which inclination this theme takes also depends on the other streams of interest and should be discussed.

Biography: Claudia Westermann is a licensed architect holding a postgraduate degree in Architecture from the University of Karlsruhe (Dipl. Ing.), a second postgraduate degree in Media Fine Arts from the University of Art and Design (HfG) at the Center for Art and Media (ZKM) in Karlsruhe, Germany, and a PhD from the University of Plymouth, UK. Her Ph.D. thesis entitled ‘An Experimental Research into Inhabitable Theories’ was supervised by Professor Roy Ascott. Her works have been exhibited internationally, including at the Venice Biennale for Architecture, the Moscow International Film Festival, ISEA Symposium for the Electronic Arts, and the ZKM in Karlsruhe.


Mutual or Mutant: Where or When Is My Education?

Attractor: Nina Czegledy

The profile of education in the 21st century is going to be very different from previous models. Both institutional leaders and academics are aiming to redefine the role of higher education and invest on a large scale in new learning technologies. Consequently, higher education is expected to be a much broader enterprise in the future. Peer to peer and on-line learning is gaining a firm foothold in academia. Institutions, by following market trends, will be inclined to focus on livelihood-related programs; enabling students to graduate with diplomas that provide the prospect of sustainable earnings indicating the greatest developmental challenge facing educational environments today. There seems to be an agreement among professionals that research, self-organization, creativity, cross-disciplinary practice, community driven professional development, break-through partnerships and a balance between experience and innovation, are the key elements that will form a new equilibrium, a new educational ecology.

Methodology: International and regional local presenters involved in new trends/models of education, to present and discuss with participatory involvement how the radical shifts internationalization in higher education became widespread and how the learning environment became completely altered. It is important to emphasize that the explosion of this new ecology has not been pre-planned; it is mainly due to a tremendous interest by the emerging generation, whose daily reality has profoundly changed and is often in conflict with, rigid, out dated educational concepts.

A discussion on the inclusion of practice-based peer-to-per models involving academia is especially essential, because limited funding, escalating class sizes and threatened course closures continue to be a serious challenge to effective training. In an era of fast technological growth and transforming art forms there is an increasing need for educational flexibility by academic institutions. In most countries, regardless of the level of economic development, policy makers have been compelled to review and reorganize their abilities for an analysis of high-level knowledge that profiles social change.

Biography: Nina Czegledy, artist, curator, educator, works internationally on collaborative art& science& technology projects. The changing perception of the human body and its environment as well as paradigm shifts in contemporary art shape the focus of her projects. She has exhibited widely, won awards for her artwork and has lead and participated in workshops, forums and festivals worldwide. Czegledy curated numerous international touring projects and published extensively. She has initiated and developed educational workshops in collaboration for each ISEA symposia since 2008, Mutamorphosis 2007 and the Media Art Histories conferences since 2007.The curatorial focus of her recent work is on the historical and contemporary interpretation of the human body with exhibitions The extension of Man – At the Intersection of Art and Medicine, West Vancouver Museum 2012, upcoming SPLICE at Blackwood and UTAC galleries, Toronto and the Hacking the Bodies workshops at the Thing Tank Lab Toronto. The Pleasure of Light co-curated with Rona Kopeczky, @ the Ludwig Museum, Budapest (2010) and the National Museum of Gdansk, Poland, 2011. Czegledy was involved in several events of the Marshall McLuhan in Europe2011 project. From her collaborative art projects The Visual Collider touring project, in collaboration with Marcus Neustetter, presented in seven countries in North America and Europe; Aura, Aurora in collaboration with Bettina Schuelke presented at artMuse Festival 2011, Bocholt, Germany, and @ the Plein Air festival, 2B Gallery, Budapest, 2010; Areosphere/ Atmosphere (with Janine Randerson) @ New Plymouth Observatory, New Zealand, 2011; Czegledy is a Senior Fellow, KMDI, University of Toronto; Associate Adjunct Professor Concordia University, Montreal; Senior Fellow, Hungarian University of Fine Arts, Budapest; member of the Leonardo/ISAST Governing Board, member of Observatoire Leonardo des Arts des Techno-Sciences OLATS, Research Fellow Intercreate org, New Zealand, Board Member, Year Zero 01, Toronto and contributing editor to LEA, the Leonardo Electronic Almanac.