Technology plays an increasingly active role in our day-to-day lives, in industry, education and science. Instead of a passive tool, technology is quickly turning into a partner in all kinds of activities. Developments like these are drawing our attention to the role of technology as a performer and to what SPRING Festival Fellow Jon McKenzie calls technoperformance: the performance of technological agents.
The SPRING City Symposium discusses the links between the developments today and a history of technological performers in the arts. McKenzie (Dean’s Fellow Media & Design, Cornell University) will be introducing his ideas on technoperformance. He will be followed by Pedro Manuel (Coordinator of the Theatre Practices Master at ArtEZ) who presents his research into the history of theatre without human actors, and a talk by Marian van Dijk (Director of Museum Speelklok) on the project Robots love Music. Each in their own way, our speakers take stock of the relationship between technoperformance historically and today, and of the ways in which contemporary developments are lending historical developments new relevance.
In collaboration with the department of Theatre Studies at Utrecht University and the Centre for the Humanities, SPRING is organizing another Festival Fellowship. This year we have invited Jon McKenzie to be the SPRING Festival Fellow. McKenzie is Professor of English and holds a PhD in Performance Studies from NYU. He is currently researching new media, performance theory, globalization and civil disobedience. As part of his Festival Fellowship, McKenzie will be contributing to the City Symposium and giving a seminar for (research) Master students and PhD students. He will also be a guest speaker during a number of meetings of the SPRING Academy.