Jon McKenzie is CfH SPRING festival fellow

Jon McKenzie
Jon McKenzie

Jon McKenzie is Centre for the Humanities SPRING Festival Fellow 2018. During his stay in Utrecht (21-26 May) McKenzie will participate in several public activities, he will provide a masterclass for RMA and PhD students and he will be guest in a number of BA and MA courses and in the An Academy programme of the SPRING Festival.

Jon McKenzie

Jon McKenzie is Dean’s Fellow for Media and Design and Visiting Professor of English at Cornell University. He is the author of Perform or Else: From Discipline to Performance and such essays as “Laurie Anderson for Dummies,” “Democracy’s Performance,” and “Global Feeling: (Almost) All You Need Is Love.” His work has been translated into a half-dozen languages. McKenzie’s StudioLab pedagogy combines seminar, studio, and lab activities to bring scholarship to communities and policy-makers. He also creates experimental videos and gives workshops on performative scholarship and transmedia knowledge. In 2013, HOBO Art Foundation and the New Theatre of Warsaw co-produced Disastronauts, an experimental theatre work with dance and Theremins based on Perform or Else and his video The Revelations of Dr. Kx4l3ndj3r.

Public activities

  • Aftertalk with theatre maker Jisun Kim

The performance Deep Present by Jisun Kim and the aftertalk with Jon McKenzie and Jisun Kim. 22 May, Theater Kikker, 21:00.

  • Lecture performance: 'Thought-Action Figures' - Jon McKenzie & Aneta Stojnic

This lecture performance focuses on performance, technology, and post-ideational thought, the reinscription of ideas with a broader spacetime suggested by Artaud, Derrida, Haraway, Lehmann, and others. What figures guide our thoughts and actions? What role might post-dramatic, post- conceptual personae and machinic genres play in rethinking the past, negotiating the present, and enacting the future? How to navigate the ladders and trees and grasses of this world and others? How might one become a thought-action figure?

23 May, Parnassos theaterzaal, 15:00-17:00h Entrance free (please sign up via


  • City Symposium: Technoperformance

Technology plays an ever increasingly active role in our daily life, industry, education, the arts and science. This role is less and less that of a passive tool and more and more that of a partner in activities of various kinds. These developments draw attention to technology as itself a performer and foreground what this year’s SPRING Festival Fellow Jon McKenzie proposes to term technoperformance: the performance of technological ‘agents’. The SPRING City Symposium explores relationships between these contemporary developments and a history of technological performers in the arts. McKenzie (Dean’s Fellow Media & Design, Cornell University) will introduce his ideas about technoperformance. This will be followed by a presentation by Pedro Manuel (coordinator of the MA Theatre Practices, ArtEZ) about his research into theatre without actors and a presentation by Marian van Dijk (director of Museum Speelklok, Utrecht) about their upcoming exhibition Robots Love Music.

25 May, Het Huis Utrecht, 14:00 – 16:00. Entrance free (please sign up via

More information
Website SPRING festival