Other Media: Decolonizing practices and cyborg ontologies

“Rather than going for the new object of study, the new product to consume, one should work on new ways of seeing, of being, or of living in the world.” – Trihn T. Minh-Ha from D-Passage: The Digital Way

“Cyborg writing is about the power to survive, not on the basis of original innocence, but on the basis of seizing the tools to mark the world that marked them as other.” – Donna Haraway from A Cyborg Manifesto

Following Donna Haraway’s epochal work A Cyborg Manifesto in which she imagines the cyborg condition as a site of liberation and decolonized subjectivity, this panel considers diverse approaches of artists, historians, theoretician-practitioners, and media activists that encode strategies of decolonization in their work and practice. Through a critical engagement of code as a (rhetorical) tool to re-inscribe historically marginalized bodies, this panel looks at a broad array of efforts, tactics, and projects that consider the ethos of a cyborg condition imagined by Haraway’s writing.  As part of this conversation, we may begin to ask: through what means and technologies are these situations deployed? What are the strategies that allow for decolonized processes that are situated within feminist, queer, and anti-colonial subjectivities? And how do these methods enable, embody, and construct new realities of being?

Recognizing new media’s ability to rupture obsolete systems in the efforts to reconstruct other idealized ontologies, this panel extends the cyborg condition through theoretical approaches and practice in an effort to re-imagine human relation. In particular, this panel seeks to address how new media practice and theory can reconfigure our understandings of marginality as well as offer strategies that enable the repositioning of subjects so as to decolonize their subjectivity.


Artists, historians, theoretician-practitioners, and media activists are all invited to submit their work for consideration for this New Media Caucus panel at the College Art Association in New York February 2017. Interested applicants should submit an abstract, 3-4 samples of their work as a link (if necessary), a CV, and their contact information. Accepted panel participants will need to either register for the CAA conference or buy a one-day pass. Submissions are due June 3, 2017 to Alejandro T. Acierto at acierto [at] uic [dot] edu. Notifications will be sent out around July 1.




from nothing, a process of marking

Looking to Helmut Lachenmann’s masterwork Dal Niente (Interieur III) as an initial point of departure, this open call seeks works that will reflect a diversity of performance practice and situational aesthetics as they traverse multiple time-based media expressions. While the work surrounding this open call are inextricably linked to my work as a clarinetist, they do not need to be works for clarinets. While Lachenmann'sinvestigation in this work considers the legacy of the clarinet and its repertory, the clarinet is reimaged as atechnology - a stage, if you will - to highlight the breath as musical material and generative tool for aesthetic andphilosophical realization. From these works, I hope to clarify the instrument (particularly wind instruments) as acommunicative device - a prosthetic that mediates the breath through a range of expressive and emotional content.
Through this project, I intend to highlight the instrument as mediator, wherein the breath thus becomes a site from whichrelation emerges. Merely audible, yet immediately intimate, the audition of the breath thus becomes not only asite of becoming, but also opens different situations of proximity and relation. To hear the breath is to beinseparably entwined with the presence of another. Therefore, enfolded within this call is both an investigation of the breath as material and a critical examination of the instrument/mouth as a cavity that becomes filled to shape the expression of the breath.

Works considered for this call should be time-based works. Films, videos, and other fixed media will be considered, though scores and performance works are preferred. Durational and other works that do not suit these categories will also be considered, though artist/collaborators will need to be willing to adapt their projects to suit the performance/presentation environment.

Interested artists should submit their proposals by June 30 11:59 CST at this link.

For questions about the call, please email Alejandro at criticalexpanse [at] gmail [dot] com.