Tag Archives: talks




Had an extraordinary day at the Lincoln Social Computing Research Centre at the University of Lincoln on the 6th June, having been invited to talk about “Emergence and the Synthetic Aesthetic” by Shaun Lawson. Lincoln’s a place to watch: as far as humanities computing goes at the moment, these guys are streets ahead, for the simple reason that they’re actually thinking reflectively about what they’re doing. Sadly, about two questions into the q&a session, the university had to be evacuated owing to a bomb hoax. Cue reflective thinking in the pub.

Find out more about the work LiSC is doing here.


Recent talks: NEXT Berlin, TED, Science Museum

I’ve given a few talks on skeuomorphism recently which aren’t yet available on video, as far as I’m aware: one on “Emergent Design: How the Skeuomorph helps us to think about Non-Human Agency”, at NEXT Berlin 2012 on the 8th May; and another at TEDx Manchester on “Skeuomorphs, evolution, and technology”, on the 13th February. The video of the talk I gave back in December at the Science Museum is up, though. The hirsuteness is the result of trailing around South America for several months; I didn’t actually get a haircut or a shave until I got to Paraguay two months later. I think it used to be known as ‘going native’:



Science Museum, London

I’ll be coming over to London to speak at Robot Futures: beyond the valley on the 1st of December. It’s a Lirec event at the Science Museum, with the associate editor of Wired, Olivia Solon; the artist Ghislaine Boddington from body>data>space; Matt Jones from BERG; and Peter McOwan from Queen Mary Westfield University.

I’ll very likely be speaking elsewhere whilst in Europe; follow me on Twitter – @skeuomorphology – for updates.


Interviews & talks: video and audio

This year’s Virtual Futures 2.0’11 conference was astonishingly productive, and the results of the new ideas discussed and new collaborations formed are still reverberating around the net, the media and the conference circuit. Hopefully I’ll be able to speak about some of those results in the near future; in the meantime, much of the conference is now available on video.

My opening lecture at VF is below:

Shortly before the conference, Amy McLeod from the Warwick Knowledge Centre interviewed me, mainly about skeuomorphs (the topic of the book I’m writing at present): the podcast of that interview is available here.

There was a lot more talk of skeuomorphs in my live chat, ‘Understanding the Virtual’, following the conference; you can read a somewhat truncated and edited-down transcript here. The actual event was invaded and eventually DoSed by 4chan, the guys who hacked Sarah Palin’s emails… it was quite an honour to get 4channed, but the real transcript is unprintable.

Rhizome.org picked up on the skeuomorph meme and published another version: Dan O’Hara on Skeuomorphs, JG Ballard, Transhumanism, and the “eradication of individual identity.

And archive video from the 1995 Virtual Futures conference is steadily being digitized and placed on the VF Vimeo channel: below is an interview conducted with me recently, which includes a large chunk of the archive footage of Stelarc’s legendary 1995 performance, in which I’m bobbing around in the background with an orange mohican, trying to fix the sound levels, whilst Stelarc waves his third arm about menacingly…


Deleuze Coloquio in Rio de Janeiro

Deleuze & Guattari: Practical Philosophy Conference in Rio de Janeiro

On the 31st of August, I’ll be speaking at Coloquio Deleuze & Guattari: Filosofia Prática about Deleuze, diagrams, and art brut. The event’s held at the Palacio Gustavo Capanema in Rio de Janeiro, and runs from the 30th of August to the 2nd of September; it’s preceded by three days of film screenings, music, dance, and performances, from the 25th to the 28th of August. The full programme is available via the link above.

I’ll no doubt also be talking about the Deleuze & Guattari Concordance, which is grinding slowly forwards, and it’ll be hard to avoid talking about skeuomorphology, as I’m currently living in Rio in order to write a book about skeuomorphism and the role it plays in the evolution of style.


Virtual Futures 2.0’11 programme

Virtual Futures 2.0’11

The speakers list and programme for Virtual Futures 2.0’11, to be held at Warwick University on the 18th and 19th of June, have been released. I’ll be there giving the opening plenary, talking about “Non-Human Agencies: A Skeuomorphological Account”.

It’s a great line-up: Stelarc returns, as do Rachel Armstrong, Ian Stewart, Jim Flint, Mark Fisher, Diane Gromala, Sue Thomas, Pat Cadigan, Richard Barbrook, Nick Fox, Martyn Amos, and o(rphan)d(rift>); plus Kevin Warwick, Sue Golding, Andy Miah, Alan Chalmers, Steve Fuller, Jeremy Wyatt… No Hakim Bey this time, though. Registration is now live.


Virtual Futures returns

Fifteen years ago, I wrote in the TLS that the rate of social change was itself accelerating. This year, I find myself the victim of my own prophecy.

At Warwick University on the 18-19 June, an event resurrecting Virtual Futures, Virtual Futures 2.0’11, takes place, organized by Luke Robert Mason, who’s doing his research thesis on the influence the conference had upon philosophy, technology, and culture, and investigating the ways in which VF led to modern synthetic biology, living architecture, and transhumanism.

It’s both extremely flattering and mindsplittingly frightening for a jobbing academic to find his activities of a mere fifteen years ago the subject of new research and conferences. I seem to be becoming-historical, as Deleuze might have said.

Anyone who was at the original conferences is especially asked to get in touch with the organizer, Luke; the line-up of speakers already looks like TED to the power of n


HEAD Geneve update


The Talking Heads event at l’Haute ecole d’art et de design, Geneve (Geneva University of Art and Design) takes place this Wednesday at 7pm. I’ll be in Deleuze-inflected conversation with Francois Roche. Click on the image above for the poster.


HEAD Geneve

On the 2nd of March I’ll be at l’Haute ecole d’art et de design, Geneve (Geneva University of Art and Design), as Francois Roche‘s special guest. He’ll be speaking about “Speculations, Fictions, Here & Now / Skyzoid machines & Ecosophical apparatuses”, and I’ll also speak separately, and/or we’ll engage in dialogue: more details soon. It’s part of a public lecture series, and all are welcome.



In September, on the 29 and 30th, I’ll be speaking (with Toni Negri, Rupert Soar, Jean Didier Vincent, Francois Jouve, John Holland, and Greg Lynn) at the University of South California on the topic of mind and machine. There’s no programme yet, but I’ll place a copy here when it becomes available

The event is interdisciplinary, and involves neurobiologists, mathematicians, architects, and philosophers. It’s organized by François Roche, whose work as an architect using Deleuze is absolutely compelling.