This one-day symposium has been developed by Martin Westwood and Charlie Tweed, both PHD researchers in the Contemporary Art Research Centre (CARC) at Kingston University. As a result of their ongoing research projects, two objects, an image and a text, are proposed for discussion. A selection of artists, curators and writers have been invited to respond to them through replies that can include both the generation of artworks and academic papers.
The symposium intends to explore, through curated responses, the movement and transformation of commodities, investigating the biographies of materials and products. In differing ways the text and the image both articulate the metamorphoses of material and information as it forms, constructs and negotiates economies. The event aims to expand the understandings of the biopolitics of objects, the geologies of materials and the system of valorisation and accumulation that commodities engineer. We are also interested in how processes of automation and feedback that are enabled by new technologies have created what Michel Serres calls “a revolution operating on matter”; and how circulation becomes closely linked with devaluation and vestigial waste.
As artists Westwood and Tweed are both interested in looking at how art practice can engage with, highlight or renegotiate these complex geologies of value and vestige.
Martin Westwood with Ali Eisa (artist/Lloyd Corporation), Melissa Gordon (artist), Isobel Harbison (curator). Charlie Tweed with Melanie Jackson (artist), Jennifer Gabrys (author), Andy Weir (artist and PHD researcher) and Tom Trevatt (curator and PHD researcher).
The symposium will be hosted in the Centre for Useless Splendour at Kingston University with an accompanying video programme, including work by Benedict Drew, Lloyd Corporation, Hannah Sawtell, Charlie Tweed, Andy Weir and Martin Westwood, screened throughout the day until 7.30 pm in the foyer of Stanley Picker Gallery.