SoundMatter @ CUNY Grad Center (2011)

I spoke about “SoundMatter” — or sonic objects — at No Thing Unto Itself at the CUNY Graduate Center. You can find my talk and media here.

Thursday, October 20, 2011, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
The City University of New York
365 Fifth Avenue, Room 9207
Free admission

On occasion of the exhibition And Another Thing at The James Gallery at The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, the Vera List Center and the James Gallery presents a panel discussion featuring artists, scholars and writers on the subject of “thingness.”

What are the political and ethical implications of considering all objects—whether animal, vegetable, or mineral, even whether animate or inanimate– equivalent and thereby interchangeable? Moderated by the exhibition’s co-curator Katherine Behar, sociologist Noortje Marres, media scholar Shannon Mattern and urban designer David Turnbull discuss how this kind of perspective changes the conversation around sustainability as well as human interaction. What happens when technology reaches the scale of cities? Can an object bear responsibility that has previously been reserved for humans? Beginning with the artist’s sometimes contentious relationship to material presence as a platform for the examination of these questions, this panel considers the constellation of disciplines including architecture, ecology, global geography, urban studies, and anthropology that are tackling these questions.

Presented on occasion of the Vera List Center’s 2011-2013 focus theme “Thingness.”

Noortje Marres
, Lecturer, Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths, University of London
Shannon Matter
n, Associate Professor, Media Studies, The New School for Public Engagement
David Turnbull
, Professor, Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture, The Cooper Union

Katherine Behar
, Assistant Professor, Fine and Performing Arts, Baruch College, The City University of New York


Beyond the Seminar Paper @ CUNY Grad Center (2011)

I spoke with Mark Sample at the CUNY Grad Center about means of assessing non-traditional classroom assignments.

Tuesday October 18, 2011, 6:30-8:30pm, Room 6496, CUNY Graduate Center

By exploring how new technologies might function as teaching tools or platforms on which students can demonstrate their learning, we expand the means and ends of education. With this increasing openness of pedagogical forms comes the responsibility to justify our choices and develop new forms of criticism and modes of assessment. Using several of my own courses as examples, I’ll address the challenges and potential benefits of holding students, and ourselves, accountable for the choices we make in our classrooms and advising relationships. I’ll focus on the value of (1) student documentation of their learning process, and in particular (2) students’ justification of their chosen methods and modes of presentation; (3) collaborative development of criteria for evaluation; and (4) connecting our work in the classroom to larger public problems and public institutions. Here are my slides, and here’s a video of my talk.