Healing Spaces, Modern Architecture, and the Body – 3 Feb 2017

New Books Series: Healing Spaces, Architecture and the Body

Co-hosted by Architecture Space and Society Centre and Centre for Medical Humanities, Birkbeck

3 February, 2-5pm, Keynes Library

You can now book your place here.

This event marks the publication of the collected volume Healing Spaces, Modern Architecture and the Body (Routledge, 2016).

We are delighted to welcome the co-editors Dr Sarah Schrank, Professor of History at California State University, Long Beach, and Dr Didem Ekici, Assistant Professor in the Department of Architecture and Built Environment at the University of Nottingham.


Didem Ekici and Sarah Schrank, Introduction to the volume

Didem Ekici, The Physiology of the House: Modern Architecture and the Science of Hygiene

Sarah Schrank, Naked Houses: The Architecture of Nudism and the Rethinking of the American Suburbs

Respondent: Caitjan Gainty, Lecturer in the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, Kings College London

There will be a drinks reception afterwards.


All welcome!

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Journal of Embodied Research (JER) Launch Party – 8th February 2017

You are cordially invited to the launch party for the Journal of Embodied Research (JER) on Wednesday 8th February, 6-8pm in The Keynes Library at the School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square.

Birkbeck, The Open Library of Humanities, and the University of Huddersfield will be co-hosting this event to celebrate the launch of the new video essay journal on the Open Library of Humanities’ publishing platform.

Please click here to reserve your FREE TICKET for the launch party via Eventbrite.

We hope to see many of you there!

All best wishes,


Caroline Edwards, Martin Eve and the JER editorial team.

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Satellite 1 February 2017

The next meeting of Satellite will take place Wednesday 1 February 2017, 14.00-16.00 in Room 106, 43 Gordon Square.

Satellite is an experimental group within the School of Arts focused on learning technologies, broadly defined. It operates as a hybrid, in that it is both a formal subcommittee for the School of Arts’ Teaching and Quality Enhancement Committee, and at the same time, a forum for exchanging information and perspectives on the critical, creative, academic and pedagogical dimensions of learning technologies.

Although as a subcommittee Satellite includes formal department representatives, its meetings remain an open forum for all who would like to attend, including academic and administrative staff, as well as postgraduate research students.

Minutes from our last meeting, along with an agenda for the forthcoming meeting, are available on Satellite’s Moodle page (http://moodle.bbk.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=4447). If you are not already enrolled, once there, you simply need to self-enrol using the following enrolment key: artstel

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Practice Based – Corkscrew Spring Term 2017


Show and Tell

Hosted by Bruno Roubicek, artist and Birkbeck PhD student, show and tell sessions invite practice-based research students to present work in progress. It’s an opportunity to share your emerging practice and receive feedback in a supportive environment. Sessions through the year will consider how practice and scholarship can work together to generate insight and understanding. What is “doing knowledge” and how can practice be made evident to examiners?

On Monday 27 February, 2-5pm, join us for the spring Show and Tell session. Alongside presentations, we will discuss Sophie Hope’s article ‘Bursting paradigms: a colour wheel of practice-research’, Cultural Trends, 25, 2 (2016), 74-86 (NB. Senate House Library membership needed for access via this link).

Show and Tell takes place in G10, School of Arts. The summer date will be announced later in the year.

RSVP to Bruno here.

The Particularities of Conference Presentation

On Friday 3 March, 9.30am-12.30pm, join us for a 3-hour workshop that offers training in delivering conference presentations effectively.

Conference presentation is an essential aspect of the working life of a professional researcher.  Yet doctoral students often acquire skills in this area somewhat unevenly, learning through trial and error.  This workshop approaches the conference presentation as a moment of public performance.  It asks: what are the formal features of an effective presentation?  What techniques can a presenter use to communicate with his or her audience – whether in the context of scholarly conferences, public lectures, or arts venues?  This workshop is run in collaboration with artists from Haranczak-Navarre Performance Projects.

Participating students can then either attend or present research on collaborative practices at Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs (Friday 3 & Saturday 4 March 2017) – a symposium that explores the duet as a mode of collaboration across the disciplines.  See the foot of this email for the CFP – deadline Friday 27 January.

The Particularities of Conference Presentation is supported by the CHASE Cohort Development Fund.  Places are free but limited to 20 – booking is essential.

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CFP: Transculturation, Encounters in the Modern Period, 1830-Present University of York – deadline 12 March 2017


Transculturation: Encounters in the Modern Period, 1830 – Present 

Tuesday 30 May 2017

University of York

Deadline for abstracts: 12 March 2017

This interdisciplinary one-day symposium aims to give postgraduate researchers at any level or point in their studies an opportunity to come together to develop debates around transculturation – the idea of works and people responding to production, reproduction and reception at different times and in different places, exploring how ‘ideas’ can transmutate and travel.

In the age of so-called globalisation when access and opportunities to ‘connect’ have never been more abundant, how do we now scrutinise borders, nations, places and spaces? Historically, scholars have established and reinforced conceptual borders between disciplines and through periodization. Increasingly, however, research of the modern period attempts to transcend those borders and explore worlds of diverse experience.

This year’s Centre for Modern Studies postgraduate conference takes transculturation as its key theme but applies it as broadly as Codell intended – incorporating all of the humanities disciplines and the atemporal nature of contemporary research.Therefore we invite proposals of individual papers on topics in the period 1830-Present that include but are not limited to:

  • Real and Imagined Boundaries: border studies, North/South, East/West (including post-Saidean disruptions to the East/West binary), metropoles/peripheries, the ‘Third Space’, contact zones 
  • Britain and Empires Beyond: Ottoman, Byzantine, Chinese, Japanese, Native American, Mayan.
  • Networked and travelling objects, art and literary works
  • Tourism and travel studies, travel literature
  • Translations of texts
  • Cross contamination: transculturation in the medical humanities
  • The internet as a transcultural space
  • Travelling ideas in philosophical thought
  • Transcultural synaesthesia: hybridity in music

Abstracts of up to 300 words should be submitted to cmods-pgforum@york.ac.uk by Sunday 12 March. Applicants will be notified by the end of March. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the organisers. 

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The Still Point Journal Issue 2 Launch Party – 25 Feb 2017

The Still Point Journal Issue 2 Launch Party, 25 Feb

We are excited to invite you to the launch party for the second issue of The Still Point Journal, The Researcher’s Notebook, featuring creative non-fiction, poetry and visual work, produced by researchers in London.

Join us for an evening of live readings and music at The Gallery Café, Bethnal Green, and pick up a free copy of the print edition. We have a limited number of copies to gift to our launch party attendees, so come along to adopt your own!

Date: Saturday 25th February

Time: 7:30-10:30pm

Place: The Gallery Cafe, 21 Old Ford Road, London, E2 9PJ

Join our Facebook event here for updates about the evening: https://www.facebook.com/events/1820911611520721/ 

For Issue 2 of The Still Point Journal, we asked contributors to imagine that their submissions are part of a collective Researcher’s Notebook in both a literal, and a broader, metaphorical sense. The issue explores the idea of the journal as a space for spontaneous discovery or self-creation.

The Researcher’s Notebook includes contributions from Bihter Almac, Isobel Atacus, Liz Bahs, Leonid Bilmes, Tianmei Chen, Chiara Raffaella Ciampa, George Clayton, Oline Eaton, Daniyal Farhani, Armenoui Kasparian Saraidari, Annegret Marten, Penny Newell, Charlotte Northall, Romy Nuttall, Jon Paterson, Stuart Ruel, Matthew Shaw, Lavinia Singer, and Ruth Tullis, and is designed by Becky Healey.

The Still Point is a literary journal for Arts and Humanities researchers from institutions across London: featuring poetry, prose and visual artwork, it is a space for storytelling about the research process. Generously supported by the London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP)/ Arts and Humanities Research Council.

We hope to see you there,

The Still Point Editorial Team x

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Eighteenth-Century Reading Group, Wednesday 1 February 2017, 12-2pm

Birkbeck Eighteenth-Century Research Group: Reading Group

Wednesday 1 February 2017, 12.00-2.00pm

Keynes Library, 43 Gordon Square

National and Cosmopolitan Antiquities in the Late Eighteenth Century (Irish, Scottish, German, Russian)

Readings chosen and introduced by:

Alexis Wolf (PhD candidate, English and Humanities, Birkbeck)

Catherine Angerson (PhD candidate, Cultures and Languages, Birkbeck)

The Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, Royal Charter (1783), pp. 2-5.

Matthew Guthrie, Dissertations sur les antiquities de Russie (1795), pp. 6-15.

Ekaterina Romanovna Dashkova and Martha Bradford, Memoirs of Princess Daschkaw, Lady of Honour to Catherine II (1840), pp. 16-21.

Johann Gottfried Herder, ‘Extract from a Correspondence on Ossian and the Songs of Ancient Peoples’ (Auszug aus einem Briefwechsel über Ossian und die Lieder alter Völker) (1773) available online in German: http://www.zeno.org/Literatur/M/Herder,+Johann+Gottfried/Theoretische+Schriften/Von+deutscher+Art+und+Kunst/1.+Auszug+aus+einem+Briefwechsel

Gottfried August Bürger, Outpourings from the Heart on Folk Poetry (Herzensausguß über Volkspoesie) (1776) available online in German: https://www.uni-due.de/lyriktheorie/texte/1776_buerger.html

(English translations available)

Alexis Wolf will introduce the writings of Anglo-Irish sisters Martha and Katherine Wilmot, who travelled to Russia between 1803-1808 to live as the guests of Princess Yekaterina Dashkova, a major figure in the Russian Enlightenment, and recorded observations about the customs and songs of Russian peasants, relating them to Dissertations Sur Les Antiquities de Russie (1785) by Matthew Guthrie, a Scottish physician resident in St Petersburg and a Correspondent Member of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, whose Charter is also included in the reading pack. The transnational practice of the Irish women and the Scottish doctor in Russia will be compared to German reflections on the poetry of Ossian through texts by Herder and Bürger introduced by Catherine Angerson.

To request copies of the readings, please email Luisa Calè, l.cale@bbk.ac.uk


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CILAVS: Vivian Ostrovsky’s Brazilian connection February 4th 2017

The Centre for Iberian and Latin American Visual Studies, CILAVS, and the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image, BIMI, present:

Vivian Ostrovsky’s Brazilian connection

Vivian Ostrovsky’s avant-garde work has been shown at major film festivals (Berlin, Rotterdam, Tribeca) and is part of international collections, including MOMA, Centre Pompidou and Deutschen Kinemathek. The screening of her films connected to Brazil below will be followed by a Q&A session with the filmmaker chaired by Laura Mulvey.


1.30 – 1.45pm – Registration
1.45 – 2.00pm – Introduction
2.00 – 3.00pm – Screenings:

P.W. – Pincéis e Painéis (P.W. – Paintbrushes and Panels)(2010, 15’51, dig)

This video was made for an exhibition on the muralist Paulo Werneck, who was the first to introduce mosaics in Brazilian Modernist architecture.

CORrespondência e REcorDAÇoes (2013, 10’48, dig)

Based on a correspondence between artist Ione Saldanha and the filmmaker, this portrait on the artist’s life and work was made for an exhibition at MAM in Rio de Janeiro.

ICE/SEA (2005, 31 Min, 16mm)

Playful collage of sea, sun and ice. A beach extravaganza starring suicidal skiers, soaking tigers, plunging mermaids and much more.

3.00 – 3.20pm Discussion
3.20 – 3.35pm – Break
3.35 – 4.25pm – Screenings:

Nikita Kino (2002, 40 Min, 16mm)

‘In 1960 my family lived in Brazil when my father discovered that his sister and brother in Moscow, who he hadn’t seen for 40 years, were still alive. […] At the time I had my 8mm camera then later a super 8 with which I filmed the family, our outings, picnics, markets and their homes.’
This material was mixed with Soviet found-footage and music of the same period.

Copacabana Beach (1983, 14 10 Min, 16mm)

A humorous glimpse at what happens every morning on the wavy sidewalks of Copacabana beach. Physical fitness Brazilian style, with a dash of soccer and hints of Carmen Miranda.

4.25 – 5.00pm – Discussion

Attendance is free but booking is necessaryhttps://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/vivian-ostrovskys-brazilian-connection-tickets-29859287934

This event has been curated by Diane Gabrysiak and Luciana Martins.

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Murray Seminars Spring Term 2017

The programme of Murray Seminars on Medieval and Renaissance Art continues this term with the following seminars.

All are welcome.

22 February 2017

Laura Jacobus ‘”Mea culpa?” Penitence, Enrico Scrovegni and me’ The Arena Chapel in Padua was until very recently thought to be commissioned as an act of restitution for usury, and its frescoes by Giotto as an expression of penitence on the part of the patron Enrico Scrovegni.  That view has now been challenged by Laura Jacobus and others.  But two of her recent discoveries have the potential to reinforce the established view and undermine her own.  What happens when a researcher uncovers inconvenient truths, and what is to be done?

15th March 2017  

Péter Bokody  ‘The Politicization of Rape: Giotto’s Allegory of Injustice in Padua’ suggests that the allegory of Injustice in the Arena Chapel (Padua) by Giotto  and the allegory of War in the Palazzo Pubblico (Siena) by Ambrogio Lorenzetti are key allegorical images of rape which can offer critical and politicized representations of sexual violence without sanitizing or eroticizing the act. Their unparalleled representations of sexual violence have implications for a general history of rape and the visual culture of late-medieval Italy.

All this term’s seminars take place in the History of Art Department at Birkbeck (43, Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD) in Room 114 (The Keynes Library) at 5pm.  Talks finish by 5.50pm (allowing those with other commitments to leave) and are then followed by discussion and refreshments.  We hope to see you there.

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