Product Design faculty Robert Kirkbride to participate in The Arts of Memory conference, 26-27 April

At the 2012 Interdisciplinary Memory Conference (April 26 and 27), over 60 international scholars will discuss the arts and artifices of memory practices, which from antiquity have informed human actions and artifacts.

Lina Bolzoni is the keynote speaker on Friday evening, discussing the magical-hermetic Memory Theatre of Giulio Camillo and the reemergence of memory studies in contemporary culture. On Friday morning, SCE Associate Professor Robert Kirkbride will present Vehicles of Transformation in the panel on Architecture and Built Environment.

For the full 2-day conference schedule:

Keynote Lecture: 2012 Interdisciplinary Memory Conference
Friday, April 27, 6:30 p.m.
(Wolff Room, 6 East 16th St, 11th Floor)

“Memory Palaces — the Renaissance and the Contemporary World”
Lina Bolzoni
Global Distinguished Professor of Italian Studies, New York University

An ancient tradition teaches the art of memory. This art builds palaces in the mind in which to place images that help us to remember. While this tradition may at first sight appear radically remote from the world we live in today, it nevertheless regularly resurfaces in different forms. This talk describes the most famous “theatre of memory” of the Renaissance, the magical-hermetic Theatro of Giulio Camillo, and draws comparisons with the Encyclopedic Palace of the World (now in the American Folk Art Museum of New York), the brainchild of an Italian emigrant who developed this project for Washington Mall in the 1950s. Further contemporary employments of the ancient memory techniques may be observed in the life and works of historian Tony Judt and writer Siri Hustdvedt, opening up intriguing questions as to why such reemergence should occur at this particular historical juncture.
Keynote followed by a reception.