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The University of Southampton
Archaeologies of Media and Technology Research group

A Significant Project in the Istanbul Design Biennial

Published: 29 August 2016
A Water Serving Automaton
A Water Serving Automaton from Al-Jazari's The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Devices (1206)

AMT Co-Director, Professor Jussi Parikka (WSA) is an invited exhibiting participant in the forthcoming Istanbul Design Biennial.

Together with Dr Ayhan Aytes (Istanbul), they are organising a section on the Middle-East legacy of technological automata. Not merely an exhibition on the media archaeology of such inventions from the period of 800-1300, it is also an exhibition, a seminar and a workshop on speculative design: what if the technological age would have really started in that period and those locations such as Baghdad’s House of Wisdom in the 9th century; how to imagine a “Middle-East futurism" in the context of contemporary geopolitics? How imaginaries of the past and the future can feed into a critical understanding of technological culture?

The main theme of the Biennial is “Are We Human” and the exhibitions focus on design issues from the body to the planetary scale. It is curated by the architectural theorists Beatriz Colomina (Princeton University) and Mark Wigley (Columbia University). The previous Istanbul Design Biennial hosted more than 100,000 visitors across the city. Some other participants from the United Kingdom include Revital Cohen and Tuur Van Balen, Tacita Dean,Territorial Agency (John Palmesino and Ann-Sofie Ronnskog), and Eyal Weizman.

More info about the themes and the participants:



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