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The University of Southampton
Winchester Centre for Global Futures in Art Design & Media

What is a Player Piano?: The Media Archaeology of Torsten Lauschmann's Art Event

The Coy Lover (2011)
19:00 - 20:00
20 July 2012
John Hansard Gallery Highfield Campus University of Southampton

For more information regarding this event, please telephone Dr Stefanie Van de Peer on 02380596925 or email .

Event details

Winchester Research Centre and John Hansard Gallery work together on an Artist Talk, hosted by WSA professor Ryan Bishop and Dr Jussi Parikka.

Friday 20 July 2012 / 7-8pm
(doors open 6.30pm)
John Hansard Gallery

The mass-produced player piano offers a unique take on technology in the late 19th and early 20th century. A parlour novelty that reflected the larger mechanisation and automation of society, the player piano brought into the home the deskilling of workers, the punch card of looms that became the basis of computers, and the push-button satisfaction of entertainment and art.

A player piano – along with a snow machine, film projector and a mechanical monkey - also figures centrally in Torsten Lauschmann’s exhibition at the John Hansard Gallery. It provides a useful entry point for looking at Lauschmann’s serious, yet whimsical works and their wider historical, social and cultural contexts.

This short public talk by Professor Ryan Bishop and Dr. Jussi Parikka from Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton, will provide a lively introduction to the exhibition and concludes with a Q & A session.

Ryan Bishop is Professor of Global Arts and Politics at the Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton. He publishes on aesthetics, technology, militarization, literature and urbanism.

Jussi Parikka is Finnish media theorist, who writes on media archaeology and cultural aspects of digitality. He is the author of Digital Contagions: A Media Archaeology of Computer Viruses (2007), Insect Media (2010) and What is Media Archaeology? (2012). He blogs at

Image: Torsten Lauschmann, The Coy Lover, 2011. AV Festival, Newcastle, 2012. Courtesy the artist and Dundee Contemporary Arts. Photo: Ruth Clark

Speaker information

Ryan Bishop,Professor of Global Arts and Politics Co-Director of the Winchester Centre for Global Futures in Art Design & Media

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