28 March 2022
Metamorphic Miscellany: Adventures at the edge of the human
with Iram Ghufran
28 March 2022 | Alserkal Arts Foundation
Encyclopaedias, indexes and catalogues share a common fantasy – of disciplining a chaotic world through a narrative logic of classification. Taxonomies, like territories, require immense labour to protect their terrain from outsiders, encroachers and aliens. One such segregation, the divide between the human and nonhuman (sometimes described as the great divide) has served as the ultimate threshold that safeguards the question of what it means to be human. But taxonomies, like territories, have always been susceptible to border crossings. Animals, ghosts, dolls, machines and even ‘non-human’ humans constantly unsettle the boundaries of ‘the human’. Iram's work has had an abiding interest in liminal spaces as a productive horizon to think from. In this talk, she deploys the idea of a un-cyclopedia of metamorphoses as a way of developing practices that welcome intrusions into humanity.
The talk will be followed by a screening of Phie Ambo’s documentary Mechanical Love (79 mins., 2007). The film explores the inter-relationship between humans and robots.