thematics

IF’11: Animal Influence workshop and concurrent exhibitions, performances and screenings will offer opportunities for in depth conversations and discussions between invited cognitive ethologists, biologists, psychologists, philosophers, artists and public policy makers whose work has helped to shift assumed conventions concerning animal cognition, consciousness, and agency, as well as reveal possibilities for the development of new media implementing image, text, and sound, and video. While there have been other symposiums and exhibitions in North America, the United Kingdom and Australia that have concentrated on human – animal relationships, to this date no workshop/exhibition has highlighted new methodologies for the development of new media artwork influenced by the growing wealth of knowledge about other species’ perceptions of the world.

IF’11 activities will target four specific audiences: members of local and international new media and art community of artists; communities of animal related scholars, scientists and public policy makers; audiences from the large contingents of the local and international public interested in animals, human-animal studies and animal advocacy and welfare; and new media audiences interested in new developments in digital image, sound, and text.

Within the broad theme of ‘Animal Influence’ we find 3 sub-themes: Perception, Agency, and Consciousness/Compassion explored through invited presentations by cognitive ethologists, psychologists, theorists, animators, new media artists and human-animal studies researchers and these themes are reflected in artist’s work in the exhibitions, screenings and performances. The presenters in the workshop are experts in their field, and have made significant contributions, nationally and internationally, to the area of investigation. The two keynote speakers, well- known and respected cognitive ethologist Marc Bekoff and international new media artist Lisa Jevbratt, will address aspects of these sub-themes. Twenty other members of the workshop will present and discuss these topics in depth from their particular perspectives.

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