This lecture marks the first collaboration in a new partnership between Museum London,The School for Advanced Studies in Arts and Humanities and Public Humanities @ Western. As rapid changes in our social, cultural and economic fabric have created uncertain times, Jeff Melanson will discuss opportunities for transformative change, and how individuals and organizations can engage the public, reframe audience development and create greater public good. Melanson was appointed president of The Banff Centre in 2012. He holds a BA in music from the University of Manitoba and a MBA degree from Wilfrid Laurier University. A member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and a trustee with the National Guild for Community Arts Education, in the United States, Melanson was the first arts leader to be appointed one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40™ for 2009. Between 2000 and 2006, Melanson held various posts at the Community School at the Royal Conservatory of Music and was promoted to dean in 2001. In this role, he was essential in building the program into the largest community arts school in North America. In 2006, Melanson was appointed executive director and co-chief executive officer of Canada’s National Ballet School. During his tenure, he was instrumental in eliminating a significant annual operating deficit, increasing annual revenues by over 50 per cent, overseeing the completion of residence renovations, and creating new strategic partnerships with many non-profit and for-profit arts and entertainment corporations. Prior to the public lecture at Museum London, Jeff Melanson participate in a roundtable discussion with city, campus and community leaders.
Dr. Ruth B. Phillips is the Canada Research Chair in Modern Culture at Carlton University. She researches visual and material culture as aspects of larger processes of culture contact and colonization in order to contribute to the development of new approaches to museological and academic representations of First Nations art. Dr. Phillips has created the Visual Studies Laboratory in Carleton’s Institute of Comparative Studies in Literature, Art, and Culture (ICSLAC), funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Innovation Fund, and Carleton University. The Laboratory hosts the work of the Great Lakes Research Alliance for the Study of Aboriginal Arts and Cultures (GRASAC), which Phillips founded in 2005. GRASAC is an international collaboration of over fifty researchers based in universities, museums, and indigenous communities. Its members are developing new understandings of Great Lakes systems of expressive culture that incorporate both Western and indigenous knowledge and perspectives. In 2008, GRASAC launched its innovative multi-disciplinary database, using software developed with its industry partner, Ideeclic, of Gatineau, Quebec. The database supports the work of GRASAC researchers and ICSLAC students and facilitates digital repatriation to indigenous communities.
Dr. Robert Enright is University Research Professor in Art Criticism, is one of Canada's most prominent cultural journalists. He was the founder and is currently the Senior Contributing Editor to Border Crossings magazine. Dr. Enright has received 14 nominations at the National and Western Magazine Awards for his writing in Border Crossings, winning four gold and two silver medals. He was an art critic for CBC radio and television for 25 years and continues to contribute to a number of network programs. He also contributes regularly to the Globe & Mail, and to a number of international art magazines, including ArtReview, Modern Painters, ARTnews and Contemporary. Prof. Enright collaborated with Arthur Danto on the book, Eric Fischl: 19702000, and published a collection of 32 interviews under the title Peregrinations: Conversations with Contemporary Artists. He has also contributed essays, introductions and interviews to 20 catalogues in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. In addition to writing about the visual arts, he has conducted interviews and reviewed works in theatre, dance, film and performance art. In 2005 Professor Enright was made a Member of the Order of Canada by Governor-General Adrienne Clarkson.
Erin Manning is a cultural theorist, political philosopher, and practicing visual artist. She currently holds a University Research Chair in the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia University and is the founder and director of SenseLab, a laboratory that explores the intersections between art practice and philosophy through the matrix of the sensing body in movement. In her writing, Manning addresses various topics related to thought and politics in a field between dance and new technology, the convergence of cinema, animation, and new media. Her focus is on the senses, philosophy, and politics, as well as on the political and micropolitics of sensation and performance art. Her publications include: Relationscapes: Movement, Art, Philosophy (2009), Politics of Touch: Sense, Movement, Sovereignty(2007), and Ephemeral Territories: Representing Nation, Home, and Identity in Canada (2003). Brian Massumi is a political theorist, writer, and philosopher. He teaches in the Communication Sciences Department at the Université de Montréal and is well known for his English translation of several major texts in French post-structural theory including Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari’s A Thousand Plateaus and Jean-François Lyotard’s The Postmodern Condition. In addition, Massumi’s research is two-fold: the experience of movement and the interrelations between the senses, particularly in the context if new media art and technology; and the emergent moves of power associated with the globalization of capitalism and the rise of preemptive politics. His authored books include Semblance and Event: Activist Philosophy and the Occurrent Arts (2011) and Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation (2002). Massumi is also the editor of A Shock to Thought: Expression After Deleuze and Guattari (2002) and The Matrixial Borderspace: Essays by Bracha Ettinger (1997).