IAS Talking Points: Technologies & Techniques of Landscape Representation
IAS VRF Dr Olga Smith’s talk ‘Technologies and Techniques of Landscape Representation in the Age of The Anthropocene’
Speaker: Dr Olga Smith (Visiting Research Fellow, Institute of Advanced Studies, UCL)
Respondents: Professor Peg Rawes (Professor of Architecture and Philosophy, Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL) and Dr Nicholas Robbins (Lecturer in British Art, c. 1700-1900, Department of History of Art, UCL)
The dawning of a proposed new geological epoch, the Anthropocene, has been notable for prompting urgent re-appraisal of the fundamental shifts in the paradigmatic conceptions of nature and human. As a genre that is explicitly concerned with the representations of physical environments in art, landscape offers especially rich material for a study of such paradigmatic shifts. Across a series of case studies, drawn from the examples in recent and contemporary art, this talk will identify the distinct ways in which landscape as a genre has evolved in response to the threat of the Anthropocene. Specifically, this talk will focus on the role of the new imaging technologies (photography, digital, CGI) in creating new techniques in representing landscapes, and their effect on cultural and artistic conceptions of landscape.
The wider aims of this project, which will be outlined in the talk, is to contribute to the future development of ecocritical and environmental enquiries within art history, while acknowledging that, as a as a humanities mode of enquiry, art history is challenged by the questions of the environment. In this regard, this project intersects with the burgeoning concentration of research that draws interdisciplinary scholarship in humanities into debates on the issues of the environment, ecology and nature.
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