Reading Frieder's heartfelt message made me pause for thought. Is the art
and science (and humanities or otherwise) debate and dialogue now overly
preoccupied with remaking and remoulding educational structures and
policies and how far do any of these discussions connect and relate to what
is happening in the world, as we live, as the ice is melting and the war
heads are advancing?
A journal I have co-edited with Lizzie Fisher has just been published and
within it we have several texts by pioneering figures in post-war
interdisciplinary trends and influences (in the UK primarily but with
international connections) and in the editorial introduction an argument is
made that this emergence was directly connected to a mood of revolution in
the air, a desire for social and political change and a sense that it might
be feasible to help to catalyse this. I am sending link to contents list
and here's our guest editor introduction:
I have posted some links to Yasmin Announcements where more of the texts
can be read in full and if anyone wishes to access any of the articles just
drop me or a line or email the author directly if you are in touch with
On 8 August 2017 at 04:42, roger malina <email@example.com> wrote:
> art/tech pioneer frieder nake sends us this comment on our
> steam to stem discussion
> he brings us a salutory reminder that the meta discussion, which
> i have been party to, may not be very relevant to practioners ! nor
> in face of the very real problems our world is facing
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: nake <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Dear Roger,
> I occasionally read a statement in this long, heavy, demanding ongoing
> STEM and STEAM and THEMAS and huevos rancheros discourses, and then I
> give up again reading (for it justs takes too much of my time), but I
> have not said anything even though I often felt I wanted to do so.
> For me, much of these intelligent essays appears as meta-polylog with
> way too much of meta. Here a three or four scattered notes, really
> scattered only, not even the attempt at anything substantial, nothing
> more than a Sunday morning remark by a wounded soul.
> At any given moment over the last five years or more, I had between 20
> and 25 students at Bachelor or Master levels (plus five at doctoral
> level) whose theses I was supervising. Their topics span a wide
> spectrum between art, media, design, and computer science. They
> require so much time to advice that the meta discourse gets touched
> once in a while but is not really interesting. Not more than a nice
> remark, not touching the substance of what those students are doing.
> There are about 200 new and unread books sitting around my desk
> wanting to be studied. They are about political, media, artistic,
> philosophical, scientific matters. I allow myself for about two hours
> on Sunday mornings at 5 a.m. to read a few pages. So I will die before
> I have read 5% of this growing and incredibly interesting mass of
> intellectual production. These books deal with issues from those
> disciplines, hardly any of them are meta.
> There is a big problem in the world: the return of religious wars.
> There is another huge problem in the world: the climate change. And
> yet another two: the outrageous attacks of capitalism on everything
> human, and the growth of right-wing political movements. To call any
> of these developments a "problem" is, in some sense, belittling. They
> are not "problems" of the kind you deal with in art or mathematics.
> They concern democracy and enlightenment and we cannot even understand
> anyof the basics if we don't approach it on the level of dialectics.
> The meta issues are far away. Almost like a fund-raising educational
> Vis-à-vis such scattered remarks, I don't see much space or time (no
> matter how you count dimensions) for those meta-questions. I am
> already fully occupied when I try to do a decent teaching job.
> Frieder Nake
> On 06/08/17 01:46, roger malina wrote:
> i had a chance to talk to marcus novak at the leonardo 50th birthday
> part at sheila pinkel's home
> in los angeles
> we discussed his THEMAS concept as an alternative to the stem to steam
> discussions- as he points put "It builds upon the successes of
> STEM/STEAM, with greater emphasis on the humanities, creativity, and
> synthesis." the us national academies study
> also emphasises that the humanites need to be fully integrated into
> the stem to steam discussion
> here is marcus ( hope you will tell us more) web site:
> Knowledge is often presented to us in fragmented form. We become
> informed about the parts, but lose the sense of the whole. We gain
> expertise, but lose balance. This course proposes to treat knowledge
> as a transdisciplinary, organic, n-dimensional continuum.
> "Mediated Worlds" examines how technologies and humanities (means and
> ends), engineering and mathematics (concrete and abstract), and arts
> and sciences (synthesis and analysis) inform all aspects of how we
> come to know and make the world.
> Touching upon themes ranging from media arts and digital humanities to
> virtual reality and future cinema, from generative systems and the
> poetics of new technologies to non-Euclidean geometries and
> n-dimensional spacetime, from liquid architectures and new music to
> pattern formation and algorithmic aesthetics, from artificial life and
> machine learning to soft robotics and bioengineering, from world
> mythologies and ancient philosophies to cognitive psychology and
> neuroscience, from thermodynamics and symmetry operations to genomics
> and new materials, from quantum entanglement and live performance to
> synthetic ecologies and the Anthropocene, this course presents an
> interconnected model of knowledge, learning, creative discovery, and
> 21st century citizenship.
> A THEMAS COURSE:
> The THEMAS*** model proposes a continuum across disciplines previously
> separated by narrow specializations. It builds upon the successes of
> STEM/STEAM, with greater emphasis on the humanities, creativity, and
> ***Technologies Humanities Engineering Mathematics Arts Sciences
> roger malina
> is somewhere in colorado
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