French philosopher Dr. Catherine Malabou, best known for her work on plasticity, has forged new connections across such fields as philosophy, neuroscience and psychoanalysis and their fundamental entanglements with cultural, political and social life. Working with post-structuralist and post-critical methodologies, she addresses the work of philosophers Kant, Hegel, Freud, Heiddeger and Derrida. Her writing engenders a reconsideration of keywords and foundational concepts such as subjectivity, affect, gender, sex, feminism, neoliberalism, sovereignty, justice and trauma, to name a few.
This fall Catherine Malabou will be visiting Vancouver in conjunction with the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery exhibition The Beautiful Brain: The Drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal (September 5–December 3). In advance of her visit, the Belkin Art Gallery is partnering with SFU Galleries, SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement and 221A to host a reading group that will focus on a selection of her recent essays. The sessions will culminate in a seminar led by Malabou.
This reading group is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Space is limited and a commitment to the five sessions is necessary. We strongly encourage participants from diverse disciplines, with diverse abilities, to participate. To register please send a brief email introducing yourself and your interests and confirm your commitment to the schedule to firstname.lastname@example.org by September 15. The reading group will meet at 221A.
Malabou will also deliver a public lecture, Empty Square v. Evolutionary Memory: The New Adventures of Signs on November 23, and a keynote address at UBC’s Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health’s 20th Anniversary Symposium on November 25.
Plasticity is co-presented by SFU Galleries, Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement and 221A. The reading group coincides with 221A’s inaugural season of the Pollyanna Library, which will support a new artistic program of fellowships dedicated to the production of cultural, ecological and social infrastructures, through a space that acts as a research collection and events venue.
Catherine Malabou’s visit is part of the French Scholars Lecture Series made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the Embassy of France in Canada in partnership with the UBC Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies, with additional support from the Audain Endowment for Curatorial Studies in the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory at UBC.
SCHEDULE OF READINGS BY CATHERINE MALABOU
October 4: “Plasticity’s Fields of Action” from What Should We Do with Our Brains?, 2008 and “Introduction” from The New Wounded, 2012
October 18: “On Neural Plasticity, Trauma and The Loss of Affects” from Self and Emotional Life, 2013 and “Neurological Objection: Rehabilitating the Event” from The New Wounded, 2012
November 1: “Will Sovereignty Ever Be Deconstructed?” from Plastic Materialities, 2015
November 15: “Whither Materialism? Althusser/Darwin” from Plastic Materialities, 2015 and “The Brain of History, or, the Mentality of the Anthropocene” from South Atlantic Quarterly 116:1 (2017): 39-53
November 21: “Introduction” from Before Tomorrow, Epigenesis and Rationality, 2016
The Beautiful Brain is the first North American museum exhibition to present the extraordinary drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal (1852–1934), a Spanish pathologist, histologist and neuroscientist renowned for his discovery of neuron cells and their structure, for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine in 1906. Known as the father of modern neuroscience, Cajal was also an exceptional artist and studied as a teenager at the Academy of Arts in Huesca, Spain. He combined scientific and artistic skills to produce arresting drawings with extraordinary scientific and aesthetic qualities. A century after their completion, his drawings are still used in contemporary medical publications to illustrate important neuroscience principles, and continue to fascinate artists and visual art audiences. Eighty of Cajal’s drawings are accompanied by a selection of contemporary neuroscience visualizations by international scientists.[more]
Once again, we are pleased to welcome the UBC Contemporary Players to the Belkin Art Gallery for a concert inspired by the exhibition The Beautiful Brain: The Drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal. Led by Directors Corey Hamm and Paolo Bortolussi, this graduate and undergraduate student ensemble from the UBC School of Music will animate the Gallery for an afternoon program celebrating themes from the exhibition.[more]