Monday, February 7, 2011

Penn Colloquia: Caitlin McGrath and Tim Murray

University of Pennsylvania's Cinema Studies continues its colloquium series with two talks this week:

Caitlin McGrath
"'Seasickness is Decidedly Pleasant': Display and Movement in Late-Silent-Era Film Aesthetics"

What connects the rollercoaster in Hindle Wakes, the display window in Asphalt, and the trolley in Sunrise? They all use mobile camera work and experimental editing techniques to recreate the perceptual experience of modern life for the viewer. This paper will consider the role of these three sites in the modern urban environment—the department store, the city street, and the amusement park – in cinematic visualizations of modernization and industrialization. Examining this mix of pleasure and discomfort through the lens of the history of perceptual psychology becomes a means of exploring the affective dimension of the history of film style from early cinema through to Classical Hollywood.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011
330 Fisher-Bennett Hall
University of Pennsylvania

Timothy Murray (Cornell Univ.)
"Performing the Future, or Longing in the Age of New Media"

The talk will consider "longing" within the context of a psycho-philosophical approach to new media studies. The place of longing will be discussed not so much in a material context (the vanishing of materials) but more in a spectral sense: from consideration of models of mourning and melancholia in relation to the "loss" of analogue textual and cinematic formats to a reformulation of the dynamics of "analogy" in the digital age. In considering a number of performance pieces and new media artworks from Asia, the talk will raise the possibility of a flexible model of "the fold," in contrast to the mechanics of perspective, while positioning the valence of longing in relation to the future pull of informatics rather than the past lament of lost artifacts.

Thursday, February 10, 2011
401 Fisher-Bennett Hall
University of Pennsylvania

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