[ISEA2011] Panel: Ker­stin Mey – Be­tween Hy­brid­ity and Hy­per-space: AES+F’s The Feast of Tri­mal­chio (2008)

Panel Statement

Panel: Hybrid Cultures

In their nine-screen dig­i­tal video the Russ­ian artist group AES+F has sought to pro­vide an anal­ogy for the glob­alised third mil­len­nium by re/pre­sent­ing it through a he­do­nist glut in the en­vi­ron­ment- as imag­i­nary lux­ury hotel re­sorts that op­er­ate as com­pound non-places of su­per­moder­nity (Marc Auge). It is a place in which the power re­la­tions be­tween con­tem­po­rary mas­ters and slaves is re/en­acted and re/af­firmed through the con­ver­gence of re­spec­tive his­tor­i­cal and con­tem­po­rary cross-cul­tural sig­ni­fiers. The space-time con­tin­uum is col­lapsed into an ahis­tor­i­cal, tem­po­rary par­adise made up of frag­mented ,global/ised ref­er­ents from fash­ion pho­tog­ra­phy, glossy tourist mag­a­zines, leisure ad­ver­tise­ments, broad sheet sup­ple­ments and soap op­eras (as well as art, de­sign and ar­chi­tec­tural his­tory) and shaped by metonymy (rather than metaphor).  Using this com­plex and dense work as a pri­mary case study, the pre­sen­ta­tion ex­plores the ten­sions be­tween its fore­grounded media and tech­no­log­i­cal hy­brid­ity and the mapped out al­le­gor­i­cal hy­per­space, as means to crit­i­cally in­ter­vene in the un­der­stand­ing of con­tem­po­rary me­di­ated cul­ture under the con­di­tions of a global flow of cap­i­tal.

  • Ker­stin Mey grad­u­ated with an MA in Art and Ger­man Lan­guage and Lit­er­a­ture from Hum­boldt Uni­ver­sity, Berlin, Ger­many and sub­se­quently ob­tained a Dr.phil. in art the­ory/aes­thet­ics and a PGDip in Eu­ro­pean Cul­tural Pol­icy and Ad­min­is­tra­tion. After work­ing in po­si­tions in uni­ver­si­ties in Ger­many and the UK, she now heads up the De­part­ment for Re­search and En­ter­prise at the Uni­ver­sity for the Cre­ative Arts, UK, where she also holds a Pro­fes­sor­ship in Fine Art. Mey’s own re­search has been con­cerned with the sit­u­at­ed­ness of con­tem­po­rary art and cul­tural prac­tices. Of spe­cific in­ter­est are: the role of art in civil so­ci­ety and the pub­lic do­main, the con­struc­tion of iden­ti­ties under the in­flu­ence of digi­ti­sa­tion, mi­gra­tion and glob­al­i­sa­tion, and the in­ter­con­nec­tions be­tween art, doc­u­men­ta­tion, mem­ory,  his­tory writ­ing and the archiv­ing process.  She is a peer re­viewer for the AHRC (Arts and Hu­man­i­ties Re­search Coun­cil) and other UK Re­search Coun­cils, in­ter­na­tional fund­ing bod­ies and pub­lish­ers. Mey was Artis­tic Di­rec­tor of ISEA2009 which took place under the um­brella theme En­gaged Cre­ativ­ity in Mo­bile En­vi­ron­ments on the is­land of Ire­land. She has cu­rated ex­hi­bi­tions in­clud­ing Bod­ies of Sub­stance (2003/4) and or­gan­ised in­ter­na­tional and in­ter­dis­ci­pli­nary con­fer­ences with cre­ative prac­tices at their cen­ter. Amongst her nu­mer­ous pub­li­ca­tions on con­tem­po­rary art and art re­search are the au­thored book Art and Ob­scen­ity (2006) and the fol­low­ing edited vol­umes: with Mor­row and Rohr, Cre­ative Trans­for­ma­tions (2008); with Kroenke and Spiel­mann, Kul­turelle Um­bruche: Iden­ti­taten, Raume, Reprasen­ta­tio­nen (2007), On-Site/In-Sight, a spe­cial issue Jour­nal of Vi­sual Art Prac­tice, Vols. 4.1-2 (2005), and Art in the Mak­ing. Aes­thet­ics His­toric­ity and Prac­tice (2004); with Yuill, Cross-wired: Com­mu­ni­ca­tion, In­ter­face, Lo­cal­ity, (2004),  Sculp­sit: Con­tem­po­rary Artists on Sculp­ture and Be­yond (2001). She cur­rently col­lab­o­rates with Susan Benn on the pro­ject A Ped­a­gogy of Cu­rios­ity which re­con­sid­ers the roles of the human sen­so­rium, sense per­cep­tion and the arts in the shap­ing of val­ues that sup­port re­silient liv­ing and an ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the en­vi­ron­ment, as well as their roles in in/form­ing self-gov­er­nance and en­gaged cit­i­zen­ship.