research and the artistic (im)pulse

Across our campus community, who among us does not seek and create?  Seek insights; interrogate existing structures and systems; search for cures, solutions, justice.  Create models and prototypes; generate ideas; envision beyond what is already given.  We often refer to such activity as “research,” but are we not also describing the practice of art?  Art could be characterized as a process of invention as inquiry – driven by personal and public exigencies, weaving together knowledge and imagination.  The artist’s search may be recursive, with no attainable ends, yet produce objects, events, and movements with the capacity to touch anyone who encounters them in unforeseeable ways.  What light does this shine on conventional scholarly/scientific spirals of research-and-publication at an institution like Stanford?  What alternative rhythms of seeking and creating can we discern?

We aim to explore how – across diverse disciplines – artists’ ways of thinking and doing can inspire new modes of work and new kinds of work-products, with more direct engagement of public interest and more direct impact on pressing societal needs.  To launch this initiative, we are organizing this two-day symposium with six invited participants: internationally renowned artists, all of whom engage artistic practice in connection with research, critique, and/or activism.  Each artist will deliver a 35-minute presentation and participate in a roundtable discussion.

Symposium Dates: March 9-10, 2023

@ Clark Center Auditorium


Tanya Aguiñiga

Onyeka Igwe

Ken Liu

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

Tavares Strachan

Anicka Yi

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Stanford Arts Institute