ReadingRoom – First Series

Speculation & Fabulation – Critique in the SF mode

ReadingRoom – First Series

Speculation & Fabulation – Critique in the SF mode

The first series of ReadingRoom was running from December 2014 to May 2015, discussing speculation & fabulation – critique in the SF mode.

Session one: Saturday, 13 Dec 2014 / Sunday, 14 Dec 2014

This session was part of a “seeance” led by filmmakers Graeme Thomson & Silvia Maglioni on Guattari’s unfilmed sci-fi screenplay Un Amour d’UIQ entitled: ‘UIQ in LOVE_A Love of UIQ : Between Translation and Transduction’, held at Casco on 13 and 14 Dec 2014. As one element of the workshop, ReadingRoom close-read parts of Félix Guattari’s Chaosmosis.

The session was sound recorded and fragments of it recomposed as part of a polyphonic soundwork Maglioni & Thomson installed for their solo exhibition ‘it took forever getting ready to exist: UIQ (the unmaking of)’ at The Showroom London in Feb-March 2015. The recording is also part of Casco’s exhibition ‘We are the Time Machines’ (starting 15 November 2015).

Session two: Tuesday, 20 Jan 2015

The meeting was linked to artist Melanie Gilligan’s exhibition ‘The Common Sense’, a sci-fi mini-series which looks at how minds, bodies, and interpersonal relations are shaped by technological advancements within capitalism. The mini-series was presented sequentially in exhibitions at Casco, Utrecht, De Hallen Haarlem, and de Appel art centre Amsterdam in 2015.

ReadingRoom was preceded by a Guided Tour with Kathrin Thiele and Melanie Gilligan. Our discussion was then based on Octavia Butler’s volume 1 (‘Dawn’) of Lillith’s Brood, looking into the role of the sci-fi genre as a form of social critique, in particular its mobilization by feminist authors to portray the possibilities for alternative futures, bodies, and relations.

Session three: Friday, 1 May 2015

We were reading Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector with French feminist Hélène Cixous to explore (non-) human becomings, writing and feminist speculation, discussion the following texts:

  • Clarice Lispector, The Passion According to G.H.
  • Clarice Lispector, The Hour of the Star
  • Hélène Cixous, ‘The hour of the star’ (in Reading with Clarice Lispector)
  • Hélène Cixous, ‘Clarice Lispector: the Approach’ (in ‘Coming to Writing’ and Other Essays)

Session four: Tuesday, 26 May 2015

The last session of this first series of ReadingRoom looked at speculative feminist utopias (with Jennifer Wagner-Lawlor), reading Jeannette Winterson’s The Stone Gods (2007) and parts from Jennifer Wagner-Lawlor’s Postmodern Utopias and Feminist Fictions (2013).

This ReadingRoom was linked up with artist Adelita Husni-Bey’s exhibition at Casco – White Paper – on view in May and June 2015.