Studio update – Spring 2022

This academic year I am on sabbatical leave finishing three long-running projects and planning to focus more on applications of the archaeological imagination to matters of common and pressing contemporary concern, especially through design foresight and futures literacy. This is why I have put to one side my critical commentary on all things archaeological and…

sampling and re-presentation

Sampled pigments from mine tailings. Amelia Colliery, Shankhouse, Cramlington, Northumberland UK. Closed 1938. One of many coal mines in south east Northumberland. The pit heap was notorious for its internal burning – hence the red and orange oxides. Non-representation. Post-phenomenology. Part of project Borderlands – [Link]

insignificants

A marvelous talk today at Stanford from Tim Flohr Sørensen (Copenhagen) about his project – Insignificants – [Link]. So much in a short report on such a beautifully simple experiment. Archaeologists often pride themselves on taking up what is overlooked, insignificant, discarded as irrelevant, detritus, mere traces, garbage. But what does this involve? What happens…

property, legacy, heritage, and a case for connoisseurship

Project Borderlands – [Link] More reflections on the entanglement of property and colonialism, taste and upbringing, class and inequality. [Link] [Link] [Link] In the early 1700s Admiral George Delaval, wealthy from a career in the Royal Navy, diplomatic service and from overseas investments, bought his old family estate from an impoverished cousin. He hired Sir…

Anselm Kiefer’s archaeological sensibility

Four new works from Anselm Kiefer go on exhibition at Gagosian Le Bourget, Paris, February 7. Marvelous manifestations of the archaeological imagination – [Link] What interests me is the transformation, not the monument. I don’t construct ruins, but I feel ruins are moments when things show themselves. A ruin is not a catastrophe. It is…

Confronting the Classics

Project Greece and Rome – [Link] Classics is the study of Ancient Greece and Rome. Or is it? Mary Beard, Cambridge University Professor, the popular “Oxbridge Don“ of the British media, deals with the question of the object of Classics in her book Confronting the Classics: Traditions, Adventures, and Innovations (Liveright 2013). I had a…