All posts by Robert Graham

The Parthenon of (Forbidden) Books (2018)

In September, my wife Sharon and I were in Kassel for several days to visit Documenta. We walked through this Parthenon of Books one evening and found it visually striking and poignant. The banned books in their plastic envelopes represented a terrible history of literary oppression and destruction. Historically, book burnings have been held on this very site.

World Line: Bill Vazan’s Spherical Geosophy (2018)

Through walking, riding, scraping the surface of the earth, marking spaces with string and tape and creating observable conditions of change, Bill Vazan has created situations for heightening our awareness of sites of terrestrial passage and occupation. While geography is the disciplinary study of the planet, geosophy (a concept introduced only in 1947) is vernacular geographical knowledge, or how the planet is commonly known, sensed. conceived or imagined, rather than how it is known and understood by academic geographers.

Introducing graphic medicine: care and comics (2017)

Since around 2000, there has been a growing body of work which tells medical stories using the form of comics. This genre has come to be called “Graphic Medicine” and has been organized and supported with annual (since 2007) global “Comics & Medicine” conferences and a publication series at The Pennsylvania State University Press. The seminal “Graphic Medicine Manifesto” was published by that press in 2015.

Gabor Szilasi: L’éloquence du quotidien (2013)

Gabor Szilasi, qui a fait partie de l’exode hongrois après 1956, est arrivé, à l’âge de 29 ans, au Canada où il s’est installé à Montréal. Là, en tant que participant actif, collègue attentif, il est devenu un des principaux acteurs à l’origine de la création et du développement d’une communauté de photographes contemporains à Québec.

Imagined Geographies: Artists and Maps (2007)

In this panel presentation, scholar Robert Graham reviews ways in which artists have used maps or map-making strategies as icons, as survey, or joined with time to render the human geography of place and pathway; sound artist Kathy Kennedy discusses artists’ use of the web as a repository for kinds of mappings that hold sonic information and artist, scientist and inventor Juan Geuer, whose work appears in Conceptual Cartographies, discusses differentials in the art and science of mapping.

Animal/Vegetable/Mineral: Michel Campeau’s Acts of Succession (2007)

Michel Campeau’s “Territoires” are fields where natural history meets the mythopoetic; where states of material being show their symbolic decay and transmutations; and where the resultant mutations point to renewal. Natural history is the temporal account of change in our physical environment. The constancy of nature (the laws of conservation of energy /matter) suggests that all change is a question of the interaction, transformation, and succession between states. At the chemical level, each of the states of matter can transmute into, and be relayed to, another. Chemistry can track the interaction, turns of succession, and replacement between the states of material being.

Claude-Philippe Benoit’s Survivals (2006)

Norbert Elias, the historian of manners, identified the great “civilizing” change occurring in Western society with, among other indicators, the “transformation of the nobility from a class of knights into a class of courtiers.” In the earlier sphere, violence was “an unavoidable and everyday event”, but the development of a series of social interdependencies replaced a warrior environment with one in which the State arrogated to itself “the monopoIization of physical violence.”