This talk took place on October 30th, 2021.
Dean Kenning and Lindsay Seers were in conversation at the ICA to mark the end of Kenning’s Mark Tanner Sculpture Award exhibition ‘Evolutionary Love’ at Standpoint Gallery.
How does life emerge from matter? How do we account for conscious awareness and empathy? What constitutes cognition, choice and purposeful behaviour with respect to machines, molecular processes, and organisms? Can art help to reposition our relationship to non-human nature and generate insights into the real by enabling us to become animal, plant or machine?
To mark the end of his Mark Tanner Sculpture Award exhibition ‘Evolutionary Love’ at Standpoint Gallery, Dean Kenning was in conversation with the artist Lindsay Seers to delve into some of these questions and the themes which have informed Kenning’s sensory, crawling automatons. In this recorded talk, they consider how artistic approaches and methods can engage with and bring new perspectives to models of reality in neuroscience, fundamental physics and biology. With particular reference to the semiotics of C.S Peirce and the process philosophy of Henri Bergson, they question how their amateur passions and collaborations inspire the growth of new artistic forms and envisage points of continuity across the realms of artistic and scientific research.
This event was supported by the Mark Tanner Sculpture Award, Standpoint Gallery, and Kingston School of Art.
Dean Kenning is a London-born artist, writer, educator and post-doctoral researcher at Kingston School of Art. Through his kinetic and sound sculptures, videos and diagrams he employs DIY, allegorical and autodidactic methods and modes of representation to engender visceral, uncanny and humorous encounters, to bring dumb matter to ‘life’, and to explore political, philosophical and scientific material. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Matt's Gallery, Beaconsfield and Piper Keys, and he has published articles in journals including Third Text, Art Monthly and Journal of Visual Art Practice.
Lindsay Seers works in London and lives on the Isle of Sheppey. Her persistent themes of hallucination, schizophrenia, biological chimerism, gender politics and the legacy of colonialism are formed through biography as a framework for larger social, political narratives and in which human consciousness seems to be the fundamental sticking point for humankind to effectively evolve. She has shown large scale works at the Venice Biennale, Hayward Gallery, Tate Triennial and Baltic amongst many others. Her works are in a number of collections including Tate collection, Arts Council collection, Artangel collection, collection of MONA, Tasmania and MTA Collection, Lebanon.