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Call for Practitioners: “Experiments Monitoring the Everyday: Art, Design, and DIY Methods for Environmental Health Research in STS”

Fri Mar 01, 2013 23:25

San Diego, California
United States of America

4S Conference
October 9 – 12, 2013
San Diego, California

Exploring the question of how to make environmental health hazards perceptible, we invite participation in an interdisciplinary hands-on, half-day workshop on emerging methods for environmental monitoring in science and technology studies. Taking the site of the conference as our space for investigation, we will use low-tech monitoring contraptions to investigate the environmental health of ourselves and our classroom and we will learn through experience about the epistemological potential of investigating everyday spaces for potential pollutants. This workshop will be linked to a panel entitled: Making Environmental Harm Manifest.

The workshop will have four parts:
1) Introduction: There will be a short introduction of pre-existing monitoring approaches from art, design, and DIY disciplines. This will build on the earlier Panel Presentation Making Environmental Harm Manifest connected to this workshop. This can include anything from infrared scanners hooked up to laptops to using our own bodies to adjudicate air quality.
2) Small group work implementing different investigation methods: groups will spend time creating an on-the-spot field guide to the room we are in, making its hidden elements manifest and open to interpretation using DIY, art, or design devices. Group members will then create a representation of their findings to share with other groups.
3) Roundtable Discussion: Participants will come together and present their findings to the group, and report back the experiences of using their devices to investigate their surroundings.
4) Documentation and Follow-up: Workshop organizers will document the proceedings and representations to create a full field guide for potential exhibition and/or publication.

If you have a monitoring device or a project idea you'd like to have groups experiment with in the workshop, please send a brief (3-6 sentence) expression of interest and description of the device, as well as a short 250-word bio or CV to co-organizers Max Liboiron and Sara Wylie by March 1, 2013. Please put “4S Workshop” in the heading. We will then submit our workshop to 4S. If the workshop is accepted, we will send out a call for participation in the workshop as a whole. Note that this is not yet the call to participate in the workshop as a device-user, but for people or groups who have devices for monitoring environmental health.


Object Ethnography Project: Call for Objects!

Sat Mar 31, 2012 09:40

The Object Ethnography Project investigates how objects accumulate stories as they move from one life to another, and how these stories add value and influence subsequent circulation. We are looking for donations of objects—any kind of object—and the stories that come with them. Members of the public are invited to take these objects in exchange for a new story about them starting March 15th, 2012. The final online exhibit will include a photograph of the object, its original story, and its adoption story, as well as follow up interviews, maps, and other archives that result from the project.

We are now seeking objects! If you have an item with a story, from a sentimental oven mitt to a first generation iPod with a play list from your first wife, and you would like to donate to this project, please mail it and its story to:

Lucrece Project
Att: Object Ethnography Project
NYU English Department
19 University Place, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10003

We are particularly looking for electronic consumer/prosumer items, some of the most personal yet mass-produced objects in circulation today.

Stories can be handwritten, typed, or emailed (to max.liboron at They can be any length, format, or language. All objects must include a story.

You can also hand-deliver objects within New York City.

We are accepting objects until March 31st, 2012.

If your object is broken, members of the Fixers Collective have generously offered fix-it workshops on February 23rd, March 8th and March 22nd, 2012 at New York University’s Kimmel Center, Room 901. If you would like to join a Fixers Collective workshop to fix any item, whether it is donated, adopted, or otherwise, please contact Vincent Lai (

Finally, there are three ways to participate in the Object Ethnography Project. You can donate an object and its story, you can request a donated object and give it a new story, or you can participate as a researcher. For more information, check our website: