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MCC Lecture Series: Examining Fluxus Artist Alison Knowles’ Work

March 24 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Dr. Nicole L Woods, an assistant professor at the University of Notre Dame, will re-examine Fluxus artist Alison Knowles’s digital poem and environments, “The House of Dust,” as part of the Muskegon Community College’s Lecture Series.

The online presentation is free and open to the public.To join the Zoom meeting, please use the following link: https://muskegoncc-edu.zoom.us/j/91998502649 Meeting ID: 919 9850 2649 To connect to audio by phone, dial 1-646-558-8656.

“Fluxus was an art movement from the 60’s and 70’s which sought to challenge the traditional definition of what art could be,” explained Erin Hoffman, a member of the MCC art faculty. “It’s a precursor to what people know of today as performance art. Fluxus attempted to merge art with life and could involve groups of people or a lone artist performing some kind of task either privately or on view of the public. This process can be documented in photographs or through any remnants of the action.”

“Unlike traditional artwork the emphasis is on the action/interaction of the artist with gallery patrons or the general public. The product then is an experience rather than an object. Flash mobs are something in pop culture which are similar. In a flash mob the instigators/artists have a framework idea of what will happen, but chance, public interaction and the space all contribute to the final result.”

Woods, whose academic responsibilities at Notre Dame span art history, gender studies, film, theater and television, will focus her lecture on artist Alison Knowles. One of the Fluxus founding members, Knowles is known for her installations, performances, sound works, and publications.

The lecture is titled “Participatory Ecologies and The House of Dust: Alison Knowles’s Expanded Publics.”

Woods describes The House of Dust (1968-75) as a “complex work which began as a computational poem composed by the artist utilizing four separate categories – material, location, lighting, and inhabitants. It later translated from its generative quatrains as free-standing installation-sculptures in New York City and Southern California.”

“The themes of multiplicity and chance-based operations are conceptual cores of The House of Dust, but so too, I argue, is its capacity for visionary habitation and the potentiality of an eco-architectural transformation of the public sphere in the 1970s and beyond.”

“Thinking about the epistemological, ideological, and aesthetic aims engendered by this work may help us to reflect more critically about how we write about women artists who aimed to disrupt the disciplinary boundaries of art and technology.”

For more information on the MCC Lecture Series, contact coordinator Andy Wible at (231) 777-0626 or andy.wible@muskegoncc.edu.



March 24
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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