Monash University Toggle Search
Donna Harraway film image

Finissage event: Pip Wallis: ‘Affinity in the State of Emergence’ | Donna Haraway: Storytelling for Earthly Survival

Saturday 15 December, 2.30–5pm
Film screening 2.30–3.50pm [81 mins duration]
Discipline lecture 4pm [60 mins duration]
Free entry 
Pay bar & light refreshments available

Monash University Museum of Art and Discipline co-present an informal finissage event for the current MUMA exhibitions Lili Reynaud-Dewar: TEETH, GUMS, MACHINES, FUTURE, SOCIETY and Alicia Frankovich: Exoplanets, comprising a lecture by Pip Wallis, ‘Affinity in the State of Emergence’ together with the first public screening in Melbourne of the acclaimed documentary film Donna Haraway: Storytelling for Earthly Survival (directed by Fabrizio Terranova, Icarus Films, 2017).

Pip Wallis’s lecture examines the renewed interest in Donna Haraway's writing on ecofeminism, inter-specieism and post-humanism in contemporary art today, with particular focus on the current MUMA exhibitions. Wallis will explore the impact of Haraway's poetic, embodied and speculative methods, and ask why she has re-emerged as a touchstone three decades after the publication of her canonical text: ‘A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century’.

Wallis is Curator, Contemporary Art, National Gallery of Victoria, where she has organised exhibitions by Helen Maudsley and Hito Steyerl, and performances by Adam Linder and Simone Forti. She was previously Managing Editor, X-TRA Contemporary Quarterly, Los Angeles; Curator in Residence, Chisenhale Gallery, London UK; Editor, un Magazine, volume 9; and Curator, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne. Her interest in Haraway is underpinned by her recent curatorial work with VNS Matrix, Hito Steyerl and Rosi Braidotti.

Donna Haraway, feminist thinker and historian of science, is perhaps best known as the author of two revolutionary works, the essay ‘A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century’ in Simians, Cyborgs, and Women (Routledge, 1991) and the book Primate Visions (Routledge, 1989). Both set out to upend well-established "common sense" categories: breaking down the boundaries among humans, animals, and machines while challenging gender essentialism and questioning the underlying assumptions of humanity’s fascination with primates through a post-colonial lens.

Donna Haraway: Storytelling for Earthly Delight features Haraway in a playful and engaging exploration of her life, influences, and ideas. Haraway is a passionate and discursive storyteller, and the film is structured around a series of discussions held in the California home she helped build by hand. Subjects include capitalism and the anthropocene (a term she "uses but finds troubling"); science fiction writing as philosophical text; unconventional marital and sexual partnerships; the role of Catholicism in her upbringing; the suppression of women’s writing; the surprisingly fascinating history of orthodontic aesthetics; and the need for new post-colonial and post-patriarchal narratives.

Image: Donna Haraway, Story Telling for Earthly Survival 2016