Art History: Men of the Space Age Meet Men of the Stone Age
Men of the Space Age Meet Men of the Stone Age: Mnemotechnologies and Temporal Disorientation in the Musée de l’Homme and its films
This paper explores the capacity of film to mediate paradoxical visions of the unity of mankind. I do so by examining how cinema destabilised linear temporalities of evolution, technicity, and ‘progress’ which developed in the research and curatorial practice of the French national ethnographic museum, the Musée de l’Homme, between the 1930s and 60s. Drawing on the writing of André Leroi-Gourhan, a paleoanthropologist who considered all technology to be part of a process of externalising human memory, I discuss the ways in which cinema – itself such a technology – was used to develop images of shared human endeavour by encompassing and imbricating existing, otherwise conflicting, theoretical horizons within a single, compelling frame.
Sophie Hopmeier is an assistant curator at the Australian Cinémathèque, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, and has recently completed her PhD in Film Studies at the University of St Andrews, Scotland.
This event will be held online via Zoom.
Upcoming seminars this semester:
Rachel Skokowski, “Monkeys & Mechanical Arts: The Goncourt Brothers and the 19th-century Etching Revival”
Anna Arabindan-Kesson, “Black Bodies, White Gold: Cotton, Race and Representation in the United States”
Lorraine Kypiotis, “Lucien Henry, Alexander Murray and the Australian Ethos” Raha Shahidi, “Boucher and the Moliere Illustrations”
Nina Stromqvist, “The Border, taking the ancient Nordic tradition of allemansrätten or ‘everyman’s right’ as a conceptual proposition”
Mimi Kelly, “New Refractions of Self: Social Media and the Digital Woman”
Diana Reynolds, “Religious Foundations as Second Voices: The Victoria Contemporary Figurative Artist, 1848-1870”