Matadero Madrid center for contemporary creation

Cosmic Brains - Round Tables

21, 22 & 23rd of November
Nave 17. Aulario

The Cosmic Brains Round Tables are a three day series of roundtable discussions taking place within the Cosmic Brains workshop. These discussions will feature key speakers in conversation with a group of invited thought leaders, guests and citizens. The goal of these sessions is to foster an immersive, informal and evolving series of conversations around the guests’ work in progress, and to maintain several days of sustained exchanges leading to the public symposium on 25.11.23 to conclude the week. 




SESSION #01 - Synthetic Minds, Cosmic Brains 

21.11.23 [16.00 - 19.30]

Participants include Peter Watts, Nandita Biswas Mellamphy, Julieta Aranda, David Roden, Bani Brusadin, and Sara Walker. Moderated by Ed Keller.

Our first panel launches the week’s workshop and roundtable discussions. Selected topics will include models of cosmological mind explored in Peter Watts’ novels Blindsight and Echopraxia; gestural ecology in Biswas Mellamphy’s work on Herbert’s Dune; and Lem’s Summa Technologiae and His Master’s Voice as engaged by Julieta Aranda’s work as an artist and curator/theorist/historian. 


SESSION #02 - Synthetic Minds, Universal Gestures: Concurrency, Embodiment, Synaesthesia

22.11.23 [16.00 - 19.30] 

Participants include Nandita Biswas Mellamphy, Gabriel Montes [zoom], David Roden, Peter Watts, Julieta Aranda, Elliott Sharp, Alvaro Domene [zoom] 

Our second session continues with presentations and discussion on gestural ecologies; language, the evolutionary pressures on intelligence; soundscapes and music; multi-modal information flow and ecosystem models of mind. Lead by Nandita Biswas Mellamphy, professor and author, investigating the intersection of Political Theory, Continental Philosophy and Media Theory, focusing on the political dimensions of the contemporary neurosciences, techno-sciences and—in addition—works of speculative science-fiction.


SESSION #03 - Synthetic Minds, Universal Gestures: Alignment, Microworlds and Pocket Universes

23.11.23 [16.00 - 19.30] 

Participants include Julieta Aranda, Ben Goertzel, Carla Leitao, Peter Watts and Nandita Biswas Mellamphy.

The third session will continue with a discussion on the temporality of language, computation and cognition, and will engage with the core concepts of alignment and the microworld/pocket universe. If alignment is not possible, what might be the cosmopolitical alternatives enabled by only partial, gestural communication? Lead by Julieta Aranda, an artist and editor interested in composing sensorial encounters with the nature of time and speculative literature.


This sessions will take place at the Aulario at Matadero Madrid. Alternatively, zoom access will be available for those who cannot make it in person, however there will be no Q&A or interaction facilitated online. 


Due to limited space, sign up is required to attend the round tables: