Lecture: Nishant Shah – Infrastructures of living

Lecture by Nishant Shah (Dean ArtEZ Graduate School) – Infrastructures of living. At ArtEZ University of the Arts’ Art Research Conference on 18 November 2016 in Arnhem, The Netherlands.

Any talk of infrastructure invariably boils down to resources, money, value, and materiality. Shaped by the vicious logics of ecology management and the predatory ambitions of neo-liberal capital, infrastructure often gets fetishized.
In relation to practice and activities in arts and humanities, infrastructure is seen as relevant or important only as measured through action and activity. This talk draws from a six-day production sprint with activists, artists, and designers – change makers – in Asia, to talk about the infrastructure of living rather than the infrastructure of doing. Drawing from specific examples of ICT4D, the talk hopes to show how the pre-wired response to infrastructure needs to be both re-wired and revaluated in our focus on inclusive and sustainable forms of artistic research and practice.
Nishant Shah (1980) was recently appointed Dean of Research at ArtEZ University of the Arts. In this new position, Shah will be responsible for further expanding research and education at Master’s level
which have been brought together under the umbrella of the new Graduate School. Over the coming years, ArtEZ plans to expand beyond the current number of four professorships with personal research domains. Nishant Shah will focus on the integration of art knowledge, while maintaining the distinctive nature of the existing curricula. He also works as a professor at the Institute of Culture and Aesthetics of Digital Media at Leuphana University in Lüneburg. Nishant Shah is the co-founder and a board member of the Centre for Internet & Society in Bangalore, India. Shah conducts work on the cutting edge of technology, identity and social and political movements. He is focused on the question of how we can remain human in a technological environment. Nishant Shah has numerous publications to his name.