Artistic Research Forum
London, U.K.

Critical Symposium is an artistic research forum that convenes once a month virtually to engage in critical discourse with multidisciplinary artists and creative practitioners from around the globe within the premise of critical, responsive and research-based art practices to locate practice with research and to foster interdisciplinary knowledge, collaboration and exchange.︎︎︎

Review Publication︎︎︎
Session Recordings︎︎︎
Research Repository︎︎︎
Open Call︎︎︎

Our second Critical Symposium, entitled Politics and Poetics of Care︎︎︎ considered the defining and blurring of boundaries in relation to these two terms. Does our current political attitude to care negate the poetic or can the poetic cause a shift in the political? We considered care when enacted as part of a paid or unpaid ‘job’, care as something we might enact and consume: a cyclical symbiotic interaction. We spoke too, on the categorisation of the bodies that have care bestowed upon them and those that are left without it and finally, care in the aftermath of trauma: how it might heal, bring anew and make space for growth....(read more)︎︎︎

- Text by Alice Harry

24 February 2024
13:00 - 14:30 GMT
CS4: Temporal Planes (upcoming session)︎︎︎
Hazel Yizhuo Jiao,
Lauric Mahé-Stephenson, Eileen White

30 September 2023 
13:00 - 15:00 BST
CS3: Haptic Tendencies︎︎︎
Carolina Estrada, Najah Rizvi, Ran Zhou, Laura Selby

19 August 2023
10:00 - 12:00 BST
CS2: Politics & Poetics of Care︎︎︎

Alice Harry, Deb Fitch-Daniels, Mujtaba Asif, Julie Heaton

30 July 2023
11:00 - 12:30 BST
CS1: Choreographic Practices + Recap of RCA2023 Degree Show at Truman Brewery (13-16 July 2023)︎︎︎
Mujtaba Asif, Junshu Gu, Tony Jacob, Priysha Rajvanshi, Laura Selby, Ran Zhou

CS3: Haptic Tendencies
30 September 2023
13:00 - 15:00 BST
Session Recording︎︎︎

Forum Synopsis: 
‘Haptics’ within research can be understood to be a heavily contested term. Embedded within multidisciplinary approaches in the scientific, technological, medical, anthropology, material culture studies and data visualisation, this forum meets to situate the objective sciences within the wider affective and affordant capacities of ‘haptics’ as an encounter, process, modulation, situation and relation.

In this forum the speakers take an expanded view on haptics through critical focus in decoloniality, ecology, erotics and robotics. Together they consider what the possibilities of understanding haptics are beyond the corporeal, the somatic, the sensorial and even the visual. Further prompts include - what are the possibilities of imagining haptics beyond the terrains of the body? How is our understanding of haptics informed by our own location within a world of surveillance and authentication?

By building discussions on the previous forum that convened on the theme of ‘Politics & Poetics of Care’, this session considers ‘Haptic Tendencies’ as an attempt to negate with the (im)possible tendencies and the tentacular linkages of ‘haptics’ as a enacted, embedded, embodied or temporal constituent in meaning making and knowledge discernment.


Carolina Estrada is an artist and researcher who studies matter as culture. An example of such research is how a sensory interface connects people to technology and myths. She reflects on the relationship between technology, culture, and nature to challenge and expand our understanding of ecological systems. Her work crosses a wide range of disciplines, drawing on the humanities, sensory studies, and indigenous knowledge. 
Instagram / Website / RCA2023

Najah Rizvi is an interdisciplinary artist currently working with performance and drawing. She aims to challenge the dominant narratives on cultural identity, in particular, those weaponised for the purpose of influencing the masses. Born in Pakistan and raised in the Middle East, Najah Rizvi went on to study her BA in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins and at the RCA is graduating in the Critical Practice pathway of MA Contemporary Art Practice. Instagram / Website / RCA2022

Ran Zhou 周然 is a multimedia artist and filmmaker based in London and Vancouver. Experimenting with multimedia installations, sculptures, and 3D animation, Zhou's practice investigates how the pharmaceutical industry, the pornography industry, and late capitalism are integrated in the cycles of social control through the regulation of bodies. 

Laura Selby is a London-based sound artist and violinist, with a background working in sound and music design for film, TV, immersive platform and theatre. Her research focuses on sonic contamination and the interconnection between the biological networks within and beyond us, that make up our way of being. Using listening led methods, Laura is interested in developing experiences that move audiences towards deeper relational understanding and care.