‘Transhumanism’ may be defining step to our future

December 29, 2010

What does it mean to be human?

In today’s world, the question is no longer a purely philosophical or religious inquiry.

The answer may in fact depend more and more on the potential impact of our advancing technological capabilities.

What will it mean to the definition of human if new technologies can enhance the abilities of the human body – and mind – to unprecedented levels?

And what if such technological enhancements are available to only a portion of the world’s population?

The intriguing social, political and ethical questions raised by these fascinating possibilities are explored in an interview with Brad Allenby on the subject of “transhumanism.”

Allenby is a professor in the http://engineering.asu.edu/sebe" target="_blank">School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, one of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. He’s also a professor of law and the Lincoln Professor of Engineering Ethics for ASU’s http://lincolncenter.asu.edu/" target="_blank">Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics.

He was interviewed in a production by http://www.thetriplehelix.org/" target="_blank">The Triple Helix, an organization run by undergraduate students from numerous universities in the United States and other countries.

Through the organization, students explore some of the most pressing modern issues “at the intersection of science, technology, society and a law.”

Listen">http://asunews.asu.edu/video_20100810_triplehelixpodcast001+#">Listen to Allenby’s interview on a podcast presented by the http://sols.asu.edu/grassroots/triple_helix/index.php" target="_blank">ASU chapter of The Triple Helix.

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Joe Kullman

Science writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering


Prize-winning Italian artist comes to ASU

December 29, 2010

TEMPE, Ariz. – The ASU Art Museum hosts the winner of the 2011 Furla Prize as an artist-in-residence from October through December 2011. The prestigious award is bestowed to mid-career Italian artists.

Five European curator teams have nominated the five prize finalists. An international jury led by renowned artist Christian Boltanski selects the prizewinner. The winner is announced at the opening of the Bologna Arte Fiera at the end of January, and celebrated at the opening of the 54th Venice Biennale in June. The winning artist also is commissioned to develop a project financed by the Fondazione Furla and exhibited publicly through an agreement with the Museum of Modern Art of Bologna (MAMbo).

"The Furla Prize has taken the role in Italy that the Hugo Boss prize has for the contemporary art world,” says Gordon Knox, ASU Art Museum director. “It identifies extraordinary talents operating at the height of their powers and producing forceful work addressing the pressing concerns of our times. That the Furla Foundation zeroed in on the ASU Art Museum as the epicenter for a residency in the U.S. reflects the growing recognition of ASU’s vanguard position as intellectual innovator in this post-disciplinary era. We are really pleased to have the Furla winner with us on campus and in the region.”

The residency at the ASU Art Museum is funded by the Furla Foundation and provides ASU students and faculty the opportunity to collaborate with a rising contemporary European artist. The winning artist also is able to spend time in the American Southwest investigating local concerns and developing new work.

The Furla Foundation residency is an example of the benefits a research university like ASU brings to the state. Research funding is legally restricted and cannot be used for instructional or other purposes.

The ASU Art Museum, named "the single most impressive venue for contemporary art in Arizona" by Art in America is part of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University. The museum is located on the southeast corner of Mill Avenue and 10th Street in Tempe and admission is free Hours are 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Tuesdays (during the academic year), 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and closed on Sundays and Mondays. To learn more about the museum, call 480.965.2787 or visithttp://asuartmuseum.asu.edu. 

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Media Contact:
Deborah Sussman Susser
ASU Art Museum