Free

Cyborgs

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Past
  • Late
Photographic portrait of Errol Francis showing a close-upse up of the left half of his face. His eye has been replaced with a technologically advanced red cyborg eye.
Errol Francis, Thomas SG Farnetti. Source: Wellcome Collection. Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0).

What you’ll do

Join us for an evening of irreverent performance, conversation and cocktails where we’ll rethink the boundaries we perceive between human and non-human, or between races, genders or classes.

Hear from artists, designers and engineers who are challenging assumptions about how we classify things as animal, human or machine, and asking whose voices we listen to when designing the future.

About your collaborator

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Culture&

Culture& open up who makes and enjoys arts and heritage through work-based training, events and arts programming.

Dates

,
Past

Events

  • Discussion
Return of the Cyborg

Henry Wellcome Auditorium

Join us to hear from Joanna Zylinska about why the cyborg has returned at a time when there’s a boom in AI, research into immortality and an unfolding ecological crisis. The talk will include a screening of Zylinska’s short photo-film ‘Exit Man’, which explores the problem of human extinction and proposes ‘a feminist counter-apocalypse’ as an alternative cyborg scenario.
  • British Sign Language

  • Performance
A Shoal of Lovers Leads Me Home

Henry Wellcome Auditorium

Listen to, breathe, taste and incite alternative Black queer liberations with speculative writer, artist and pleasure activist Ama Josephine Budge. You will explore possible climate-changed futures via her speculative fabulation ‘A Shoal of Lovers Leads Me Home’.

  • Screening
The Last Angel of History

Henry Wellcome Auditorium

Watch a screening of ‘The Last Angel of History’, a film by Black Audio Film Collective. This film follows the journey of a data thief and uses Afrofuturism as a metaphor for cultural displacement, presenting a new way to understand the relationship between Black identity and the body. The film will be introduced by Errol Francis.

  • Performance
Long Straight Pubic Hair

The Forum

Watch a newly commissioned and irreverent performance by artist Mamoru Iriguchi about a humble enhancement to his body that would change his life for ever.

  • Performance
Are You There?

The Forum

Join artist Rebekah Ubuntu to experience an Afrofuturist sound, video and performance work exploring unbelonging, questing and intersectional utopianism through the speculative gaze of an artificially intelligent cyborg.

  • Workshop
Flesh and Machine

Medicine Man and Being Human galleries

Meet designers and engineers from UCL who are creating devices to extend our bodies’ capabilities. In the Medicine Man gallery, try out a third thumb designed by Dani Clode and learn how new limbs could affect our brains. In the Medicine Now gallery, see prototypes of new technologies to be used in surgery and during rehabilitation after injury, designed by engineers from UCL's Centre for Rehabilitation Engineering.
Just turn up

  • Workshop
In the Kingdom of Impossible Life

Viewing Room

Join a participatory workshop run by Zia Álmos Joshua X and explore classification and how it relates to the cyborg. Your activities will focus on the legacy of Carl Linnaeus (who created the system of naming organisms that we still use today), modern ideas about symbiosis and interspecies relationships, and on the political and ethical power of technology.
Just turn up

  • Discussion
Cyborg Reading Groups

Reading Room

Join a reading group to discover and discuss writing by Donna Haraway, Samuel R Delany, Octavia Butler, Will Harris and Ursula K Le Guin.
Just turn up

  • Discussion
NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism

Williams Lounge

Take part in a virtual reality experience created by Hyphen-Labs in which you‘ll visit a neurocosmetology lab where black women are pioneering techniques of brain optimization and cognitive enhancement. At 19.00 hear from the creators as they talk about their work in speculative product design, emerging technologies, cognitive research and transhumanism.
Just turn up

  • Performance
Disco Cosmonaut

Reading Room

Watch Le Gateau Chocolat as she sings two numbers that speak to her own struggles with identity as well as those of LGBTQIAP+ people everywhere: Gloria Gaynor’s ‘I am what I am’ and Whitney Houston’s ‘I Wanna Dance with Somebody.’
Just turn up

Need to know

Location

This is a large-scale event with several different activities. Check specific sub-events for their locations.

Multi-part programme

This is a large-scale event with several different activities, which may include drop-in sessions, scheduled performances, workshops or talks. Check specific activities for details and to see if you need to book a ticket or to just show up. Spaces for drop-in activities are first come, first served and may run out if we are busy. If you have any access requests or requirements, email us at access@wellcomecollection.org or call 020 7611 2222.

Our event terms and conditions