Caroline A. Jones

Professor of the History of Art and Associate Dean, School of Architecture and Planning, MIT

Panel: Open Systems

Anicka Yi, Biologizing the Machine (terra incognita) (detail), 2019, acrylic vitrines, powder-coated steel, Venetian mud and bacteria, calcium carbonate, calcium sulfate, egg yolks, cellulose, custom PCB, gas probe sensors, dimensions variable. Photo: Renato Ghiazza.
Caroline A. Jones, “Virions: Thinking Through the Scale of Aggregation,” Art Forum, May/June 2020. Human embryo at forty-five days. Photo: Omikron/Science Source.

Caroline A. Jones began her inquiry into the centuries-long confluence of art and science with a groundbreaking study of Clement Greenberg’s formalism and its role in the “bureaucratization of the senses”—the division and isolation of sensory modalities during modernity. Building on past CAST projects concerning the art and science of Experience, and widely influential volumes on “pictures” and architectural contexts of artistic and scientific production, Jones has recently turned her attention to “biofictions” that forward a mode of being she terms symbiontics (symbiosis as that-which-is). As the convenor of “Open Systems,” Jones choreographs a discussion entwining biofiction and Indigeneity, alien intelligence, and ecology.

Biography: MIT Department of Architecture

Caroline Jones. Credit: Joel Elliot.

Symposium Schedule

Panel: Open Systems
Live Presentation & Q&A
Thursday, April 8, 2021 / 11:00am–12:00pm and 5:00-7:00pm EST
Location: Livestream

Related Works

“In Praise of Wetware”

2019, MIT Ethics, Computing, and AI Series

Jones’s contribution to a series of commentaries by faculty from all five MIT schools, collected to offer perspectives on the societal and ethical dimensions of emerging technologies on the occasion of the launch of the new MIT Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing.

“Virions: Thinking Through the Scale of Aggregation”

2020, Artforum

Jones addresses the “inhumanity” of today’s COVID-19 crisis and asks if we can learn how to embrace the “species reset” that the pandemic has forced on our everyday individualist episteme.

The Global Work of Art

2017, University of Chicago Press

Going back to the earliest world’s fairs in the nineteenth century, Jones explains that “globalism” was incubated in a century of international art contests and today constitutes an important tactic for artists.