CRISTINA BASILI is a Lecturer in Contemporary Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy and Society at the Complutense University of Madrid. She received her PhD in Humanities from the University Carlos III of Madrid (2016) with a dissertation entitled La caverna della modernità. Filosofia e politica nel Platone di Leo Strauss (Outstanding Thesis Award for Humanities UC3M). Her research focuses on the question of power in twentieth-century thought, with special attention to the work of women philosophers. She is the author of several essays on Simone Weil, Hannah Arendt, and Leo Strauss, on the contemporary reception of classical political thought, and the theological-political problem.
HOWARD CAYGILL is a philosopher and cultural historian educated at the UK’s Bristol, Sussex, and Oxford Universities. Most recently serving on the faculties of Goldsmiths, Kingston, and Paris VIII, Howard Caygill is the author of several acclaimed books, including A Kant Dictionary; Walter Benjamin: The Colour of Experience; On Resistance: A Philosophy of Defiance; Kafka: In Light of the Accident and most recently, Force and Understanding. Writings on Philosophy and Resistance. He is currently working on the philosophy and aesthetics of the Anthropocene and the role of philosophy in curating and interpreting the art produced by inmates of mental hospitals during the first half of the Twentieth Century. He lives between Athens and Barton-on-Sea on the coast of England.
MELVIN EDWARDS is a pioneer in the history of contemporary African American art. While the artist’s formal language clearly engages with the history of abstraction and modern sculpture, Edwards’s work is born out of the social and political turmoil of the civil rights movement in the United States. Themes of race, protest, and social injustice permeate the artist’s practice. Born in Houston, Texas, Edwards moved to New York City in 1967. Shortly after his arrival, his work was exhibited at The Studio Museum in Harlem; in 1970, he became the first African American sculptor to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Mel Edwards received an honorary doctorate from IDSVA in 2022.
JASON HOELSCHER is Gallery Director and Associate Professor of Interdisciplinary Art at Georgia Southern University. Hoelscher received an MFA in painting from the Pratt Institute and a PhD in Philosophy, Aesthetics, and Art Theory from IDSVA, where he completed his dissertation under the supervision of Brian Massumi. His book Art as Information Ecology was published by Duke University Press in 2021 and nominated for the American Society of Aesthetics “Outstanding Monograph” award in 2022. Hoelscher has exhibited his paintings worldwide and has written for such publications as Burnaway, ARTnews, ArtPulse, and ArtCore Journal.
ILHAM IBNOU ZAHIR received her PhD at Goldsmiths’ College, where her dissertation explored the unsettling relationship between ancient philosophy and techne/the art of healing-medicine. Currently, she is exploring the concept of the giver of knowledge/wisdom through philosophical problems in the intertwined subjects of theology, history, architecture, and craftsmanship.
DEJAN LUKIĆ is trained as an anthropologist (PhD, Columbia University, 2007). His research encompasses continental philosophy, science and religion, art, and ecology. He is engaged in developing what could be called avant-garde philosophy and multi-ontology. Consequently, he is interested in ways in which art crosses into life. He has published two books and numerous catalogue essays. He is currently writing a multi-volume manuscript titled “Deranged Vivarium: Variations on Coexistence.” He lives and works between two places: the high desert of New Mexico and an Adriatic island in Croatia.
FRANCA MARINI is an Italian international artist based in Siena. After many years of experience in the visual arts, she is currently engaged in the creation of site-specific installations and video art. Her work has been shown in Europe, The United States, Central America, and Palestine.
SILVIA MAZZINI, a philosopher and theatre author, works on the intersection of Aesthetics and Political Philosophy. She published on Arts and Politics in Pasolini, Bloch and Vattimo, on tragic and comic thought and community theatre; currently, she is writing on the Philosophy of Poverty. Before joining IDSVA, she was a research fellow at the Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry and worked as Assistant Professor at the Humboldt University (where she also obtained her PhD) and at the Berlin University of the Arts. She taught History of late-modern Continental Philosophy at the University of Groningen (The Netherlands).
SIMONETTA MORO is a visual artist and scholar with a focus on painting, drawing and mapping practices. Her artwork has been exhibited internationally; publications include Mapping Paradigms in Modern and Contemporary Art: Poetic Cartography (Routledge, 2021) and The Vattimo Dictionary (Edinburgh University Press, 2023). Moro holds a PhD in Fine Arts, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK; an MA in European Fine Arts, Winchester School of Art, UK; and a BFA in Painting Accademia di Belle Arti, Bologna, Italy. Born in Italy, she currently lives between New York City and northern Italy.
NENI PANOURGIÁ is an anthropologist, the Academic Adviser at the Justice in Education Initiative, and Adjunct Associate Professor at the Prison Education Program at Columbia University through which she teaches in the New York State and the Federal prison system. Her essays on anthropology, ethnography, critical theory, art and architecture, critical medical studies, and politics can be found in Mousse,Documenta, American Ethnologist, Ethos, Anthropological Quarterly, Angelaki, and many edited volumes. Her book publications include Fragments of Death, Fables of Identity. An Athenian Anthropography; Ethnographica Moralia (co-edited with George Marcus); Dangerous Citizens. The Greek Left and the Terror of the State; a new edition of Paul Radin’s Primitive Man as Philosopher; and Leros: Neural genealogies and the saltatory conductivity of space.
NINA PAPAZOGLOU was born in Thessaloniki and studied International Relations in Greece (BA) and Belgium (MA). In 2004, she studied interdisciplinary research in the Humanities at Birkbeck’s London Consortium. In 2009 she moved to Berlin as a visiting postgraduate student at Humboldt University and in 2013 obtained her PhD in Cultural History, supervised by Howard Caygill, from Goldsmiths’ College (UOL). Her research is centered on the non-autonomous character of contemporary artistic values and the way these inform economic and cultural capital and the context of art history. She has been collaborating since 2012 with IDSVA in Berlin and Athens and is currently based on the island of Crete.
GEORGE SMITH founded the Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts in 2006. IDSVA is the first school in the world to offer a PhD in philosophy especially designed for visual artists, curators, and creative scholars. Professor Smith serves on the IDSVA Core Faculty and writes on literature, the visual arts, visual culture, psychoanalytic theory, and philosophy of education. He is the author of The Artist-Philosopher and New Philosophy (Routledge 2018) and The Artist-Philosopher and Poetic Hermeneutics (Routledge 2021).
ELINA STAIKOU is Associate Lecturer in Modern Liberal Arts at Winchester University, UK. She is the author of Deconstruction at Home: Metaphors of Travel and Writing and of articles on contemporary philosophy, literature, and biomedicine. She previously participated in the 2017 IDSVA Athens symposium with a talk on migration and hospitality and in the 2021 IDSVA symposium on the Anthropocene.
SHARA WASSERMAN is an American art historian and curator of contemporary art, and the director of the Temple Rome Gallery of Art at Temple University in Rome, where she is also a faculty member in the Art History program. Wasserman has curated numerous international exhibitions in public and institutional spaces.
ANDREAS WEBER is a biologist, philosopher, and non-fiction writer. His work deals with a re-evaluation of reality as a life, subjective, and deeply shared. He teaches ecophilosophy at the Berlin University of the Arts and is adjunct professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati. His latest books are Enlivenment. Toward a Poetics of the Anthropocene (MIT Press, 2019) and Sharing Life. An Ecopolitics of Reciprocity (New Delhi & Berlin, 2020).