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Memories of Sustainable Futures: Remembering in the Digital Age

PhD Novo Nordisk Mads Øvlisen PhD scholarship with an extraordinary potential in practice-based art

Helene Nymann has received funding for a new PhD project affiliated with Interacting Minds Centre (IMC) at Aarhus University and in collaboration with Kunsthal Aarhus. Andreas Roepstorff will be supervisor.


New research in human memory points to the fact that the rapid technological development and our daily use of computers and smartphones is changing how our memory works. How we process and remember information is largely affected by the constant digital and online stimulation and lack of conscious choice, as to what information to remember. In a future of a possibly even more amalgamated man-machine relationships, my claim is that we have to focus on how we process information and, hence, how we create, store and access memories. My research project endeavours to create and analyse new artworks that explore the importance of human memories and the potential of images to store knowledge. For while most people find rest in technological developments and digital systems, I posit the necessity to address the shift in our relation to and perception of memories - both human and non-human. I will thus employ mnemonic devices as an artistic method to deepen our understanding of the relational functions of memory. This project will investigate the possible connections and exchanges between cultures of remembrance, ecosystems and brain-computer interfaces. This triangulation will lead to the creation of dynamic thought-spaces (Denkräume) that stimulate new ways of thinking and imagining alternative methods of how to remember and navigate our way towards more sustainable development in the age of rapid technological change.


The artistic practice of Copenhagen-based multi-disciplinary artist Helene Nymann, investigate the notion of embodied knowledge and the way in which associative images stimulate memory. Interested in the borderline between the natural and the digital worlds, Nymann constructs performative environments in which the moving image, sound and sculpture make way for transformative arrays of consciousness, deepening the understanding of the fundamental aspects, by which we process information, store knowledge and how we create memories for more sustainable futures.

Read more about Helene Nymann here