Matthias Sperling: Now That We Know

Matthias Sperling returns to Lilian Baylis Studio in London with Now That We Know, a science fiction lecture exploring a future relationship between mind and body, on Thursday 1 and Friday 2 November.

Now That We Know explores a hypothetical future in which science has discovered precisely how our bodies give rise to our mind – there is no longer a gap between the two. It considers how dance and choreography could be expanded by this new understanding, and how society will be altered.

Matthias Sperling is a choreographer and performer working in London, originally from Canada. His work looks at close interactions between contemporary visual arts and the brain sciences, and has been presented in theatres and galleries internationally. Duet, Duet was performed at the Southbank Centre in 2010, and The Movers, a collaborative performance with Carlos Motta, was performed in The Tanks at Tate Modern in 2013. He also appeared in conversation with Guido Orgs at the Wellcome Collection last year to discussNow That We Know, as part of the exhibition States of Mind.

The show is also accompanied by a symposium – the Institute of Neurochoreography: First Open Congress, at 2.30pm on Friday 2 November. Speakers include neuroscientist Guido Orgs, artist and performance maker Choy Ka Fai and choreographer Colette Sadler, among others. Together, they envisage the first ‘official’ gathering for the fictional institute Sperling is imagining throughout the performance and his research.

For more information, see the press release and Matthias Sperling’s website

The Unification of the Arts: Neurocognitive Perspectives on What the Arts Share and Why

Steven Brown has organized a one-day conference will explore the underlying similarities and differences among the arts, both at the cognitive and neural levels. Such factors permit syntheses of the arts, such as dancing to music, singing words, streaming background music in a movie, or blending sounds and visual elements in multimedia forms. By understanding how artforms are able to combine, we can aspire towards a unification of the arts.

Conference date: Friday, May 11, 2018

Time: 9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Place: Council Chambers, Gilmour Hall; McMaster University; Hamilton, Ontario


  • Ellen Dissanayake (University of Washington): origins of the arts
  • Raymond Mar (York University): literature/theatre
  • Oshin Vartanian (University of Toronto): the visual arts/architecture
  • Krista Hyde (University of Montreal): music
  • Steven Brown (McMaster University): dance
  • Anjan Chatterjee (University of Pennsylvania): aesthetics
  • Aaron Kozbelt (Brooklyn College, City University of New York): creativity

Organizer: Steven Brown (McMaster University)

Poster session: People are encouraged to present research findings related to cognitive and/or neural aspects of any branch of the arts at a poster session taking place during the lunch break. Abstracts should be submitted by April 20 to Matthew Berry at

Registration cost: $80 ($50 for enrolled students). This includes lunch.

To register for the conference or for more information, please visit:


Postdoctoral position: Neuroaesthetics and your Brain on Dance

Postdoctoral position:

Neuroaesthetics and your Brain on Dance

The Laboratory for Noninvasive Brain-Machine Interface Systems invites applications for one National Science Foundation (NSF) -funded postdoctoral  position at the intersection of neuroscience, engineering and the arts. The postdoctoral trainee will work in the areas of neural interfaces, wearable devices, fMRI, and the visual and performing arts in collaboration with leading art institutions in Houston such as the Blaffer museum, the Children’s museum, the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston and the Methodist Center for Performing Arts Medicine.

The position is with the Laboratory for Noninvasive Brain-Machine Interface Systems research group, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Houston, Houston, Texas.  For more information about the department please follow the link:

The lab is directed by Professor Dr. Jose L ‘Pepe’ Contreras-Vidal (

Application deadline: 12-01-2015 (or as filled)


Jose L. Contreras-Vidal, Ph.D.
Hugh Roy and Lillie Cranz Cullen University Professor
Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering & Biomedical Engineering
Director, Laboratory for Noninvasive Brain-Machine Interface Systems
University of Houston
W310 Engineering Building II
Houston, TX  77204-4005
713-743-4429 (O)
713-743-4444 (F)

Description: This project will deploy noninvasive Mobile Brain-body Imaging devices (MoBI) in public and private museums with the goal of assaying individuality and variation in neural activity as it occurs (e.g., “in action and context”) in a large and diverse group of people, including children, experiencing fixed and interactive art exhibits. The research also includes working with neurological music/visual therapists and performing/visual artists to decode intentionality and understand the creative process. Applications to education, art therapy and engineering innovations will be sought. This is a great opportunity for those candidates with interests/skills in both the arts and neuroscience/engineering.

Major responsibilities: The postdoctoral fellow will carry out original research  throughout the period of appointment. Results will be communicated in the form of scientific articles, conference presentations, demonstrations, performances etc. The candidate will work under the supervision of senior researchers with background in neural and cognitive engineering, machine learning, big data analytics, performing arts medicine and neuroscience, and the arts. There will also be opportunities for collaboration with scientists and physicians with the Methodist Hospital Center for Performing Arts Medicine and local museums in the Houston area.

The working time of a postdoctoral fellow is mainly devoted to research and public outreach, but may include supervision of undergraduate and graduate students working in the neuroaesthetic team.

Position summary: Full-time temporary employment. The position is limited to a maximum of three years. Salary is competitive commensurate with experience and skills.

Qualifications: Applicants should have a Ph.D’s degree (or Diploma) in an area of Engineering or Applied Math, or an equivalent or similar background. Expertise or a degree in the Visual or Performing Arts is advantageous. Expertise in two of the following: biomedical signal processing, EEG, motion sensing, scientific programming, arts, neuroscience are required. Furthermore, the position requires sound verbal and written communication skills in English. High grades in relevant undergraduate courses, C/C++ and hardware implementation experience are advantageous.

University and Department: The University of Houston is located in a park-like campus close to major energy companies and the Texas Medical Center, the largest in the world, and NASA. The Carnegie Foundation recognized UH as a public research university with very high research activity. The department has embarked on an exciting period of research growth driven by committed leadership. Houston is a thriving city with an internationally diverse population, first-rate recreational opportunities, excellent schools, and affordable housing. The University of Houston, a designated Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI), is among the top 25 colleges and universities granting undergraduate and graduate degrees to Hispanics and among the top 50 for enrolling Hispanic graduates and undergraduates. Additionally, the University ranks among the top 25 institutions for full-time, four-year undergraduate and graduate enrollment. The University of Houston is an ADVANCE institution, one of a select group of universities funded by NSF in support of our commitment to increase diversity and the participation and advancement of women in STEM.