Futures Of The Contemporary

Date and location

from May 10, 2017 until May 12, 2017
Orpheus Institute

Futures of the Contemporary

Eventfrom May 10, 2017 until May 12, 2017

Academy 2017

The contemporary points towards incommensurable definitions. Intensely debated in the fields of visual arts, art theory, and philosophy, it describes different practices, relating to disparate conceptual horizons. However, if distinguished from the contemporaneous of a given historical time, the contemporary becomes a selective concept: it promotes or excludes things and practices according to their ability of diagnosing previously unnoticed aspects of the present. In this sense, it gains a critical function, involving particular modes of relating to history and to one’s own time.

Following Roland Barthes’ claim, who—inspired by Nietzsche, and quoted by Agamben—said that “the contemporary is the untimely”, the contemporary might suggest artistic practices that run against their own time and epoch, implying specific forms of resistance.

Beyond historicising frameworks, the 14th International Orpheus Academy for Music and Theory—Futures of the Contemporary—will explore and discuss new modes of thinking the contemporary in the arts, particularly focussing on music and music performance.

Guest Faculty

  • Babette Babich, Fordham University, New York (USA)
  • Chaya Czernowin, Harvard University (USA/Israel)
  • Heiner Goebbels, professor to the Justus Liebig University, Gießen (D)
  • Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, Hochschule für Musik und Theater Leipzig (D)
  • Peter Osborne, Kingston University London (UK)
  • Zsuzsa Baross, Trent University (CA)

Academy convenors

Paulo de Assis, Michael Schwab, Heloisa Amaral

Music Performances by

Almut Panfilenko, Heloisa Amaral, Juan Parra C.,  Mieko Kanno, Paulo de Assis



The International Orpheus Academy for Music and Theory is open to the public upon registration. Registration fee: 100,00 €; Bachelor and Master students: 50,00 €; docARTES students: free.