Leonardo Art/Science Evening Rendezvous of November 2021

Online Edition: the L.A.S.T. Dialogues


Exploring the Frontiers of Knowledge and Imagination, Fostering Interdisciplinary Networking
Hosted from Stanford during November 2021
by Piero Scaruffi

During the covid pandemic, this online program replaces both the 12 physical L.A.S.E.R.s that were planned at Stanford University and University of San Francisco for 2020 and the L.A.S.T. Festival that was planned for Spring 2020. Since some of them are simply "fireside chats", we tentatively called them the The Life Art Science Tech (L.A.S.T.) dialogues. See previous and future speakers and their videos.
(Note: All times are California time)

  • November 10 @ 6pm
    Albert Russell Ascoli (UC Berkeley/ Literature) on "Dante and the Invention of Italian, Italians, and Italy" (on the 700th anniversary of his death)
    Kat Mustatea (Playwright & Technologist) on "Augmented Reality and the Decaying Book"
    Neil Shubin (University of Chicago) on "Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA"
    Register here or here


    Albert Russell Ascoli (UC Berkeley) on "Dante and the Invention of Italian, Italians, and Italy"
    If you missed this dialogue, you can view it by clicking on the image:

    . Albert Russell Ascoli is Terrill Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Italian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He has published widely, and in particular "Dante and the Making of a Modern Author" (Cambridge University Press, 2008). His current work focuses on Giovanni Boccaccio's "Decameron", and Ludovico Ariosto's chivalric epic, "Orlando Furioso". He is a past president of the Dante Society of America.


    Kat Mustatea (Playwright & Technologist) on "Augmented Reality and the Decaying Book"
    If you missed this dialogue, you can view it by clicking on the image:

    . Kat Mustatea is a playwright and technologist whose language and performance works enlist absurdity, hybridity, and the uncanny to dig deeply into what it means to be human. Her TED talk, about puppets and algorithms, unpacks the meaning of machines making art. She co-curates EdgeCut, a live performance series that explores our complex relationship to the digital, and is a member of NEW INC, the art and tech incubator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York. Her most recent hybrid work, Voidopolis, won the Arts and Letters Unclassifiable Prize for literature and the Dante Prize for art, and has been exhibited internationally in a variety of digital and physical formats, including at Ars Electronica 2021 in the form of an AR book meant to disappear. Her mixed reality play, Lizardly, will premiere at MAXLive: The Neuroverse, co-produced by New York Live Arts, in fall of 2021. She speaks and writes frequently about cutting edge technology and art.


    Neil Shubin (University of Chicago) on "Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA"
    If you missed this dialogue, you can view it by clicking on the image:

    . Neil Shubin is the Robert R. Bensley Professor of Organismal Biology and Anatomy, Associate Dean of Organismal Biology and Anatomy and Professor on the Committee of Evolutionary Biology at the University of Chicago and the Provost of the Field Museum of Natural History. He is a paleontologist and evolutionary biologist. Raised outside Philadelphia, Shubin earned a A.B. from Columbia College of Columbia University in 1982 and a Ph.D. in organismic and evolutionary biology from Harvard University in 1987. He also studied at the University of California, Berkeley. Shubin was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2011. He is the author of "Some Assembly Required" (2021, an accessible new view of the evolution of human and animal life on Earth), "Your Inner Fish" (chosen by the National Academy of Sciences as the best book of the year in 2009, which showed how our bodies are the legacy of ancient fish, reptiles and primates), and "The Universe Within - Discovering the Common History of Rocks, Planets, and People".


The Stanford LASERs are sponsored by the Deans of: Engineering; Humanities & Sciences; and Medicine.