RE-TOUCHING McLUHAN – Berlin Centennial Weekend


Marshall McLuhan Centennial Weekend May 27 – 29, 2011
Conference |  Screening  |  Installation  |  Performance

Embassy of Canada / Marshall McLuhan Salon, Berlin


transmediale, in collaboration with the Embassy of Canada Berlin and Marshall McLuhan Salon invite you to a key weekend event celebrating the legacy of Canadian media philosopher Marshall McLuhan on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth.  Part of the McLuhan in Europe 2011 network of events initiated by transmediale, Berlin’s Conference and Centennial Weekend will take place May 27 – 29 at the Embassy of Canada and Marshall McLuhan Salon.

The international conference Re-Touching McLuhan: The Medium is the Massage chaired by Dieter Daniels and moderated by Christopher Salter, sees leading international media and digital culture researchers Richard Cavell, Martina Leeker, Claus Pias, Dieter Daniels, Katja Kwastek, Michael Darroch, Janine Marchessault and Lorenz Engell explore McLuhan’s unique take on tactile and multi-sensory media expressed by the media philosopher’s unintentionally published blurring of the words message and massage.

The opening of the Centennial Weekend features the worldwide (re-)launch of McLuhan’s 1968 audio art classic The Medium is the Massage, digitally remastered for the first time, produced and presented by hip-hop musician and conceptual artist Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky.

Legendary McLuhanist Derrick de Kerckhove and Berlin-based McLuhan scholar Steffi Winkler elaborate on rare material from the McLuhan archives in the first session of the McLuminations screening and discussion series, produced by Baruch Gottlieb.

The Centennial Weekend will feature the European première of Through The Vanishing Point, a major new multi-media installation by leading Canadian digital artists David Rokeby and Lewis Kaye, and Play_McLuhan from media students of Hochschule Darmstadt under direction of Sabine Breitsameter. The Weekend will be preceded by the 2nd German-Canadian Professionals Conference featuring keynotes Brian Lee Crowley, Linus Neumann and Gundolf S. Freyermuth.

Programme Highlights

Friday May 27, 18.00
Re-Touching McLuhan Centennial Weekend
Opening and Reception featuring Richard Cavell and Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky

Saturday May 28, 10.00 – 18.00
Re-Touching McLuhan: The Medium is the Massage
Conference chaired by Dieter Daniels

Sunday May 29, 14.30
McLuminations #1
Screening & Discussion featuring Derrick de Kerckhove and Steffi Winkler

Sunday May 29, 17.00
Through The Vanishing Point
Installation by David Rokeby and Lewis Kaye – Vernissage

Special Pre-Events

Friday, May 27, 12.00 – 17.00
Global Village: Calamity or Chance?
2nd German-Canadian Professionals Conference

Friday, May 27th, 17.00
Exhibition presentation by Sabine Breitsameter and students of the Hochschule Darmstadt

All events are FREE and open to the public, but spaces are limited so please RSVP at

The events will take place in English / Die Veranstaltungen finden in englischer Sprache statt.

The Centennial Weekend will take place at the Embassy of Canada / Marshall McLuhan Salon, Leipziger Platz 17, 10117 Berlin. Please arrive early to ensure enough time for embassy security.

If you are unable to attend, please join us online on this website. All RE-TOUCHING McLUHAN conference presentations will be streamed live and there will be opportunities to participate in a moderated online forum. To register your interest in our streaming programme, please contact Lalitha Rajan on .

For updates please follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Re-Touching McLuhan is a project of transmediale in collaboration with the Embassy of Canada and its Marshall McLuhan Salon with the support of the Government of Canada, the Deutsch-Kanadische Gesellschaft, Blackberry, the McLuhan Estate and the Gingko Press. The event is part of the McLuhan in Europe 2011 Network, initiated and directed by Stephen Kovats in collaboration with Michelle Kasprzak, celebrating the centenary of Marshall McLuhan and his impact on European Art and Media Culture.

Through The Vanishing Point was commissioned in 2010 by the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival (Bonnie Rubenstein, curator) and the Faculty of Information McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology (Dominique Scheffel-Dunand, director) University of Toronto, Canada.

McLuhan in Europe 2011 is an initiative of transmediale in collaboration with the Marshall McLuhan Salon / Embassy of Canada Berlin, Gingko Press, and RIM. Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha