Booklaunch: Barbara Creed – Stray

The Power Institute and the Ian Potter Museum of Art are pleased to invite you to a talk by Barbara Creed, followed by a book launch celebrating Stray: Human-Animal Ethics in the Anthropocene.

Barbara Creed’s timely polemic explores the relationship between human and animal in the context of the stray. To celebrate the launch of this new publication, Creed, with respondent Dr lynn mowson, Vice Chair of the Australasian Animal Studies Association, will discuss the concept of the stray through the visual arts, film and literature, introducing the concept of the anthropogenic stray and exploring the contradictions it embodies. Following the talk, Stray will be officially launched by curator Victoria Lynn, Director, TarraWarra Museum of Art.


The stray is the outsider, other, exile, refugee—the one who lives apart from the mainstream or isolated in foreign lands. The idea of straying offers an unusual but rich concept with which to think about the shared animal–human condition and the possible fate of the earth and all species in the Anthropocene. Why do societies label certain animals as strays? How do human animals become strays? Julia Kristeva sees the stray, human and animal, as abject. Yet, she says: ‘I stray in order to be’. Hélène Cixous argues that women living in a patriarchal world are exiles or strays in that they are without a language of their own. Is there something life-affirming about being/becoming a stray? This talk will explore the concept of the stray from earliest times to the present with particular reference to the visual arts, literature and film.

Barbara Creed is a Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor at the University of Melbourne and an Honorary Professorial Fellow. Dr lynn mowson is a sculptor whose practice is driven by the entangled relationships between human and non-human animals, in particular agricultural animals.

Friday 26 May, 2017 | 6–8pm

Ian Potter Centre, Melbourne

Lecture by Barbara Creed, with response from lynn mowson 6–7.00pm

Book to be officially launched by Victoria Lynn 7–8.00pm

Ian Potter Museum of Art

Swanston Street, The University of Melbourne

Victoria 3010 Australia

RSVP via The Ian Potter Museum website:

Copies of Stray can be purchased on the evening.

Copies can also be ordered at:

Image: Patricia Piccinini, The Young Family (detail), 2002 Silicone, polyurethane, leather, plywood, human hair, 80 x 150 x 110 cm © Patricia Piccinini, courtesy Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney.

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