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Alumna Damali Abrams and Naomi Elena Ramirez and Faculty Co-Chair Dalida MarÍa Benfield in NYC

MIGRATORY TIMES/EMBODIED SPACES: TWO PROVOCATIONS + A WORKSHOP.

Migratory Times/Embodied Spaces will center performance works by Naomi Elena Ramirez (NYC) and the collective Diásporas Críticas (Barcelona/Guayaquíl) as transformative pedagogical interventions that open the space of a collaborative workshop to produce collective articulations of (dis)occupying spaces, disidentifications, (re)embodiment, radiofonization, and sonic translocalization, in migratory times.

This event contributes to Migratory Times, a year long global art, research, and pedagogical initiative that facilitates translocal and transnational decolonial feminist dialogues on displacements and migration through cultural interventions, workshops, and publications. Migratory Times is a project of the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects, a transnational feminist art, media and research collective, and is made possible in part with a Community Arts Fellowship from the Abundance Foundation.

ponga cuerpo donde boca

choreographed and performed by Naomi Elena Ramirez

sound design by Naomi Elena Ramirez sounds: excerpt from “Two Woman” by Anonymous; excerpt of speech by Fred Hampton of the Black Panther Party; excerpt of speech by Angela Davis ‘How Does Change Happen?’; Manu Chao, EZLN…Para Todos Todo

As the fog of imagined democracy dissipates how does one prepare oneself for the necessary sacrifices of activism, dissent, and the push for concrete change? When our bodies are on the line, what can we do to encourage ourselves to fight? I ask this of myself because I think the fight is only going to get uglier. ponga cuerpo donde boca responds to these questions through movement explorations of gestures from protest, moving through fear, finding strength in resilience, and dancing to sustain agency of resistance.

Llamando el mago

Diasporas Críticas

Llamando el mago is a live new media work that explores a “crisis of presentation” in an image saturated public sphere conditioned by techniques of surveillance that order the routes and experiences of transmission between metropolis and colony. Departing from the essay of the same title (“Calling the Magician”) by Aime Cesaire, Llamando el mago traverses censorship and media exoticisation, bureaucracy and coloniality, surveillance and polarisation, towards a meditation on decolonisation as a sophisticated anti-racist program that includes political, aesthetic and epistemic freedom of movement.

Naomi Elena Ramirez is a multidisciplinary artist whose work encompasses visual art, video art, performance art, and contemporary dance. Naomi uses photography and drawing as choreographic method, creating experimental scores from which live performance is made. Naomi has an MFA in Visual Art from Vermont College of Fine Arts and a BA in Dance from the University of California at Berkeley. Her work has been presented by Movement Research at The Judson Church; DoublePlus at Gibney Dance; The Bronx Latin American Art Biennial; Nurture Art Gallery; Wallplay Gallery; The Situation Room, LA; Gallery 107, North Adams, MA; Arte Nuevo InteractivA, Mérida, Mexico; Northwestern University’s Performance Studies Conference In Bodies We Trust; New Voices in Live Performance at The Center for Performance Research; amongst others. She is a recipient of the A.I.R. Gallery Fellowship for 2016/2017. She lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. (b. Hermosillo, Mexico) www.naomielenaramirez.com

Diásporas críticas is an open platform for artistic research. Diásporas críticas research explores and responds to the ways in which nationalisms intervene through micro-process to affect the body and the senses, researching notions of “transmission” and “contagion” in relation to mass media and technology as well as medical discourses and disease. They have received various research and production grants from academic and arts institutions. Throughout 2017 Diasporas criticas are preparing a research project entitled “Contralecturas Tropicales”. They are thinking: climate, cliche, sickness, poetic trope, surrealist dream, melodrama, medical theory, compass, geopolitical sex fantasy, cyclical time and exile.http://cargocollective.com/diasporascriticas

Damali Abrams the Glitter Priestess is a project-based artist born and raised in NYC by Guyanese parents. She constructs spaces and experiences of fantasy and myth, using collage, video installation and performance, that explore Black Utopia through the lenses of Afrofuturism and Afro-Caribbean syncretic religions. She examines folklore and contemporary popular culture, placing them in dialogue with one another to create a site of liberation for the Black imagination, rejecting tragedy as the sole, dominant narrative of the Black experience. Damali earned a BA at NYU, an MFA at Vermont College of Fine Arts, and recently completed the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program. She has been a fellow at A.I.R. Gallery as well as with apexart in Seoul, South Korea. She has been an artist-in-residence at Fresh Milk (Barbados), Groundation Grenada, Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning, The Center for Book Arts, and LMCC on Governors Island.

damaliabrams.wordpress.com | GlitterPriestess

Dalida María Benfield, Ph.D., is a Latinx (Panamá/U.S.A.) media artist and researcher who produces video, installations, archives, artists’ books, workshops, and other pedagogical and communicative actions, across online and offline platforms and often, collectively. Her current work crosses the spaces of contemporary art, education, and media activism and social justice. She has co-founded numerous autonomous cultural organizations, popular education projects, and research networks. She is currently the co-founder of the transnational feminist platform, The Institute of (Im)Possible Subjects, for art, research, activist culture, and publishing. From 1994 – 2007, she was a member of the artists’ collective Video Machete, which created open access media centers and free workshops as a practice of liberatory pedagogy and media production with youth of color, LGBTQ youth, and recent immigrant youth. She is co-chair of the Visual Arts program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and founding Program Director at the Center for Arts, Design, and Social Research. dalidamariabenfield.info

DATE AND TIME

Sat, June 24, 2017

7:30 PM – 9:30 PM EDT

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LOCATION

GIBNEY DANCE

280 BROADWAY

STUDIO C

New York, NY 10007

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Faculty Member Cauleen Smith @ Art Institute of Chicago

Human_3.0 Reading List

Through October 29, 2017
Gallery 124

Museum Hours

Open daily 10:30–5:00
Thursday until 8:00

Newspapers, magazines, and websites frequently offer lists: the 10 best new restaurants, the 50 top places to see in the world, the 100 best movies of all time. Chicago-based artist Cauleen Smith (American, born 1967) has created another kind of list, a new canon of humanistic literacy presented as a series of drawings. Titled Human_3.0 Reading List, the project represents a new dimension of Smith’s work, one that engages with the idea of a collective consciousness through manually drawn renderings of book covers.

In this series of 57 drawings—each produced on 8½ × 12- inch graph paper in watercolor over graphite, occasionally elaborated with acrylic—the artist proposes a selection of books that is both personal, conveyed by the frequent inclusion of fingers or a thumb shown holding up a given book, and idiosyncratic. Harriet Tubman, C. L. R. James, and bell hooks find their place alongside Starfish, Sea Urchins, and Their Kin by Nelson Herwig. Together the drawings ask challenging questions: Have you read these books? Will you read these books? What will they mean to you? What do they mean to us now? Which titles might be missing?

An artist whose primary discipline is film, Smith has incorporated various influences and references in her images—science fiction, the black diaspora, and the lyrical potential of landscape. She first garnered national recognition with her feature-length film Drylongso (1998), which she completed during her graduate training at UCLA’s film school. In 2010, Smith moved to Chicago, where her work has grown increasingly site-specific and engaged in social activism. She created the Solar Flare Arkestral Marching Band Project, which has organized flash-mob appearances of a marching band composed of youth groups from the city’s South Side. This and other recent works have explicitly invoked the legacy of pioneering composer and performer Sun Ra, whose music and elaborate self-defining mythology also propelled the broader artistic movement of Afrofuturism.

Grounded in a sober assessment of race relations and institutional power structures, Human_3.0 Reading List calls its viewers to prepare for social change through self-empowered education. In the final words of the manifesto accompanying the series, Smith exhorts her audience: “Love. Resist. Read on. Right on.”

Sponsors

Support for this exhibition is provided by the Print and Drawing Club of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Cauleen Smith. Wild Seed, from Human_3.0 Reading List, 2015. Promised gift of Helen and Sam Zell.

Co-Chair Dalida María Benfield Collaborates In Barcelona

INTERSECTION | INTERVENTION | INTERPLAY
Gender, Collaboration and Counter-Memory in Migratory Times and Spaces

An afternoon intersecting interventions focused on technologies of collaboration to reimagine gender, history, memory, futures, and communities, with the collective projects Diasporas Críticas, Migratory Times, and the Museum of Random Memory.

Using as a taking off point the decolonial feminist philosopher María Lugones’ phrase “playfulness, world traveling and loving perception,” the public is invited to engage in these art based research projects that explore these actions as forms of reimagining and remaking social relations.

Date

May 31, 2017
15:00 – 19:30 p.m.

Place
Museu del Disseny de Barcelona
Floor -1 – Room B

Conducted by
The Museum of Random Memory/futuremaking.space
Diasporas Críticas and Migratory Times
the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects

 

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PROGRAMME

15:00 – 16:30The Museum of Random Memory
Conducted by MoRM: Museum of Random Memory/futuremaking.space

“Do you have something you would like to remember? Something you think should be forgotten? We would like you to contribute to our temporary permanent collection.”

What is a memory?
What is it good for?
How do we remember?
How do we forget?

These are a few of the questions that are asked by the participants and creators of the Museum of Random Memory, an ongoing practice-based research project. The project and the work of the project (the creation of the archive and the museum itself) represent a deliberate attempt to directly engage difficult questions of ownership, archive, preservation, and mediation. What does it mean to take ownership of a memory? What can we do with it? What should we do with it? What do we do with it? How do we proceed and where do the lines of the analog and the digital collide with the lines of public, private, hidden and revealed? How do you build (and destroy) a museum in days? What is gained and what is lost?

For this event we, the UnCurators, will perform an iteration of the Museum.
Attendees will be invited to participate by submitting memories and engaging in the intake process.

16:30 – 17:00 – Coffee Break

17:00 – 18:30 Exercise in Radiofonization
Conducted by Diasporas Críticas & Migratory Times/the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects

This workshop is directed at trans-feminist artists, activists and poets with the aim of sharing research around the process of creating a manifesto, enunciation and the practices, histories and metaphors associated with radio, we propose an “exercise in radiofonization”. Part workshop and part performance of a radio recording-studio, this session puts into practice a range of pedagogical and affective techniques in the fields of voice, enunciation and reading.

This space offers an encounter with various enunciation tactics and invites participants to co-produce a performative “exercise in radiofonization”. Depending on the technical capabilities this can be emitted in connection with other online, free or community radios, or recorded for a future transmission. “Exercise in radiofonization” focuses on the transdiscursive and transtemporal conditions of the feminist and decolonial manifesto and how, like the apparatus of radio, it makes a curious incision across the literary, historical, political and artistic; past present and future.

18:30 – 19:30 – Roundtable discussion
With Dalida María Benfield, Anyely Marin Cisneros, Rebecca Close and Annette Markham.

 

BIOS

THE MUSEUM OF RANDOM MEMORY/futuremaking.space

The Museum was first conceived and performed in March 2016 at the CounterPlay Festival held in Aarhus. Over the following year, key participants transformed the ideas into a conceptual framework, which guided the creation of the second instantiation of the museum, presented again at the same festival in March 2017.  The museum is the sum of the efforts of more than a dozen artists, activists, academics, researchers and students working with the Creating Future Memories project at Aarhus University in Denmark. The Creating Future Memories project is one of the projects of the futuremaking.space, a transdisciplinary space for research and public engagement.

 DIASPORAS CRITICAS

Diásporas críticas is an open platform for artistic research. Diásporas críticas research explores and responds to the ways in which nationalisms intervene through micro-process to affect the body and the senses, researching notions of “transmission” and “contagion” in relation to mass media and technology as well as medical discourses and disease. They have received various research and production grants from academic and arts institutions. Throughout 2017 Diasporas criticas are preparing a research project entitled “Contralecturas Tropicales”. They are thinking: climate, cliche, sickness, poetic trope, surrealist dream, melodrama, medical theory, compass, geopolitical sex fantasy, cyclical time and exile.

MIGRATORY TIMES/THE INSTITUTE OF (IM)POSSIBLE SUBJECTS
Migratory Times is a global art, research, and education initiative to facilitate transnational dialogues on displacements and migration. Migratory Times constructs a translocal architecture for overlapping learning, research, and making circles across diverse sites including Bogotá, Colombia; Aarhus and Copenhagen, Denmark; Jeju and Seoul, S. Korea; Manila, Philippines; Barcelona, Spain; and Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, Detroit, and New York City, USA. Over the course of a year, 2016-17, cultural interventions, workshops, and publications are being produced in local sites as well as through virtual networks, using popular education and co-design strategies. Migratory Times is a project of the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects, a transnational feminist art, media and research collective.

 

Free entry.
Required Registration. Send us an email to: [email protected]
http://d-future.net

Contact:
[email protected]
+34 93 326 3470

 

Organized by:

 

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D-Future Project/Mediaccions

 

In collaboration with:

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The Museum of Random Memory

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Migratory Times/the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects

Diasporas Críticas

 

Sponsored by:

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Ministerio de Economía y competitividad de España (Ref. CSO2014-58196-P)

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Museu del Disseny de Barcelona

 

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Estudis d’Art I Humanitats de la Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

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Future Making Research Consortium

Featured image: Diasporascriticas

Alumnus Michael Ruiz @ San Diego Art Institute

SDAI is pleased to present “Extra-Ordinary Collusion”, an exhibition with twenty-three artist and scientist collaborations, curated by Chi Essary. The opening reception will take place at the San Diego Art Institute, 1439 El Prado, on Saturday, May 20 from 6pm-8pm. The exhibition will run though will run through July 2.

The popular misconception of San Diego as a sleepy beach town ignores the vibrant artist community and undermines the reality of San Diego’s cultural potential. San Diego is not only known as one of the top three biotech capitals in the world, thanks to the presence of research centers like the Salk, Scripps, and the Stanford Consortium, but it is uniquely situated next to the creative hotbed that is Tijuana. Extra-Ordinary Collusion celebrates this rich cultural heritage by fostering innovative exchange between two of San Diego’s great cultural strengths—our thriving scientific and artistic communities.

For this exhibition artists were paired with scientists from the Salk Institute and invited to tour the scientists’ labs and learn about their state-of-the-art research. Using this visit as the impetus for the exhibition, artists created new work based on their conversations and interactions with the scientists. The artists in Extra-Ordinary Collusion come from various disciplines including painting, sculpture, installation, new media, and conceptual art.

Participating artists and scientists are: Cooper Baker (with Jun Wu), Hugo Crosthwaite (with Laura Tan), Einar & Jamex de la Torre (with Amy Rommel), Thomas DeMello (with Carol Marchetto), TML Dunn (with Sreekanth “Shrek” Chalasani), David Fobes (with Tatyana Sharpee), Abbey Hepner (with Mike Avery), Debby & Larry Kline (with Saket Navlakha), Jessica McCambly (with Julie Law), Meegan Nolan (with Manching Ku), Arzu Ozkal (with Janelle Ayres), Philip Petrie (with Ahmet Denli), Irma Sofia Poeter (with Uri Manor), Iana Quesnell (with Corina Antal), Sasha Koozel Reibstein (with Beverly Emerson), Marisol Rendón (with Axel Nimmerjahn), Vincent Robles (with Chen-min Yeh), Michael Ruiz (with Paloma Martinez-Redondo), Ellen Salk (with Tom Albright), Shinpei Takeda (with Tom Albright), Maya VanderSchuit (with Antonio Currias), Vicki Walsh (with Alan Saghatelian), Melissa Walter (with Martin Hetzer) Also on display will be photographs by Josue Castro documenting the scientists in their laboratories.

Please also join us for a series of discussions with some of the artist/scientist teams in Extra-Ordinary Collusion:

Thursday, June 8th, 7pm-9pm ($10, includes appetizers and refreshments) Location: Park 6, 590 Fir Street, San Diego, CA 92101
Vicki Walsh with Alan Saghatelian from the Clayton Foundation Laboratories for Peptide Biology, Einar & Jamex de la Torre with Amy Rommel from the Laboratory of Genetics—Verma, and Abbey Hepner with Mike Avery from John Reynold’s Lab

Wednesday, June 28th, 6pm-8pm ($5, cash bar) Location: San Diego Art Institute, 1439 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101
Marisol Rendón with Axel Nimmerjahn from the Waitt Advanced Biophotonics Center, David Fobes with Tatyana Sharpee from the Computational Neurobiology Laboratory, and TML Dunn with Sreekanth “Shrek” Chalasani from the Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory

Winter 2017 Grads

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Holly Britt

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Simone Spruce-Torres

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Lillie Grace

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Vicki Knipp

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Lori Victor

ADP170201_6384

Guy Coffin

ADP170201_6405

Jon Chapman

ADP170202_6541

Moksha Sommer

ADP170202_6637

Luann Bice

Viet Le Speaks at Asian American Genders & Sexuality Panel | SFSU

The Center for Research and Education on Gender and Sexuality is pleased to present “Asian American Genders and Sexualities”, a moderated panel discussion exploring Asian American gender and sexuality from an interdisciplinary perspective, featuring Valerie Francisco-Menchavez, Việt Lê, Anantha Sudhakar, and Amy Sueyoshi.

Wednesday, February 22nd from 5pm-7pm.
Room 121 (first floor), J. Paul Leonard Library,
San Francisco State University
1600 Holloway Ave

https://www.facebook.com/events/223574031436933/

The panel will be featuring:

Valerie Francisco-Menchavez: Assistant Professor in Sociology and Sexuality Studies at SFSU. Dr. Francisco’s work focuses on global and transnational sociology, migration and immigration, Phillippine diaspora, gender and family, and on the transnational activism that emerges from the social conditions of migration, separation, and migrant labor.

Việt Lê: Artist, writer, curator, and an Assistant Professor in visual studies at California College of the Arts. He has ben published in positions: asia critique; Crab Orchard Review; American Quarterly; Amerasia Journal; Art Journal; and the anthologies Writing from the Perfume River; Strange Cargo; The Spaces Between Us; Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art; among others.

Dr. Anantha Sudhakar’s work, which focuses on South Asian American literature, diaspora and transnationalism, and feminist and queer theory, has been published in the Asian American Literary Review and Small Axe. She serves as an advisor for the South Asian American Digital Archive, an online repository of documents related to South Asian American immigration, and as an editor for Tides magazine.

Amy Sueyoshi: Associate Dean of the College of Ethnic Studies at SFSU. She is a co-curator and founding member of the GLBT History Museum, the first queer history museum in the United States. She also initiated the Dragon Fruit Project, a community oral history project for API Equality Northern California. Her second book Discriminating Sex: White Leisure and the Making of the American “Oriental” is forthcoming from University of Illinois Press.

This event and all CREGS events are wheelchair accessible. If you would like to request additional accommodations for this event, including ASL interpretation, please contact Zed Meade at [email protected] or 415-817-4525 by 2/15/17.

Cauleen Smith & Beatriz Santiago Muñoz | Whitney Biennial Film Program

Faculty member Cauleen Smith and past visiting artist Beatriz Santiago Muñoz will screen films during Whitney Biennial Film program.

For ten consecutive weekends, the Biennial film program will present new moving image works in the Susan and John Hess Family Theater. At once radical and quiet, global and intimate, the selected works explore subjective and affective experiences of the contemporary political and social moment. Reflecting on the urgent themes seen in the exhibition, the film program features some of the most exciting voices working in moving image today.

The film program is organized by Christopher Y. Lew, Mia Locks, and Aily Nash.

Program details and schedule here.

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Residency Public Events | 2017

The MFA in Visual Art program would like to invite the community to join us for presentations with our Visiting Artists, as well as student exhibitions, January 28 through February 3.

Graduating Student Exhibition – VCFA Gallery

  • Tuesday, January 31 – Friday, February 3. Hours: 9am-6pm. Gallery may be closed for critiques and reviews as determined by the program.
  • Opening: Monday, January 30, 8-9:30pm, VCFA Gallery

The daily exhibitions are free and open to the public most days. Please be considerate of critique groups and closures as needed for academic purposes.

New and Returning Student Exhibitions – Alumni Hall

  • Sunday, January 29 – Friday, February 3. Hours: 9am-6pm.
  • Opening: Saturday, January 28, 7-8:30pm, Alumni Hall

Gallery may be closed for critiques and reviews as determined by the program.

Visiting Artists Presentations:

Art, Place and Place-making
  • Sunday, January 29, 10:30am to noon,  College Hall Chapel
  • Artist-in-Residence, Mildred Beltré, will discuss her practice.

Mildred BeltreMildred Beltré, is a Brooklyn-based artist, mother, and popular educator working in print, drawing, and participatory politically engaged practice to explore facets of social change. She is interested in exploring political movements and their associated social relations and structures. Her most recent work involves looking at revolutionary theorizing and posturing through a feminist lens.

Beltré’s selected national exhibitions include: International Print Center New York, NYC; Burlington City Arts, Burlington, VT; Five Myles Gallery, Brooklyn, NY; BRIC, Brooklyn, NY; Smack Mellon, Brooklyn, NY; Freedman Gallery, Albright College, Reading, PA; University of Colorado, Boulder, CO; Art in General, NYC ; and international group shows at Projecto Ace, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Hollar Gallery, Prague, Czech Republic; Brun Leglise Gallery, Paris, France; among others.

Her work is included in the Special Collections of the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY, and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, among others.

She has been awarded residencies at the Lower East Side Printshop, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Santa Fe Art Institute. She has received grants from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Brooklyn Arts Council,  Brooklyn Foundation, and the Rema Hort Foundation, among others.

Beltré is the co-founder of the Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine, an ongoing socially engaged collaborative art project in Crown Heights, Brooklyn that addresses gentrification and community building through art-making.

Waiting/Welcome
  • Sunday, January 29, 7pm, College Hall Chapel
  • A poetic meditation/reading/screening performed by MFA in Visual Art faculty, Viet Le and Faith Wilding with slides of images of colonial subjects from National Geographic, rephotographed and titled by faculty member, Michelle Dizon. A discussion with the audience follows.
Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine: Community and Collaboration
  • Wednesday, February 1, 1-2:30pm, Chapel, College Hall
  • Artist-in-Residence, Mildred Beltré, and her collaborator, Visiting Artist Oasa DuVerney, will discuss their collaborative work.

Mildred and OasaThe Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine is a socially-engaged project started in 2010 by artists Mildred Beltré and Oasa DuVerney. Dubbing ourselves the “Official Unofficial Artists in Residence” of our block, we set up tents, tables, and art supplies on the street outside our apartment building and invited anyone walking by to stop and make art with us. In this way we co-founded the Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine (BHAM), a collaborative public art intervention that explores art-making as a community-building tool.

Often when a neighborhood is undergoing rapid change, outdoor space is criminalized for some while being preserved for others. One thing that the BHAM seeks to do in its insistence to be outdoors, and particularly on the street, is about claiming the street as a generative space for people of color. Public and collective projects are a way of combating the social isolation that leads to suspicion amongst neighbors as opposed to cooperation. By engaging our neighbors on the street, we facilitate conversation and trust which is often lost when a community undergoes significant transition and upheaval. Our vision is to facilitate a public space for community members—often silenced by socio-economic circumstances—to get informed, feel empowered, create, and organize to take positive action.

As artists it is important to us to not create work solely for the gallery, but also to use our practice to make artwork with and for our community. By creating weavings and art activities on our sidewalks we provide a visible and participatory space for Crown Heights residents of all ages to see and interact with each other. These workshops serve as a creative outlet for our neighbors and provide an opportunity to engage with each other outside of the daily routine and thus encourage a new kind of interaction, one leading to new social relations based on mutual respect and understanding. The fence weavings provide an opening for that conversation amongst neighbors to begin.

Oasa DuVerney is a Brooklyn-based artist and mother, born in Queens, New York. Selected exhibitions include “The View From Nowhere,” Rush Arts Gallery, NYC (2016); “The Window and the Breaking of the Window,” Studio Museum in Harlem, NYC (2016); The Brooklyn Biennial, BRIC, Brooklyn NY (2016), “Crossing the Line,” Mixed Greens Gallery, NYC (2013); “March On!,” Brooklyn Academy Of Music (2013); “Through A Glass Darkly,” Postmasters Gallery, NYC (2012).

DuVerney was awarded the Rush Philanthropic Foundation Artist Residency (2016), Smack Mellon Studio Artist Residency (2014-2015) the LMCC Workspace program residency (2012-2013), Brooklyn Foundation Grant (2016) a grant from the Brooklyn Arts Council (2011), a grant award from the Citizens Committee For New York City (2010, 2013), and the Aljra Emerge Fellowship by the Aljira Center for Contemporary Art (2007).

Media and Publications include The Independent, UK (2016), PIX 11 News (2016), Hyperallergic (2015, 2016), The Guardian, UK (2015), Palestine News Network (2013), The New York Times (2012, 2011), and The New York Daily News (2010). She received her B.F.A. from the Fashion Institute of Technology and her M.F.A. from Hunter College, CUNY.

Visiting Artists/Scholars during the Visual Art residency:

Damali Abrams, Ujju Aggarwal, Eshrat Erfanian, Nils Karsten, Suzy Spence, Rodrigo Valenzuela, and John Willis.

Faculty Member Cauleen Smith @ CAC Gallery | Irvine

The Warplands, Cauleen Smith 
Curated by Rhea Anastas 

Jan 14, 2017 to Mar 25, 2017

Reception: Saturday, January 14, 2017 – 

2:00pm to 5:00pm

 

How – right now, today – can we care for U.S. everyday social life? This exhibition combines two areas of recent work by filmmaker Cauleen Smith. For the show, Smith created a film from her research on the influence of the music and life of Alice Coltrane (1937-2007), a film visually keyed to a recording of a notable Coltrane composition. PILGRIM, 2017, joins three pieces drawn from an area of Smith’s work best described as activist response, a multiplicity of work rooted in Chicago, where Smith has lived since 2011. These works differ in their effects, taking on the locations (public, the street, the worldwide web) and functions of activism (being loud, using your body, making informal networks for self-education and information dissemination). These include LESSONS IN SEMAPHORE (2013), a digitized 16mm film and HUMAN_3.0 READING LIST (2016), an iPhone film of Smith’s essential readings as drawings. Smith’s GWENDOLYN BROOKS BANNERS for The Black Love Procession: Conduct Your Blooming (2016) took a part of a poem by Gwendolyn Brooks and mobilized it as a renegade procession that took place in Bronzeville, a historically black neighborhood. This procession responded to a controversial exhibition by an artist whose work about the death of Michael Brown was presented at a gallery in Bronzeville.

 

Smith was awarded the 2016 Alpert Award in visual art and was the first recipient of The Ellsworth Kelly Award from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, given to the artist for Give It Or Leave It, a solo exhibition linked to The Warplands through research and a book. Give It Or Leave It is forthcoming at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania in 2018.

 

Smith is known for a group of influential films and videos, moving image installations and objects with connections to experimental film and third world cinema, structuralism and science fiction. A California native, Smith was born in Riverside, grew up in Sacramento and was educated at San Francisco State University (BA) and the University of California, Los Angeles (MFA, Film). Recent films, such as Crow Requiem and The Way Out Is the Way To, move between Smith’s active study of multiple sources and archives (avant-garde, African-American histories and improvisational music), and Smith’s personal and political response to recent and ongoing violence against people of color at the hands of the state. Press Kit

 

Events:

Conversation: Cauleen Smith and Rhea Anastas

Thursday, January 12, 7:30pm

LAXART
7000 Santa Monica Blvd.
Hollywood, CA 90038

Cauleen Smith

HUMAN_3.0 READING LIST MANIFESTO (PDF)

From the book:
Cauleen Smith
HUMAN_3.0 READING LIST 2015-2016
Published by Corbett vs. Dempsey, Chicago © 2016

Featured image: Cauleen Smith. Processional Declaration, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and Corbett vs. Dempsey, Chicago.

Cauleen Smith Mousse Magazine Interview

Destroying Narratives: Cauleen Smith

Cauleen Smith and Carolyn Lazard in Conversation

Cauleen Smith is an interdisciplinary artist operating with multiple materials and modes, including installation environments, referencing mid-20th-century experimental film. She draws from devices originating in science fiction to deploy a conversation with the representation of black women in Western cinema as radical others, and to address the dislocated relationship with ideas of belonging to a “homeland.”

CAROLYN LAZARD: Over the past few years, you’ve created more and more installation work and pieces that expand outside of a traditional cinema environment. There seems to be this never-ending debate about the contested presence of cinema in the gallery space. Can you address these formal changes in your work and why you necessarily wanted to take your work out of the theater?

CAULEEN SMITH: When I first started making films, showing moving images in gallery and museum spaces was both prohibitively expensive and technically difficult. It was actually painful to have my work in art shows because the exhibition decisions were so disrespectful to the medium and the way the work was intended to be viewed. Digital video has changed that. A good projector is affordable and requires no human projectionist for operation. An extremely high-quality piece of media can loop effortlessly on a media player. Furthermore, there are the natural similarities between installation art and filmmaking: the completeness, the immersiveness, the totality of materials and playing with their materiality is, to me, echoed in each form. The installation becomes a container, a wrapper, for the films, and sometimes a physical echo of things occurring in the films. It also becomes a three-dimensional footnote in a sense because I rely on the environment in which my films play to expand and illuminate the content, tone, and forms deployed in the films. By building chambers, what I have taken to calling “space stations,” I have a chance to control the spectator’s approach toward the work and influence their receptivity. Frequently the installation is a playful obstruction. A way of slowing down the spectator, of inviting them to spend more time with the work by offering them information that can only be gleaned by being inside of the space that contains the film.

CL: In H-E-L-L-O (2014) and in The Way Out Is The Way Two: Fourteen Short Films about Chicago and Sun Ra (2012), you work directly with musicians, addressing the legacy of black music and the avant-garde. Your use of non-diegetic sound, dubbed dialogue, and text in lieu of voice can be quite disorienting. The dissonance between sound and image points to worlds outside of the frame, adding layers of perception. Often, one senses that there is an entirely separate sonic narrative unfolding under your films. Could you address your relationship to sound as a filmmaker?

CS: I admit to the strangeness of something your questions alludes to, which is the fact that I really do favor dissonant, non-diegetic sound design. I get excited when the sound I hear disagrees with the image I see but somehow manages to point me toward a new question or possibility. Whenever a spectator is offered drama through dialogue, they desire the satisfaction—the seduction—of losing themselves in the affective transference that occurs between screen character and individual spectator. Dialogue is a very special kind of text, different from essay, poetry, or expository voice-over. I love what it can do, but I don’t love enabling that traditional desire for illusionistic filmmaking in my spectators when I am trying to offer them a different kind of viewing experience. In the context of my work, it’s misleading to invite viewers to lose themselves in the narrative drama, when all of the tension actually resides in the image and its formal relationship to what comes before and after and what sounds support or undermine those images. Rather than completely mute the figures in my films, I prefer to untether the voice from the body and insert some slippage. In that space, I hope, is the potential for a kind of recognition of self, that invites more than desire. Cognitive estrangement and cognitive dissonance are both tactics that I rely on quite heavily. What does it feel like to live in a body that is perceived as malevolently vacant, fugitive, unknowable, and black? Estrangement and dissonance are two psychological states that come to mind when I think about how black people have to move through the world and the assumptions we are sometimes subjected to. Undermining the mundane aspects of moving through cinematic space by peppering the sonic environment with alien information seems like an invitation to contemplate the discomfort—and that freedom.

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Featured image:

Cauleen Smith, Song for Earth and Folk (still), 2013
Courtesy: the artist