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The Black Embodiments Studio is an arts writing incubator and a public lecture series rooted in expansive and dynamic investigations of blackness in contemporary art.

Participants in The Black Embodiments Studio are immersed in models of writing that bridge academic and non-academic audiences, and that chart a theory and ethics of arts criticism surrounding questions of racial blackness, aesthetics, and embodiments. The Studio provides a structure of support for participants to develop their own pieces of short-form arts writing on black embodiments as well. Critically, participants gain intimate access to conversation with invited artists, scholars, critics, and curators who conduct workshops with residents and participate in public programming regarding their own engagements with black embodiments.

In focusing on embodiments, plural, The Studio highlights the term as a verb that invokes activity and movement, as well as the temporary and fleeting. The language of embodiments clears space to consider the repeated, performative constitution of blackness while remaining attuned to the material consequences of inhabiting skin marked as "black.


Kemi Adeyemi  is Assistant Professor of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington. Adeyemi’s writing spans academic and arts audiences. Her book manuscript, Making New Ground: Black Queer Women’s Geographies of Neoliberalism, and co-edited volume, Queer Nightlife, are currently in development. She has essays forthcoming in GLQ and Women & Performance; recent publications “Conversant: an interview with taisha paggett” (Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts) and “Donald Trump is the Perfect Man for the Job” (QED: A Journal of GLBTQ Worldmaking); exhibition catalog essays for black is a color (Los Angeles, CA), Impractical Weaving Suggestions (Madison, WI), and Endless Flight (Chicago, IL); and writings on artists including Adee Roberson, Amina Ross, Brendan Fernandes, Jovencio de la Paz, and Indira Allegra. Adeyemi’s exhibition unstable objects, co-curated with Sampada Aranke, opened at The Alice Gallery in 2017.

The Studio is run in collaboration with The Jacob Lawrence Gallery, and is generously supported by the Walter Chapin Simpson Center for the Humanities.

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