2018-2019 Guest Lectures

Danny Giles

Danny Giles is a Chicago-based artist who makes work that often brings together live performance, video, and sculpture to address the dilemmas of representing and performing identity and interrogate histories of oppression and creative resistance. Giles received his BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2011, MFA Northwestern in 2013, and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2013. Giles’ work has been exhibited, performed and screened at the Luminary, St. Louis, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, El Museo Tamayo, Mexico City, and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. Giles is currently a 2019 BOLT Artist-in-Residence at the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC). Giles is part-time faculty at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Academic Director of the Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists' Residency in Saugatuck, MI. In 2019 he served as in the Jacob Lawrence Legacy Resident at the Jacob Lawrence Gallery in Seattle, Washington.

In this Winter 2019 talk , Giles discusses his practice and his solo exhibition, "In The Practice and Science of Drawing a Sharp White Background," on view at the Jacob Lawrence Gallery January 22-February 28, 2019.

 

 

Claire Tancons

Photo by Marlon James

Photo by Marlon James

Look for Me All Around You: Aporia and Diaspora

Marcus Garvey’s incantatory words to “Look for me all around you, look for me in the whirlwind” (1925) as he faced incarceration in Atlanta following the failure of the Black Star Line continue to resonate across the African diaspora almost a century later. Or do they? How do contemporary scholars and artists find path back towards Garveyites’s global and racial politics at this time of heightened anti-black sentiment, and how might historical discourse and artistic practice provide avenues for divesting from the hate?

 Taking her upcoming eponymous curatorial platform for Sharjah Biennial 14 (March 2019) as a starting point, curator and scholar Claire Tancons brings Indian Ocean epistemologies to bear on a primarily Afro-Atlantic diasporic discourse while introducing ideas from a few of the biennial’s new commissioned projects. Together, these projects by artists such as Rose, Leo Asemota, Jace Clayton, Peter Friedl, Meshac Gaba, Isabel Lewis, Carlos Martiel, Mohau Modisakeng and Caecilia Tripp propose different tracks onto which to embark in the ever-political task of embodying blackness through enfleshment (through the body, movement, with the people) and materialism (from matter)—all the while attending to the global concerns of the cosmo-ecological, the techno-sensorial, and the museo-imaginal.

 By bringing together a global outlook onto the cultural conditions and artistic manifestations generated by a concern with the African diaspora at large whose experience all too often functions as a litmus test for global developments to follow, Tancons proposes that processes of diasporisation are always already alternatively dispossessive and repossessive and, as such, reveal the aporetic dimension of the contemporary.

 

2017-2018 Visiting Lectures

 

 

Taylor Renee Aldridge 

Taylor Renee Aldridge is a Detroit based writer and curator. In 2015 she co-founded ARTS.BLACK, a journal of art criticism from Black perspectives. Taylor is currently the assistant curator of contemporary art at the Detroit Institute of Arts. She has worked for the N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art, the Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African & African American Art, and The National Museum of American History (Smithsonian Institutions) as a Goldman Sachs Junior Fellow. Taylor is the 2016 recipient of The Andy Warhol Foundation Creative Capital Arts Writers Grant for Short Form Writing. She has written for Art21, ARTNews, ContemporaryAnd, Detroit MetroTimes, SFMoMA’s Open Space and Hyperallergic. Taylor earned a M.L.A from Harvard University with a concentration in Museum Studies and a B.A from Howard University with a concentration in Art History. 

In her Spring 2018 talk, “Performing Interior Pleasure: The Somatic Work of Jennifer Harge,” Aldridge put the pleasure work of dancer Jennifer Harge in conversation with black feminist theories of erotics, freak technique, and ecstasy to identify contrasts between the "specifically honed craft" and the seemingly pejorative "freak-ish" nature of queer Black vernacular dance.

 

 

Sampada Aranke

Sampada Aranke (PhD, Performance Studies) is an Assistant Professor in the Art History, Theory, Criticism Department at The School of the Art Institute, Chicago. Her research interests include performance theories of embodiment, visual culture, and black cultural and aesthetic theory. Her work has been published in e-flux, Artforum, Art Journal, Equid Novi: African Journalism Studies, andTrans-Scripts: An Interdisciplinary Online Journal in the Humanities and Social Sciences at UC Irvine. She has written catalogue essays for Sadie Barnette, Kambui Olujimi, and Zachary Fabri. She's currently working on her book manuscript entitled Death's Futurity: The Visual Culture of Death in Black Radical Politics.

Sampada Aranke's Winter 2018 talk examines Black contemporary artists in the exhibition Walls Turned Sideways: Artists Confront the American Justice System, focusing on how they escape various modes of control made possible by sight by re-centering the bodily and sensorial.

 

 

Liz Mputu

Ball of tension. Hyperbolic. Online is not a safe space but u can map out your own terrain bravely free education thru forum adult play time in cyber utopias as established by “clicks and enters” “clicks and enters” as activism/actionism, activating n stimulating alternate realities n possibilities healing centers. Online presence as a mechanism 4 centering political identity n drawing energy towards the preservation of ur kind. Groundation. Seeding. Bleeding out wen ur net worth’s oversharing/ networks overbearing/demanding still us in a machine, queering normative standards of existing. Refreshing pages. Refreshing. New ages. Refreshing. Options. Selectivity new windows. Open.new perspectives. I’m liz n i’m a #thot online
— Liz Mputu, artist bio
Image: Elizabeth Mputu in  Hello Selfie , 2015. Photo by Emily Raw.

Image: Elizabeth Mputu in Hello Selfie, 2015. Photo by Emily Raw.

LVLZ Healing Center: IRL Application of Digi-Manifestation installation. Photo by Joe Freeman.

LVLZ Healing Center: IRL Application of Digi-Manifestation installation. Photo by Joe Freeman.

In their Fall 2017 artist's talk, Liz Mputu discussed their practice of mobilizing video, interactive media, sculpture, and installation to examine questions of play, spirituality, and well/being within and beyond virtual space. Their multimedia and multiplatform practice rigorously engages questions of sex, gender, blackness, and queerness in ways that necessarily press against the privileging of whiteness that categories such as "internet art" and "feminist net art" can encompass, while also posing trenchant critiques of the mythos of the internet-as-utopia. Mputu's solo show, LVLZ Healing Center: IRL Application of Digi-Manifestation, was on view at Interstitial Gallery until October 28, 2017.