Monuments and the Reification of Anti-Black Violence
5 March 2020 19:30 - 21:00
This event has been cancelled
In the wake of rising nationalism, critiques of globalism, and ongoing emancipatory struggles around the world, the series Monument, organised in collaboration with e-flux Architecture, investigates how monuments have come to play a significant and contested role in the constitution of identities--be they national, ethnic, communal, or other. In its first event, architect and scholar Mabel O. Wilson will discuss spaces of America's commemorative landscape. Wilson's work addresses the necessity to make visible the history of lynching and its legacy in mass incarceration through public commemoration. The presentation will be followed by a conversation with Mitchell Esajas from the Black Archives around the processes of reification within the Dutch context.
From urban reconstructions in Berlin and Beirut to new structures being built in Accra and Utøya, the relationship between identity and built form has invested architecture with a renewed sense of urgency and agency. Architecture is not just a pragmatic spatial product, but an object capable of mobilising and rearticulating struggles for recognition. It cannot help but inscribe one set of ideas, beliefs, events, and/or figures into the built environment and suture them into the daily experience of history. The series, accompanied by online published essays, will include contributions by David Adjaye, Vasyl Cherepanyn, Philip Oswalt, Jorge Otero-Pailos, Valentina Rozas-Krause, Mabel O. Wilson, amongst others.
Mabel O. Wilson
Mabel O. Wilson is the Nancy and George Rupp Professor of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, a Professor in African American and African Diasporic Studies, and the Associate Director of the Institute for Research in African American Studies (IRAAS) at Columbia University. At GSAPP she co-directs the Global Africa Lab. Wilson joined the faculty of Columbia in 2007 and she has held fulltime and visiting appointments at UC Berkeley, California College of the Arts, Princeton University, Ohio State University and the University of Kentucky. She is trained in Architecture and American Studies, two fields that inform her scholarship, curatorial projects, art works and design projects. Through her transdisciplinary practice Studio &, Wilson makes visible and legible the ways that anti-Black racism shapes the built environment along with the ways that Blackness creates spaces of imagination, refusal and desire. Her research investigates space, politics and cultural memory in Black America; race and modern architecture; new technologies and the social production of space; and visual culture in contemporary art, media and film.
Memory and Oblivion
Monument is part of Memory and Oblivion, a long-term research project on ideology, memory and monuments, launched in 2018 by Het Nieuwe Instituut, and directed by its Research department. The project will look at different case studies around the world that epitomise the demand of a renewed relation between remembering and forgetting.
e-flux Architecture is a sister publishing platform of e-flux, archive, and editorial project founded in 2016. Edited by Nikolaus Hirsch, Anton Vidokle, and deputy editor Nick Axel, the news, events, exhibitions, programs, journals, books, and architecture projects disseminated by e-flux Architecture describe strains of critical discourse surrounding contemporary architecture, culture, and theory internationally. Since its inception, e-flux Architecture has maintained a dynamic international program of projects and events in collaboration with leading institutions and practitioners.
The Black Archives
The Black Archives documents the history of Black emancipation movements and individuals in the Netherlands. The archive comprises unique book collections, archives and artifacts that are the legacy of Black Dutch writers and scientists. The approximately 3000 books in the collections focus on racism and race issues, slavery and (the) colonization, gender and feminism, social sciences and development, Suriname, the Netherlands Antilles, South America, and Africa. The Black Archives are founded by Jessica de Abreu, Mitchell Esajas, Miguel Heilbron and Thiemo Heilbron, and are managed by the New Urban Collective.
Before the Thursday Night you can grab a bite to eat with the speakers and staff of Het Nieuwe Instituut. At 18:00 Het Nieuwe Café will serve a light vegetarian meal. Dinner vouchers are available for ¬ 7.70 up to a day before the particular Thursday Night event via the Tickets link.
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