Guest Speakers

2018-2019 

SEPAKE ANGIAMA

Sepake Angiama is a curator and educator interested in discursive practices, the social framework, and how we shape and form our experiences in understanding the world. She is inspired by working with artists who disrupt or provoke the social sphere through action, design, dance, and architecture. She is the initiator of Under the Mango Tree: Sites of Learning in cooperation with ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen), Stuttgart. Through notions of unlearning and indigenous knowledge, artist-led project spaces, libraries, and schools interested in unfolding discourses gather to discuss and build radical education practices that destabilize the European canon. Previously, Angiama was Head of Education for documenta 14, Kassel, 2017; Director of Education for Manifesta 10, Saint Petersburg, 2014; and Curator of Public Programmes at Turner Contemporary, Margate. She has created education programs for several institutions, including Tate Modern, London, and Hayward Gallery, London. Angiama lives and works in transition.

JANE BENNETT

Jane Bennett is Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities at Johns Hopkins University. She is one of the founders of the journal Theory & Event and edited the journal Political Theory: An International Journal of Political Philosophy from 2012-17.  Professor Bennett specializes in political theory: ecological philosophy, art and politics, American political thought, political rhetoric and persuasion, and contemporary social theory. She has been a Fellow at the Internationales Kolleg fur Kulturtechnikforschung und Medienphilosophie, Bauhaus University, Weimar, Germany; at Oxford University (Keble College), at Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities (University of London), and the Humanities Research Centre at Australian National University. She was a seminar director at the School for Criticism and Theory at Cornell in 2013.  Her latest book is Influx & Efflux: Writing Up with Walt Whitman (Duke University Press, 2020).

ROBERT BLACKSON

Rob Blackson’s research-based curatorial work is centered in the creation of practical and poetic solutions for systemic challenges within our society. As the founding Director of Temple Contemporary, Blackson has curated numerous works including Symphony for a Broken Orchestra, reForm, Funeral for a Home and Restoring Ideals, in partnership with artists and local and national communities. These works have received critical acclaim in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Guardian, The BBC, NBC Nightly News, NPR and Huffington Post. He also directs The Velocity Fund—a regional-regranting program for Philadelphia artists supported by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. 

BETH CITRON

Beth Citron is the Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art at the Rubin Museum. Her exhibitions for the Rubin Museum have included Genesis Breyer P-Orridge: Try to Altar Everything (2016), Francesco Clemente: Inspired by India (2014), Witness at a Crossroads: Photographer Marc Riboud in Asia (2014), and the three-part exhibition series Modernist Art from India(2011–13). She completed a PhD in the History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania, and has taught in the Art History Department at New York University, from which she also earned a BA in Fine Arts.

KRIS GREY

Kris Grey is a New York City based gender-queer artist whose cultural work includes curatorial projects, performance, writing, and studio production. Grey earned a Bachelor of Fine Art from the Maryland Institute College of Art and a Masters Degree in Fine Art from Ohio University. They perform, teach, and exhibit work internationally. Grey was a Fire Island Artist Residency recipient, a resident artist for the ANTI Festival for Contemporary Art in Kupoio, Finland, and a teaching artist at The International Centre for Training in the Performing Arts in Brussels, Belgium. In addition to their individual practice, Grey collaborates with Maya Ciarrocchi under the moniker Gender/Power. Gender/Power has been awarded a Baryshnikov Art Center residency, a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council residency, a Franklin Furnace grant, and a MAP Fund Grant. Recent curatorial projects include Queer Objectivity at the University of Maryland, MIX NYC Experimental Film and Performance Festival, and the Queer Culture Performance and Lecture Series at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Grey's writing has been published in print and on the web for Huffington Post and Original Plumbing. Their latest writing, Trans*feminism: fragmenting and re-reading the history of art through a trans* perspective, written in collaboration with Jennie Klein, was published in Otherwise: Imagining Queer Feminist Art Histories.

Native Art Department International—MARIA HUPFIELD & JASON LUJAN

Native Art Department International is a Toronto-based collaborative project of the wife-and-husband pair of artists Maria Hupfield and Jason Lujan. Together they curate group exhibitions in which they sometimes show and occasionally make work together as a way to counter the pigeonholing of contemporary art by Native Americans and people of First Nations descent.

PREM KRISHNAMURTHY

Prem Krishnamurthy is a founding principal of the design studio Project Projects and the director/curator of the multidisciplinary exhibition space P!. In addition to working on commissions with Bard College Center for Curatorial Studies, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Guggenheim Museum, Harvard University, The Jewish Museum, MoMA, RISD Museum, SALT, Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Yale University Art Gallery, he has co-edited books and publications such as MATRIX/Berkeley: A Changing Exhibition of Contemporary Art (Project Projects with Elizabeth Thomas), PRINT magazine’s January 2011 special “Collaboration” issue, and the art journal Paper Monument. He has lectured at institutions ranging from the Walker Art Center, GAMeC Symposium of Emerging Curators, Jan Van Eyck Academie, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, SALT, Platform Garanti, and Bauhaus University Weimar. Krishnamurthy has received grants from the Graham Foundation and the New York State Council for the Arts for his independent curatorial research. In September 2012, he launched the multidisciplinary exhibition space P! in New York's Chinatown. Since its founding, the space has been featured in publications including ArtforumArt in AmericaFriezeSurfaceDesign ObserverThe New Yorker, and The Atlantic.

MIGUEL LUCIANO

Miguel Luciano is a multimedia visual artist whose work explores themes of history, popular culture, social justice and migration, through sculpture, painting and socially engaged public art projects. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including exhibitions at The Mercosul Biennial, Brazil; El Museo Nacional de Bella Artes de la Habana, Cuba; La Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris; El Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City; The San Juan Poly-Graphic Triennial, Puerto Rico, and The Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC. He is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including the Louis Comfort Tiffany Award Grant, the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors Award, and he was a fellow of the smARTpower Program – an international, community-based art initiative of the Bronx Museum of the Arts and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State. His work is featured in the permanent collections of The Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Brooklyn Museum, El Museo del Barrio, the Newark Museum, and the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico.

TINASHE MUSHAKAVANHU 

Tinashe Mushakavanhu is a writer, editor and scholar from Zimbabwe working at the intersection of art, design and technology. He holds a PhD in English from the University of Kent. He has co-edited three books: Some Writers Can Give You Two Heartbeats(2019); Visa Stories: Experiences Between Law and Migration (2013) and State of the Nation: Contemporary Zimbabwean Poetry(2013). He is co-creator and lead researcher on readingzimbabwe.com a digital archive collecting, cataloguing, digitizing  and making available information on books about Zimbabwe from the 1950s to the present. He is also co-founder of a boutique creative agency, Black Chalk & Co, which brings together writers, artists, designers, academics, and technologists and engenders a new culture and new forms of publishing and creative production. 

LAURA RAICOVICH

Laura Raicovich is dedicated to art and artistic production that relies on complexity, poetics, and care to create a more engaged and equitable civic realm. She is currently working on a book about museums, cultural institutions, and the myth of neutrality (Verso, 2020), and is the recipient of both the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Fellowship and the inaugural Emily H. Tremaine Journalism Fellowship for Curators at Hyperallergic. Until early 2018, she served as President and Executive Director of the Queens Museum where she oversaw an inviting and vital commons for art, ideas, and engagement. That same year, she co-curated Mel Chin: All Over the Place (with Manon Slome and No Longer Empty), the first major presentation in New York City of artist Mel Chin in more than 20 years, which occupied the entire Queens Museum and multiple public sites in the city. Prior to the Queens Museum, Raicovich inaugurated Creative Time’s Global Initiatives, where she successfully expanded the organization’s international work; launched Creative Time Reports, a media initiative featuring artists’ perspectives on world news and events; and directed the Creative Time Summit. She arrived there after a decade at Dia Art Foundation, where she served as deputy director and was a key member of the senior team during a period of transformation for the institution that included the opening of Dia:Beacon. Prior to that, she worked at Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Public Art Fund, and New York City's Department of Parks and Recreation.

BRIDGETTE ROBINSON

Bridgette Robinson is an Assistant Professor of History and Director of the African American Studies Institute at Prince George’s Community College in Largo, Maryland. She is a proud HBCU alum, with degrees from both North Carolina Central University and Morgan State University. She holds degrees in American, European, and African American histories. As an intellectual historian, her research interests include early twentieth century eugenic sciences and race politics links between the United States and Western Europe.

GREGORY SHOLETTE

Gregory Sholette PhD (born Philadelphia, USA, 1956) was a founding member of Political Art Documentation/Distribution PAD/D 1980-1988), which issued publications on politically engaged art and whose archive is now in the Museum of Modern Art; of REPOhistory (1989-2000), a collective of artists and activists who repossessed suppressed histories in New York in the 1990s; and more recently, of Gulf Labor, a group of artists advocating for migrant workers constructing museums in Abu Dhabi. In numerous installations in the US and Europe, dozens of essays, a special global issue of FIELD journal, and seven books including Art as Social Action (with Chloë Bass, 2018, Skyhorse Press); Delirium & Resistance: Art Activism & the Crisis of Capitalism (2017), Dark Matter: Art and Politics in an Age of Enterprise Culture (2011, both Pluto Press), and It’s The Political Economy, Stupid (with Oliver Ressler from Pluto Press, 2012), Sholette documents and reflects upon decades of activist art that, for its ephemerality, politics, and market resistance, might otherwise remain invisible. He has contributed to such journals as FIELD, Eflux, Artforum, Frieze, October, Critical Inquiry, Texte zur Kunst, Afterimage, CAA Art Journal and Manifesta Journal among other publications. Sholette holds a PhD in History and Memory Studies from the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2017), he is a graduate of the Whitney Independent Study Program in Critical Theory (1996), Graduate of University of California San Diego (1995), and The Cooper Union School of Art (1979), and Bucks County Community College (1974). He is a Professor of studio art and co-directs the Social Practice Queens MFA concentration and certificate at Queens College CUNY, and is an associate of the Art, Design and the Public Domain program of Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design.

LISE SOSKOLNE 

Lise Soskolne is an artist and core organizer of W.A.G.E. (Working Artists and the Greater Economy). W.A.G.E. is a New York-based activist organization whose mission is to establish sustainable economic relationships between artists and the institutions that contract their labor, and to introduce mechanisms for self-regulation into the art field that collectively bring about a more equitable distribution of its economy. An organizer within W.A.G.E. since its founding in 2008 and its core organizer since 2012, she began working in arts presenting and development at downtown New York City nonprofits in 1998. Venues have included Anthology Film Archives, Artists Space, Diapason Gallery for Sound, Meredith Monk/The House Foundation for the Arts, Participant Inc, and Roulette Intermedium.

HANK WILLIS THOMAS

Hank Willis Thomas (b. 1976, Plainfield, NJ; lives and works in Brooklyn, NY) is a conceptual artist working primarily with themes related to perspective, identity, commodity, media, and popular culture. His work has been exhibited throughout the United States and abroad including the International Center of Photography, New York; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain; Musée du quai Branly, Paris; Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong, and the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Netherlands. Solo exhibitions of his work have been featured at SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, GA; California African American Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Philadelphia Photo Arts Center, Philadelphia, PA; Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA; Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH; The Art Museum at the University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY; The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY; Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD; Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO, and the African American Museum, Philadelphia, PA, among others.

XIAOYU WANG

Xiaoyu Weng was appointed to spearhead The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Chinese Art Initiative in 2015. At the Guggenheim, she has co-curated the exhibitions Tales of Our Time (2016–17) and One Hand Clapping(2018). In 2019, she curated the 5th Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art, taking place in Yekaterinburg, Russia. Previously she served as the founding director of the Kadist Art Foundation’s Asia Programs, Paris and San Francisco. She launched the Kadist Curatorial Collaboration, which organizes exhibitions that stimulate cultural exchange, and she oversaw artist residencies and the building of the contemporary Asian art collection. From 2009 to 2010, she worked as a curator at the Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts at the California College of the Arts (CCA). Her other recent projects include Neither Black / Red / Yellow Nor Womanat Times Art Center Berlin; Soft Crash at Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Bergamo, Italy (2016); Robert Zhao Renhui: Flies Prefer Yellow at Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco (2014–15); Landscape: the virtual, the actual, the possible? at Guangdong Times Museum, Guangzhou, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco (2014); Invisible Hand: Curating as Gesture, the second CAFAM International Biennial at Central Academy of Fine Arts Museum, Beijing (2014); and Ming Wong: Making Chinatown at Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco (2013).

CAROL ZOU 

Carol Zou is an artist, writer, educator, and cultural organizer who has worked for over a decade on the relationship between arts, culture, community, and activism. Her work has spanned various collaborative modes with: Yarn Bombing Los Angeles, Michelada Think Tank, Trans.lation Vickery Meadow, Asian Arts Initiative, U.S. Department of Arts and Culture, Imagining America, American Monument, and now Little Tokyo Service Center. She believes that we are most free when we help others get free. Zou will be working with Little Tokyo Service Center on a series of projects that engage residents and community stakeholders around the cultural identity of Little Tokyo in order to build community power and self-determination over the future of the neighborhood. She hopes her fellowship will build the capacity of Little Tokyo Service Center to integrate arts and culture into multiple levels of its planning work. Carol Zou has been awarded fellowships and residencies from Santa Fe Art Institute, Intercultural Leadership Institute, National Art Strategies, Women's Center for Creative Work, Common Field, University of Chicago Place Lab-Rebuild Foundation, and University of Houston College of the Arts-Project Row Houses. Zou earned her MFA in Public Practice from the Otis College of Art and Design and her BFA from Cornell University.

PAST GUEST SPEAKERS INCLUDE:

Fred Wilson, Herb Tam, Joyce J. Scott, Kamelaah Janan Rasheed, Peter Nesbett, Lauren van Haaften-Schick, Saisha Grayson-Knoth, Omar Lopez-Chahoud, Jessica Hong, Casey Fremont, Amanda Parmer, Amara Antilla, Mark Strandquist, and Courtney Bowles