knowledges Integrated Arts Research Initiative Colloquium
November 5–7, 2019
Join us to reflect on the investigations and accomplishments of the Integrated Arts Research Initiative during the past three years, and look ahead to future explorations. This colloquium also serves as a pre-conference for the Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru) national gathering hosted by KU.
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 5
Exhibiting Africa: Anthropology, Museums, and the Persistent Western Imagination
Monique Renee Scott (Bryn Mawr College)
Hall Center for the Humanities
In this talk, museum anthropologist Monique Renee Scott rethinks the representation of race in museums and U.S. national monuments to combat anti-Black racism, reimagining new possibilities for people of the African Diaspora. Museums have long diminished Africa to a seemingly static, dark, and dusty prehistory. Through the destructive lens of early race science, many African people were bestialized in the Western imagination, and this stigmatization has persistently shaped museums as well as popular culture and national politics. Scott is an interdisciplinary scholar in residence this fall at the Hall Center for the Humanities.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 6
Fires Moving on the Water: Scholarship as Ancestral Practice
Sarah Hunt (Tłaliłila’ogwa, University of British Columbia-Vancouver)
Spencer Museum of Art, Auditorium
Participants are invited to consider how Kwakwaka’wakw cosmologies expressed across the nested scales of the body and the land work to unsettle normative understandings of scholarly knowledge production. Drawing on her current research on the ways in which coastal Indigenous women and gender diverse people define and experience justice through collective cultural praxis, Hunt will situate herself not as a scholar but as Tłaliłila’ogwa – someone who goes around inviting people. Rather than making sense of Indigenous knowledge through existing scholarly frames, she asks what is possible when we are responsive to the always-already existing forms of knowledge alive within the lands and waters on which our work is situated, and within the bodies and spirits of Indigenous interlocutors.
Lunch on your own
Performance of Mark Applebaum's Aphasia
Michael Compitello (University of Kansas)
Michael Compitello is assistant professor of percussion at the University of Kansas and is assistant director of Avaloch Farm Music Institute. He is a dynamic, “fast rising” (WQXR) percussionist active as a chamber musician, soloist, and teaching artist. Compitello has performed with Ensemble Modern, Ensemble Signal, Ensemble ACJW, and has worked with composers Helmut Lachenmann, Nicolaus A. Huber, David Lang, John Luther Adams, Alejandro Viñao, Marc Applebaum, and Martin Bresnick on premieres and performances of new chamber works. With cellist Hannah Collins as New Morse Code, he has created a singular and personal repertoire through long-term collaboration with some of America’s most esteemed young composers. Their debut album, Simplicity Itself, described as “a flag of genuineness raised” (WQXR), was released in 2017 on New Focus Recordings. Currently, Compitello’s Unsnared Drum project seeks to reinvent the much-maligned instrument through collaboration with four of America’s most esteemed women composers.
Decoding Space: Liquid Infrastructures
Ron Morrison (University of Southern California)
Artificially intelligent systems (AI) are increasingly the ubiquitous, unseen arbiters of our social, civic, and family lives. Ever-increasing computational power, combined with almost limitless data has led to a turning point in the way artificial intelligence assists, judges, and cares for humans. But in the wake of such power we must ask, what are we making inherently unknowable as the world becomes more predictable, managed, and discrete? And what does it look like to spatialize memories, knowledge, and experiences of urban geographies that lie outside of the algorithm?
"Decoding Space: Liquid Infrastructures" meditates on redlining, a popular narrative of post-WWII economic segregation and a conceptual framework that is often engaged to explain contemporary patterns of poverty and racial segregation. This workshop engages redlining and subaltern geographies as a critical intervention in reframing race, space, knowledge, and data.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 7
Whiteness: What Is to Be Done?
Nicholas Mirzoeff (New York University)
Kansas Union, Woodruff Auditorium
This keynote by visual culture scholar Nicholas Mirzoeff investigates whether art spaces can serve as sites to decenter whiteness and stimulate social justice. In the context of highly visible social symbols, such as colonial monuments and border walls, Mirzoeff prompts us to consider how we can understand and engage with issues of race, hierarchy, and political power. He urges white people to recognize their complicity within current power structures, and asks: What can white people and predominantly white institutions do to foster mutual and productive exchange?