Of Hospitality, a symposium

Of Hospitality, a symposium

University of Chicago Arts

Ana Prvacki, The Greeting Committee, 2011–ongoing, Offering slatko as part of a participatory artwork and installation including canning jars, carpet, glasses, jam, metal spoons, napkins, silver tray, and wood. Courtesy of the artist.
April 18, 2012
Of Hospitality, a symposium

Friday and Saturday, May 4–5, 2012


Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago
5550 S. Greenwood Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
Friday dinner at Jane Addams Hull-House Museum, University of Illinois, Chicago, 800 S. Halsted
Saturday events at the Logan Center for the Arts, University of Chicago, 915 E. 60th Street
Contact: Michael Christiano, Smart Museum of Art, 773.702.2351
 “Let us say yes to who or what turns up…”
—Jacques Derrida, Of Hospitality


Using the Smart Museum’s exhibition Feast: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art and Jacques Derrida’s text “Of Hospitality” as points of departure, this symposium combines presentation, discussion, artists’ projects, shared meals, and a keynote address by critic and theorist Jan Verwoert.


Friday, May 4, 2012, 5.30–8.30pm, at the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum
(Registration for this portion of the event is full.)
Drawing on Jane Addams’ legacy of progressive activism and her commitment to hospitality at Hull-House, this communal dinner is complemented by intimate conversation in Hull-House spaces where social reformers met to share meals and ideas.  Dinner and discussion are curated in collaboration with chef Tara Lane and Lisa Lee, Hull-House Museum director.


Saturday, May 5, 10am–5:30pm, with reception to follow, at the Logan Center for the Arts, University of Chicago
What does it mean to practice “hospitality” within the realm of art and culture? How might cultural institutions enact hospitality as a creative, ethical, meaningful activity—one that gets beyond the rote pragmatism of the paid greeter who asks “how can I help you” but really means “what can I sell you”? What’s at stake when cultural practitioners and institutions embrace hospitality as a theoretical framework or day-to-day activity? What stands to be gained, and what might be lost? Dig into these questions during a day of discussion, presentations, performances, and meals including Radical Hospitality One Pot at A Time, a reception created by Soup and Bread, Chicago.

Featured artists’ projects include:
The Greeting Committee by Ana Prvacki; world premiere of The Identical Lunch Symphony by Alison Knowles; Enemy Kitchen (Food Truck), by Michael Rakowitz; “E-Dogz” Mobile Culinary Community Center by Eric May; and Neighborhood Infusions by Fallen Fruit.


Presentations and discussions include:
Feeling Welcome: opening remarks by Stephanie Smith, Smart Museum of Art


Radical Domestic:reflections on hospitality, criticality, and the meal as they intersect with the idea of the domestic.


Participants include: Hannah B. Higgins, University of Illinois at Chicago; Erika Dudley, University of Chicago; and Amy M. Mooney, Columbia College, Chicago; and response by MFA student Anais Daly


Being Bad:questioning the line between hospitality and hostility. When is it useful to be a “bad” host or guest?


Participants include:  Matthew Jesse Jackson, University of Chicago; artist Ana Prvacki, Los Angeles; artist Michael Rakowitz, Northwestern University, Chicago; artist Laura Letinsky, University of Chicago; Responses from Dieter Roelstraete, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; and MFA student David Giordano


Practicing Hospitality:manifestos and discussion about if, why, and how hospitality matters within our work.


Presenters include Edward Marszewski, Maria’s Packaged Goods & Community Bar, Chicago; Charles Esche, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven; Abigail Satinsky, InCUBATE and threewalls, Chicago. Discussion facilitated by Michael Christiano, Smart Museum of Art.


To All Those Who Set the Stage: keynote lecture by theorist and critic Jan Verwoert, with responses by Zachary Cahill of the Open Practice Committee, and MFA student Cassandra Troyan


To close the conference, Anthony Huberman of The Artist’s Institute in New York, will give a toast.

Of Hospitality is presented by the Smart Museum of Art in collaboration with the University of Chicago’s Open Practice Committee in the Department of Visual Arts, Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry, and the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum.


Of Hospitality is free, however advanced registration is required. Find a complete schedule and register to attend at smartmuseum.uchicago.edu/symposium

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University of Chicago Arts
April 18, 2012

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