Engine for Art Democracy and Justice (EADJ): “Living in Common in the Precarious South(s)”

Engine for Art Democracy and Justice (EADJ): “Living in Common in the Precarious South(s)”

Vanderbilt University

Carrie Mae Weems, Don’t Worry, We’ll Hold Hand Again., 2020. Digital banner. Photo: Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons. Jean Alexander Heard Library, Vanderbilt University.

October 6, 2020
Engine for Art Democracy and Justice (EADJ): “Living in Common in the Precarious South(s)”
October 6–November 18, 2020
Vanderbilt University
PMB #1660
2301 Vanderbilt Place
Nashville, Tennessee 37235-1660
United States

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Vanderbilt University is pleased to announce the 2020 fall program of Engine for Art Democracy and Justice (EADJ), a trans-institutional collaboration between Fisk UniversityFrist Art MuseumMillions of Conversations, and Vanderbilt University.

Founded by artist María Magdalena Campos-Pons, as part of her appointment as the Cornelius Vanderbilt Endowed Chair Professor of Fine Arts, EADJ is a platform for academic, creative, and social exploration aimed at developing new knowledge and new practices. Situating visual representation at its core and allied with other major constituents of the arts, EADJ functions as a forum for a diversity of approaches and inclusive discussions on cultural interconnections, historical entanglements, and the consequences of geographies, histories, and politics. EADJ offers opportunities to engage with painful historical legacies and progress toward more just and democratic futures.

This fall’s program “Living in Common in the Precarious South(s),” curated by Athens-based curator and writer, Marina Fokidis, addresses four themes over eight episodes with the objective of re-examining social and historical inequities as seen in art from the broader “southern” geographies, as well as re-addressing creative approaches of togetherness.

Given the dynamics of the current pandemic, this year’s occasion will be online, free of charge, and in English with simultaneous translation in Spanish. 

You can follow the program below:

Redefining Monuments
Episodes one and two archived here, focused on memorials dedicated to the confederacy and other buildings and sites that represent the painful history of white subjugation of non-white peoples, as well as on the possibility of generating new memories.  The panels included artists Hank Willis Thomas, Carrie Mae Weems, Ibrahim Mahama, Caroline Randall Williams, Jamaal Sheats, as well as curators and scholars Kevin Murphy, Monika Szewczyk, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, and Jane Landers.

Paths of Emerging Solidarities
Episodes three and four will examine the notions of translocality, polyvocality, and “orientation,” positions from which we perceive the rest of the world, through live discussions around the shared legacy of colonialism, diaspora, and the retention or adaptation of culture and identity.

Episode 3: October 7, 10am CST (US/Canada) 
Rina Banerjee, Theaster Gates, Otobong Nkanga
Moderator: Marc Scala
Respondent: Franklin Sirmans

Episode 4: October 14, 10am CST (US/Canada)
Speakers: Salah M. Hassan, Gabi Ngcobo, Nikos Papastergiadis
Moderator: Marina Fokidis
Respondent: Allison Glenn

Performativity and the Social Body
Episodes five and six will address the idea of performativity as a practice of resilience, transcendence, and resistance to structures of oppression, inequity, white supremacy, and patriarchy. 

Episode 5: October 21, 10am CST (US/ Canada)
Nikki A. Greene, Doris Sommer, Cecilia Vicuña
Moderator: Candice Amich
Respondent: Grace Aneiza Ali
Commissioned Artist intervention on the ground of Nashville: Shamell Bell

Episode 6: November 4, 9am CST (US/Canada)
Paul Preciado, Okwui Okpokwasili , Regina José Galindo
Moderator: Octavio Zaya
Respondent: Pablo Lafuente

Love Transmutation
Episodes seven and eight will look at the viral pandemic in terms of love, connectivity, migration, and how internal vulnerability manifests itself externally.

Episode 7: November 11, 10am CST (US/Canada)
T Bone Burnett, Paul Kwami, Dina Bennett
Moderator: Lorenzo F. Candelaria
Respondent: Joseph Horowitz

Episode 8: November 18, 10am CST (US/Canada)
María Magdalena Campos-Pons, T.S. Harvey, Samar Ali
Moderator: Susan H. Edwards
Respondent: Edward T. Fischer


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Vanderbilt University
October 6, 2020

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