Jul 29, 2018, 12PM–2PM

Extra Credit: Global Art and Other Myths

Photograph of Imani Roach
Imani Roach
EXTRA CREDIT is an education series that aims to provide a general overview of contemporary art and to demystify the field for those outside of the art world. It is ideal for anyone interested in learning more and for those looking to further engage with exhibitions and museums.What do we speak of when we speak of Global art? For many, this term is shorthand for a sense of increased connectivity and shared visual language bred by the internet and social media — a new utopia in which artists and other cultural producers in far-flung corners of the world create in conversation with each other in exciting and unprecedented ways. For others, it marks the inclusion, in recent decades, of a select group of artists from formerly-colonized territories in Western museum collections, elite university curricula, and the highest economic tier of contemporary art fairs. But does globalism really define out current aesthetic moment? More importantly, what histories are erased and who is left out of the picture when we divert economic and scholarly resources to work on the basis of its apparent universality? 

This course attempts to understand both the good intentions that motivate attempts at thinking globally about art, and the damage that is done to our understanding of how images and power circulate when we prioritize a global approach. This event is free and open to the public; register here.

IMANI ROACH is a Philadelphia-based artist, critic and scholar of modern and contemporary African art and material culture. Across disciplines, her interests include the surveillance, consumption and containment of black emotion, vulnerability and entitlement practices in urban space, and gender and the public/private divide. She is the Managing Editor of the Artblog (an online platform dedicated to regional art criticism), a member at Vox Populi gallery and collective, a co-founder of The Lonely Painter Project (a bi-coastal performance collaborative), and a lecturer on the arts of Africa and the black diaspora at the University of the Arts and elsewhere. Her doctoral research in African Studies and the History of Art at Harvard University focuses on the first generation of black South African photojournalists under Apartheid. As a maker and performer, she filters mass culture, whether historical and contemporary, through labor-intensive processes designed to open up a space for meditation, interpretation, contestation and embellishment.Public Engagement is supported by the Bernstein Public Engagement Fund. 

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