The Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics 2016-2018: International Biennial Prize Conference, Day II

Conference Sat 4 Nov 2017 12.00PM-5.30PM The New School
Theresa Lang Community and Student Center
55 West 13th Street, 2nd floor
New York, NY 10011
Admission is free to all events.Please register here.

Day I: Friday November 3, 2017
Day II: Saturday November 4, 2017
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The Vera List Center Prize Conference in November looks at the urgent and necessary work of the recipient of the third Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics, Brazilian artist Maria Thereza Alves, and the five Prize Finalists: the London-based interdisciplinary research agency Forensic Architecture; the artist coalition Gulf Labor; House of Natural Fiber (HONF), a new media arts laboratory in Yogyakarta, Indonesia; IsumaTV, a collaborative multimedia platform for indigenous filmmakers and media organization in Canada; and MadeYouLook, an artist collective based in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The Saturday panels are focused on the projects of the Finalists, and the ways theirs resonate with Alves' Seeds of Change. The previous day, Friday, the panels are centered on Maria Thereza Alves' prize winning project Seeds of Change and culminate in a keynote conversation between her and Ruth Wilson Gilmore. This is followed by the presentation of the Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics 2016-2018 to Alves and the opening of her exhibition Maria Thereza Alves, Seeds of Change: New York—A Botany of Colonization.

Prize Finalists Panel Discussion I
The House We're Building: 12:00-2:00pm

Try as we might, the materiality of structures and infrastructure still determines much of how we interact with others. Finalists for the Vera List Center Prize, Forensic Architecture and Gulf Labor are artist research groups dedicated to reassessing and activating the visible and invisible aspects of infrastructures. Forensic Architecture has established a form of history writing that skips over the historical significance to architectural forms, to focus instead on architecture's performance as material witness. Gulf Labor has focused on the Guggenheim Museum's labor practices to propose that artistic practices entail ethical positions. Representatives of the two groups discuss the visibility of markers of absences, and how alignments between organic and non-organic matter can result in an affirmative acts of community building.

Doris Bittar, Gulf Labor
Nitasha Dhillon, Gulf Labor
Hannah Meszaros Martin, Colombia, Forensic Architecture
Greg Sholette, Gulf Labor
Moderator: curator Galit Eilat, 2017-2018 Keith Haring Fellow in Art and Activism, Bard College; VLC Prize Nominator
Respondent: Zoe Carey, Ph.D. Candidate in Sociology, The New School for Social Research; VLC Editorial Assistant

Prize Finalists Panel Discussion II
Languages For Us(e)/Ways of Knowing: 2:30-4:30pm

In light of rampant skepticism towards democratic forms of political representation, media platforms have recently been positioned as the new commons. But in the struggle for social justice, visual and discursive media languages can only be effective if they enact as much as they convey social justice values shared among their members. This panel is informed by current debates in the U.S. on self-representation and protocols of accessing images, words and other culturally specific narratives. IsumaTV is a collaborative multimedia platform for indigenous filmmakers and media organizations in Canada; House of Natural Fiber (HONF) is a new-media arts laboratory in Yogyakarta, Indonesia; and MadeYouLook uses Johannesburg's public transportation system in order to stage performative interventions that jolt different relationships among commuters. Here, representatives of all three groups elaborate on the specificities of visual and discursive languages and the dynamics of media production that seeks distinct and different audiences and co-producers especially when addressing trans-local environmental challenges.

Irene Agrivina, Indonesia, House of Natural Fiber
Samuel Cohn-Cousineau, Canada, IsumaTV
Nare Mokgotho, South Africa, MadeYouLook
Molemo Moiloa, South Africa, MadeYouLook
Moderator: VLC Curator Amanda Parmer
Respondent: Whitney Slaten, Ass. Professor of Music Technology, Lang College

4:30-5:30pm Festive Closing Reception with music, dance, and song
    • The House Were Building
    • Languages For Useways Of Knowing
      • K Vera List Center 2016-2018 Prize Companion Download - pdf (539 kB)
The Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics 2016-2018: Maria Thereza Alves, Seeds of Change New York—A Botany of Colonization is organized by Carin Kuoni, director, and Amanda Parmer, curator, Vera List Center for Art and Politics. It is made possible by Prize Founding Supporters James Keith (JK) Brown and Eric Diefenbach, Elizabeth R. Hilpman and Byron Tucker, Jane Lombard, Joshua Mack, and The New School.

Hyperallergic is the exclusive media sponsor for the International Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics 2016-2018.