This conversation will mark the launch of Reshaping the Field: Arts of the African Diasporas on Display, edited by Dr. Nana Adusei-Poku, and proceeding from a conference that took place at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, in fall 2021. For this special event, Dr. Adusei-Poku will moderate a conversation with Margaret Winslow, who will speak on her recent exhibition Afro-American Images 1971: The Vision of Percy Ricks (2021-2022) at the Delaware Art Museum, and Elise Armani, Amy Kahng, and Gabriella Shypula, who will present their exhibition Revisiting 5+1 currently on view at the Paul W. Zuccaire Gallery at Stony Brook University.
Now available, Reshaping the Field: Arts of the African Diasporas on Display is a 268-page publication that expands the field of exhibition histories through a selection of pioneering exhibitions that have shaped Black art today. Emphasizing how Black artists have organized, networked and created space for their work, it is the first publication to focus exclusively on African diasporic art in the US and UK through the histories of Black art exhibitions. Through a range of contributions by artists, art historians, curators and theorists, this publication reflects on the sociopolitical circumstances that were essential to the emergence of a field of study and mode of exhibition that is constantly reshaping itself and challenging normative orders. Read the introductory essay by Nana Adusei-Poku here.
Edited and introduced by Adusei-Poku, with contributions by Mora J. Beauchamp-Byrd, Bridget R. Cooks, Abby R. Eron, Amber Esseiva, Cheryl Finley, Languid Hands (Imani Mason Jordan and Rabz Lansiquot), Julie L. McGee, Derek Conrad Murray, Serubiri Moses, Senam Okudzeto, Richard J. Powell, Jamaal B. Sheats, Howard Singerman, Marlene Smith with Claudette Johnson, Lucy Steeds and Brittany Webb.
The book was published on occasion of the online conference Reshaping the field: Arts of the African Diasporas on Display, 4 –6 Nov, 2021 organized by Adusei-Poku, then Associate Professor and Luma Scholar at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College.
Published by Afterall in 2022 in association with the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College; Asia Art Archive; and the Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts, University of Gothenburg. Distributed by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther und Franz König, Cornerhouse Publications and ARTBOOK | D.A.P.
Nana Adusei-Poku, PhD, is Assistant Professor in African Diasporic Art History in the Department of History of Art at UC Berkeley, California. She was previously Associate Professor and Luma Foundation Scholar at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, New York. She is the author of Taking Stakes in the Unknown: Tracing Post-Black Art (2021), editor of Reshaping the Field: Art of the African Diaspora on Display (2022) and, her articles have been published in Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, e-flux, Kunstforum International, Flash Art, L’Internationale and darkmatter. She curated the event ‘Performances of Nothingness’ (Academy of Arts, Berlin, 2018) and Black Melancholia (Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, New York 2022).
Elise Armani is a curator, a Ph.D. candidate in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University, and a 2023-2024 History of Art and Visual Culture Fellow at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Her dissertation considers a network of East Asian and Latin American immigrant and diasporic artists on the Lower East Side in the 1970s and 1980s, examining the conditions for their convergence and demonstrating how their artistic practices were intertwined with the cultivation of a communitarian ethos to address both the conditions of neighborhood divestment and the cultural and personal isolation of migration. She has contributed to curatorial projects at TANK Shanghai, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Walker Art Center, and the Weisman Art Museum. She recently co-curated Revisiting 5+1 at the Paul W. Zuccaire Gallery, presented in partnership with the MFA Boston, and co-edited the accompanying catalog.
Amy Kahng is a PhD candidate in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University and a 2022-23 Patricia and Phillip Frost Predoctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Her dissertation project examines twentieth century Asian American artists and their relationship to land and landscape. Amy has contributed to projects at MoMA, MFA Boston, J. Paul Getty Museum, Kukje Gallery, and the Weisman Museum of Art. She curated exhibitions including Mis/Communication: Language and Power in Contemporary Art (now touring five SUNY campuses), Printing Solidarity: Tricontinental Graphics from Cuba, and durée. Amy recently co-curated Revisiting 5+1 at the Paul W. Zuccaire Gallery and co-edited the accompanying catalog.
Gabriella Shypula is a curator and PhD Candidate in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University. Her dissertation examines New York-based women artists and their relationship to autobiography in the 1970s–80s, revealing how their practices exemplify a broader feminist turn to developing shared historical narratives in the United States since 1970. Gabriella has worked on curatorial and research projects at SFMOMA, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Baltimore Museum of Art, MoMA, the Willem de Kooning Foundation, SculptureCenter, A.I.R. Gallery, and Princeton University Art Museum. She has contributed to exhibitions including Joan Mitchell (SFMOMA, Baltimore Museum of Art, 2021–22) and Judson Dance Theater: The Work Is Never Done (MoMA, 2018–19). She recently co-curated Revisiting 5+1 in consultation with Howardena Pindell at the Paul W. Zuccaire Gallery and co-edited the accompanying catalog.
Margaret Winslow currently lives and works in Wilmington, Delaware where she is the Chief Curator and Curator of Contemporary Art at the Delaware Art Museum. She has curated for the Neuberger Museum of Art and The Delaware Contemporary and assisted with exhibits for the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. Recent exhibitions at the Delaware Art Museum include Afro-American Images 1971: The Vision of Percy Ricks; Black Survival Guide, or How to Live Through a Police Riot, a 2018 commission by Hank Willis Thomas; Truth & Vision: 21st Century Realism; Dream Streets: Art in Wilmington 1970–1990; and Retro-Active: Performance Art from 1964–1987. Margaret has served as an evaluator for the Headlands Center for the Arts, an adjunct faculty member at the University of Delaware, and a radio host for Art Watch on WCHE 1520 AM. Public presentations include talks at the Beijing American Center in China, College Art Association, and the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums. Margaret holds a BA in Art History from the University of Mary Washington and an MA in Modern and Contemporary Art, Theory, and Criticism from SUNY Purchase College.