Saturday, December 20, 2014

CAA Board of Directors: Please vote!

I wish to announce that I am a finalist for the College Arts Association Board of Directors. Voting starts in January 2015, leading up to the Annual Conference in New York in February. As the largest and arguably the most important association of arts professionals, membership on the board of directors is crucial, as it will determine the direction of the CAA's work for the next four years. I am particularly interested in getting the CAA address issues of artists' rights in resale of works; diversifying the organization's membership; expanding its international footprint; and taking more assertive position in important issues that affect (not just the arts, but) our world today. If you are a member of the CAA, I  ask for your vote!

Here is the page with information (statements and biographies) on the six candidates. Four candidates with the most votes will join the board:


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Law Against Black Men

  • Whatever law allows a policeman to go blameless for shooting dead an unarmed youth a dozen times, even in the head, is simply wrong. 
  • Whatever law allows a policeman to kill a youth because this youth is said to be "charging" at the policeman is simply wrong. 
  • Whatever politics that permits white policemen who are perpetually afraid of black men to police black communities is wrong. 
  • Whatever law permits a white lawyer whose father was killed by a black man to decide whether or not to charge a white officer for killing a black man is wrong.
  • Whatever system that saw nothing wrong with the handling of the Michael Brown case by Ferguson police and prosecutor is wrong
  • Is the law rigged against black men in America?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Postdoctoral Associate, Center for African American Studies, Princeton

This is a great opportunity for young scholars working in the field of African and African Diaspora studies:

Monday, November 17, 2014

Don Cosentino, "Kongo in the American Imaginary" lecture today

"Four Moments Revisited: Kongo in the American Imaginary"
Donald Cosentino ,  Emeritus Professor, UCLA
November 17, 2014
4:30 P.M.  •  McCormick 106

Donald Cosentino is Professor Emeritus of World Arts and Cultures. His research interests include Black Atlantic myth, rituals, art and popular cultures. He has done extensive fieldwork on oral traditions in Sierra Leone;  on Vodou art and mythology in Haiti; and on the flowering of alternative religions in Los Angeles. He is the author of Defiant Maids and Stubborn Farmers: Tradition and Invention in Mende Story Performance (Cambridge University Press,1982, 2008) and Vodou Things: The Art of Pierrot Barra and Marie Cassaise (University of Mississippi Press, 1998). He was the curator, editor and chief writer for the award winning project, The Sacred Arts of Haitian Vodou (1995-99), and for Divine Revolution: the Art of Edouard Duval-Carrie (2004). As a Guggenheim Fellow (2006), Cosentino completed fieldwork for Chasing the Dead, a book he is writing based on his travels with an Argentine-American magus and his Kongo spirit guide. Cosentino is currently chief curator of "In Extremis: Death and Life in 21st Century Haitian Art," a traveling exhibition, which opened at the UCLA Fowler Museum in Fall 2012 and travelled to La Musee de la Civilisation in Quebec City in 2013-14. He has a Ph.D. in African Languages and Literatures from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

This lecture is part of the "Kongo Arts in Africa and the World" lecture series organized by Chika Okeke-Agulu in conjuction with the exhibition "Kongo Across the Waters" at the Princeton University Art Museum (October 25, 2014 - January 25, 2015).

Please contact Rebecca Aguas with any questions.

Steven Salaita speaks today in Princeton

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Nnenna Okore

Twist and Turns

November 20, 2014 - January 17, 2015
Opening reception: November 20, 6-8pm

Nnenna Okore, Aja Nsukka, mixed media, nd. Courtesy, the artist

David Krut Projects is pleased to present Twist and Turns, Nnenna Okore’s second solo exhibition at the gallery. The title of the exhibition draws attention to the sense of dynamism and movement in this selection of Okore’s most recent sculptures - continuing her exploration of material through a laborious hands-on creative process gleaned from the traditions of West African art making.
Raised in Nigeria, Okore’s affinity for tactile and gristly elements from the semi-urban environs of Nsukka in south-eastern Nigeria, have inspired a body of works that broadly focus on transformation and regeneration of mundane ecological and man-made objects. Through visual subtleties, she is able to present the fluid and delicate attributes of the physical world, triggered by aging, death and decay. She embraces biodegradable materials laced with memories and histories of her past; and submits to the use of several organic forms delicately articulated in an interwoven manner to reflect the quintessence and mystery of life cycles. The familiar yet abstract sculptural forms rely heavily on materials including newspapers, cloth, plaster and hessian, which were acquired mostly in her Fulbright year abroad. These materials metaphorically reference social, historical and environmental interconnectedness of our collective experiences as mortals.
By default, Okore responds to the movement and malleability of her mediums and processes, allowing them to lead her. Her drawn-out processes of threading, fraying, tearing, teasing, twisting, rolling, layering and dying are derivative of domestic Nigerian tasks that she mastered while living in the country. Through her work, she reveals impermanent earthy attributes of organic and twisted forms. Her intuitive approach to process begets intricate and unhindered layers of the process and materials. The undulated nature of Okore’s work further accentuates the extraordinary panoramic dance between the art and the gallery’s unique ambience. The result is an intriguing display of spellbinding ethereal forms.

Nnenna Okore is an Associate Professor of Art at North Park University, Chicago, where she teaches Sculpture. She has received numerous international awards and been exhibited in many prestigious venues, including October Gallery, London; Museum of Art and Design, New York; Sao Paulo Biennale, Brazil; and Art Twenty One, Nigeria. She received the prestigious Fulbright Scholar Award in 2012, which resulted in a year-long project in Nigeria. Her works and interview were recently featured in the July/August 2013 issue of Sculpture Magazine.

For more information please contact or