The opening of In Site in the Kimmel Windows at Laguardia and W. 3rd on May 3, 2016. In Site is a series of original performances and installations by the MA Arts Politics class of 2016 as part of a course entitled Seminar in Cultural Activism. Class instructed by Karen Finley. Exhibition curated by Pam Tinnen in collaboration with Karen Finley.
crystal marich, Ivonne Villalon Perez & Vanessa Cuervo Forero // In the dissection of a “catcall” / “piropo” a genealogy of violence against womyn is revealed. The life cycle of this violence begins well before the encounter and collision of two bodies; in our walks to school, on our rides in public transportation, in the windows in which we are displayed. Surrounded by infinite reiterations of our objectification, we, as womyn carry these stories of violence within our bodies. Perpetually diverting the unwanted gaze. Each catcall, each stare, and every glance lives in the multiple ways we experience remembering; they form connective tissue between the city streets and the validation of patriarchy and misogyny.
Peter DiGennaro // torc |tôrk| a neck ornament consisting of a band of twisted metal. Inspired by the images of The Great Circle (social unity) and The Coil of Power (polarized sociality) - images crucial to my studies of Shared Power, Hegemonic Power, and the living social psychologies of equality and inequality, the “torc”represents these dichotomies, now entwined and “worn” in our inner and outer worlds. Especially the simultaneous fears of life and death. The source material for this work is the voices of this year’s Arts Politics cohort. Each student was asked a variation on one simple question meant to addresses this unified conflict of our human condition and the worlds we (apart-together) create and/or negotiate: How do you betray?
Chenglu Liang // Bullying is a form of violence. It can exist in many forms, such as rumors, threats, and verbal attacks, and occur in many places including educational institutions. Through the form of letter, the work intends to raise the awareness of the importance of bullying awareness education and efficacious anti-bullying methods on campus. When bullying occurs within a disadvantaged or underrepresented group, such as Chinese students studying in the U.S., is there anything the society should do? There needs to be cultural sensitivity for Chinese students to have safe opportunities to speak up. Moreover, anti-bullying involves an extension of discussions of important topics such as respect, human dignity, cultural differences, gender discrimination, and individual autonomy.
GB Kim & Saina M. Louyeh // A penumbra is most simply defined as a nearly or partially shaded region. In astronomy it defines the partial shade that surrounds the shadow of an opaque object, often applied to phenomena that occur during eclipses. It is a place of in-betweenness, a border-scape. It is a place where uncertainty is the most palpable; it manifests in the human as one of the truest modes of being. But it is also in uncertainty where the sounding of the bodies are obscured--where the cause of their pain remains invisible. With our figurations we seek to attend to the in/visible and il/legible pressures on the body. We explore the term ‘press’ here in its various embodiments: its use as an infix/suffix ( sup-press-ion, op-press, re-press, etc.), as a verb pertaining to both physical and metaphysical pressure, as causal such that a pressing may create an imprint or trace, etc. We consider pressures from the banal and mundane to the significant and striking--no term being mutually exclusive to another--and place these thoughts in and around society, politics, economy, culture, and so on.
Zhen Cao & Cleo Barnett // For five years her every move online was watched. Text messages, emails, facebook messages and web cams were infiltrated. This is how the perpetrator gained access to information used to keep her close. After the confession letter and subsequent series of events thereafter, it became clear that privacy was never real. You See Hack Me explores methods of exposure to investigate surveillance in the Postinternet era. Assuming that the public, private, personal and political exist simultaneously and cannot be separated, how do you respond to the possibility/reality that your life is monitored for political, commercial and/or personal manipulation? Where is he? How big is he? Where does he end? email@example.com
Samira Musa & Weslyn Stephens // These two works in conversation are exploring our bodies and its violent interaction with the historical trajectory of surveillance techniques that target racialized and religionized bodies – namely Blackness and Muslimness - and what happens when these identities and these works intersect. Stephen’s Black womanhood and Musa’s Black Muslim womanhood in and of itself are the sites in which we aim to move towards an ontological resistance through our own bodies that challenge state sponsored discourses that construct our identities as threats. Our very existences are a continuous dance between too much and never enough. We aim to root these centrifugal narratives of surveillance within the genealogy of the historical violence rooted in the over-policing and under-protecting of such bodies. From our respective locations in the US to the UK, our Black Atlantic meeting discusses the universality of surveillance and legislative tactics that are anti-Black and Islamophobic – the increase of Closed Circuit Television in public spaces, Stop and Search laws, drone wars to counter-terrorism programs helps us to locate surveillance tactics as a function of colonial and imperial powers and as emblematic of colonizer-colonized relations.
Jennifer Williams & Lauren Winnenberg // What does misunderstanding look like? How do we articulate ourselves when those around us do not understand? What does it look like when the perception inside our heads is different than what comes out? This piece explores the struggle of being understood, and questions if we must always have clarity. If the words hung in the window are hard to read, cannot be perfectly seen, does the art still function? The goal is for the frustration that happens in the mind to be experienced by the audience, and for the audience to ponder how it is that we communicate.
Rachel Davis & Katie Beeton // Look at your reflection from the inside. Do you see all the angles and perspectives of your image? NYU encourages the mix of languages, talents, and studies. NYU obscures and pulls together people from around the world. We are all different here. If you brand a group as one thing, you lose the shades of diversity within the group. 1. Pick up a purple hand print. 2. Stick your print on the window, as high or low or wide as you can go. 3. Where did you leave your mark?
Tiffany Fung // The Hong Kong SAR Government’s education department recently declared that “Cantonese is a Chinese Dialect that is not an official language”. Inspired by this statement and recent socio-political events, this piece explores language as resistance discourse to challenge cultural and political hegemony. The video installation presents 2 sets of rotating traditional Chinese characters that have irrelevant meanings but similar sounds to “fuck” and “you”. Playing with Cantonese’s 9 tonalites, humor and lively nature, the statement questions the intelligibility of different languages and highlight the distinct cultures they embody. In layers of (mis)translation, how may illegibility become a subversive intervention? How may the use of language activate a physical space (dialect translates to place-speech in Chinese), our personal voice and collective identity? This is part of an ongoing collaborative project on Cantonese inspired art. You are invited to respond by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Gabriel Gordon & Elizabeth Kipp-Giusti // Boulevard, housed in the Kimmel Center for University Life, takes its name from its sister development, Kimco Realty's "The Boulevard" community shopping center. Located in Staten Island, NY, The Boulevard shopping center is part of Kimco Realty’s unrivaled portfolio of North American strip malls. Boulevard is installed in the Kimmel Center for University Life, part of New York University's unrivaled holdings of real estate in New York City. Engaging with the tools of our scholarship, we have tempered and standardized our books in order to continue to build this empire. As the wall rises, we are invited to look through the window at what is being sold inside. Standing as consumers, we challenge academic institutional hierarchies, prohibitive costs of enrollment into higher education, and consumption-based models of community. un/Build with us - theboulevardproject.tumblr.com
A collaborative performance by coco cafe, Vanessa Cuervo, Sophia Mak, Gb Kim, Tiffany Fung, and Ivonne Villalon // With participation by Cleo Barnett, Katie Beeton, Elizabeth Kipp-Giusti, Gabe Gordon (with Pato Hebert), crystal marich, Samira Musa, Isaque Ribiero, Lauren Winnenberg and honored guests Anté/Bodies Performance Series (Organized by Sophia Mak & coco cafe//Courtney Brown) as part of IN SITE Arts Politics Final Exhibition opening on May 3rd, 2016. Special Thanks to Karen Finley, Pamela Tinnen, Adonis Volanakis, Leonie Ettinger, Art & Public Policy Faculty and Staff, and NYU Kimmel Center Staff