A new painting by contemporary artist Kehinde Wiley that responds to a "grand manner masterpiece" by Thomas Gainsborough.
PS Professor Malik Gaines has organized a conference with The Huntington in LA that will stream live on Saturday, October 2nd titled "Looking Like a Person: Portraits after Coloniality." As a part of the conference, Performance Studies Ph.D. Candidate Alhena Katsof will moderate a panel on Undoing Representation in Contemporary Art, and Performance Studies Ph.D. Candidate Thomas Lax will present during the third panel of the day.
This symposium interrogates the issues raised by a new painting by contemporary artist Kehinde Wiley that responds to a "grand manner masterpiece" by Thomas Gainsborough. Between these two paintings, separated by 250 years, lies a colonial history that has managed representation across a field of visuality, nominating certain figures for human status and others for something less or more. What does it take, in a Euro-American art tradition, to look like a person? And what might come after coloniality in art?
An opening panel of interdisciplinary scholars will address the philosophical issues, considering what is at stake in depicting humans in the genres of modernity; and two art historical panels, one focused on the 18th century and one focused on contemporary art, will explore specific examples of the ways in which artists have reflected, reinforced, or resisted the power of representation.
The event will be held online via Zoom. Zoom link will be sent to attendees in registration confirmation email.