“The Geometries of Afro Asia”
Joan Kee, University of Michigan and MoMA
Tue, 4/25 · 5:00 pm—6:30 pm · Room N107, School of Architecture
Program in Media and Modernity
” The Geometries of Afro Asia”
[Response: Irene V. Small]
Tuesday, April 25, 2023 @5pm ET
N107 (School of Architecture)
How do we embark on a history of art from the assumption of a global majority, outside of essentializing categories like race or hollow proclamations of solidarity? With this book, Joan Kee presents a framework for understanding the rich and surprisingly understudied relationship between Black and Asian artists and the worlds they initiate through their work.
The Geometries of Afro Asia breaks down this relationship and chronology into points, angles, and trajectories. Spanning North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, Kee looks at the relationships that formed between Black and Asian artists at critical historical junctures—from civil rights struggles in the United States and the development of South Korea amid US military occupation in the 1960s and 1970s to debates over multiculturalism and critiques of globalization in the 1990s and 2010s. Through geometry, a language of magnitudes and alignments, Kee opens up new ways of seeing how artworks shape our lives and politics by getting us to commit some of our most valuable resources—time and attention—to one another.
Joan Kee is Professor in the History of Art at the University of Michigan and a Ford Foundation Scholar in Residence at MoMA. A contributing editor at Artforum, Kee’s books include Cotnemporary Korean Art: Tansaekhwa and the Urgency of Method (2013), Models of Integrity: Art and Law in Post Sixties America (2019) and The Geometries of Afro Asia: Art Beyond Solidarity (2023).
Irene V. Small is Associate Professor of Contemporary Art & Criticism in the Department of Art & Archaeology at Princeton University, and associated faculty in the Program in Latin American Studies and the Department of Spanish & Portuguese. She is the author of Hélio Oiticica: Folding the Frame (University of Chicago Press, 2016). A new book, The Organic Line: Towards a Topology of Modernism, is forthcoming from Zone Books in 2024. She is currently Acting Co-Director of the Program in Media & Modernity.