Global Social Practice: Art, Commoning and Urban Imaginaries
December 05, 2020
THE NEW CITY CONFERENCE: PANEL DESCRIPTION
Visionary artists and architects present pathways for reimagining cities through on-the-ground, solutions-based projects. Both conceptual and pragmatic, these projects have emerged from and are inspired by real life situations. They propose new perspectives and directions for how those who inhabit cities can reinvent them into more workable and inspired places to live. Additionally, the creative products of these artists and architects serve to further elaborate and theorize on the possibilities for new ways of thinking and behaving that foster more just and equitable urban experiences and spaces.
Presented as part part of the The New City conference co-ordinated by 2020Visions in collaboration with Union Theological Seminary, this panel discussion, a collaboration with the Wallach Art Gallery
The New City conference is a gathering of leading innovators presenting aspirational models and solutions to city challenges. Sessions will feature global and civic world leaders, creatives, and innovators working to solve problems and design cities of the future.
Betti-Sue Hertz (moderator) is director and chief curator at Columbia University’s Wallach Art Gallery since 2019. Her curatorial and scholarly work focuses on the intersection of critical visual culture, transnational exchange and socially relevant issues. She was director of visual arts, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (2008–2015), curator of contemporary art, San Diego Museum of Art (2000–2008), and director, Longwood Arts Project (1992–1998). Hertz has curated and co-curated numerous major exhibitions throughout her career including Public Intimacy: Art and Other Ordinary Acts in South Africa; Landscape: the virtual, the actual, the possible?; Dissident Futures; Song Dong: Dad and Mom, Don’t Worry About Us; Renée Green: Endless Dreams and Time-Based Streams; Eleanor Antin: Historical Takes; Transmission: The Art of Matta and Gordon Matta-Clark; Past in Reverse: Contemporary Art of East Asia; and Urban Mythologies: The Bronx Represented since the 1960s. She was curator in residence at HOW Art Museum Shanghai in 2018 and has been a public arts consultant with TLS Landscape Architecture for major projects in Suzhou and Shenzhen since 2016. Hertz has taught social art history and theory courses at Stanford University, San Francisco Art Institute and UC Berkeley and was a member of the Stanford Creative Cities Working Group (2016-2019). Hertz is a member of the Advisory Committee of 2020Visions.
Christoph Schäfer lives in Hamburg. Since the early 1990s, he has worked on urban everyday life and the production of spaces for and by collective desires. This interest is mirrored in a wide range of work, that often reflects and sometimes intervenes, in unusual drawings, installations and collective projects. His main contributions include the independent urban-planning-as-art-and-activism project Park Fiction (1994-2005, documenta11 2002), the drawing series and book The City is Our Factory (2010), the programmatic development of temporary University Campus ContainerUni (2012), the drawing series Bostanorama (Istanbul Biennial 2013) and the co-founding of the transdisciplinary planning office PlanBude (since 2014).
Lee Chun-Fung (b.1984, Hong Kong) works in the fields of contemporary art, education and curatorial practice. His work explores communal relationships in spatial, historical, and political contexts, within the dynamics of Hong Kong and beyond. Lee incorporates collaboration, praxis and field study into his practices, and has initiated actions such as Cycling to the Square (2010-ongoing), Pitt Street Riot (2014), and curatorial projects such as Can We Live Together? (2014). He has been a co-founder of several art initiatives, including Woofer Ten (2009-2015), a community/art space based in a Yau Ma Tei, a grassroots neighborhood in Hong Kong that examined the relationship between art and gentrification. Lee has collaborated on various inter-Asian art/activist exchanges including East Asia Multitude Meeting (2012, 2013) and Art/Activist-in-Residence (2011-2015) and is currently a member of a networking project mapping self-organized woodcut collectives. He graduated from the Chinese University of Hong Kong’s Fine Arts Department in 2007.
Pablo X. Almeida is a lead member of the Tranvía Cero collective, founded in Quito, Ecuador, in 2002. The thrust of its work focuses on the democratization of processes, the production and circulation of artistic expressions, and the contextual use of public space by university-trained artists, self-taught artists, designers and cultural facilitators engaging and connecting with low-income communities. He received his degree in Visual Arts in 2005 from Central University of Ecuador where he specialized in painting and graphic arts.
Natasa Lekkou represents Zuloark, a distributed architecture and urbanism open office, founded in 2001 and currently based in La Coruña, Berlin, Bologna, and Madrid, and developing flowing and collaborative professional working models and building co-responsibility environments through shared authorship projects ever since. Zuloark's radical approach to public design projects includes a belief in 'public ownership' of materials. Their works are manifestations of living structures of thought and constructed as “critical objects” and the office involves constituencies in the conception and production of their projects such as El Campo de Cebada and Inteligencias Colectivas. Zuloark's award winning work has been exhibited in renowned cultural institutions including MoMA, Akademie der Kunste Berlin and Lisbon Architecture Triennale.