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Vera Lists Center’s 2019 Forum Considers “If Art Is Politics”

At the forum, the collective Chimurenga will install its Pan African Space Station for a three-day broadcast that explores the participation of African American artists, activists, and intellectuals in FESTAC ’77.

Pan African Space Station at The Chimurenga Library, The Showroom, London, 2015. Photo by Dan Weill, courtesy Chimurenga and The Showroom, London.

The Vera List Center is pleased to announce VLC Forum 2019 dedicated to art as a political practice. The forum will highlight Pan-African collective Chimurenga, recipient of the Jane Lombard Prize for Art and Social Justice, and conclude with a day of conversations with Jane Lombard Fellows hailing from four continents.

Chimurenga’s Pan African Space Station (PASS) will land at The New School for a three-day broadcast (October 23–25, 12–6 pm) that explores the participation of the nearly-700 African American artists, activists, and intellectuals in FESTAC ’77, the 2nd World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture held in 1977 in Lagos Nigeria.

The broadcast will close on October 25 at 7:30 pm with a rare performance by composer and trombonist Craig Harris titled FESTAC ’77 at the John L. Tishman Auditorium. Harris traveled to Lagos and participated in FESTAC as a member of Sun Ra’s Arkestra, and this composition responds to that soul-stirring experience.

On October 26 from 11–5 pm, Global Voices: Conversations with the Jane Lombard Fellows will host Liz Johnson Artur, Chimurenga, Tiffany Chung, Dar Yusuf Nasri Jacir for Art and Research, Naine Terena de Jesus, and Jasmeen Patheja in conversation with with their nominators Maria Thereza Alves, Kaelen Wilson-Goldie, Bala Starr as well as artist David Hartt, curator Thomas J. Lax, and other writers and curators. Ann Laura Stoler, Willy Brandt Distinguished University Professor of Anthropology and Historical Studies, The New School, will deliver “Archiving an Anti-Colonial Avant-Garde: Elsewhere and Otherwise,” the keynote lecture on art as political practice.

For more information and location details, visit www.veralistcenter.org/vera-list-center-forum-2019.