Worlding the Global: The Arts in the Age of Decolonization

International Academy
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

November 8-10, 2019

The Carleton University Centre for Transnational Cultural Analysis, in partnership with the institutional members of TrACE (Transnational and Transcultural Art and Culture Exchange), is proud to present Worlding the Global: The Arts in the Age of Decolonization, an international academy designed to collaboratively re-imagine and pluralize the ‘global’ from multiple geocultural perspectives. Working in collaboration with Àbadakone / Continuous Fire / Feu continuel, the International Indigenous Art Exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada, the academy takes as its ethical starting point its situation on unceded Algonquin territory as well as the city of Ottawa’s entangled settler colonial, migrant, diasporic, and other transnational and transcultural histories. Bringing together local, national, and international scholars, artists, activists, and curators, the academy will facilitate a multi-pronged dialogue on the global in the arts and culture, proposing to understand our global world as a temporally constituted and open-ended process of lived interrelations and interconnections (Glissant 1997; Cheah 2016; Shih 2012).

The academy starts from an understanding of art and its related discourses as world-making practices, which articulate, perform, construct, and analyze the global from entangled positions. This acknowledgment of art’s world-making capacities is echoed by recent studies in global art history, which call for a fundamental paradigm shift beyond a neoliberal conception of the ‘global’ as an expansive network of culture and capital that starts from a colonial centre and disperses to its peripheries. Such binary models of centre versus periphery, colonizer versus colonized, settler versus indigenous, east versus west, north versus south, fail to analyze the complex power and knowledge structures of the world. Worlding, a concept rooted in phenomenological thinking, is understood as a decolonial “tactic” that “enacts openings of time and consciousness to other values and multiple modes of being” (Wilson 2008). Michelle Antoinette (2014), for instance, examines how contemporary Southeast Asian art contributes to a project of “re-worlding” that not only de-centres Euro-American art-historical imaginaries but also disrupts essentializing narratives about Southeast Asia. Likewise, Sonal Khullar (2015) draws on worlding as a tactic to re-shape art-historical conceptions of the global from the national and international contexts of twentieth-century India, understanding modernism as both projected outward to the world as well as inwardly reflective of the time and place from which specific artworks and ideas are cultivated. More than acknowledging how art worlds have been shaped by globalization, these authors reveal that the necessary work of global art history is that of decolonization, understood as a multi-sited and collaborative engagement with entangled histories, epistemologies, power structures, migrations, culture, and capital (Juneja 2013) that involves critically examining how particular concepts, practices, and knowledges of art-making shape our understanding and being-in-the-world.

Our program comprises a combination of different formats for critically engaged dialogue: from roundtable sessions and panel discussions to an early career researchers’ workshop, networking workshops, artist talks, and a keynote lecture by Shu-mei Shih (UCLA). Worlding the Global: The Arts in the Age of Decolonization is the first in a series of international academies and symposia organized by TrACE (Transnational and Transcultural Art and Culture Exchange), the first transregional consortium dedicated to the study of the arts and culture from critical transnational and transcultural perspectives.

Organized by: Centre for Transnational Cultural Analysis

Conference Committee: Birgit Hopfener, Ming Tiampo, Victoria Nolte, Emily Putnam, and EJ McGillis

With support from the following Carleton University bodies: ODFASS, SSAC, MDS, and ICSLAC

Sponsors: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Ottawa Embassy Hotel and Suites, Baden-Württemberg Foundation’s “Elite-Programm für Postdoktoranden/-innen”

Local Partners: Korean Cultural Centre, National Gallery of Canada, SAW Gallery, Université du Québec en Outaouais, University of Ottawa

Schedule of Events

All scheduled events are free and open to the public. No registration is required.

Download conference program (PDFs):
For public program-at-a-glance: click here
For full public program (with speakers’ abstracts and bios): click here

For conference poster: click here
For keynote poster: click here

Friday November 8, 2019
Korean Cultural Centre
(150 Elgin Street, Unit 101)

8:30am-9:00am: Welcome & Introduction
KCC Welcome by Director Kim Yongsup
Carleton Welcome by Pauline Rankin (Dean, ODFASS, Carleton University)
Introduction by Birgit Hopfener and Ming Tiampo

9:00am-11:00am: Panel 1: Decolonizing Modernisms
Chairs: Ruth Phillips (Carleton University) & Ming Tiampo (Carleton University)

Sohl Lee (Stony Brook University)
Jolene K. Rickard (Cornell University)
Samina Iqbal (Lahore School of Economics)
Rolando Vázquez (Utrecht University)

11:00am-11:15am: Coffee break

11:15am-1:15pm: Panel 2: How we write histories: Shedding light on art’s historiographical multiplicity
Chair: Birgit Hopfener (Carleton University)

Viren Murthy (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
Naoki Sakai (Cornell University)
Su Wei (Inside-Out Art Museum, Beijing)
Peter Morin (OCAD University)

1:15pm-2:15pm: Lunch at the Korean Cultural Centre

2:15pm-4:15pm: Panel 3: Collaborative Curating, Curating Collaboration
Chairs: Paul Goodwin (University of the Arts London) & Jonathan Shaughnessy (National Gallery of Canada)

Wanda Nanibush (Art Gallery of Ontario)
Georgiana Uhlyarik (Art Gallery of Ontario)
Liu Ding (Artist, China)
Nanne Buurman (University of Kassel)

4:15pm-5:00pm: Afternoon break

National Gallery of Canada (380 Sussex Drive)

5:30pm-6:45pm: Keynote Lecture presented by Carleton University, The Centre for Transnational Cultural Analysis and the National Gallery of Canada

Indigenous Knowledge in a Relational World
Shu-mei Shih (UCLA)

7:00pm-9:00pm: CBC In-the-Making: Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory
Film screening and discussion organized as part of Àbadakone / Continuous Fire / Feu continuel

Saturday November 9, 2019
National Gallery of Canada
(380 Sussex Drive)

10:30am-12:00pm: Panel 4: Art and Indigenous Ways of Knowing
Chairs: Heather Igloliorte (Concordia University) & Carmen Robertson (Carleton University)

Biung Ismahasan (University of Essex)
Peter Morin (OCAD University)
Melissa Cody (Artist, Arizona)
Skawennati (Artist, Montreal)

12:00pm-1:00pm: Lunch

1:00pm-3:00pm: Meet the artists of Àbadakone / Continuous Fire / Feu continuel

Galerie UQO (101 rue Saint-Jean-Bosco, Gatineau, QC)

5:00pm-7:00pm: Roundtable discussion on the occasion of Jinny Yu’s exhibition Perpetual Guest:

Space of suspense between permanence and passing through
A conversation with Claudette Commanda (University of Ottawa), Amy Fung (Carleton University), David Garneau (University of Regina) and Jinny Yu (University of Ottawa)

Moderated by Alice Ming Wai Jim (Concordia University)

7:00pm-9:00pm: Reception at Galerie UQO

Sunday November 10, 2019
Club SAW
(67 Nicholas Street)

8:30am-11:30am: Early Career Researchers’ Workshop: Worlding Decolonial Knowledges in Modern and Contemporary Art
Chairs: Victoria Nolte (Carleton University) & Emily Putnam (Carleton University)

Anna Stielau (New York University)
Amy Kahng (Stony Brook University)
Ellie Tse (UCLA)
Marisol Villela Balderrama (University of Pittsburgh)
Krista Ulujuk Zawadski (Carleton University)
Maya Wilson-Sanchez (University of Toronto)

11:30am-12:00pm: Coffee break

12:00pm-1:30pm: Panel 5: Worlding Gender
Chair: Laura Horak (Carleton University)

Andrew Gayed (York University)
Zairong Xiang (University of Potsdam)
Raven Davis (Artist, Toronto)

1:30pm-2:50pm: Lunch

3:00pm-5:00pm: Panel 6: How we work together: ethics, histories, and epistemologies of artistic collaboration
Chair: Franziska Koch (Heidelberg University)

Shao-Lan Hertel (Tsinghua University Art Museum)
Katia Olalde (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México)
Beth Hinderliter (James Madison University)
Theresa Deichert (Heidelberg University)

5:00pm-6:30pm: World Café

World Café tables:

Moderated by Rebecca Dolgoy & Zairong Xiang

Moderated by Malini Guha & Aboubakar Sanogo

Relational Comparison
Moderated by Shu-mei Shih

Biennials at Large: Fit in or Subvert it? 
Moderated by Amarildo Ajasse & Amy Bruce

Worlding Memory Studies
Moderated by Ania Paluch & Emily Putnam

Global Modernisms
Moderated by EJ McGillis & Maggie Bryan

Worlding Gender: Codes of the Local/Metaphors for the Global
Moderated by Andrea Fitzpatrick

6:30pm: Closing party at Club SAW