Arts Counter/Act is an ongoing speaker series devoted to creative and critical examinations of relationships between the arts, institutional racism, and global white supremacy. The webcast forum features recent MFA and PhD alumni from the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture, which is made up of four departments: Architecture and Urban Design, Art, Design | Media Arts, and World Arts and Cultures/Dance.
Contributors to this series will discuss how original research and artistic production can unsettle racist practices and structures, collectively considering myriad issues. One guiding query, however, asks whether performance, scholarship, and arts education can truly foster anti-racist and decolonial approaches without first explicitly countering institutional racism and the colonial structures which persist in academia and the university system.
October 28, 2020 speakers:
Dr. Elyan Jeanine Hill is currently a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research interests include narratives of slavery, visual culture, ritual performances, and Black women’s history-making practices in Ghana, Togo, Liberia, and their diasporas.
Christine Suarez (MFA 08) was born in Caracas, Venezuela and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She is founder of Suarez Dance Theater-a Los Angeles-based not-for-profit ensemble that stimulates social change through dance-making and creative practices. They create at the intersection of collaborative dance-making projects and community organizing programs.
Dr. Neelima Jeychandran is a Visiting Assistant Teaching Professor of African Studies and Asian Studies at The Pennsylvania State University. She is the co-editor of the book “Reimagining Indian Ocean Worlds” and the co-editor of the Routledge book series “Indian Ocean and Trans-Asia.”
Dancer-scholar Dr. Alessandra Williams is assistant professor of dance at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. With Ananya Chatterjea and Hui Wilcox, Williams is co-editor of their forthcoming book on transnational feminism and dance. And while completing a book proposal on the choreography of David Roussève/REALITY dance company, Williams continues to perform with the Ananya Theatre Dance Company.