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Symposium on Decolonial Aesthetics from the Americas

Toronto, Canada
10, 11, 12 October 2013

@ University of Toronto, Hart House (7 Hart House Circle)

Special issue of FUSE Magazine - September 2013

Organized by e-fagia organization in collaboration with FUSE Magazine, and Justina M. Barnicke Gallery / Hart House.
Gallery partnership: Unpack Studio
(11 Willison Square)





Sponsored by Canada Council for the Arts

Programme and Participants

The Symposium on Decolonial Aesthetics From The Americas will host diverse artists and scholars of the Americas and the Caribbean. Featuring papers, workshops and performances, the symposium will provide an unparalleled opportunity to engage the diversity of contemporary aesthetic practices informed by decolonial thought. We are pleased to announce the confirmed programme and participants.





::Keynote Lecture: Dr. Walter MIGNOLO / Duke University
7pm Thursday October 10th @ Music Room, Hart House (7 Hart House Circle)

::Keynote Performance: Rebecca BELMORE
7pm Saturday, October 12th @ Unpack Studio (11 Willison Square)

Keynote presentations are free and open to the public.


Each Conversatorio or conversational panel will feature three or four people who will deliver a presentation that will serve to engage the audience in a collective dialogue. The presenters will have a space previous to the panel in which they can exchange their views in order to structure their participation as a conversation. The Conversational panel's layout will be circular, allowing a relation that isn’t based on hierarchical structures, implying the acknowledgement and recognition of what is expressed by every subject.

Thursday, October 10th

2 - 3:30pm, Music Room, Hart House
:: Panel A - Decoloniality and Art Spaces
Wanda Nanibush, Susan Douglas, Pedro Lasch, Dannys Montes de Oca

4 - 5:30pm, Music Room, Hart House
::Panel B - Colonial and Decolonial Landscapes
Berlin Reed, Pat Badani, Ron Benner, Dalida Benfield

Friday, October 11th

11:30am - 1pm, Music Room, Hart House
::Panel C - Transcultural Alignments
Damien Lee, Emelie Chhangur, Gita Hashemi

2 - 3:30pm, Music Room, Hart House
:: Panel D - Performing Politics
Miguel Rojas Sotelo, Julie Nagam, Leah Decter and Carla Taunton

4 - 5:30pm, Music Room, Hart House
::Panel E - Senses and Affect: Indigenous epistemologies
David Garneau, Raul Moarquech Ferrera-Balanquet, Ruby Arngna'naaq

7 - 9pm, Music Room, Hart House
::Panel F - Decolonial Practices
Rebecca Belmore, Paul Vanouse, Walter Mignolo

Saturday, October 12th

11:30 - 1pm, Debates Room, Hart House
::Panel G - Futurity, Utopia
Rinaldo Walcott, Alejandro Campos, Katherine McKittrick

2 - 3:30pm, Debates Room, Hart House
::Panel H - Decolonizing the Local: Canadian Artistic Practice in the context of the Americas
Dot Tuer, Gordon Ingram, Eugenia Kisin

WORKSHOPS (enter here for more information)

Friday, October 11, 8:30am-11:30am

:: Workshop A: Decoloniality and the Shifting the Geopolitical of Reasoning
Walter Mignolo, Dalida María Benfield, Miguel Rojas-Sotelo, Raul Moarquech Ferrera-Balanquet - Duke University (Duration: 3 hours)

:: Workshop B: Indigenous/Settler Engagement: Dialogic Conversations on Writing the Land
Mimi Gellman & Barbara Meneley (Duration: 3 hours)

Saturday, October 12, 8:30am-11:30am

:: Workshop C: The Sovereignty of Indigenous Aesthetics
Prof. Dylan A.T. Miner, Michigan State University (Duration: 3 hours)

:: Workshop D: Archives of the past and future: decolonization and cosmopolitanism
Susan Lord, Dannys Montes de Oca, Isabel Alfonso, David Austin
(Duration: 3 hours)


The worktable is a model that will include several facilitators along with registered audience members in a roundtable setting. Throughout the 3 days of the symposium the worktables will meet to discuss questions relevant to the participants' practice in relation to the theme of decolonial aesthetics. At the end of the symposium they will be given the opportunity to present a summary of their findings and questions to a larger audience. The worktables provide an opportunity for extended dialogue and research in the context of the symposium. Its intention is to generate questions that can be addressed through future programming and create a long-term conversation.

Worktable A:

Contemporary Aesthetic Practices and decoloniality.
Conveners: Omar Estrada, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Samantha Galarza, Alexandra Majerus, Natalyn Tremblay.

Thursday October 10th 11:30am-1pm, Music Room
Friday October 11th 11:30am - 1pm, North Dining Room
Saturday October 12th 11:30 -1pm, Committees Room

Worktable B:

Indigenous Art, Aesthetics & Decolonial Struggle in the Academy and Beyond.
Conveners: Jarrett Martineau (University of Victoria), Eric Ritskes (University of Toronto), Aman Sium (University of Toronto)

Thursday October 10th, 11:30am - 1pm, North Dining Room
Friday October 11th, 2pm - 3:30pm, North Dining Room
Saturday October 12th, 2pm -3:30 pm, Committees Room


Friday October 11th @ The Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Avenue)
Doors open 9pm

:: Natalyn Tremblay and Samantha Galarza
:: The Wind in the Leaves Collective


Thunderstruck By Jeneen Frei Njootli
October 3 - 26. Reception: October 3, 7 -10pm
Whippersnapper Gallery
594b Dundas St W, Toronto.

Frei Njootli examines the cross points between colonization and Indigenous psychogeography in her installation, Thunderstruck; an architectural dream space. The artist seeks to understand the influence of the constructs of home spaces/places/nonplaces on one’s psyche. Large-scale screen prints on composite wood depict figures dressed in contemporary spirit regalia, which represent archetypes and heroes derived from a myth Frei Njootli’s practice is constructing. The figures interact with altered traditional objects such as muskrat traps, stretchers, antler, skins and ric rac. Thunderstruck explores the histories that materials embody and examines how they have shaped, helped and hindered First Nations peoples’ in their concept and creation of art, home, regalia, religion and community.

Supported by the Ontario Arts Council

For more information, please contact:

Maria Alejandrina Coates or Julieta Maria

www.e-fagia.org                                 www.fusemagazine.org