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Arts of Extraction: A two-day symposium at the University of Essex

CityColchester
CountyEssex (GB052)
Date31/01/2019
Hours14:00
CategoriaEvents
Official Website
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Colchester
Essex (GB052)
Tel 2019-01-31
Categoria Events

Arts of Extraction University of Essex, 31 January - 1 February 2019 This two-day symposium brings together artists, curators and scholars to examine the spatial and aesthetic legacies associated with technologies of extraction, revisiting the grounds on which human and non-human life has unfolded and posing questions about the territorial conditions for our collective futures. Attuned to rising concerns about ecological decline, the meeting creates a space to share and discuss practice research methodologies that unfold through fieldwork, art-making, curatorial practice and publications. We probe extraction in an expanded sense, conceiving the phenomenon as the physical process of removing botanical and mineral resources from the ground to insert them into the circuitry of local markets and global capitalism, and as the aesthetic means of recording images of nature that enables them to circulate in visual economies.

Our speakers will explore Latin America’s longstanding conception as a treasury of natural resources, by addressing landscape formations generated by extraction, modes of representing matter, and contemporary art-research projects that grapple with the territorial impacts of extractive industries and their related socio-political contexts and ecological conflicts. We ask: What role have visual technologies played in the longstanding prospecting of nature in Latin America’s history of extraction?  How does contemporary art practice draw out the enduring legacies and impacts of extraction and its attendant epistemological and political pacts?  How does the circulation of images and artworks shed critical light on global networks of trade and local attachments to the land? This event is part of a series of exhibitions, talks, publications and an artist residency organised to celebrate twenty-five years of the founding of the Essex Collection of Art from Latin America. We are grateful for support from the Society of Latin American Studies. Image credit: Nancy La Rosa, Huaccoto Quarry, 2017. Courtesy of the artist.  All enquiries: [email protected] For information about the program of events to celebrate ESCALA, see: http://www.artexchange.org.uk/exhibition/gone-to-ground/  Confirmed speakers Ana Bilbao (Research Fellow and Editor of Afterall, Central St Martins)  Nancy La Rosa (Artist and Lecturer in Fine Art, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Peru) Alejandro Jaime (Artist and Lecturer in Painting, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Peru) Rebecca Jarman (Lecturer in Latin American Cultural Studies, University of Leeds)  Natalia Majluf (Simón Bolívar Visiting Chair for 2018-19; former Director Museo de Arte de Lima) Louise Purbrick (Principal Lecturer, Centre for Design History)  Programme Thursday 31 January - Various locations  2-4pm: Visit to ESCALA, Constable Building 4-6pm: Ivor Crewe Seminar Room Other Possible Stories. Rethinking the Collections of the Museo de Arte de Lima Natalia Majluf (Simón Bolívar Visiting Chair for 2018-19; former Director Museo de Arte de Lima) 6-7pm: Tour of Gone to Ground, Art Exchange, University of Essex Friday 1 February - Lakeside Room, Silberrad Student Centre 9:45am: Registration 10am: Introduction and Welcome Lisa Blackmore (University of Essex) 10:00-11:30 - Earth Movements Photography, the Tourist Gaze and Mineral Extraction - Rebecca Jarman (Lecturer in Latin American Cultural Studies, University of Leeds)  Trafficking the Earth - Louise Purbrick (Principal Lecturer, Centre for Design History)  11:30-12:00pm: Coffee Break 12:00-1:30 – Environmental Aesthetics Artist-Run Spaces and Contemporary Environmental Aesthetics in Colombia  - Ana Bilbao (Research Fellow and Editor of Afterall, Central St Martins)  *Paper to be confirmed 1:30-2:30pm: Lunch  2:30-4:30 - Earthworks  The Route of the Stones: Ideas about Material, Substance and Identity - Nancy La Rosa (Artist and Lecturer in Fine Art, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Peru) Extractive Landscapes – From Peru to Essex - Alejandro Jaime (Artist and Lecturer in Painting, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Peru) 4:45pm: Closing Remarks Abstracts and Speaker Bios  Natalia Majluf  Other Possible Stories. Rethinking the Collections of the Museo de Arte de Lima This presentation attempts to account for the work carried out by a group of curators and experts at the Museo de Arte de Lima over the past two decades. It explores the challenges of incorporating historical and contemporary objects within a panoramic survey collection that spans cultural production in the Andean region from the pre-Columbian period to the present. This effort has confronted the museum with notions of art, time and place that establish oppositions between crucial categories of museological classification: high and popular culture, art and craft, history and ethnography, tradition and modernity, the local and the global. These issues are discussed through examples of specific collecting and research projects related to forms of cultural production traditionally excluded from the museum’s narratives.  Natalia Majluf, currently Simón Bolívar Chair at the University of Cambridge, 2018-2019, is an art historian who works on the long nineteenth century in Latin America, from the era of Independence to the early twentieth century. As Head Curator and Director of the Museo de Arte de Lima, between 1995 and 2018 she oversaw the renovation of the historic building that houses the museum and was responsible for enriching and broadening the scope of the collections. She has held fellowships from the Getty Foundation, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts in Washington, D.C. She is editor, among others, of Los incas, reyes del Perú (2005), Luis Montero’s The funerals of Atahualpa (2011), José Gil de Castro, pintor de libertadores (2014) and has co-authored Tipos del Perú. La Lima criolla de Pancho Fierro (2008), Fernando Bryce. Drawing Modern History (2011), Sabogal (2013) and Chambi (2015), among other books and exhibition catalogues.  Louise Purbrick Traces of Nitrate: the documentation of historical loss From the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth, British merchant houses and British speculators dominated the extraction, manufacture, transport and export of Chilean nitrate, a highly valued ingredient of fertilizers and explosives. Nitrate was intimately connected with the industrialization of both life and death as well as with the fortunes City of London and the Atacama Desert. Traces of the extraction of nitrate and its trafficking between Britain and Chile have been to a great extent either overlooked or disregarded. This paper examines the photographic residues and the archeological remains of the nitrate trade. It explores the composition of images of nitrate extraction, including the traces of mining labour, alongside the debris of broken and polluted landscapes in Latin America and Europe. It concludes with consideration of the different legacies of the monopoly capitalism of mining. Louise Purbrick is Principal Lecturer in the History of Art and Design at the University of Brighton (http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/staff/louise-purbrick). She is interested in the material culture of conflict, extraction, political struggle and everyday life. With Xavier Ribas and Ignacio Acosta, she is part of Traces of Nitrate(www.tracesofnitrate.org), a research project that examines legacies of mining colonialism and has exhibited in Barcelona, London, Liverpool and Santiago. Rebecca Jarman Capturing Extraction? Geology, Photography and Institutional History in the Godfrey Bingley Archives  The art of extraction is often an act of disappearance, making invisible industrial practices of exploiting the environment. This presentation explores this idea by examining the Godfrey Bingley archive, held at the University of Leeds, that consists of over 10,000 photographic images taken at the peak of industrialization in northern England. Of prolific Yorkshire stock, Bingley was once the owner of a foundry, before retiring in 1884 to work as a photographer. He would be employed as an assistant to Percy Kendall, a professor of geology in the newly minted University that specialised in industrial technology and environmental sciences. In his expeditions with Kendall around Britain, he would photograph mountainous landscapes and rock formations, keeping meticulous records in his diaries and logbooks. By 1911, Bingley would lose his sight and donate his collection to the University, to be used as research aids by geologists. While scholars have documented Bingley’s activities in the UK, less is known of his work abroad on multiple trips to the Americas. In the 1890s, Bingley travelled extensively across Venezuela, Colombia, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico. His diaries and log books from this period, if they exist, are missing from the archive, as are most photographs of geological interest.What remains are tourist snaps of people and places framed by the gaze of a Victorian industrialist. Drawing on interviews with historians, archivists and photographers, I further the hypothesis that Bingley may have been involved in exploratory mining surveys whose trace has been removed from the collection. Scrutinizing the images that are available, I demonstrate how Bingley’ssnaps of tell the story of a region that, to Bingley’s eyes, was ripe for development by British investors.By tracking the legacy of the Bingley collection, I also trace the epistemologies of geology, photography and Latin American Studies as entangled, co-constitutive disciplines.  Rebecca Jarman is a Lecturer in Latin American Cultural Studies at the University of Leeds, where she has resided since 2015. Her research is situated at the intersections between culture and politics in contemporary Latin America, focusing on the conflicts that drive urbanization in diverse geographical and historical contexts. To date, her work has examined the ways in which these tensions are mediated in visual and textual discourse, and how such discursive practices contribute to the production of social imaginaries and urban configurations in a postcolonial environment. She is currently completing a monograph, tentatively entitled Representing the barrios: Culture, Politics and Urban Poverty in Twentieth-Century Caracas, thatunpicks the entangled relationship between populist politics, the oil industry and urban poverty as this is mediated in cultural production. Developing from this is a second project called “Viscous Cities” that interrogates the cultural history of urban landslides in the Andes, particularly in Peru, Colombia and Venezuela, to elucidate how landslides are bound up with the uneven processes of urban development. Ana Bilbao   Mining Colombian Contemporary Art: Histories, Scales, and Techniques of Gold Extraction Gold is not only a witness to Colombia’s history, but a fundamental actor in its religious, cultural, social, and economic landscapes. This paper will explore different moments in the history of gold mining in the country through the lens of contemporary artists working within their local context. Articulating a distinct visual language, each selected artwork crystallises three characteristic elements of this extractive practice: a historical moment, a scale and a technique. The works act as sensible horizons that uncover the precious metal as a microcosm of Colombia. Ana Bilbao is an editor of Afterall Journal and a Research Fellow at the Afterall Research Centre in Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London. Her research focuses on the history of exhibition-making from the cabinet of curiosities to the present. She specialises in the emergence and proliferation of SVAOs (Small Visual Arts Organisations) from the 1990s-present in different parts of the world and in stories of exhibition-making from the Global South. Ana completed a PhD in Art History and Theory at the University of Essex, where she often teaches. She has worked in various areas of the cultural sector including arts education and curating.  Nancy La Rosa The Route of the Stones: Ideas about Material, Substance and Identity  This paper will focus on two projects whose central theme is stone extraction in two quarries in the Peruvian Andes, exploring their contexts and stone transformation practices. I will present the art project Surface / Essence / Presence, an installation of photography and video that proposes a double approach to stones: observing the stones and exploring their immutable gaze. The project develops in a disused Inca quarry, which was active in pre-Hispanic times. The enormous stones previously worked were abandoned as milestones along the route that connects the quarry with an Inca building. These are stones loaded with historical, affective and symbolic meaning, linked to the geographic space they occupy and the identity of the community in which they are found. I will also present the project The route of the stones, which explores the Huaccoto quarry, where andesite stone is currently extracted. In this case, the stone acquires different uses and interpretations along the route from the extractive site of the quarry, to its final forms such as sculptures, monuments or infrastructure. Along this route, different ideas are expressed about the relationship with the material and the regime or value in which the stone participates. These regimes connect the Huaccoto community with different cultural and economic circuits. The stone is the material element that mediates the different interactions and relationships between people and their world. Nancy La Rosa received a BA in printmaking from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru and is currently an M.A. candidate in Visual Anthropology at the same university. Her works in diverse media—drawing, print, photography, video, and installation—are concerned with the socio-environmental conflicts derived from the uncontrolled legal and illegal extraction of natural resources in Peru, as well as with the power relations that exist in the traditional representations of the territory. La Rosa’s works have been shown in venues in Peru, United States, Spain and different cities of Latin America, including Medellin, Cusco, Santa Cruz, and Caracas. She has also participated in residencies and site-specific projects and in encounters like "Study Days" in Lamas, Peru, as part of the public activities of the 32nd São Paulo Biennial. Her works are in the collection of MALI-Museum of Art of Lima, LARA Collection, and private collections.  Alejandro Jaime Extractive Landscapes – From Peru to Essex In this paper I will reflect on the process of practice research in two very distinct extractive environments by presenting existing bodies of works produced in Peru in dialogue with concepts and initial results from my artist residency in Essex. The residency project explores and responds to the geology and extractive industries of the Colne Estuary, a longstanding recipient and instigator of dramatic landscape changes. Glacial drifts of sand and gravel deposited here half a million years ago provided the materials that saw the rise of the aggregates industries established on the River Colne in the early twentieth century. Physical traces of these interconnected geological and extractive processes endure in the landscape surrounding the University. Through fieldwork and interdisciplinary conversations, this art-research process aims to delve into the deep time of geohistory and to explore the landscapes of the post-industrial present. Sites for exploration include gravel pits, nature reserves created from obsolete quarries, and extractive infrastructure located on the banks of a river on the cusp of total de-industrialisation.  Alejandro Jaime is a visual artist and researcher who specialises in landscape, public space and ephemeral architecture. Using painting, photography, land art and sculpture, he interrogates human impacts on the land, working across an expansive timeframe that tracks spatial shifts through geological strata, pre-Columbian civilizations, industrialization and ecological decline. Jaime holds a MA in Art History and Curatorial Studies from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, where he works as a Lecturer in Painting at the Faculty of Art and Design. His work is represented in the Colección Hochschild, Peru, and the Essex Collection of Art from Latin America. He has been exhibited widely in museums and galleries across Latin America, Asia and Europe, and taken part in artist residencies at the Fundación Botín in Spain, Royal Botanical Gardens in Ontario, Canada, and URRA, Argentina, among others.   Getting to the University of Essex  The University is served by Colchester (Mainline) or Wivenhoe Stations. Trains travel directly to either from London Liverpool Street. Local buses connect to the Colchester Campus and a taxi rank is also available (Colchester station only). Accommodation The Colchester Campus features an on-site hotel, Wivenhoe House Hotel, which offers Bed and Breakfast, as well as other meals and refreshments.  

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