The museum will not be decolonised

Media Diversified

Sumaya Kassim describes the challenges of trying to bring context to Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

“The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house. They may allow us to temporarily beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change.” Audre Lorde, 1978

Earlier this year, I was part of a group of co-curators invited to set up an exhibition at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG) which would use the Museum’s collection to confront history in new and challenging ways. The attempt is worthy – reflective of movements like ‘Rhodes must fall’ and ‘why is my curriculum white’, which call for a radical reassessment of history, an awareness of how colonial processes impact our present times. However, the exhibition brought into focus an important question – one of whether large British institutions like BMAG can and should promote ‘decolonial’ thinking, or…

View original post 1,976 more words


CLTs for NYC: Mapping H.E.Arts and Threats in the South Bronx — communitybasedresearch

Bronx residents face the largest challenges to economic opportunity of anyone in the city on the basis of (poor) access and benefits, housing, work and school, and infrastructure, and yet the city continues to give away public space for private development and industrial activity. The fight for public control of land in the Bronx has been brewing for … Continue reading CLTs for NYC: Mapping H.E.Arts and Threats in the South Bronx

via CLTs for NYC: Mapping H.E.Arts and Threats in the South Bronx — communitybasedresearch

Engaging Multilingual Students: An Educator’s Guide

Art Museum Teaching

Written by PJ Gubatina Policarpio

As the new school year officially starts here in New York, I am reminded of the thousands of students in the city, who will eventually descend upon our museums, science centers, botanical gardens, libraries, historical societies, and many other informal places of learning. As always, I am inspired by these young learners who bring a richness of experiences, languages, cultural identities, curiosities, and imagination that make our institutions come to life. In my own practice, I often wonder how I can tap into the wealth of characters and personalities each student brings to the table to create a truly engaging and equitable learning environment for all.

As school programs educator at Queens Museum, I was amazed by the diversity of the students that were coming into the museum; reflecting the demographic of the borough (one of the most diverse in the country!). It was more…

View original post 1,305 more words

Mapping as Process: Food Access in Nineteenth-Century New York

“Mapping as process differs from mapping as representation in that it is generative of new questions and answers, feeding back into a productive cycle of research and interpretation.”

Global Urban History

Gergely Baics, Barnard College, Columbia University

BaicsMapSeq1Geographic information system (GIS) has changed social science and humanities research through spatial analysis. It has reinvigorated the spatial turn, which has swept many fields in the past decades, improving their empirical foundations, methodological tools and analytical process. Historians, especially those working within the field of urban history, have looked to GIS to incorporate new resources and methods to raise new questions or revisit old ones. Further, given the considerable data demands of certain projects, GIS mapping has made historical research more accessible, collaborative and open-ended. Some of the most fruitful collaborations occur when the public is directly invited to help produce and make use of historical GIS data, as is the case with the New York Public Library’s several creative initiatives (Map Warper, Building Inspector, NYC Space/Time Directory), or when historians work together with geospatial analysts to produce…

View original post 1,164 more words

The Pleasures of Protest: Taking on Gentrification in Chinatown

“I began to understand that gentrification, which was so often described as white people moving into a neighborhood and displacing long-time residents, was actually a process that was far more complex.”


Esther Wang | Longreads | August 2016 | 17 minutes (4,223 words)

On a cold night in the early winter months of 2007, I was with a group of tenants — all Latino and Chinese immigrant families — clustered together in front of their home, two buildings on Delancey Street that straddled the border between Chinatown and the Lower East Side. We were there, shivering in the cold, to protest their landlords.

Ever since they bought the two buildings in 2001, the owners of 55 Delancey and 61 Delancey Street — Nir Sela, Michael Daniel, and 55 Delancey Street Realty LLC — had been attempting to kick out the Chinese and Latino families who had lived there, but in recent months, the situation had come to a head. They had begun aggressively bringing tenants to housing court, often on trumped up charges (one lawsuit argued that, based on the number…

View original post 4,242 more words

Locales: Made in LA


Update: Color<Coded> launched Locales on November 16 with a campaign—”Keep It Locales” (Buy Local)—to support the sustainability of small businesses in our communities by increasing their visibility and promoting ethical spending. We were generously hosted by one of our profiles (and the hottest spot for micheladas), La Chuperia.

LOCALES is a web platform that connects residents of Los Angeles with small businesses that are owned and operated by people of color (currently in English and Español). The tech collective I joined in May, Color<Coded>, is working on a “soft” launch of the service next month. For now, I’m pleased to share that some suggestions I made via Slack are leading us to consider accessibility, styleguides, and careful form design in our process. Also, I’m building something with React, Babel, and Webpack (vs. Ruby on Rails)!

thinking about accessibility is indispensable when building technologies!

* accessibility includes language

Resources include: “Accessible UI Components for the Web” by Addy Osmani, The A11y Projectally.jsWebAIM Color Constrast Checker,, Sim Daltonism/Color Oracle, Marvel’s Styleguide, Nicole Saidy’s Intro to Style Guides, Frontify, multilingual.js

Continue reading “Locales: Made in LA”

(Re)Mediating Manifestos

It started with a Facebook message to an old classmate from New Media Research Studio and ended up in the annual, week-long Gallatin Arts Festival in 2016

(Re)Mediating Manifestos is a series of Risograph-printed posters as well as a dynamic digital environment that explores expression, subjectivity, and labor through close readings of manifestos by cultural agents across disciplines. A collaboration with Shira Feldman, this project seeks to recognize the significance of the manifesto as a trace of a history and a space for expression in self/collectively-selected and self/collectively-defined terms.


13835473_10154472554699558_329587797_o.jpg static1.squarespace.png

On a mounted iPad, viewers are welcomed to interact with a curated archive of excerpts from and notes on manifestos, which were selected because of their powerful relevance to our contemporary society. The project culminates in a manifesto for the digital citizen, subjects whose lives are necessarily mediated by technologies in any capacity.

Special thanks to David Furfero’s jQuery Touch Punch hack, Allison Conner’s help with the Risograph GR 3770 housed at the Women’s Center for Creative Work in Los Angeles, and professors Carlin Wing and Joshua Clayton for giving me guts.

how is the artist or writer to function (survive and produce) in the community, outside of institutions?

“Your own aesthetic process is a transformative activity; it’s not an economic transaction that you purchase with a university degree.” –Arturo Romo gives us his blessings

East Los Angeles Dirigible Air Transport Lines

los angeles

  1. all you mfa candidates, all you college students, all you awp hangers-on, all you high school students wondering what to do (which is the same thing as how to live, how to make a life of your own, how to save your own life), all you secret poets looking for support, all you striving artists who need a job, what about you?
  2. most will sooner or later find themselves outside institutionalization.
  3. dreams tell us that the life of the mind goes on regardless. regardless of institutions or individuals, the life of the mind is a collective dreaming. the dream goes on whether anyone is making movies and documenting it, holding conferences and seminars about it or not. the mind goes on.
  4. the institutional imagination, with its schedules and regulations, with its tests and prerequisites, will be insufficient on the outside, in a broader world of completely indifferent and more democratic…

View original post 2,977 more words