Toward Sanctuary Summits
Hosted by the Vera List Center for Art and Politics
Thursday, February 15, 7 – 8:30 pm
The New School, Auditorium, 66 West 12th Street
Stewardship Curriculum Workshop:
Friday, February 16, 12:30 – 4:30 pm
The New School, José Clemente Orozco Room,
66 West 12th Street, 7th floor
Admission free. Please RSVP here for the Keynote and here for the Workshop.
Just over a year into U.S. President Trump’s first term, the Vera List Center, in association with The New School Sanctuary Working Group, is calling for a public convening to debate this country’s legacy and current engagement with the notion of safe space, especially as it plays out in civic and cultural institutions. The keynote conversation on Thursday features leaders from different cultural and civic realms in a frank reckoning of the current state of debate, and provides an outlook toward the second year of the present administration in Washington. They are Tom Finkelpearl, Commissioner, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; Jeanne van Heeswijk, artist and initiator of Philadelphia Assembled, and Laura Raicovich, former President and Executive Director, Queens Museum. The conversation is moderated by Alexandra Délano Alonso, Associate Professor and Chair of Global Studies at The New School, and Carin Kuoni, Director/Chief Curator, Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School. Executive Dean Mary R. Watson offers welcome remarks.
Over the last twelve months, an urgent debate has played out in a broad range of settings—from highly publicized policy pronouncements such as the California university system’s lawsuit against the Trump administration to protect DACA recipients, to private discussions within religious organizations and non-institutional settings—about physical spaces and the safety they signal, provide, or deny to immigrants with precarious legal status. At The New School, this exchange—echoing the national debate—has been driven by The New School Sanctuary Working Group with the active involvement of students and affected individuals, and will continue through spring and fall 2018 with a number of workshops and events. This keynote conversation examines some of the crucial questions pertaining to the Sanctuary Movement, and begins to stake out possible strategies for the next few years both at the university and beyond.
On Friday, after a communal luncheon, we will hold a workshop on developing a Stewardship Curriculum, guided by artist Jeanne van Heeswijk and community educator and sanctuary facilitator Michael O’Bryan who collaborated on the expansive project of Philadelphia Assembled. Beginning in 2013 at the invitation of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia Assembled was initiated by van Heeswijk and shaped by a group of over one hundred collaborators from across the city, including O’Bryan, to articulate a collective narrative about Philadelphia and some of its most urgent issues. This work forms the basis of the afternoon’s exchange of experiences for us to learn from one another about the ways in which artistic practices can engage in and support the Sanctuary Movement. Recently published by Philadelphia Assembled, the Sanctuary Stewards Guide will be at hand as reference.
The setting for the workshop is The New School’s historic José Clemente Orozco Room, where we’ll assemble around the Mexican muralist’s 1931 fresco Table of Universal Brotherhood.
Workshop and luncheon are free though RSVP is requested and may be completed by following this link.
Tom Finkelpearl, Commissioner, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs
Jeanne van Heeswijk, artist and initiator, Philadelphia Assembled, Rotterdam
Laura Raicovich, former President and Executive Director, Queens Museum
Alexandra Délano Alonso, Associate Professor and Chair of Global Studies at The New School
Carin Kuoni, Director/Chief Curator, Vera List Center for Art and Politics, The New School
Mary R. Watson, Executive Dean, The New School/Schools of Public Engagement
Friday Workshop Facilitators
Jeanne van Heeswijk, artist and initiator, Philadelphia Assembled
Michael O’Bryan, Director of Youth and Young Adult Programs, The Village of Arts and Humanities, Philadelphia
Toward Sanctuary Summits is organized by the Vera List Center for Art and Politics in association with The New School Sanctuary Working Group and The Zolberg Institute Working Group on Expanding Sanctuary.