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Speculative Histories & Futures

March 4 at 12:00 pm1:30 pm

The Center for Innovation, Research and Creativity in the Arts (CIRCA) presents Speculative Histories & Futures, a panel featuring four internationally renowned artists and scholars — Tiffany E. BarberAyodamola Tanimowo Okunseinde (ayo), Kite, and Jonas Staal — who will discuss the panel’s titular terms in relation to their own work, expanding the terms however they desire, with moderator Safiyah Cheatam., M.F.A. ’21 intermedia and digital arts. The event is hosted by art historian and critic Kathy O’Dell, associate professor of visual arts and special assistant to the dean for education and arts partnerships.

The term “speculative” has been applied to numerous fields of thought and action since ancient times. Aristotle and Plato debated the speculative nature of theory, versus the logical nature of praxis. The first 17th-century European settlers on the land we currently occupy in North America engaged in speculative finance to wrest land from its occupants, thereby colonizing it. In the last few decades, the adjective has been applied to more specifically visual fields of research, a development reflecting the term’s Proto-Indo-European (PIE) root “spek” – to observe. From Speculative Design, a term coined in the 1990s by Anthony Dunne, who along with Fiona Raby promoted the practice at the Royal College of Art, to the Black Speculative Art Movement with its roots in Afrofuturism, as described by Reynaldo Anderson in 2016, visual culture ignited the idea of this panel to discuss “Speculative Histories and Futures.”

This event is free and online (registration required). For complete details, including speaker biographies, please visit CIRCA’s site.

Speculative Histories is co-sponsored by the Department of Visual Arts and CIRCA.

CIRCA is committed to making its events accessible to everyone. Please send an email to circa@umbc.edu to request specific accommodations.



March 4
12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
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