Dead Lecturer / distant relative: Notes from the Woodshed 1950-1980: Curated by Genji Amino. Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University, New York

9 July - 2 October 2022
Wallach Art Gallery:

Dead Lecturer / distant relative: Notes from the Woodshed, 1950-1980   focuses on works by Asian American and African American artists whose approaches to abstraction provided alternatives to prevailing vocabularies for representation and resistance during the social movements of the 1960s and 70s, and for whom the parameters of visibility continue to remain a problem for thought today.

Dead Lecturer / distant relative gathers an archive of visual art and poetics to pose questions about the relationship between loss and kinship, between history and memory, and between race and abstraction. How do we recall the voices of those for whom art history has never represented either a reliable record or the proper horizon of address? How do we share the news of an archive of experiment whose relationship to the contemporary continues to be compromised by an ongoing history of racial violence and colonial enterprise? What forms of intimacy, address and refusal have yet to be imagined in and through this archive that exceed the prevailing art historical vocabularies for modernism, innovation, and abstraction?

The exhibition draws its title from three works that testify to the constitutive loss and irreducible experiment which conventional art histories neither reliably receive nor record: poet LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka’s 1964 collection The Dead Lecturer, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s 1977 artists’ book audience/distant relative, and painter Jack Whitten’s posthumous collection of writings, Notes from the Woodshed (2018).


Pacita Abad
Charles Alston
Leo Amino
Shūsaku Arakawa
Russell Atkins
Mei-mei Berssenbrugge
Bernice Bing
Vivian Browne
Beverly Buchanan
Theresa Hak Kyung Cha
Ching Ho Cheng
Beauford Delaney
Fred Eversley
Sarah Webster Fabio
Julia Fields
Charles Gaines
Sam Gilliam
Byron Goto
Joseph Goto
Jessica Hagedorn
Marvin Harden
Felrath Hines
Lawson Fusao Inada
Stephen Jonas
LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka
June Jordan
Bob Kaufman
Roy Kiyooka
Ted Kurahara
Elouise Loftin
Al Loving
Wong May
George Miyasaki
Emiko Nakano
Senga Nengudi
Win Ng
Jerry Tsukio Okimoto
Joe Overstreet
John Pai
Howardena Pindell
Adrian Piper
Thomas Postell
N.H. Pritchard
Martin Puryear
Ed Roberson
Kay Sekimachi
Thomas Sills
Lorenzo Thomas
Walasse Ting
Leo Valledor
Carlos Villa
José García Villa
Fred Wah
Jack Whitten

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