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In a sense, colonization is both manifested by and has itself manifested fields. Foundational to settler-colonialism is the transformation of so-called ‘virgin land’ into fields of economized agricultural space. Applied and field-based sciences such as botany and ethnography played ‘scholarly’ roles in extractive colonial economies, filled natural history museums with plunder and expanded European world-ordering systems of thought. The colonial concept of Terra Nullius even mirrors the notion of the ‘visual field’ in art, defined by the Chicago School of Media Theory as a field in which one can “simultaneously see something and nothing at all; emptiness, absence, paradoxically fills the very space of vision”. If fields diverge into lands, disciplines, research practices and components of artistic composition, fields nonetheless converge in that they systematize and formalize material and conceptual grounds. Fields are further tied to historically European measures of practice; the acre is the size of field that could be ploughed by a medieval farmer in a day. Fields provide for complex topographies of ownership, belonging, and means of valuation for labors, ideas, practices, objects, colors, media, and lands alike.

The workshop Depth of Field: Decolonization and the Grounds of Art(istic) Research involves a small group of scholars and artists whose work on decolonization re-evaluates the ‘fields’ and ‘fieldworks’ of arts research and art-as-research.

November 26 & 27 2021 in hybrid (online and face-to-face)
* all below times are Berlin (Central European Standard Time / 1 hour ahead of UK)

November 26

14:00-14:30 (Introduction): Neither Field nor Forensic / neither property nor sovereignty (in-person & online @ “Temporal Communities”)
Lindsey Drury, EXC 2020 “Temporal Communities”, Freie Universität-Berlin

14:30-15:30: Warnayaka Art, Networking the Unseen (online)
Gretta Louw

16:00-17:30: Gesturing Towards Decolonial Futures through Queer Metabolic Sensibilities (online)
Dani d’Emilia in conversation with Sarah Amsler (Gesturing Towards Decolonial Futures Collective)

18:00-19:00: Underneath both cultural conditioning and epigenetics: the memetic-somatic origins of white supremacy (online)
Tada Hozumi (guest moderated by Dr. Ben Spatz)

November 27

14:00-15:00: Performing Idiotic Knowledge: Walking with Nijinsky (in-person & online @ “Temporal Communities”)
Wojtek Klimczyk

15:30-16:30: Digital Territory and Indigeneity (online)
Tiara Roxanne

17:00-18:00: The Councils of the Pluriversal (online)
Luiza Prado

18:30-19:30: Indigenous Ecologies (online)
Muhktara Yusuf

Lindsey Drury