Decolonial Archive Lab - Student Initiative
This seminar is a collaboration between a small group of BIPOC + migrant students and Juana Awad at the Theory and History department. It is a student research-creation initiative in which participants will work both theoretically and practically with notions of knowledge generation and dissemination within the context of decolonial theory and practices. The collective work will lead towards a publication.
We will decide on our reading list on our first meeting on May 8th. Participants are encouraged to propose texts and sources. Possible authors include Gloria Anzaldúa, Saidiya Hartman, Alana Lockward, Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui amongst others.
Registration starts on April 17th. Max. participants 14.
Dates: Our first meeting is on May 8th. Thereafter we meet every Monday from 10am to 2pm. There will be two sessions with external guests on Thursday 1.6 (TBC) and 15.6. (TBC) open to the whole khb community. Additionally there will be two final session in early July on dates to be decided by the group.
Important: This course will build upon the theory covered during the past courses Postcolonial and Decolonial Matters (SoSe22), Postmigrantische Kritiken (SoSe22) and Colonial Presents: Artistic and Curatorial Interrogating (WiSe22/23). Past experience and engagement with decolonial theory and practices are expected.
WHY IS THIS COURSE TAKING PLACE
“Dear friends and collaborators, we are a small group of BIPOC + migrant students collaborating with theory lecturer Juana Awad, and this summer semester we are creating an autonomous seminar, a laboratory and writing group, producing our own archive as a decolonial practice and the many layers and facets that it touches in our lives. We want to create a space within this this art school, where we can support each other, have discussions, and produce and distribute knowledge - in the form of archive creation - because we sincerely believe that knowledge has the amplifying effect in empowering ourselves and our communities, and to shift the centre away from – and reduce reliance on – the capitalist colonial patriarchal hegemony.
We ask ourselves:
• What can archive actually mean… and what is it for?
• What forms can this archive take?
• What is the decolonizing practice, beyond the word “decolonial” which is already so exhausted in academic circles?
• How to produce and distribute knowledge that is conscious of discrimination structures based on class, gender, race, ability, etc., and how do they influence a person's access to knowledge?
• How to write and publish, when most of our mother tongues are actually neither English nor German?
• What is the importance of translation work and when can something not be translated?
• How do we use this project to expand our networks, invite collaborations, and share our privileges and resources? Especially with our communities who are doing amazing decolonizing work somewhere else, beyond the spaces of white colonial institutions?
• What structural supports should this project have to ensure its long-term run?
What is the importance of having this space in the university?
An art university in the capital of one of European Fortress’s largest (economic and political) superpowers, an institution that from our perception stands for innovation, intellectualism and expression, is not free of colonial violence but rests on the coloniality inherent to the modern-world system, which has historically denied, subalternized and/or appropriated art forms, knowledge, and methods of knowledge production from around the world.
This lab is started with the intention of criticizing that epistemological and structural colonial violence. It is also started with the intention of creating our own program, inviting our own workshops, panel discussions and some lecturers we would like to see, around archive and knowledge-production, and trying to use the structures already in place to achieve this.” Raras Umaratih