Guided Tour – Beyond Borders: Global Africa

Seydou Keïta, Untitled, 1956-57, gelatin silver print. Courtesy of the Contemporary African Art Collection (CAAC), Collection Jean Pigozzi, Geneva, Inv# MA/KE.046.D, © Seydou Keïta / SKPEACMore than ever in the era of globalization, ideas traverse geographic, generational, and cultural boundaries, even as national borders seem to be closing. ‘Beyond Borders: Global Africa’ reflects on this moment by considering how Africa and its artists have been at the center of complex histories of encounter and exchange for centuries. Bringing together a dazzling array of works made in Africa, Europe and the United States from the nineteenth to twenty-first century, the exhibition demonstrates the international scope and reach of art from Africa and the African diaspora. Join UMMA docents as they explore the significant themes of our times including slavery, colonization, migration, racism and identity.

Lead support for ‘Beyond Borders: Global Africa’ is provided by the University of Michigan Office of the Provost, Michigan Medicine, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the University of Michigan Office of Research, African Studies Center, and Department of Afroamerican and African Studies. Additional generous support is provided by the University of Michigan CEW Frances and Sydney Lewis Visiting Leaders Fund and Susan Ullrich.

Maker Faire-Detroit at the Henry Ford

Saturday, July 28 to Sunday, July 29 (All day)
The Henry Ford (map)

As in previous years, UM-Dearborn is a sponsor for Maker Faire-Detroit at the Henry Ford on July 28 and July 29 (managed by CECS).

CECS partners with The Henry Ford to offer shuttle service from The Fairlane Center at 19000 Hubbard Drive in Dearborn to The Henry Ford. Free shuttles will operate from 9:30am to 6:30pm on both days of Maker Faire. The Henry Ford attendants will be there to greet you. The shuttle drop off and pick up at The Henry Ford is in front of the Museum. Parking at The Henry Ford is $6 per vehicle for non-members. Pricing subject to change.

CECS will also have a tent at the Maker Faire where we will offer an engineering related make and take project, student orgs/teams demos and students from E100 will demo their projects. New this year, the CECS Alumni Affiliate will host an ice cream social reception for students participating in Maker Faire with robotics, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts interested in engineering and computer science.

PCAP Exhibition: Michigan Art for Justice Forum

Photo: G Allen, Crying Inside

In a collaboration with California Lawyers for the Arts, Shakespeare Behind Bars, and Creative Many that is funded by the Art for Justice Fund, we are hosting the Michigan Art for Justice Forum. This all day symposium will bring together lawmakers, artists, scholars, justice advocates and formerly-incarcerated people to imagine how the arts can contribute to reforming the criminal justice system. This event is part of a series of six public policy forums happening in 2018 in Michigan, Texas, Alabama, Georgia, New York and California. Reception to follow at 5:30 PM in the Duderstadt Center Gallery.

“Prison does not define who we are as people, but instead reflects poor decisions we have made. I would ask that those who judge us to perhaps look past the blue and orange state clothes we wear, and to try to practice empathy. Please try to understand us. Please try to look past our imperfections and most importantly, try to forgive us. I believe that many inmates struggle with, yet desperately desire to express who they truly are, and the reasons are numerous. Creating art is one avenue I personally use to express myself. All of my paintings reflect either my sadness, my happiness, my dreams, my desires, my passions, or I just find them beautiful. Whatever painting of mine you may be looking at right now, please know that while you are certainly seeing a part of me, there is far more to understand and discover about me beyond the blue and orange I wear.” G. Allen 2018

Photo Credit: G. Allen, Crying Inside

Chelsea Manning: A Conversation with Heather Dewey-Hagborg

Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series Manning speaks on the social, technological, and economic ramifications of Artificial Intelligence, and on the practical applications of machine learning. She is an advocate of queer and transgender rights and government transparency. During her time as an intelligence analyst for the U.S. Department of Defense, Manning publicly disclosed classifed documents that she felt revealed human rights abuses and corruption connected to the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan during her deployment in Iraq in 2009. Upon being sentenced to 35 years for leaking government documents, she publicly identifed as a trans woman and asserted her legal rights to medical therapy. After serving seven years in military prison, President Barack Obama commuted her sentence; she was released in 2017. Heather Dewey-Hagborg is a bio-political artist and educator. In her creative collaboration with Chelsea Manning, Probably Chelsea (2017), Dewey-Hagborg received cheek swabs and hair clippings from Manning to create DNA-derived sculptural portraits. The work illustrates a multitude of ways in which DNA can be interpreted.

This Penny Stamps Speaker Series event is co-presented with the Institute for Research on Women and Gender, the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, and Munger Graduate Residences, with additional support from the Rackham Graduate School, the Knight-Wallace Fellows, and the Dissonance Event Series.

Buster Simpson: Art Antioxidant

Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series

Buster Simpson, an artist active since the late 1960s, has worked on major infrastructure and planning projects, site-specific sculptures, museum installations, and community interventions. Simpson was born in Saginaw, Michigan, and attended the University of Michigan, where he received his MFA in 1969, and later, the Distinguished Alumni Award in Architecture and Design. Simpson is a recipient of numerous awards, including NEA fellowships and the Americans for the Arts Public Art Award in 2009. “I prefer working in public spaces. The complexity of any site is its asset, to distill, build upon, and reveal, the challenge is to sharpen the conjunction between poetry and place.”

Simpson has exhibited at The New Museum, MoMA PS1, Seattle Art Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum, Capp Street Project, International Glass Museum, and a recent retrospective at the Frye Art Museum. Simpson’s work is included in numerous public commissions throughout North America.

A University of Michigan Bicentennial event.

All Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series presentations are free and open to the public; visit to view upcoming events.

UM-WiSER Mellon Workshop. Decolonizing Sites of Culture in Africa and Beyond

Keynote Speakers: Annie Coombes, University of London; Morag Kersel, DePaul University; Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi, The Cleveland Museum of Art; Mbongiseni Buthelezi, Public Affairs Research Institute, South Africa

This 2.5 day workshop, bringing together scholars, theorists, practitioners, artists and cultural producers, will examine and reflect on strategies of decolonization in presentations of public culture in museums, galleries, and heritage sites. Free and open to the public. Registration requested at

For a detailed workshop schedule and museum tour, visit:

Making A Difference: Women, Art and Activism in South Africa Today

Professor Annie E. Coombes, Birkbeck, University of London

Image credit:  Nondumiso Hlwele, Body Map, 2002

Women’s collaborations continue to lead the way in a number of critical human rights issues in post-apartheid South Africa: historical memory and heritage; housing and land rights; HIV/AIDS; LGBTI rights and the right to safety at home and at work without fear of violence. The ongoing struggles for these rights are usually intertwined.

At the UN Women Summit in May 2016, the Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, specifically highlighted the critical importance of women’s role, “Experience and research show that when women are included in humanitarian action, the entire community benefits…Women must be included in decision-making about the forms of assistance, means of delivery, and the provision of the protection and economic and social empowerment opportunities they need so they can be agents of change.” (http//

This lecture argues that while the conventional political terrain in South Africa appears to be stalling on delivering the fruits of a democratic process, a new space for effective political activism on the ground has been opened up by women makers and artists. The lecture explores some of the extraordinary projects which have taken the initiative to transform complex social environments still blighted by the devastating legacy of the apartheid years and the economic and health challenges presented by years of official denialism in the face of the AIDS/HIV pandemic. It argues that gender is a critical component in the wider social efficacy of these art projects.

The lecture contends that the art and creative collaborations examined in this research has lent agency to women activists and has become an effective means of challenging the authorities and raising awareness of women’s rights. It argues that the mental and physical health benefits arising from these processes have enabled the confident transmission of accessible and lifesaving knowledge.

Speaker Bio:

Annie E. Coombes is Professor of Material and Visual Culture in the Department of Art History and Founding Director of the Peltz Gallery at Birkbeck, University of London. Coombes is an art and cultural historian specializing in the history of the culture of British colonialism and its legacy in the present, particularly in Africa (Kenya and South Africa) and in former settler colonies. Her prize-winning books include: History After Apartheid: Visual Culture and Public Memory in a Democratic South Africa (2003) and Reinventing Africa: Museums, Material Culture and Popular Imagination in Late Victorian and Edwardian England (1994).

Image credit: Nondumiso Hlwele, Body Map, 2002

Interrogating and Applying Critical Intersectionality: Cross-Disciplinary Conversations on History, Epistemology, Methodology, and Application

Critical Intersectionality Mini-Conference

poster image with event title

Please register:

– Beth Glover Reed, Associate Professor of Social Work & Women’s Studies
– Charlotte Karem Abrecht, Assistant Professor in American Culture
– Elizabeth Armstrong, Professor of Sociology & Organizational Studies
– Elizabeth Cole, Associate Dean for Social Sciences and Professor of Women’s
Studies, Psychology, & Afroamerican and African Studies
– Larry Gant, Professor of Social Work & Art and Design
– Margo M. Mahan, Postdoctoral Fellow in Sociology
– Maria Cotera, Associate Professor of American Culture & Director of Latina/o
– Nesha Haniff, Lecturer in Women’s Studies & Afroamerican and African Studies
– Patricia Garcia, Assistant Professor of Information
– Petra Kuppers, Professor of English

1:00-2:15pm: Faculty panel on the history and epistemology of intersectionality theories
2:30-3:30pm: Faculty-led lightning talks and discussion on questions and tensions on methodology and conducting research within a critical intersectional framework
3:45-5:00pm: Brief lightning talks with faculty and graduate students on research and practice application of intersectionality theories

Organized by the Critical Intersectionality Rackham Interdisciplinary Workshop
Sponsored by the School of Social Work Critical Intersectionality Learning Community (CILC), Rackham Graduate School, and Institute for Research on Women and Gender (IRWG).

For any questions please contact Marisol Fila: