Events

    Día de los Muertos/Day of the Dead Commemoration (at the Peabody Museum)

    Location: 

    Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, 1 Divinity Ave., Cambridge

    Stop by the Peabody Museum for a short moment of personal reflection on the past year which brought losses to so many. The front steps of the museum will be set up as a simple outdoor altar and staff will distribute lighted candles to visitors in observance of those we have lost. Pause and remember as you place your candle in our community display. Post a Message of Love to our online Virtual Altar before attending. And join us next year when our annual fiesta returns to the Peabody galleries! Rain or...

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    Harvard Design Magazine #49: “Publics” Issue Launch and Conversation

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    In a world of increasing polarization and boundary-drawing manifest at multiple scales, what has happened to the notion of “the public”? Is there evidence that collective understanding of who belongs in our neighborhoods, cities, regions, and nations is changing? And to what extent have the urban planning and design professions enabled or constrained these transformations? The 49th issue of Harvard Design Magazine, guest-edited by Anita Berrizbeitia and Diane Davis, addresses “the status of the...

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    Between Worlds: China’s WWII Interpreters and Their Divergent Fates in China, Taiwan, and the United States

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    David Cheng Chang is an associate professor of humanities and the associate director of Global China Center at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. While at Radcliffe, he is using interdisciplinary source materials to write a book that will weave together the personal histories of more than 3,000 Chinese interpreters for the American and British allied forces during World War II with the larger military, political, diplomatic, and social history of World War II, the Chinese Civil War, the Korean War, and the Cold War. Join Chang as he discusses this project and the...

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    Daniela Bleichmar, “The history of cochineal and the changing value of Mexican indigenous environmental knowledge, ca. 1500–1800”

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    Before the development of synthetic dyes in the second half of the 1800s, natural dyes were some of the most prized and sought-after commodities in the global economy. This talk uses historical images and texts to excavate changing approaches to indigenous environmental knowledge in colonial Mexico and early modern Europe through the study of cochineal.

    This insect, native to the Americas, produced the world's best quality and most valuable red dye from the 1520s until the rise of the modern chemical dye industry. Long used by indigenous people in the Americas, under Spanish...

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    The Climate of Grief

    Location: 

    Harvard Divinity School—Online

    This conversation is part of the series "Weather Reports: The Climate of Now." The featured speaker is poet Victoria Chang.

    Victoria Chang writes in her New York Times Notable Book of 2020, Obit, “I always knew that grief was something I could smell. But I didn’t know that it’s not actually a noun but a verb. That it moves.” After the deaths of her parents, she refused to write elegies; instead, Chang wrote poetic obituaries of the beautiful, broken world that surrounds her (many see them...

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    Rachel Dorothy Tanur Memorial Lecture: Andrea Roberts, “The Community Core: Making and Keeping Place Heritage in Texas’s Freedom Colonies”

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    In Texas’ freedom colonies — African American settlements founded 1866-1930 — descendants of community founders engage in heritage conservation by keeping folklife, sacred rituals, and other cultural expressions that sustain communities’ Black sense of place. However, rural, vernacular African American placekeeping strategies are rarely framed in planning and architectural history as transgressive or expressions of Black liberation.

    Presenting an excerpt from her forthcoming book, Never Sell the Land, Dr. Roberts shares case studies in which descendants of Deep East...

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    Decoding AI: The Science, Policies, Applications, and Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly permeating many facets of our lives, raising both hope and concern about possibilities for our future. AI is transforming domains as disparate as science, medicine, commerce, government, law, the military, and the arts, and in doing so, it is forcing us to grapple with practical, political, and philosophical questions about humans and the nature of human interaction. The Harvard Radcliffe Institute Science Symposium, featuring speakers from disparate disciplines and industries, will examine AI, its impact, and its ethics by exploring current and...

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    Jane Bennett, “Out for a Walk in the Middle Voice”

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    It begins with two strolls: one by the 19th-century naturalist Henry Thoreau, who finds himself inscribed by vegetal forms and powers; and one by Paul Klee's graphic line as it enlists the energies of a human hand to become a doodle. These two walks expose the radical entanglement of human and nonhuman activities, and they call for a lexicon able to acknowledge such a trans-specied kind of agency.

    How to bespeak such joint efforts in ways that give the nonhuman its due? What grammar, syntax, and verbal forms best acknowledge the contributions of human, animal, vegetal, mineral...

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    The Art of Making Day of the Dead Altars

    Location: 

    Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology—Online

    Live interpretation in English and Spanish

    Interpretación en vivo en inglés y español

    Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a Mexican tradition that seeks to commemorate and celebrate the lives of loved ones who have passed away. The creation of an altar is a key component of this celebration, which is both bittersweet and joyful. In this program, Los Angeles-based artist, educator, and altarista Ofelia Esparza will share her philosophy and approach to making altars and to keeping Día de los Muertos alive in the U.S. She will be joined by her daughter,...

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    “We know and walk together”: Contemporary Indigenous Art in Brazil

    Location: 

    Harvard Museums of Science & Culture—Online

    This event will be held in Portuguese with simultaneous English translation.

    One of the most exciting developments in Brazilian art and art history today is the emergence of Indigenous self-representation. The growing presence of Indigenous artists and art curators in exhibitions and museums in the country challenges traditional narratives and modes of display as it generates new spaces for the silenced voices of the over three-hundred Indigenous ethnic groups that inhabit the territories of Brazil. In 2017, the Rio de Janeiro Museum (MAR) organized the exhibition...

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    Songs in Dark Times: Yiddish Poetry of Struggle from Scottsboro to Palestine

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    Amelia M. Glaser is an associate professor of literature at UC San Diego and the author of Songs in Dark Times: Yiddish Poetry of Struggle from Scottsboro to Palestine, about leftist Yiddish poets who wrote about the struggles of non-Jewish ethnic minorities in the 1930s. Focusing on performative genres such as music, comedy, film, theater, and highly visible poetic performance, Glaser is working on a new book that will examine how artists have re-envisioned the history and future of Ukraine since the 2014 “Maidan” revolution. Join her to learn more about her book and her...

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    Kenzo Tange Lecture: Christ & Gantenbein and OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen, interviewed by Jeannette Kuo

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    Join the Harvard Graduate School of Design for an interview by Jeannette Kuo (Assistant Professor in Practice at Harvard GSD and founding partner of KARAMUK KUO) with Swiss architects Emanuel Christ and Christoph Gantenbein, and OFFICE founders Kersten Geers and David Van Severen.

    ...

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    Margaret McCurry Lectureship in the Design Arts: Jade Kake, “Indigenous Urbanism”

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    Jade Kake (Ngāpuhi, Te Arawa, Te Whakatōhea) leads a small team at Matakohe Architecture + Urbanism, a kaupapa Māori design studio based in Whangārei in the Te Tai Tokerau region of Aotearoa New Zealand. The architectural department of the studio is focused on working primarily with Māori community clients on their papakāinga, marae, commercial and community projects, whilst the pūrākau (culture narrative) integration strand focuses on working to facilitate meaningful hapū participation in the design of major civic, commercial and education projects within their rohe. Matakohe are also...

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    Frederick Law Olmsted Lecture: Jamaica Kincaid

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    Jamaica Kincaid is a widely acclaimed and fiercely original writer known for her novels, short stories, and essays, including writings on her life as a gardener. She was also staff writer for the New Yorker from 1973 to 1996 and has been a contributor for the Village Voice.

    She is beloved by generations of readers who discovered her fiction, including Annie John and “Girl,” in high school and is admired by critics for her daring and unorthodox body of work. Answering claims that her fiction and essays are characterized by anger, Kincaid says, “The...

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    Rouse Visiting Artist Lecture: Zoe Leonard with José Esparza Chong Cuy

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    The artist Zoe Leonard will present a work in progress titled Al Rio/To the River and will engage in conversation about the project with curator José Esparza Chong Cuy.

    Al Rio/To the River is a large-scale photographic project centered on the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo, in particular the 1,200-mile section of the river that is used to demarcate the international boundary between Mexico and the United States. Begun in 2016 and currently still a work in progress, the work engages in a sustained observation of the water, surrounding landscape, and built environment,...

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    American Women and the Ongoing Battle to Save Democracy

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    Jennifer Rubin, the author of Resistance: How Women Saved Democracy from Donald Trump (William Morrow, 2021) and a Washington Post opinion writer, will join Michel Martin, weekend host of NPR’s All Things Considered, in a conversation about the persistent threat to American democracy and the central role women from across the political spectrum played in opposing and ultimately defeating Trump. Rubin will discuss how American women redefined US politics and, looking ahead, will examine women’s importance to defending the rule of law and multiracial democracy.

    ...

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    Airbrush, Instamatics, and Funk: Art, Pop, and New York City’s Long 1970s

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    A presentation from 2021–2022 Walter Jackson Bate Fellow Uri McMillan.

    Uri McMillan, an associate professor in the Department of African American Studies and Department of English at UCLA, is a cultural historian who researches and writes in the interstices between black cultural studies, performance studies, queer theory, and contemporary art. He is writing a book about the effervescent artistic practices and networks of affiliation of three artists living and working in 1970s New York City: the Jamaican American visual artist Grace Jones, the Nuyorican illustrator Antonio...

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    Loeb Lecture: Reginald Dwayne Betts, “Felon: A play; A discourse”

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    From the speaker, Reginald Dwayne Betts:

    "Felon: An America Washi Tale is about re-imagining paper. A solo performance that begins with the pages of a book being slid into a cell, traverses stoves made of toilet paper, kites from a father, handwritten affidavits, legal complaints, handmade paper, certificates of pardon, and a 1,000 squares fashioned from the clothing of men serving life sentences, the variety of papers that reveals what is possible and burdened by prison. Here, I weave traditional theater, poetry, fine art, and Japanese paper making aesthetic...

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    Monuments Reimagined: Public Art in Our Communities

    Location: 

    Harvard Ed Portal—Online

    Join policy makers, urban designers, and artists in Boston and Cambridge for a discussion about the future of public art!

    Public art has the potential to make a community a more vibrant and welcoming place. Free and accessible to all, it also has the power to provoke debate about our shared cultural experience. As engaged citizens call for the removal of certain public monuments that evoke harmful systems, the conversation about the role of public art in our communities gains momentum.

    On October 5, join City of Boston Chief of Arts & Culture Kara Elliott-Ortega...

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