"A terrible mechanism [is] on the march, its gears multiplying." So begins the first essay of the 48th issue of Harvard Design Magazine, guest edited by Mark Lee, chair of the department of architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and Florencia Rodriguez, editorial director of -Ness Magazine. The issue takes as its theme the slippery and ambiguous figure of "America," seen through the lens of the built and unbuilt environment. Americanization—once the "terrible mechanism" bent on pressing capitalist values on emerging economies everywhere—is now in...
*For high school students living or attending school in Allston-Brighton or Cambridge!*
Remember Play Doh when you were a kid? What if we told you you're never too old to play with clay? Sign up for our 4-session Zoom clay class, where we will make and decorate mugs, phone holders, sculptures—whatever you want, really!—using our hands and objects you can find at home. No experience necessary!
We'll teach you everything you need to know, PLUS we'll mail you all the stuff you'll need! You'll get to keep your final product and, as an added bonus, we'll...
Climate change has brought renewed and urgent interest in the relationship between human behavior and the mass extinction of animal species and their habitats. Early modern Europeans, too, were preoccupied with extinction, and many works of art bear witness to their concerns. Focusing on Antonio Tempesta’s print A Wolf Hunt, with a Dead Ram as Bait, this talk will examine the period’s various notions of extinction, while also drawing connections with contemporary thinking on the subject in museums and elsewhere.
Explore works that are shaped by decay and generated through destruction. This interactive tour looks closely at the beauty that remains in the wake of decay in the Thai sculpture The Standing Buddha (7th–8th century), the bronze Daphne (1930) by sculptor Renée Sintenis, and the painting Legno e Rosso 3 (1956) by Alberto Burri.
In this tour, Harvard student, Adam Sella, explores the action of red, yellow, and blue in three works of art. For red, it’s a panel from Mark Rothko’s Harvard Murals (1962); for yellow, the painting A Nayika and Her Lover (c. 1660–70) by an unknown artist from India; and for blue, Pablo Picasso’s Blue period painting Mother and Child (c. 1901). Taking our Forbes Pigment Collection as a springboard, the tour also looks at the material basis of these colors, their history, and their power to stir emotions.
Mind Brain Behavior Interfaculty Initiative at Harvard—Online
How does an actor transform into a character? What is the process that allows this transformation to happen? What is the role of the audience in completing the theatrical event? Join Diane Paulus, Professor of the Practice in Theater, Dance & Media and English, for a behind the scenes look at the creative process of making theater.
Harvard’s Kaitlin Hao confronts the history of museum practice through a critical look at three works installed at the Harvard Art Museums: Eight Men Ferrying a Statue of the Buddha (from Mogao Cave 323, Dunhuang, China), a Liberian (Mano) "chief’s mask," and Nature Study by Louise Bourgeois.
Following the inaugural MICD Just City Mayoral Fellowship–a collaboration between the Mayors’ Institute on City Design (MICD) and Harvard GSD's Just City Lab–the seven inaugural MICD Just City Mayoral Fellows discuss how to tackle racial injustices in each of their cities through planning and design interventions.
Explore the relationship between art and the origins of its creation, looking at different ways in which art objects and artists get removed from their original cultural contexts. This interactive tour looks closely at the seventh-century mural painting Eight Men Ferrying a Statue of the Buddha (from Mogao Cave 323, Dunhuang, China), the sculpture Torso of a Young Girl (1922) by Constantin Brancusi, and the easel painting Jocular Sounds (1929) by Wassily Kandinsky.
In 1867, nineteenth-century sanitary engineer George E. Waring, Jr. (1833–1898) published an influential manual entitled “Draining for Profit, Draining for Health,” reflecting the obsessions of his gilded age—wealth, health, and miasma. Even as the germ theory emerged, Waring supported the anti-contagionist miasma theory, positing that disease spread through the air as a poisonous vapor, emerging from damp soil. He applied his knowledge of farm drainage to an urban theory of public health, with a drainage plan for Central Park; a sewerage system for Memphis; a transformation of New York...
Join the Harvard Law School Library for a live screening and panel discussion of “Racially Charged: America’s Misdemeanor Problem,” a new documentary about the racial history and modern discrimination of the American misdemeanor system. The film, produced by Brave New Films and directed by Robert Greenwald, was inspired by HLS Professor Alexandra Natapoff’s book, “Punishment Without Crime: How Our Massive Misdemeanor System Traps the Innocent and Makes America More Unequal.”
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online
Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, a professor and South African National Research Foundation Chair in Violent Histories and Transgenerational Trauma at Stellenbosch University, focuses her research on trauma in the aftermath of gross human rights violations and on remorse and forgiveness that emerge in victim-perpetrator dialogues. At Radcliffe, Gobodo-Madikizela returns to the archive of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to think through the horrific violence in contemporary South Africa. Is this violence a reflection of “ghosts” from the past, the death of hope in the present, or a...
Renewed uprising against the death-making apparatus of police and prison demands that we attend to the relationship between property and personhood, specifically to how the theft of land is facilitated by the theft of life. This talk, given on the occasion of International Women’s Day and during the week that marks the first anniversary of Breonna Taylor’s killing, focuses on the propertization of the gendered subject in the making of whiteness. The time of abolition, Roy argues, requires the undoing of gender-property logics. What does this entail within the university? Speaking as "...
In this talk, photography curator Makeda Best will explore the history of photography collecting at Harvard and share her work to foreground new perspectives, contexts of interpretation, and historical connections.
This is the third lecture in the Arnold Arboretum's 2021 Director's Lecture Series. Tiya Miles takes up the pecan tree as inspiration for exploring the meaning of trees in the lives of enslaved African Americans. Using a family heirloom, slave narratives, oral histories, and missionary records, her talk underscores the importance of trees in the Black experience of captivity and resistance, ultimately revealing the centrality of the natural world to Black, and indeed human, survival.
At the time of its founding in 1872, the land on which the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is sighted was a patchwork of farmland and forest. As the Arboretum was planted, pathways were developed to lead people through the picturesque landscape. As the landscape developed, economies shifted, wars took place, and directors changed. Each of these factors subtly influenced shifts in the park’s path system. Join the Arnold Arboretum on Zoom with Jared Rubinstein as he reveals the layers of change in this beloved landscape.
Examine the tension between nature and artifice in constructions of feminine beauty. She will lead an interactive discussion of Under the Cherry Blossoms, an early 16th-century illustration for The Tale of Genji by Tosa Mitsunobu, and two sculptures by women: Daphne (1930) by Renée Sintenis and Nature Study (1986) by Louise Bourgeois.
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online
The stories of Asian American women extend far beyond the geographic borders of the United States. Inspired by tales and objects from family history, their narratives often reflect the transnational nature of Asian American women’s lives. Despite the importance of these narratives to expanding and complicating our understanding of war, migration, inequity, and difference, the accounts and perspectives of Asian American women have often been overlooked in formal records, and the tangible objects providing critical evidence of their histories have been ignored. This program will bring...
History is a manner of thinking about the world, grounded in the places we design, construct, and inhabit. Design offers the opportunity to re-imagine the world around us, today and for the future. We might draw from history, or draw upon it; certainly, it is to be hoped that we are drawn to it, as designers and historians. The purpose of landscape history—not reducible to memory nor timelines nor styles—is to produce and share knowledge of how we have come to be who and where we are. We will gather across studios we collectively inhabit to draw attention to and lessons from the...
Toxic Beauty. Troubled Allure. Fallow Fairness. Not Vacant, Open. Not Abandoned, Changing.
D.I.R.T. cultivates a perverse attraction and an unapologetic approach to wrecked landscapes.
Not Restorative, Regenerative.
The work holds back. It doesn’t make everything perfectly okay. The work listens. It hears them above trying to make sense, below the ground producing heritage. The work hurts. It flips preconceptions of stuck minds. The work is messy. It’s all about finding. The work emerges.
It doesn’t descend. The work leaves. It lets you in....