Open Engagement: Emergent Futures
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22 September 2019
By Lee Walton
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Open Engagement 2019 / Emergent Futures: State of the Field

Three days of exchanges and social research in North Carolina's Triangle & Triad


September 13 - Chapel Hill

September 14 - Durham

September 15 - Greensboro


For a full decade, Open Engagement has brought together artists, activists, and scholars for an intensive yearly conference in a wide range of cities like New York, Chicago, Oakland, Portland, and Regina. Founded by artists and characterized by its grassroots self-organization, OE has stood out as a key context for socially engaged practitioners and theorists alike. Participants have ranged from the local to the international, including people like Angela Davis, Suzanne Lacy, Lucy Lippard, Mel Chin, Rick Lowe, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, J. Morgan Puett, Tom Finkelpearl, Claire Doherty, Michael Rakowitz, Pablo Helguera, Paul Ramirez Jonas, Emily Jacir, Julie Ault, and Theaster Gates. 


As part of Open Engagement's research year to re-assess its future and evaluate the needs of the field, they will be hosted in the NC Triangle & Triad September 13-15 2019 by the FHI Social Practice Lab at Duke, UNC-Greensboro, UNC-Chapel Hill, and various local organizations. The OE team will keynote the weekend, sharing their trajectory and making space for conversations on local needs, followed by an emergent strategy training. Led by Alexis Pauline Gumbs to assist in thinking about possible futures, the training is based on the work of adrienne maree brown and has been arranged with the Emergent Strategy Institute (ESII). NC partners will present a series of programs and events highlighting the work of socially engaged artists, activists, students, scholars, community members, as well as organizations working within the area. This event has been organized by Pedro Lasch (Duke) and Lee Walton (UNC-G), in collaboration with all listed individuals and groups.


Special thanks to all of the above participants and co-organizers, as well as Laura Ritchie, Quran Karriem, Adam Carlin, Sunny Spillane, Amy Russell, and Emily Ensminger. In addition to the above listed host organizations, Emergent Futures has been made possible through the generous support of UNC-Greensboro School of Art, Carolina Performing Arts, and Duke University’s Provost, Vice Provost for the Arts, Vice Provost for Interdisciplinary Studies, Global Affairs, Arts & Sciences Dean, Humanities Dean, Dean of Academic Affairs, Franklin Humanities Institute, the Department of Art, Art History, and Visual Studies, The Coraddi, and the Biddle Fund.

The Photographs below are courtesy of Irvin Maldonado

Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds: Unofficial Audio Book

Collective reading of Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds, by adrienne maree brown. Over 30 people in small groups read and recorded partial segments of the book with ensuing conversation. The creation of this audio book was an emergent strategy in process and also part of Emergent Futures: State of the Field, an Open Engagement gathering. The author, adrienne maree brown, shares the lineage, core principles and elements of emergent strategy. It features interviews with activists, and a toolbox of spells, rituals and emergent strategy activities that anyone can use in their creative and organizing work. – Description from Allied Media Projects.

Tags: Projects, art
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