Hear Theaster Gates, one of the world’s most influential living artists, discuss his career and art practice. As a socially engaged artist, Gates's art has transformed places and aims to improve the lives of the people who live there. During this talk, the artist will share his thoughts about his ongoing artistic endeavours on questions of land ownership, displacement, and interracial relationships. Gates will be talking with Professor Michael Ralph and British fashion designer Grace Wales Bonner.
Got a question for Theaster Gates? Take part in our audience Q&A - your chance to talk to the artist.
This event is organised by Tate Liverpool and supported by the Lunder Institute of American Art at Colby College. The Lunder Institute for American Art supports innovative research and creative production that expands the boundaries of American art. A collaborative initiative with the Colby College Museum of Art located in central Maine, the Lunder Institute invites visiting artists, scholars, and museum professionals to engage across disciplines with Colby faculty and students.
Theaster Gates is currently Distinguished Visiting Artist and Director of Artist Initiatives at the Lunder Institute for American Art at Colby College, which seeks to challenge received ideas and expand interpretive communities in he fields of American art history and practice. Gates's visit to and research on Malaga Island led to the creation of this exhibition.
Theaster Gates lives and works in Chicago. His work explores value, economy and material exchange in charged social contexts. Gates created the Rebuild Foundation in 2010, a non-profit platform aimed at regenerating communities through neighbourhood revitalisation. Many of the foundation's initiatives have focused on Chicago's South Side, creating hubs and archives for black culture, which serve as catalysts for discussions on race, equality, space and history.
Michael Ralph is Director of the Africana Studies Program and teaches in the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis and the School of Medicine at New York University. His research integrates political science, economics, history and medical anthropology through an explicit focus on debt, slavery, insurance, forensics and incarceration. In 2015 he published Forensics of Capital and he is currently working on 2 books that centre on slavery, insurance and incarceration. Professor Ralph has built the multimedia archive, Treasury of Weary Souls, the world's most comprehensive ledger of insured slaves.
Grace Wales Bonner
Grace Wales Bonner is a British fashion designer. In 2014 she launched her line, Wales Bonner, which proposes a distinct notion of luxury via a hybrid of European and Afro-Atlantic approaches. In 2015 she was awarded Emerging Menswear Designer at the British Fashion Awards. In 2019 she collaborated with Dior to re-interpret their New Look silhouette for the Resort 2020 collection. Shortly after, she was announced the winner of the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund. She also presented A Time for New Dreams at London’s Serpentine Gallery, which explored magical resonances within black cultural and aesthetic practices.