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Summer Sessions: Assembly

Jul 7, 2019 – Jul 14, 2019

Assembly refers to the ways in which we organize, socially or politically, around resources and to accomplish goals. We will address histories of art and activism and the ways in which cultural producers have engaged with politics. And we will consider how we might assemble minds and bodies, working across and through difference(s) toward common good(s).

What forms of assembly are most effective in creating commons, today? What could we learn by thinking about assembly in relation to common wealth and common debts? How are these issues being explored by artists, designers, activists, and local organizations?

Facilitator: Rebecca Keel

Session contributors include Gregory Sholette (Queens College, New York), Sarmistha Talukdar of Southerners on New Ground (SONG), Chaz Antoine (6Pic + VCU, Richmond), and Ice Cream Social.

Wednesday, July 10 // Social Session, 6–9 pm

Open to the Public
For this week’s Social Sessions, the ICA’s Gallery 1 will be turned over to Ice Cream Social, a Richmond-based DIY dance collective centered around giving a space to queer and trans people of color. Hosted by Chaz Antoine, the evening will be a celebration of black joy through movement, music, and bodies in the space. Cash bar. All ages. Runs until 9 pm.

Saturday, July 13 // Program Session

Open to the Public
Program Sessions invite us to go deeper into each week’s topic through a mix of discussion and experience, and to reflect together about what to carry forward.

1:00–1:15 pm | Welcome:
Rebecca Keel and Noah Simblist

1:15–2:15 pm | Talk
Artist, activist, and writer Gregory Sholette considers recent intersections of art, activism, and assembly, drawing on writings collected in his 2017 book Delirium and Resistance. Sholette is a Professor at Queens College, CUNY, where he co-runs Social Practice Queens with artist Chloë Bass.

2:30-3:30 | Workshops
This workshop will focus on the creative potential we have to collectively assemble for social change. Led by members of SONG (Southerners on New Ground)—Dr. Sarmistha Talukdar and Rebecca Keel MSW—participants will be guided through a conversation about Demystifying the Creative Process, Deep Listening, Applying a Theory of Change, Intelligent Mischief, Visionary Thinking, and how these principles can be applied to Assembly.

3:45–4:15 pm | Reflection
What should we carry forward from this Session? We will reflect, discuss, and take notes on the gallery walls.

4:30–5:30 pm | WRIR “Local Voices Live”
Reflecting on “assembly” with leaders of this week’s Session. Moderated by Chelsea Higgs Wise, host of WRIR’s “Race Capitol.”

Ongoing video screening: Jonas Staal, New World Summit – Brussels, Video (2014)

Summer Sessions: Commonwealth

Jun 15, 2019 – Aug 18, 2019


Summer Sessions: Introduction

Saturday, Jun 15

1:00 PM–5:00 PM


Summer Sessions: Natural Resources

Jun 18, 2019 – Jun 23, 2019


Summer Sessions: Built Environment

Jun 25, 2019 – Jun 30, 2019


Summer Sessions: Dependence / Independence

Jul 1, 2019 – Jul 7, 2019


Summer Sessions: Assembly

Jul 7, 2019 – Jul 14, 2019


Summer Sessions: Public Domain

Jul 16, 2019 – Jul 21, 2019


Summer Sessions: Reflections

Jul 22, 2019 – Aug 11, 2019


Summer Sessions: Closing

Aug 13, 2019 – Aug 18, 2019


Rebecca Keel

Gregory Sholette

Queens College, New York

Southerners on New Ground (SONG)

Chaz Antoine

6Pic + VCU, Richmond

Chelsea Higgs Wise


Sarmistha Talukdar

Southerners on New Ground

Ice Cream Social