An Urban Humanities Initiative


“Dwell in Other Futures” uses art and activism to imagine a different St. Louis

April 25, 2018

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The Fair Housing Act turned 50 this month, and lots of local organizations are using that milestone as an opportunity to look back and take stock of how far we've actually progressed since 1968. On Friday and Saturday, Dwell in Other Futures, "a two-day festival of art and ideas that explores the collisions of race, urbanism and futurism" will grapple with many of the same topics, but in a more nonlinear, speculative way. Organized by Rebecca Wanzo, Tim Portlock, and Gavin Kroeber with support from Wash U's Divided City Initiative, it's been in planning for more than a year.

Reimagine Urbanism in St. Louis This Week at “Dwell in Other Futures”

April 23, 2018

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For multidisciplinary artist and curator Gavin Kroeber, scholar and Washington University in St. Louis faculty member Dr. Rebecca Wanzo, and artist and Washington University faculty member Tim Portlock, exploring St. Louis’ many possible futures also doubles as an opportunity to dig deeper into more complicated questions. Driven by a desire to facilitate a more imaginative and accessible dialogue open to the St. Louis public, the trio organized “Dwell in Other Futures: Art / Urbanism / Midwest.” The two-day festival, scheduled for the weekend of April 27-28, features panels, performances and art installations all meditating on the intersections of race, urbanism, and futurism through multiple artistic practices and interpretations.

Dwell in Other Futures Art Fest Will Explore ‘Artivism’ in St. Louis

April 17, 2018

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The Dwell in Other Futures Art Fest will feature some major -isms: futurism, urbanism, activism and even, in the words of the organizers, "artivism." After its opening night at .ZACK (3224 Locust) on April 27, the festival will take place at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation (3716 Washington Boulevard) throughout the afternoon and evening of April 28. Organized by Gavin Kroeber, Rebecca Wanzo and Tim Portlock, it will feature poetry, visual art, sound and other creative mixes, all with a particular focus on the Midwest.

Atlas St. Louis: The Fate of The Landscape

February 1, 2018

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An Article in Art in America magazine on the "Charting the American Bottom" digital humanities project. The American Bottom region is the focus of a multi-year initiative led by artist Jesse Vogler and artist and researcher Matthew Fluharty. The project's primary manifestation is "Charting the American Bottom," a website featuring an interactive map of the region, photographs, texts describing key geographical features, and essays examining the poetics of the landscape as well as the histories of conflict and growth that have left physical traces on the terrain.

Photographer Matt Rahner On The Current Exhibit At The Griot Museum Of Black History In St. Louis

October 12, 2017

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Interview with featured artist and co-curator Matt Rahner about the origins of the "Eminent Domain/Displaced" exhibit, the long-term impacts of eminent domain, and the ways in which art and activism intersect. “Eminent Domain/Displaced” will be on display through Nov. 20, 2017.

St. Louis Gay History Unfolds on an Interactive Map

October 10, 2017

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On a map of the city, researchers at Washington University have placed 800 dots. They represent pieces of gay history, stitching together a story arc that has been told only in snippets. There on the interactive map are the nightclubs, the bookstores, the places of worship where those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer came together, safe harbors in a Midwest city resisting what was not considered normal. The project is a collaboration of Washington University, the Missouri History Museum, the State Historical Society of Missouri and the St. Louis LGBT History Project.

‘Eminent Domain/Displaced’ opens at The Griot, sheds light on black neighborhoods lost to redevelopment

October 4, 2017

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“Eminent Domain/Displaced,” a collaborative installation by Matt Rahner and Lois Conley, which opens October 6 at the Griot Museum, is a new exhibit that explores neighborhoods victimized by eminent domain. Visitors will view scenes from Kansas City’s Wendell Phillips neighborhood to Mill Creek Valley and St. Louis Place (home to the upcoming NGA West Campus), scenes of life before and after the headache ball.

No Place Like Home: St. Louis’ Eminent Domain History

September 22, 2017

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Historian Margaret Garb, of Arts & Sciences, writes on the Center for the Humanities site about St. Louis’ use of eminent domain. An exhibit opening and panel discussion took place on October 6-7, 2017.

New issue of “Off the Shelf” magazine highlights the collaboration between The Divided City Initiative and Washington University Libraries

December 12, 2016

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In March of this year, WU Libraries received funding for three collaborative projects through “The Divided City: An Urban Humanities Initiative." Check out page 10 of "Off The Shelf" magazine to learn more about the collaboration between The Divided City Initiative and Washington University Libraries!

‘Memorializing Displacement’ brought the world to St. Louis

November 30, 2016

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How to prevent the erasure of displaced communities? The Divided City, Washington University in St. Louis co-organized a workshop to explore the question, gathering local and global experts to tell their stories.