Visible/Invisible: Designing Afro-Futures

This event has passed.

Center for Design & Material Culture
@ 5:00 pm

Visible/Invisible: Designing Afro-Futures

Thursday, November 4 @ 5pm CT
This event has passed. View the recording on the CDMC Kaltura Channel.

D. Denenge Duyst-Akpem presents on her multi-hyphenate practice as an award-winning, self-described “space sculptor”, designer, writer, performance artist, and educator whose practice and scholarship bridge disciplines of design, ritual and ecology. This lecture highlights Duyst-Akpem’s ongoing engagement with site, body, visibility, and identity via audience-interactive performances; through design for healing and protection; and in mobilizing radical pedagogical approaches to creating new futures of equity and possibility. She will discuss virtual performances and museum installation activations, looking over two decades of practice in the realm of Afrofuturity, considering artistic agency within digital space amidst pandemic, and exploring how art can serve as catalyst for transformation.

Duyst-Akpem is Associate Professor, Adjunct, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she is core faculty in the Low-Residency MFA Program and offers cross-disciplinary courses in art history and designed objects, among other departments. She received a 2018 Marion Kryczka Excellence in Teaching Award, an inaugural Diversity Advisory Group 2016 Teaching Awards for Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion, and is a 2020 LaBecque Laureate, 2016-17 Rebuild Foundation/U-Chicago Place Lab Fellow and 2014 NEH Institute Fellow. Her work has been featured in museum exhibitions and publications worldwide including ICA London, Red Bull Arts, MCA, AGO, U.S. Library of Congress, U-Minnesota Press, MIT Press, and more. Through Denenge Design and In The Luscious Garden, focused on holistic, conceptual approaches to human-centered design, Duyst-Akpem creates fantastical interactive environments and performances to interrogate, titillate, decolonize, and empower, inspired by Sun Ra and asking: “Who controls the future?”

This event is part of the Equity & Justice Network Design Series and co-sponsored by the Design Studies Department.

Image Credit: D. Denenge Duyst-Akpem in the Original Camo Coat, Lurie Garden, Millennium Park, Chicago, Winter 2018. Photo courtesy Hilary Higgins/Chicago Tribune.

image of a woman wearing a camo coat and camo wrap and standing outside with the Chicago skyline behind her