Joan Kee and Serubiri Moses: Mao and Afro-Asia in Context

October 6, 2023 – October 6, 2023
7:00 pm

172 Classon Ave
Brooklyn, NY

Samuel Fosso, Self-portrait as Mao Zedong, 2013.

Samuel Fosso, Self-portrait as Mao Zedong, 2013.

“Who are our enemies? Who are our friends?,” asked Mao Zedong in his storied 1926 essay on the failures of revolution. These questions resonate with special force through the constituent assemblies of Afro Asia. A term whose very inception stemmed from the issue of coexistence thrown into stark relief during the Korean War and throughout decades of decolonization on the African and Asian continents, Afro Asia compels thinking beyond allyship and solidarity to speculate on the complexity of being together. What, for example, would an art history for a global majority look like?  How, for example, does Maoism reframe such a history?  If Afro Asia entails different angles of incidence onto ideas of “community,” how do economic, legal, and social structures including caste unfold?

Following the recent publication of Joan Kee’s The Geometries of Afro Asia: Art Beyond Solidarity, join the author and e-flux journal contributing editor Serubiri Moses in conversation with three partner-works:  Ed Bereal’s America, a Mercy Killing (1966-1975), Trinh T. Minh-ha’s Reassemblage (1982), and Samuel Fosso’s Raccord #5: Mine à ciel ouvert noyée de Banfora from the series Kolwezi (2011)—on Friday, October 6 at 7pm at e-flux.

Joan Kee is Professor in the History of Art at the University of Michigan and an occasional public interest lawyer in Detroit. Kee’s books include Contemporary Korean Art: Tansaekhwa and the Urgency of Method (2013), Models of Integrity: Art and Law in Post Sixties America (2019) and The Geometries of Afro Asia: Art Beyond Solidarityreleased this April.

Serubiri Moses is a curator and author based in New York City. He currently serves as faculty in art history at Hunter College and the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, and serves on the editorial team of e-flux journal.