Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy

Friday, March 23, 2018
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM (ET)
WCC WCC 104 Cantor Fitzgerald Art Gallery
Event Type
Callinan, Matthew S
Hurford Center for the Arts and Humanities

 Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy

Curated by Vanessa Kwan and Kimberly Phillips

Featuring: Billy-Ray Belcourt, Mike Bourscheid, Justine Chambers, Noa Giniger, and Ginger Brooks Takahashi

March 23—April 27, 2018

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy proposes a re-consideration of melancholia defined through our contemporary condition. Resisting the historical definition of melancholy as an affliction that creates disorder or inactivity, this exhibition reimagines passive sadness as powerful refusal, a conscious (or unconscious) “standing aside,” a wilful production of generative failures and resistant potencies. Each of the contributing artists begins with the idea that outside the boundaries of “contentment” resides a potent flourishing. Unwilling is a resistance and a proposition: it responds to the profound cultural reckoning we are witnessing at this moment in time, as the boundaries and exclusions of state-defined citizenship become increasingly fraught. The exhibition asserts that sadness might be a defining aspect of an active and resistant subject, and proposes that the future, if it is to hold us at all, must address this subject head on.

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy is made possible with support from the John B. Hurford '60 Center for the Arts and Humanities. The exhibition is organized in conjunction with the Hurford Center's 2017-18 Faculty Seminar "The Arts of Melancholy" led by Richard Freedman (Music).

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