Camp Aesthetics & Desi Visual Culture: Brown Bag Lunch Talk


A Brown Bag Lunch Talk with Alpesh Patel

November 22, Monday
12:30 to 1:45 pm
Alpesh Patel, CSGS Visiting Scholar and Independent Art Historian/Cultural Arts Producer
In the Western art world, a curious alliance has formed between those that are sympathetic to identity politics and those that have always been suspect of aesthetic judgment being tied to any notion of identity: both groups agree that we are in a post-identity era. The former does so purportedly to distinguish between different waves of artistic production concerned with primarily racial, gendered, and sexual difference, but seems to fall back on conceptualizing identity as positional or fixed; while the latter suggests that we are post or over identity, but only to return artistic value back to a dis-embodied art object. Drawing on camp theoretical models and their connections with theories of aesthetics, phenomenology, and identity construction (colonial, gender, and queer) and honing in on an exploration of Desi (the Hindi word meaning “from my country”) as affective and visual knowledge, this talk examines a series of contemporary artworks that suggest much more complex understandings of difference as multi-sensorial, spatial, and temporal configurations between and within subjects.
41-51 East 11th Street, Room 741
between University Place and Broadway
(wheelchair access at 85-87 University Place, between 11th and 12th Streets)
Part of the Brown Bag Lunch Talk Series — bring your own lunch and we’ll provide beverages and dessert!
Image: detail of artist Rina Banerjee’s 2003 mixed media installation, Take Me, Take Me, Take Me . . . to the Palace of Love. Installed in Peabody Essex Museum, Essex, MA.