Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons presents Where Do We Migrate To?

Xaviera Simmons, Superunknown (Alive In The), 2010.

Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons presents Where Do We Migrate To?

Parsons The New School for Design

February 3–April 15, 2012

Opening:
February 2, 6.30–9pm 

Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons
2 West 13th Street, New York

www.newschool.edu/sjdc

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The Sheila C. Johnson Design Center (SJDC) at Parsons The New School for Design will present Where Do We Migrate To? (February 3–April 15, 2012), an exhibition exploring the diverging ways in which artists have addressed forms of migration, experiences of displacement, and questions of belonging. A public opening reception will be held on Thursday, February 2 from at 6:00 p.m. in the galleries.

Where Do We Migrate To? features the work of nineteen internationally recognized artists and collectives, including Acconci Studio, Svetlana Boym, Blane De St. Croix, Lara Dhondt, Brendan Fernandes, Claire Fontaine, Nicole Franchy, Andrea Geyer, Isola and Norzo, Kimsooja, Pedro Lasch, Adrian Piper, Raqs Media Collective, Société Réaliste, Julika Rudelius, Xaviera Simmons, Fereshteh Toosi, Philippe Vandenberg, and Eric Van Hove. The exhibition includes photography, painting, sculpture, mixed media, audio, and video works.

“While our world is shaped by incessant globalization, the migrant remains a figure marked entirely by their transgression of national boundaries,” said curator Niels Van Tomme, Director of Arts and Media at Provisions Learning Project. “This exhibition was organized to challenge that notion, and suggest an alternative view of the migrant as a role model and, ultimately, an agent of change.”

The works capture the experiences of isolation, acceptance and bureaucracy that are common to migrants around the world. Andrea Geyer’s “Interim” is an 80-page tabloid newspaper telling the story of a young female immigrant from an unnamed country moving to an unnamed American city. In “Guías de Ruta,” Pedro Lasch presents travel maps used by Latin American immigrants crossing the U.S. border, alongside interviews about the journey. Société Realiste’s EU Green Card Lottery Registration Office mimics the game playing of state bureaucracies.

“In foregrounding these political and psychological journeys, these artists map a globalized world continually riven and remade by migrant experiences. The experiences and issues raised by the show resonate deeply within the highly international communities of both The New School and New York,” said Radhika Subramaniam, director and chief curator of the SJDC.

Where Do We Migrate To is one of a number of exhibitions on view in the SJDC this spring. Other highlights include Layered SPURA: Spurring Conversations on People and Cities, an exploration of urban renewal efforts on Manhattan’s Lower East Side (January 23–February 25), and an exhibition exploring Occupy Wall Street as a living archive. Please visit the SJDC website for more information.

Where Do We Migrate To? is organized by the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where it was on view in spring 2011. The exhibition and exhibition catalogue are made possible, in part, by the support of the Flemish Government through Flanders House New York.

The Sheila C. Johnson Design Center is an award-winning campus center for Parsons The New School for Design that combines learning and public spaces with exhibition galleries to provide an important new downtown destination for art and design programming. The mission of the Center is to generate an active dialogue on the role of innovative art and design in responding to the contemporary world. Its programming encourages an interdisciplinary examination of possibility and process, linking the university to local and global debates. The center is named in honor of its primary benefactor, New School Trustee and Parsons Board Chair Sheila C. Johnson. The design by Lyn Rice Architects is the recipient of numerous awards, including an Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects.

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