I just got an email about this two-part virtual talk: “Whose Standards? Racial Equity in Craft & Design”
I’ll be attending at least the first event, if not both.
From the organizer:
I hope you will join us in October for a two-part conversation, Whose Standards? Racial Equity in Craft & Design, led by my colleague Alison Croney Moses, with a panel of guests from around the country.
This Eliot School Salon will unfold over two sessions, part of Boston Design Week and generously underwritten by Haystack Mountain School of Craft. You’ll find details and registration links here:
Part 1: Thursday Oct 8, 7pm
Part 2: Wednesday, Oct 14, 7pm
Are our foundations our own biggest roadblocks on the path to achieving racial equity in craft and design? Institutions in the field of craft and design engender cultures of elitism through gate-keeping and hierarchies of knowledge and aesthetics, resulting in white-dominated canons and histories. There is a growing awareness that representation must be racially diverse – from artists whose works enter collections or hang on walls, to staff and faculty hired as decision-makers and thought leaders. Yet, when racial equity is discussed in these overlapping fields, tokenism abounds, and community and education are devalued in favor of established (and exclusionary) academic and curatorial benchmarks. The structures that underpin them – themselves built on entrenched modes of white supremacy – are rarely, if ever, interrogated.
As white society wakes up to racial injustice, leaders in craft and design struggle with their own racial reckoning. Whose standards are we working within and towards? How must they be disrupted and dismantled to truly move forward racial equity? How can we be honest about the historic exclusion of people of color, and specifically black people, from all aspects of the field? What do we need to embrace, give up, and change, in order to gain true anti-racist transformation within craft and design?