Book Launch and Talk: Places of a Present Past Presented by Publication Studio Hudson Friday, September 18 – 7:30

Book Launch and Talk: Places of a Present Past
Presented by Publication Studio Hudson
Friday, September 18 – 7:30pm 

In conjunction with the launch of the new publication Places of a Present Past from Publication Studio Hudson, curator Noah Simblist and artist Aissa Deebi will discuss the ways that contemporary artists address the traces of trauma left on particular sites; paying close attention to the scars left by the wounds of war. Simblist, the editor of the publication, will talk about the structure of the book, which touches on Japanese-Korean relations, post-Holocaust Germany, and Israel-Palestine. Deebi, one of the artists included in the publication, will talk about his work on the history of Palestinian Marxism. Books will be available for purchase.

About Places of a Past Present

Places of a Present Past brings together three exhibitions presented at the Pollock Gallery at SMU, Meadows School of the Arts in 2014. These exhibitions addressed the traces trauma left on particular sites; with specific focus on the colonial relationship between Japan and Korea in the first half of the twentieth century, the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and the legacy of the Holocaust in Germany and beyond. The artworks in this book are bound together by a historiographical impulse. The artists included here are less interested in the truth than the way that we feel through the legacies of past traumas. They reveal the oblique ways that we repress historical trauma, burying it in the very sites of their origin. Places of a Present Past is filled with an archaeological ethic, metaphorically digging down, both spatially and psychologically into the depths of transnational grief.

Noah Simblist is Chair and Associate Professor of Art at SMU Meadows School of the Arts. He works as an artist, curator and writer with a focus on art and politics in Israel-Palestine and has contributed to Art JournalModern PaintersArt PapersArt Lies, Art21 and other publications. Curatorial projects include Yuri’s Office by Eve Sussman and the Rufus Corporation at Ft Worth Contemporary Arts, Out of Place at Lora Reynolds Gallery, Tamy Ben Tor at Testsite, and Queer State(s) at the Visual Arts Center in Austin. He was also on the curatorial team for the 2013 Texas Biennial. Writing projects include interviews with Kader Attia, Khaled Hourani, AL Steiner and AK Burns, Omer Fast, Jill Magid, Walead Beshty, Yoshua Okon, and Nicholas Schaffhausen.

Aissa Deebi is a visual artist and scholar based in New York and Genève. His early work investigated the complexity of daily practices in post 1948 Palestine. Later Deebi’s work tackled the theme of immigration and alienation, which culminated into his PhD research, providing critical analysis of Arab Diaspora as a creative space. Most recently in 2013 Deebi’s work The Trial was exhibited at the Venice Biennale. Deebi has held several positions teaching art and design at a number of institutions including the Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton, in the United Kingdom, Centre de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey Design, Mexico and Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok Thailand and the American University of Cairo’s Arts Department as a Professor of Art and Design. Additionally Deebi was the Director of the Sharjah Art Gallery at the American University of Cairo. Currently Deebi is the Chair of the Department of Art and Design at Montclair State University, New Jersey. Deebi was a founding member of ArteEast in New York City, where he served as the first Director of the Visual Arts and Director of the Board. He is also a consultant on education for the Birzet University’s Museum in Palestine, and the curator of Mizna, the Arab American Art and Literature Magazine in Minneapolis, USA. His work was exhibited across the globe from the 55th International Venice Biennale, and the Queens Museum of Art in New York to the Haus am Lutzowplatz in Berlin, in addition to the Asia-Pacific