Upcoming Symposium | Canal to Cuyahoga: Everlasting Plastics in Context

Case Western Reserve University’s Department of Art History & Art, in collaboration with SPACES and the Cleveland Museum of Art and supported by the Department of English at CWRU, is proud to host a public symposium in celebration of the internationally recognized exhibition Everlasting Plastics. Co-curated by Tizziana Baldenbro, Curator for Special Projects at SPACES, and Lauren Leving, Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, Everlasting Plastics is currently on view at the U.S. Pavilion of the 2023 Venice Architecture Biennale (5.20.2023 – 11.26.2023). The symposium will serve as a forum to consider our cultural relationship to the ubiquity of plastic, its impact on material cultures, and the consequences and possibilities it entangles for our collective futures.

The symposium will be held on Saturday, Oct. 7, 10-4, at the Gartner Auditorium of the Cleveland Museum of Art.

The day will begin with a panel discussion featuring the five contributing artists to Everlasting Plastics: Xavi Aguirre, Assistant Professor of Architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Detroit-based designer Simon Anton, cofounder of the design collective, “Thing Thing”; Ang Li, assistant professor at the Northeastern University School of Architecture; Norman Teague, assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Design; and Cleveland-based sculptor and conceptual artist Lauren Yeager. The panel will be moderated by Magdalena Moskalewicz, Chief Curator of FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art.

During the afternoon, attendees will have the opportunity to participate in small group breakout sessions.

The symposium will conclude with a keynote presentation co-sponsored by the Department of English at CWRU featuring interdisciplinary writer, artist, and theorist, Dr. Katie Schaag, Assistant Professor of Theater and Performance, Spelman College. Forging a space for connection and dialogue among artists, architects, curators, scholars, students, and members of the Cleveland community, we will trace the complex networks of plastic production, consumption, and waste from the Venetian Lagoon to the Lake Erie watershed, opening up new possibilities for innovation, collaboration, and revitalization.

This event is sponsored by the Department of Art History & Art at CWRU, the Department of English at CWRU, SPACES, and the Cleveland Museum of Art, with support from the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities, and FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art.


Register here!