The Geometries of Afro Asia: Art beyond Solidarity (Paperback)
A groundbreaking method for writing art history, using the language of geometry.
How do we embark on a history of art from the assumption of a global majority, outside of essentializing categories like race or hollow proclamations of solidarity? With this book, Joan Kee presents a framework for understanding the rich and surprisingly understudied relationship between Black and Asian artists and the worlds they initiate through their work.
The Geometries of Afro Asia breaks down this relationship and chronology into points, angles, and trajectories. Spanning North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, Kee looks at the relationships that formed between Black and Asian artists at critical historical junctures—from civil rights struggles in the United States and the development of South Korea amid US military occupation in the 1960s and 1970s to debates over multiculturalism and critiques of globalization in the 1990s and 2010s. Through geometry, a language of magnitudes and alignments, Kee opens up new ways of seeing how artworks shape our lives and politics by getting us to commit some of our most valuable resources—time and attention—to one another.
About the Author
Joan Kee is Professor in the History of Art at the University of Michigan. She is the author of Contemporary Korean Art: Tansaekhwa and the Urgency of Method and Models of Integrity: Art and Law in Post-Sixties America.
"A reformulation in which ‘Afro’ and ‘Asia’ are loosed to orbit and collide with one another in new ways, presenting nuanced and timely approaches to exchange. . . . Kee’s rich interpretive geometry is a fractal that arcs towards the future."
"Wide-ranging and meticulously compiled, the volume examines artworks from the past century that push our conceptions of Afro Asia beyond the confines of identity and regionalism currently in institutional vogue."