EMPAC Spring Season Kicks Off with Kapwani Kiwanga’s Multimedia “Afrogalactica”

Troy, NY — The Spring 2018 season at The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute kicks off on Tuesday, January 16, with Canadian artist Kapwani Kiwanga’s multimedia performance Afrogalactica. The performance begins at 7PM in the EMPAC Theater.

Afrogalactica is an ongoing project synthesizing film, poetry, mythology, pop culture, science, and scholarly discourse to challenge historical narratives regarding the African diaspora. An anthropologist, social scientist, and award-winning filmmaker, Kiwanga weaves together fact and fiction to examine colonial struggle and African subjectivity. Drawing on the tradition of Afrofuturism, the performance casts Kiwanga as a speculative anthropologist who charts alternate histories and imagines new possible futures, integrating personal, canonical, and supernatural stories along the way.

Born in Hamilton, Canada, and currently based in Paris, Kiwanga studied anthropology and comparative religions at McGill University. She was the 2016 Commissioned Artist at the Armory Show, New York, and has recently presented her work in solo exhibitions at Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, The University of Chicago; The Power Plant, Toronto; La Ferme de Buisson, Noisiel; South London Gallery, London; and the Jeu de Paume, Paris.

The Spring 2018 season at EMPAC features the premiere of commissioned works by Laure ProuvostElena Demyanenko and Erika Mijlin, new performances by Ni’Ja WhitsonMallory CatlettEllen ArkbroMichael Gordon, and David Lang, a work-in-progress presentation by Ephraim Asili and Sonia Sanchez, talks by Johannes Goebel and Patrick Keilty, and film events with Ulysses JenkinsJorge Jácome, Naeem Mohaiemen, and Beatriz Santiago Muñoz.

For more information, please visit empac.rpi.edu.

The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is where the arts, sciences, and technology interact with and influence each other by using the same facilities and technologies, and by breathing the same air. EMPAC hosts artists and researchers to produce and present new work in a building designed with sophisticated architectural and technical infrastructure. Four exceptional venues and studios enable audiences, artists, and researchers to inquire, experiment, develop, and experience the ever-changing relationship between ourselves, technology, and the worlds we create around us. EMPAC is an icon of the New Polytechnic, a new paradigm for cross-disciplinary research and learning at Rensselaer, the nation’s oldest technological research university.

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