Tracing Erasure: 41st Annual AHVA Graduate Symposium

Friday March 9, 2018
10:30 AM - 6:30 PM


Keynote address by Dr. Esra Akcan, Cornell University

Please join the UBC Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory (AHVA) for the 41st Annual UBC AHVA Graduate Symposium, Tracing Erasure. The symposium invites the exploration of art and architecture as sites of intervention in personal, social, and cultural narratives and memories. This collaborative project seeks to examine sites of struggle and potential transformation, where art and architecture, as loci of memory, challenge notions of historical stability and linearity. The duality of creation and destruction that accompanies cultural change may not be new, but a rapidly globalizing and shifting world brings renewed urgency to questions of how we as individuals and societies conceive, and have conceived, of ourselves, and our histories.

This symposium and its concurrent exhibition follow the university’s mandates to create a rich academic environment and to foster intellectual exchange among graduate students by providing a unique opportunity to engage in questions concerning cultural mediations within visual culture and the histories of art and architecture.


Multipurpose Room in the Liu Institute for Global Issues

6476 NW Marine Drive

University of British Columbia




Friday, March 9, 2018


10:30am Refreshments


10:45am Welcome and Opening Remarks

AHVA Graduate Symposium Organizing Committee


11:00am Session I

Lucas Kling

MA, University of British Columbia

Traumatic Memory and Memorial Culture: Loss, Absence, and Commemoration in the 21st Century Memorial Museum

Felicity Hamer

PhD, Concordia University

Killing Me Softly: Photographic Remembrance and Melancholia

Zhe Dong

PhD, University of Virginia

The Forming of Time: Reconsidering Iconic Semiotics through Mao Zedong’s Figurative Representations


12:30pm Lunch


1:30pm Session II

Emily Putnam

PhD, Carleton University

Norman Takeuchi and Emma Nishimura: Artistic Practice that Un-Historicizes the Japanese Canadian Internment in a Post-Redress Reality

Minah Lee

MA, Simon Fraser University

Third Skin: The Borderless Surface of Migrants’ Creative Resistance

Noni Brynjolson

PhD, University of California San Diego

Art against Displacement: The Production of Visibility in Mapping, Storytelling, and Community-Organizing Projects


3:00pm Break


3:15pm Session III

Michelle Lorna Nahanee

Squamish Nation

MA, Simon Fraser University

Playing Postcolonial: a decolonizing activity book for the woke and the weary

Astara Light

PhD, Cornell University

Longing for the Unseen: Connecting to a Balinese Imagined Community through Offerings and Contemporary Art


4:15pm Break


4:30pm Keynote

Dr. Esra Akcan

Associate Professor, Cornell University

Open Architecture: Migration, Citizenship, and a New Ethics of Hospitality


6:00pm Closing Remarks

Dr. Saygin Salgirli

Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia



We thank our donors for their generous contributions:

Audain Endowment for Curatorial Studies

Department of Anthropology

Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory

Department of Asian Studies

Faculty of Arts HSS Grant

Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Dean’s Office

Institute for European Studies

Liu Institute for Global Issues

Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery

Museum of Anthropology

Provost and Vice President Academic

School of Public Policy and Global Affairs