weekend links: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, climate change, utopian cities

Bodys Isek Kingelez,  Kimbembele Ihunga  (detail) (1994).  Image courtesy  Hyperallergic/CAAC – The Pigozzi Collection, Geneva, © Bodys Isek Kingelez.  Photo by Maurice Aeschimann.

Bodys Isek Kingelez, Kimbembele Ihunga (detail) (1994). Image courtesy Hyperallergic/CAAC – The Pigozzi Collection, Geneva, © Bodys Isek Kingelez. Photo by Maurice Aeschimann.

“I want to tell the truth,” says Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. “That’s where my storytelling comes from. My feminism comes from somewhere else: acute dissatisfaction.” In this interview, the novelist, nonfiction writer, and author of Americanah and We Should All Be Feminists discusses raising boys to feel shame for not being vulnerable, writing Melania Trump, and her works being read as Feminist Novels. [Vulture]

"It's a certain feeling when you are constantly watching people who look like you, your mother, your best friend getting killed in cold blood on the street and nothing is being done with it," Jordan Rome says. In the young black actor and director’s new video series, 365 Ways to Kill an American, police brutality cases are reenacted, often with a twist: in the video depicting the case of Sandra Bland, a white woman is cast as the victim, and a black actor as the officer. The series is an effort on the part of the whole tight-knit production team to generate outrage and action, particularly among white viewers. “I'm hoping this film will inspire white people to empathize more. If that's what it takes—someone with the same skin color as them being treated this way—for them to care about the issue, then I am happy to help make that happen." [Chicago Reader]

Feeling a creative block? Pick a card, any card! From tarot, to The Oblique Strategies deck, to the newer Method Deck, artists and writers spanning W.B. Yeats to David Bowie have long been using cards to inspire and revitalize their artistic processes. [Artsy]

Hurricane Sandy, disappearing land in a mangrove forest, and living in New York City, respectively, sparked three artists and writers to begin making work about climate change. Amitav Ghosh, Nathan Kensinger, and Helen Phillips are panelists in a conversation series sponsored by Guernica and the New York Society Library, titled The Art and Activism of the Anthropocene, held to address the role of climate change in contemporary art and writing. In this transcript from the panel, the three discuss climate fiction, non-human aesthetics, the uncanny, and the ever-changing relationship between art and politics. [LA Review of Books]

“There is no police force in this city, to protect the city, there are no soldiers to defend it, no doctors to heal the sick. It’s a peaceful city where everybody is free. It’s a city that breathes nothing but joy, the beauty of life. It’s a melting pot of all races in the world. Here you live in a paradise, just like heaven.” Bodys Isek Kingelez’s imagined metropolis, displayed at the Museum of Modern Art in the first retrospective of his work following his death in 2015, repurposes trash to build architecture that addresses the structural urban design problems in his home country of Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo. The utopian world is not only the model of a gloriously functional society, but also a world of beauty, rendered meticulously by Kingelez’s detail-oriented hand. [Hyperallergic]

This week, Pump Project said goodbye to the iconic yellow warehouse it had called home for the past 13 years. Many of Austin's finest art shows took place at Pump (including some of our own readings and release parties), and the space was also home to many artists' studios. Thankfully, the group has found a new and larger home, although with increased space comes increased costs. Affordability issues continue to plague Austin's arts communities, as evidenced in the city's 2017 Creative Space Survey results released this week. "It's not a great feeling when people you've been in Austin with for a long time in the arts group, they're talking about having to leave the city that they do love, but they just can't afford it anymore," Pump Project director Joshua Green laments. "We're all just scrambling around, trying to figure out solutions." [KXAN]

Taji Senior blew us away with her performance at our issue 8 release party, and she has a new one-woman show that has got critics raving. Inspired by a George Bernard Shaw short story, Senior's ‘A’ (What the Black Girl Found While Searching for God) is being performed at the Ground Floor Theatre in Austin tonight and tomorrow. The play explores explores "the ways in the which the U.S. Constitution defines and denies the humanity of people of color,” Senior explains. “If you are black and a woman, someone is always asking you to collapse or neglect one part of your humanity in order for them to achieve full recognition of their own." Highly recommended. [Austin American-Statesman]


Juliet Gelfman-Randazzo and Sean Redmond