Illustration by Allie Linn
may 1 — june 25, 2020

not (yet) futura free is a compilation of ten multidisciplinary projects that will unfold over the course of six weeks during this moment of collective transformation. Presented in partnership with STABLE, this online exhibition will archive the processes of twelve artists as they share new work about future poetry.

This project is about imagining another world, inspired by the scholarship of Kara Keeling who uses the term "poetry from the future" to describe a felt presence of the unknowable. The unknown/known feeling of an abolitionist, anti-capitalist, anti-racist, queer, and feminist world. Through storytelling and friendship, the project weaves together the disparate mythologies a place just beyond reach. Nostalgia is a recurring mood throughout, a nostalgia that has both a past and future dimension that can be helpful as we collectively consider what the world will feel like emerging from a global pandemic. 

Each artist's page will be updated regularly as stories emerge.

not (yet) futura free is curated by Nathalie von Veh, supported by STABLE, and brought to life by the graphic design of Composite Co.

The generative proposition that another world is possible, the insistence that such a world is here now and it listens, with others, for the  poetry, the refrains, the rhythms, and the noise such a world is making.”

Kara Keeling
programs

Introduction to the project
Curator Nathalie von Veh in conversation with STABLE co-founders
Saturday, May 2, 2020 from 3:30–4:00pm ET
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Artist talk with Nina Q. Allen, Rex Delafkaran, and Ashley Shey
Moderated by Nathalie von Veh
Sunday, May 17 from 4:00–5:30pm ET
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Natural dye workshop with An Ly
Friday, May 22 from 4:00–5:00pm ET
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Artist talk with Mojdeh Rezaeipour, Sera Boeno, and Hannah Spector
Moderated by Nathalie von Veh
Saturday, May 23 from 2:00–3:30pm ET
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Everything I Hold Is Wet
Performance by Rex Delafkaran
Friday, May 29 from 6:00–7:00pm ET
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SM/: system building
Performance by Ashley Shey
Sunday, May 31 from 7:00–8:00pm ET
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Reflections on the project
Friday, June 12, 2020 from 3:30–4:30pm ET
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Screening with Mojdeh Rezaeipour
Thursday, June 25, 2020 from 8:00–9:00pm ET
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notes on stable

STABLE is strengthening Washington, DC’s contemporary visual arts community by providing affordable and sustainable studio space, and collaborating with local, national, and international partners to provide programming and exhibition opportunities, fostering an engaged and diverse community in Washington, DC.

notes on curatorial practice

MICA's MFA in Curatorial Practice prepares students to determine how curators will shape the cultural life of our global society. The first MFA of its kind in the country, this program offers a hands-on curriculum that balances collaboration and socially engaged practices with academic research in history and theory. Students work in a variety of experimental contexts and formats, proposing alternative models of exhibition-making, institution-building, and social justice through art. Designed to forge connections among artists, institutions, and communities, the program fosters contemporary art and culture in collaboration with diverse audiences, and links local issues to international discourse. By creating real-world collaborative and individual exhibitions, our students raise awareness, bridge societal gaps, and catalyze exchanges across various disciplines, both inside and outside the artworld.

notes from the curator

This project would not be possible without the generous support and guidance of so many. It all started thanks to Gee Wesley who first introduced me to Kara Keeling’s essay “Looking for M–” which I kept coming back to, eventually centering the project around her description of “poetry from the future”. In the spring of 2019, I started conversations with participating artists Arrin Sutliff, Ashley Shey, Rex Delafkaran, Hannah Spector, and Nina Q. Allen about our shared interests and goals. From the beginning, conversation built over studio visits, group meals, and walks grounded and shaped the project. Over the next six months, I continued to bring more collaborators in, following my intuition based on how our practices aligned. Throughout fall of 2019 and into spring of 2020, the project was planned to be an immersive exhibition and series of programs. That all shifted as we collectively adapted to a new reality due to COVID-19. I’m grateful for the ways that this challenged and strengthened my practice.

Special thanks to Christian Dutilh and Jacob Weinzettel of Composite Co. who intuitively understood my vision and created this site. This project would simply not be possible without you.

Deep thanks to all of you who have contributed to the project in one way or another through your support, friendship, and conversation. I am so grateful for my peers and mentors at MICA, my friends and family, mentors, and collaborators. Special thanks to Allie Linn, Gee Wesley, José Ruiz, Zoë Charlton, and Vicky Kiechel. Shout out to Jordan Martin and Tsedaye Makonnen for their brilliance and support during this period of curatorial adaptation.

This project is only the beginning, sowing seeds for future collaborations, friendships, and work to come. Thank you for following along and supporting!

You can contact me with any inquiries or questions at nvonveh@mica.edu

for further exploration