Last year, Krzysztof Wodiczko, professor of visual arts in the Department of Architecture, won the fourth Hiroshima Art Prize awarded for both high achievement in international contemporary art and contributions to world peace. Now, his colleagues at MIT are celebrating his achievement with a day-long symposium in his honor. "Trauma and Artistic Intervention" will take place on Saturday, Nov. 20 from noon-5pm in Rm 10-250.
Professor Wodiczko is internationally renowned for his public projections on architectural facades and monuments, addressing issues such as militarism, xenophobia, urban violence, domestic abuse and homelessness. His Bunker Hill Monument projections of bereaved Charlestown mothers undertaken in spring 1999 for Boston's Institute of Contemporary Arts' Vita Brevis series was pronounced "searing" by the Boston Globe and drew international attention and acclaim.
Featuring presentations by MIT Professor of Art History Michael Leja and scholars from Harvard University, Cornell University and Barnard College, the symposium will expand on Professor Wodiczko's public project, addressing the ways in which artists confront the trauma generated by both catastrophic events and day-to-day urban conflict.
Presentations will be followed by a panel discussion and Professor Wodiczko's presentation of his public project for Hiroshima.
Professor Wodiczko was born in Warsaw in 1943 and has taught at MIT since 1991. Director of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS) from 1995-96, he is now head of MIT's Interrogative Design Group in CAVS and teaches in the Visual Arts Program of the Department of Architecture. He received the MFA from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, Poland in 1968, with an emphasis on architecture, industrial design and the visual arts.
The symposium was organized by the Visual Arts Program and sponsored by the Office of the Dean of the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, the Department of Architecture, the associate provost for the arts and authors@mit, a project of MIT Libraries and the MIT Bookstore.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 17, 1999.