Waters of Empire:
Modern Water as Relation on Occupied Turtle Island
Null Point / Colin Tucker
June 30 – July 31, 2021, streaming at vsw.org
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The program features event scores from George Brecht’s Water Yam and Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit, focusing on against-the-grain interpretations authorized by anti-Humanist conceptual frameworks of Indigenous, Black, and decolonial study. These latter analytics reveal an Imperial, technoscientific politics of visibility in Water Yam, but also suggest that, for this very reason, the scores may be useful in excavating these politics if re-interpreted. Grapefruit, on the other hand, provides tools useful for interrogating how colonial regimes of visibility are subtended by invisibility and hypervisibility, tools which the lecture-performance puts into dialogue with recent scholarship on “colonial unknowing” (Manu Vimalassery et al.) and “white ignorance” (Charles Mills).
The lecture-performance presents event scores by Ono and Brecht focused on water, interpreting them in ways that foreground their positioning within settler-colonial spatial politics on occupied Turtle Island. The program considers a variety of attempts to rewrite Indigenous land as secular water, not only within specialized technoscience but also within libidinal economies of the Settler-Conquistador everyday.