The Presidential Library Project includes a series of conversations and lectures called Beer Summits that explore issues related to the future Barack Obama Presidential Center, artistic production, and issues of politics. The title of these conversations comes from an incident early in Obama’s first term when acclaimed black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested trying to enter his own home in Cambridge, Ma. Following the arrest President Obama invited Gates and the arresting officer to join him for a beer in the Rose Garden as an example of how to create teachable moments from difficult situations. Major media outlets called the meeting a “beer summit.” The Beer Summits are an unsanctioned and unofficial continuation of that first dialogue.
What: Beer Summit: Envisioning Artistic Engagement with the Archive When: Sunday, June 8, 2014, 1:30-3:00 PM Where: Western Exhibitions, 845 W Washington Blvd. Chicago, IL 60607 This presentation was a part of Locust Round Tables and EXPO Chicago. Museum displays in presidential libraries are notorious for obfuscating the historical truths found in their archives. Famously, the displays in Ronald Reagan’s…
What: Beer Summit: Groundbreaking, Obama’s Presidential Library and occupying and defining space. When: Monday, April 20, 2015, 6:30-8:00 PM Where: The Chicago Cultural Center, First Floor Garland Gallery Guest: Michael Golec, Andres Hernandez, Leah Gipson The future Obama Presidential Center has the potential to dramatically change the community within which it will be cited.…
A reception and screening featuring an array of black presidents from popular culture from the blackface to the Anger Translator.
A conversation about Obama’s presidency in relation to popular cultural imagination of a Black President.
Artists and cultural producers have already begun writing the first draft of President Obama’s legacy into dynamic Chicago based exhibitions and collections.
Beer Summit: How’s Harold? revisits the artistic and fabricated images of Chicago Mayor Harold Washington created after his sudden death in the fall the 1987.
Beer Summit: Counting and Counted at the Heartland Café reflects on how and who we count. Who is allowed to cast ballots in the United State, and therefore who counts, has always been a negotiation.