TrAIN Open Live Event: Allan deSouza

When and Where

Wednesday, November 11, 2020 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm


Allan deSouza, Professor & Chair, Department of Art Practice, University of California, Berkeley
Paul Goodwin, Director, The Research Centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation (TrAIN)


This event is based on Allan deSouza’s book, How Art Can Be Thought (Duke, 2018), which looks at how art is taught and how it functions as politicised culture within a global industry.

It will focus on some of the most common terms used to discuss art, how we use them, and how they affect and are affected by which art is taught, discussed and valued.

The event take format of ‘20-20-20’ and will comprise of 20 minutes presentation, 20 minute discussion with between Prof. Allan deSouza and Prof. Paul Goodwin and 20 minute Q&A session, where the audience is invited to submit their questions.

This TrAIN Open Live Event will take place online on 11th November, at 6pm (GMT). 

The event is free but booking is essential. The booking form is available on the event webpage or click on the "Register" button at the top of this page.

Allan deSouza is an artist whose cross-media works restage colonial-era material legacies through counter-strategies of humoru, fiction, and (mis)translation.

Recent projects, Through the Black Country…(2017), and La Vida del Capitan (2019), transpose, respectively, Henry Stanley’s 1870s African expedition journals to England during the 2016 Brexit vote, and Columbus’ 1492 ship diaries to a 2019 expedition from Oak Town, Khalifia (Oakland, California) to Ishbiliyya, Al-Andalus (Seville, Spain). Both texts are accompanied by expedition maps and photographs.

deSouza’s work has been shown extensively in the US and internationally, including at the Krannert Museum, IL; the Phillips Collection, Washington, DC; and the Pompidou Centre, Paris.

deSouza’s book, How Art Can BeThought (Duke, 2018), examines art pedagogy, and proposes decolonising artistic and pedagogical practices that can form new attachments within the contemporary world. The book provides an extensive analytical glossary of some of the most common terms used to discuss art, focusing on their current usage while considering how those terms may be adapted to new artistic and social challenges.

deSouza’s most recent artist book, Ark of Martyrs: An Autobiography of V (Sming Sming Books, 2020), is a polyphonic, rhymed rewrite of Joseph Conrad’s infamous Heart of Darkness (1899). In opposition to Conrad's colonial narratives, deSouza's account takes place during a wedding party on a cruise ship that's adrift and under quarantine, and probes a dystopian collusion with political anxiety and greed, dysphoric carnality and war. deSouza is represented by Talwar Gallery, NY and New Delhi, and is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Art Practice at University of California, Berkeley.

Paul Goodwin is an independent curator, urban theorist and researcher based in London. His curatorial, research and writing projects extend across the interdisciplinary fields of contemporary art and urbanism with a particular focus on black and diaspora artists and visual cultures. At the Centre for Urban and Community Research at Goldsmiths, University of London, between 2006 and 2010 he directed Re-visioning Black Urbanism, an interdisciplinary research project exploring the multiple modalities of blackness and urbanism in cities such as London, Lisbon and Paris.

From 2008 to 2012 as a curator at Tate Britain he directed the pioneering Cross Cultural Programme that explored questions of migration and globalisation in contemporary British art through a programme of international conferences, workshops, talks and live art events. His curatorial projects include a number of internationally significant exhibitions including: Migrations: Journeys Into British Art, Tate Britain 2012; Thin Black Line(s), Tate Britain, 2011; Coming Ashore, 2011, Berardo Collection Museum in Lisbon, Portugal; Afro Modern: Journeys Through the Black Atlantic (consultant curator), Tate Liverpool, 2010; Underconstruction, Hospital Julius De Matos, Lisbon, Portugal, 2009. In 2013 he curated Charlie Phillips: The Urban Eye at New Art Exchange, Nottingham which was long-listed for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2014.

Goodwin is curatorial director of the 3D Foundation international sculpture park and residency programme in Verbier, Switzerland and is a trustee of socially engaged art organisations Peckham Platform and in London.

Contact Information

Ewelina Warner, Research Centre Administrator


The Research Centre for Transnational Art Identity and Nation (TrAIN)