Sharon Hayes, If They Should Ask, 2017. Courtesy Monument Lab Philidelphia. Image credit: Steve Weiniki / Mural Arts Philidelphia.


Dialogues on Art and Publics Speaker Series: Paul Farber and Ken Lum

This lecture with Paul Farber and Ken Lum has been postponed. A new date will be announced shortly.

Dialogues on Art and Publics is an ongoing speaker series presented in collaboration with the City of Vancouver Public Art Program that continues with a presentation by Paul Farber and Ken Lum of Monument Lab.

Dialogues on Art and Publics invites artists who critically engage the notion of "public" to present a talk in relation to their practice. This ongoing program seeks to explore the ways that artists navigate the tensions of a public sphere that have historically been constituted by exclusion. By engaging a diverse set of practices we seek to facilitate critical questions around definitions of public art that have been based on settler-colonial histories.

Farber and Lum will consider what an appropriate monument for the contemporary city might be. Monument Lab works with artists, students, activists, municipal agencies, and cultural institutions on exploratory approaches to public engagement and collective memory. This includes citywide art exhibitions, site-specific commissions, participatory research initiatives, a transnational fellows program, publications, and a web bulletin and podcast. In a time when cities are reckoning with and reinventing monuments, Monument Lab explores notions of process, participation and power through an acknowledgment that monumental processes and approaches to justice are evolving. 

Paul Farber is a Philadelphia based curator, historian and educator, where he is the co-founder and Artistic Director of Monument Lab. Farber is the author of A Wall of Our Own: An American History of the Berlin Wall (2020) and co-editor with Ken Kum of Monument Lab: Creative Speculations for Philadelphia (2019). He serves as Senior Research Scholar at the Center for Public Art and Space at the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design.

Ken Lum is an artist born and raised in Vancouver and currently based in Philadelphia. His work has been exhibited at documenta 11, the Venice Biennale, Shanghai Biennale, Carnegie International, Whitney Biennial, and the Vancouver Art Gallery. He has produced public artworks in cities from Rotterdam to Burnaby, including his Monument for East Vancouver (2010) on Clark Avenue in Vancouver. Lum was recently awarded the Governor General's Award in Visual and Media Arts (2020), the Gershon Iskowitz Prize (2020), and was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2017. He is co-founder of Monument Lab and is the Marilyn Jordan Taylor Penn Professor in the Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania and Chair of the Department of Fine Art.