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Perverse Decolonization

May 20, 2018
2:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Para Site is pleased to present a seminar in the framework of Perverse Decolonization, a long-term research project initiated by the Academy of Arts of the World in Cologne, together with a network of six institutions around the world, that includes Para Site.

The project addresses the current crisis of postcolonial studies and identity politics and its possible appropriations in new nationalisms emerging on a global scale. It proposes to look closely at how the decolonizing agenda we support is enlisted in reactionary projects, and what new forms of solidarity and common action one might propose to resist these new dangers. The project convenes an international research group with the participation of artists, writers, curators, and theorists from East and South East Asia, the US, and Europe.

At the seminar organized by Para Site, we will discuss historical and current instances of derailed, hijacked, and corrupted processes of decolonization, in Hong Kong and the region: when postcolonial identities reproduce colonial violence, when identity politics deny the political dimension to postcolonial subjects, when alternative colonial projects export non-Western versions of progress no less brutal than the original European prototype. We will also be asking if alternatives can be found to lead a way forward out of a deadlocked postcolonial field.

Perverse Decolonization commenced with an initial research meeting in Autumn 2017 in Cologne, and continues with a series of research symposia and public events throughout 2018 at the partner institutions, culminating in a symposium in 2018 in Cologne. As a lasting contribution to today’s urgent discourse on the subject, a book will be produced in July 2019.

Project heads: Ekaterina Degot, David Riff
Curator of artistic commissions: Aneta Rostkowska

Institutional partners:
Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw
Para Site, Hong Kong
The Israeli Center for Digital Art, Holon
Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, Chicago
Tensta Konsthall, Spånga
Württembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart



A project of the Academy of the Arts of the World, Cologne
Funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation
Hong Kong seminar organized by Para Site 

Panel Discussion Schedule

2.00 – 2.30 pm
Introduction by Cosmin Costinas (Executive Director/Curator of Para Site, Hong Kong) and Ekaterina Degot (art historian, curator, and Director of Steirischer Herbst Festival, Graz)

2.30 – 3.00 pm
Presentation by Clara Cheung (curator, artist, and Co-founder of C&G Artpartment, Hong Kong)

3.00 – 3.30 pm
Presentation by Yau Ching (Filmmaker and Adjunct Professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong)

3.30 – 3.45 pm

3.45 – 4.15 pm
Presentation by Shabbir Hussain Mustafa (Curator at the National Art Gallery, Singapore)Presentation by

4.15 – 4.45 pm
Gridthiya Gaweewong (Artistic Director of the Jim Thompson Art Centre, Bangkok)

4.45 – 5.15 pm
Presentation by Simon Soon (Senior Lecturer in the Visual Art Department of the Cultural Centre, University of Malaysia)

5.15 – 5.30 pm

5.30 – 6.00 pm
Presentation by Law Wing Sang (Adjunct Associate Professor of Lingnan University, Hong Kong)

6.00 – 6.30 pm
Presentation by Pablo Lafuente (educator, curator and writer, Rio de Janeiro)

6.30 – 7.30 pm
Panel Discussion, moderated by Cosmin Costinas and Ekaterina Degot

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