About Academia: Muntadas

Muntadas’s exhibition About Academia, currently on view at the Audain Gallery in Vancouver, investigates the complicated relationship between the university as a nexus of knowledge production and the economic power that underlies its operations. Exhibited as a large-scale multi-screen video installation, About Academia juxtaposes interviews of prominent figures in contemporary academia with architectural footage of various university campuses and textual quotations from Muntadas’s own research. Among the interviewees are several MIT professors as well as scholars from other leading educational institutions: Carol Becker (Dean of Columbia University School of the Arts); Noam Chomsky (Institute Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at MIT); Diane E. Davis (Professor of Political Sociology at MIT); Ute Meta Bauer (Associate Professor and former Director of ACT); and Doris Summer (Ira Jewell Williams, Jr., Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures and Professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard University). The project incorporates fifteen interviews, which are transcribed in a book accompanying the exhibition.

Teaching classes on the production of public art and spatial cultural identity, Muntadas has been a Professor of the Practice at MIT since 1990. In addition to his teaching position at ACT, he is also a Visiting Professor at the Iuav in Venice, Italy. His artistic work addresses social, political, and communication issues and investigates channels of information and the ways they may be used to censor or promulgate ideas. He is a Guggenheim Fellowship recipient and his work has been exhibited worldwide at MoMA, Documenta, and the Whitney and Kwangju Biennials, among many others. Full biography

About Academia will be on view until February 23, 2013 at the Audain Gallery at the Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. The project was first exhibited in the spring of 2011 at the Carpenter Center for Visual Arts at Harvard University and travelled to Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts in Tempe Arizona the same year.