Every Ocean Hughes, Beyond the Will to Measure, 2014. Wall-mounted ceramic, clock movements, acrylic, dimensions variable. Installation view, PARTICIPANT, INC., Courtesy of the artist.
Lex Lancaster. Photo courtesy of the author.
Jan 27, 2022 - 5:30
Virtual Event

Join us for a lecture by scholar, curator, and author Lex Lancaster, titled, "Queer Abstraction: Dragging Difficult Histories," presented as part of the exhibition A Question of Emphasis: Louise Fishman Drawing.

Co-presented with the Department of Gender & Women’s Studies, the Program in Art History, and the LGBT Resource Center, with support from the HRI Supplemental Event Fund. Paid for by the Student Cultural Programming Fee.

In this talk, Lex Lancaster will discuss their book, Dragging Away: Queer Abstraction in Contemporary Art (forthcoming from Duke University Press in Fall 2022), highlighting how contemporary queer tactics of abstraction drag on difficult visual forms and histories of modernism.

Lancaster will discuss how particular formalist investments—in the grid, the gesture, or chromatic play—can expose the potential difficulties and violence of abstraction for those who are marked by difference, while at the same time transforming those tactics to make them work for queer, feminist, non-binary, and anti-racist art practices.

Bringing Louise Fishman’s work into this larger field, Lancaster will consider how her work foregrounded these queer formalist strategies long before the language for “queer abstraction” emerged, and how we can continue to take her abstractions seriously as social and political tactics now.


This virtual event will take place via Zoom. | Register Online


Krannert Art Museum endeavors to be accessible to all. The event will be in English and will be CART captioned via Zoom. If you have questions or would like to request an accessibility accommodation, please email kam-accessibility@illinois.edu


About Lex Lancaster | Website

Lex Morgan Lancaster (they/them) is a scholar, professor, and curator who focuses on queer, feminist, trans, and anti-racist visual and theoretical contributions to the field of contemporary art. Their published essays and forthcoming book from Duke University Press investigate the phenomenon of queer abstraction, forging a queer formalist and materialist approach to the history of abstraction and its persistence in contemporary art. Lancaster is Assistant Professor of Art History and Gallery Director at the University of South Carolina-Upstate. They earned their PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2017.