The Malice and Benevolence of Inanimate Objects: Jimmie Durham’s Anti-Architecture.  
Public Talk by Visiting Scholar Richard W. Hill.  
Tuesday, February 4, 2014 – 6:30 p.m.  
The New Space – TSH 114.  

Since his return to Europe in 1994, Cherokee artist Jimmie Durham has produced a vast and diverse body of work investigating the relationship between architecture and national narratives. Much of this project has concentrated on finding ways to re-imagine our relationship to stone, the iconic material of state architecture. Where church and state impose metaphors of stony stability or permanence, Durham has sought for signs of movement and agency and in his art we often find stone doing work and causing productive trouble.


Image: Jimmie Durham, A Stone from Metternich’s House in Bohemia, 1996

Jimmie Durham, A Stone from Metternich’s House in Bohemia, 1996

Richard William Hill is Associate Professor in Department of Visual Art and Art History at York University and he is a curator, critic and art historian of Cree and other heritages.   Professor Hill’s research focuses primarily on historical and contemporary art created by Indigenous North American artists. As a curator at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Dr. Hill oversaw the museum’s first substantial effort to include Indigenous North American art and ideas in permanent collection galleries. He also curated Kazuo Nakamura: A Human Measure at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 2004, co-curated, with Jimmie Durham, The American West at Compton Verney, UK in 2005 and, beginning in 2006, The World Upside Down, which originated at the Walter Philips Gallery at the Banff Centre in 2006 and toured across Canada.

    Professor Hill’s essays on art have appeared in numerous books, exhibition catalogues and periodicals. He has a long association with the art magazine FUSE, where he was a member of the board and editorial committee for many years and now writes a regular column reviewing recent art exhibitions. He is currently revising a book on the problem of agency in the art of Jimmie Durham, which was the subject of his PhD thesis.