Gavin Kroeber is an artist whose projects and writings poach from visual art, urban theory, and performance. He produces curatorial projects and performance events that interrogate the cultural dynamics of power and their expression in the poetics of place. His project New Cities, Future Ruins, which received the 2016 Meadows Prize, investigated planetary crises of growth, migration, and sustainability in the sprawling cities of the Sun Belt. Recently relocated to St. Louis, he organized the 2018 festival Dwell in Other Futures: Art / Urbanism / Midwest and the interdisciplinary platform Art + Landscape STL, which culminated in a 2019 exhibition produced in partnership with the German art institution Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW) and the Granite City Art & Design District (G-CADD). He most recently launched Laboratory for Suburbia, a collaboration with The Luminary and Washington University in St. Louis's Divided City initiative, and is currently developing a project engaging the multiplying burn zones of California's wildfires. He is co-founder of the nomadic curatorial platform Experience Economies and was Producer at Creative Time from 2005 until 2010. He is a regular contributor to Art in America and has written for publications such as Afterall, Art in America, Art Journal, and PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art. He holds a Master of Design Studies in Art, Design, and the Public Domain from the Harvard Graduate School of Design.
New Cities, Future Ruins is a four-year curatorial initiative inviting artists, designers, and thinkers to re-imagine the extreme urbanism of America’s Western Sun Belt.
Fast-growing symbols of opportunity and entrepreneurialism, the region’s cities are sprawling agglomerations in delicate ecosystems, marked by resource overuse, dramatic demographic change, and political struggle that particularize and illuminate global crises of rapid urbanization. Suburban in texture, they are 21st-century spaces that resist creative and political strategies inherited from the industrial city. Bringing critical and innovative practices from around the world to bear on this urban landscape, New Cities, Future Ruins is designed to foster visionary thought and artistic experimentation at these urgent sites.
The initiative will launch with a convening in Dallas, TX, featuring artists’ projects, tours, and events throughout the city, as well as talks, roundtable discussions, screenings, and workshops. The roster of participants includes Noura Al-Sayeh, Mary Ellen Carroll, Teddy Cruz and Fonna Forman, Naima J. Keith, and Postcommodity, among others.
Following the convening, New Cities, Future Ruins will expand to include artist residencies and public projects around the region (2017-18) and culminate in an international touring exhibition and publication (2019).