MAS Context Spring Talks 2024

Virginia Hanusik: Into the Quiet and the Light

June 15, 2024 at 2PM

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Presentation and book launch by photographer Virginia Hanusik about her book Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana. The program will take place at the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts (4 West Burton Place Chicago, Illinois 60610).

Contributors

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Mississippi River Near Fort St. Philip. © Virginia Hanusik.

During this presentation, photographer Virginia Hanusik will discuss her first book, Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana (Columbia Books on Architecture and the City, 2024).

In South Louisiana, where the Mississippi River meets the Gulf of Mexico, water—and the history of controlling it—is omnipresent. Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana glimpses the vulnerabilities and possibilities of living on the water during an ongoing climate catastrophe and the fallout of the fossil fuel industry—past, present, and future. The book sustains our physical, mental, and emotional connections to these landscapes through a collection of photographs by Virginia Hanusik. Framing the architecture and infrastructure of South Louisiana with both distance and intimacy, introspection and expansiveness, this work engages new memories, microhistories, anecdotes, and insights from scholars, artists, activists, and practitioners working in the region. Unfolding alongside and in dialogue with Hanusik’s photographs, these reflections soberly and hopefully populate images of South Louisiana’s built and natural environments, opening up multiple pathways that defy singularity and complicate the disaster-oriented imagery often associated with the region and its people. In staging these meditations on water, life, and land loss, this book invites readers to join both Hanusik and the contributors in reading multiplicity into South Louisiana’s water-ruled landscapes.

The book includes texts by Richie Blink, Imani Jacqueline Brown, Jessica Dandridge, Rebecca Elliott, Michael Esealuka, T. Mayheart Dardar, Billy Fleming, Andy Horowitz, Arthur Johnson, Louis Michot, Nini Nguyen, Kate Orff, Jessi Parfait, Amy Stelly, Jonathan Tate, Aaron Turner, and John Verdin.

The presentation will be followed by a reception and book signing. A limited amount of copies of Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana will be available for purchase at the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts.

Thanks to the Graham Foundation for partnering for this program.

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Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana (Columbia University Press, 2024).

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Abandoned Oil Infrastructure, Plaquemines Parish. © Virginia Hanusik.

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Elevated Route 1 over Leeville. © Virginia Hanusik.

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Chalmette Refinery. © Virginia Hanusik.

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New Construction, Grand Isle. © Virginia Hanusik.

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The Great Wall of Louisiana #2. © Virginia Hanusik.

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