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July 18, 2020 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Hosted online
Meredith Schweitzer

Beginning in the summer of 2020, the School of Advanced Research (SAR), in collaboration with SITE Santa Fe and Center for Contemporary Arts Santa Fe (CCA), presents Beyond Borders, a series of installations and events starting with Hostile Terrain 94, a participatory art project and exhibition intended to call attention to the realities of migration and border policy in our hemisphere.

To learn more about the full run of Beyond Borders programming, visit https://sarweb.org/beyond-borders-2020/

Following the launch of Hostile Terrain 94, join MacArthur Fellows Jason De León and Steven Feld as they explore how research and data can be translated creatively for public consumption through numerous forms of art and media, and be used to inspire individuals to take action in their own lives to contribute to the greater good.

Funding for this event provided by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and Fund for Refugees & Asylum Seekers of the Santa Fe Community Foundation.


SAR 2013/2014 resident fellow, Jason De León / De León’s 2015 book, The Land of Open Graves: Living and Dying on the Migrant Trail (winner of the 2018 J.I. Staley Prize) chronicles the suffering and deaths of undocumented migrants who attempted to cross into the United States through the Sonoran Desert of Arizona. His work combines ethnography, archaeology, linguistics, and forensic science and questions the effectiveness of the 1994 Prevention through Deterrence policies enacted by the U.S. government. Building on this work, De León created the traveling installation, Hostile Terrain 94.

SAR Senior Scholar, Steven Feld / Ethnomusicologist and Columbia University professor of anthropology, Steven Feld began working in Papua New Guinea’s Bosavi region in 1976 and has dedicated much of his career to documenting the sounds and cultural dynamics of the area. In 1991 he released an ambient soundscape album, Voices of the Rainforest (part of Mickey Hart’s Endangered Music Project). In 2018 released a full-length documentary by the same title that merged his audio archive with visuals from the rain forest and interviews with community members. Speaking about the project, Michael Stone notes, “The result is as close as we humans are likely to come in communicating with spirits gone but not departed, something that, despite the unimaginable cultural losses charged to the disingenuous promise of western “development,” Bosavi people, as cultural innovators in a wailing world, have long and tragically understood.”

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