Everlasting Plastics

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Expected release date is Jun 10th 2024

Everlasting Plastics

Edited by Tizziana Baldenebro, Lauren Leving, Joanna Joseph, and Isabelle Kirkham-Lewitt

Columbia Books on Architecture and the City

How can we live without plastics? But, also, how can we live without plastics? These two questions, which index a different set of urgent concerns, haunt Everlasting Plastics. Exploring the infinite ways in which plastics permeate our bodies and our world, the book offers intimate and political accounts of our fraught yet enmeshed kinship with these materials. Rather than making a case for or against the material, the writings and artworks collected in this volume attempt to register our ongoing toxic dependencies on plastic, its impact on other material cultures and behaviors, and the harm and possibilities it entangles for our collective futures.
Everlasting Plastics records and expands upon the exhibition of the US Pavilion at the 2023 Venice Biennale, which excavated the ways synthetics both shape and erode contemporary ecologies, economies, and the built environment. Refusing to see the exhibition as a static event and instead imagining it as an invitation to evolve the stakes of a shared conversation, the book gathers the work of the exhibition alongside research, reflections, sketches, and newly commissioned critical essays. More than a catalog, Everlasting Plastics is itself an exercise in plasticity—staging interactions between institutions and disciplines, between editorial and curatorial practice, between book and exhibition. Through its range of formats, the book unfolds, broadens, revises, and expands the histories, relations, preoccupations, and discourses on and around our relationship to plastic matter and thought.

With artwork by Xavi L. Aguirre, Simon Anton, Ang Li, Norman Teague, and Lauren Yeager; essays from madison moore, Laura Raicovich, Shannon Rae Stratton, Marisa Solomon, Jessica Varner, and Michele Washington; sketches by Kristen Bos, K. Jake Chakasim, Sky Cubacub, Heather Davis, Jennifer Gabrys, Rania Ghosn, Stephanie Ginese, Aurelia Guo, Adam Hanieh, Ilana Harris-Babou, Theodossis Issaias, Zakiyyah Iman Jackson, Carolyn L. Kane, Laleh Khalili, Anjuli Fatima Raza Kolb, Naa Oyo A. Kwate, Esther Leslie, Ani Liu, Adie Mitchell, Timothy Mitchell, Gabrielle Printz, Kyla Schuller, Terry Schwarz, Pallavi Sen, Ayesha A. Siddiqi, Ala Tannir, and RA Washington.


Isabelle Kirkham-Lewitt (Edited by)
Isabelle Kirkham-Lewitt is director of Columbia Books on Architecture and the City and contributing editor of the Avery Review. She is the editor of Paths to Prison: On the Architectures of Carcerality (Columbia Books on Architecture and the City, 2020).

Tizziana Baldenebro (Edited by)
Tizziana Baldenebro is the curator of special projects, former executive director at SPACES in Cleveland, OH, and Co-Curator of the U.S. Pavilion at the 2023 Venice Architecture Biennale. An arts administrator, curator, writer, and critic, her practice focuses on emerging artists and designers, and she is an organizer and activist in the effort to produce equitable cultural centers. She currently sits on the board of FRONT International, is an editor-at-large at the Avery Review, and serves as an ex officio board member of the Cleveland Museum of Art Contemporary Art Society.

Lauren Leving (Edited by)
Lauren Leving is a Chicago-based independent curator and writer currently serving as Curator-at-Large at the Museum of Contemporary Art (moCa) Cleveland, Associate Curator of the 2024 California Biennial at the Orange County Museum of Art, and Co-Curator of the U.S. Pavilion at the 2023 Venice Architecture Biennale. As an arts administrator and curator, she collaborates closely with early- and mid-career artists to support their most ambitious work and make it accessible to a broad audience.

Joanna Joseph (Edited by)
Joanna Joseph is assistant director of Columbia Books on Architecture and the City and contributing editor of the Avery Review. She is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation in the Critical, Curatorial, and Conceptual Practices Program, and is a co-founder of the research practice Adjustments Agency.