Fred Moten, a professor at NYU Tisch School of the Arts, has been named a 2020 MacArthur Fellow by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, along with NYU journalism alumna Nanfu Wang.
Fred Moten, a professor in the Department of Performance Studies at NYU Tisch School of the Arts, has been named a 2020 MacArthur Fellow by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
MacArthur fellows are recipients of the foundation’s “genius grants,” who each receive $625,000 over a five-year period to pursue intellectual, social, and artistic endeavors.
“In the midst of civil unrest, a global pandemic, natural disasters, and conflagrations, this group of 21 exceptionally creative individuals offers a moment for celebration. They are asking critical questions, developing innovative technologies and public policies, enriching our understanding of the human condition, and producing works of art that provoke and inspire us,” said Cecilia Conrad, Managing Director, MacArthur Fellows.
Also among this year’s 21 fellows is documentary filmmaker Nanfu Wang, who received a masters degree from the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute in NYU’s Graduate School of Arts and Science in 2014.
Moten, a professor in the department of Performance Studies at NYU Tisch School of the Arts since 2017, focuses on creating new conceptual spaces that accommodate emergent forms of Black cultural production, aesthetics, and social life. In his theoretical and critical writing on visual culture, poetics, music, and performance, Moten seeks to move beyond normative categories of analysis, grounded in Western philosophical traditions, that do not account for the Black experience. He is developing a new mode of aesthetic inquiry wherein the conditions of being Black play a central role. Moten’s diverse body of work includes his first book In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition (2003), a recently completed three-volume theoretical treatise, collectively called consent not to be a single being (2017–2018), and his 2014 collection, The Feel Trio.
Wang, a documentary filmmaker, creates intimate character studies that examine the impact of authoritarian governance, corruption, and lack of accountability on the lives of individuals and the well-being of communities. Wang’s work includes the feature film, Hooligan Sparrow (2016), I Am Another You (2017), and the most recent film, One Child Nation (2019).