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Public Lecture and seminar by Rizvana Bradley | Tuesday March 5, 12-14h | Location: Doelenzaal, Universiteitsbibliotheek | Organizers: SEX NEGATIVITY Research Group (Dr. Marija Cetinić, Tessel Veneboer, Persis Bekkering, Stefa Govaart)
Event details of Anteaesthetics
5 March 2024
12:00 -14:00

Drawing on her book Anteaesthetics, this talk begins from the proposition that blackness cannot be represented in modernity’s aesthetic regime, but is nevertheless foundational to every representation. Troubling the idea that the aesthetic is sheltered from the antiblack terror that lies just beyond its sanctuary, Bradley insists that blackness cannot make a home within the aesthetic, yet is held as its threshold and aporia. The book problematizes the phenomenological and ontological conceits that underwrite the visual, sensual, and abstract logics of modernity.

Rizvana Bradley is Assistant Professor of Film and Media and Affiliated Faculty in the History of Art and the Center for Race and Gender at the University of California, Berkeley. She is the 2023–24 Terra Foundation Visiting Professor at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies at Freie Universität Berlin. Bradley’s book, Anteaesthetics: Black Aesthesis and the Critique of Form (Stanford UP, 2023), moves across multiple histories and geographies, artistic mediums and forms—from nineteenth-century painting and early cinema, to contemporary text-based works, video installations, and digital art—in order to inaugurate a new method for interpretation, an ante-formalism, which demonstrates black art’s recursive deconstruction of the aesthetic forms that remain foundational to modernity.

Convened by the research group Sex Negativity as part of the We Have Never Had Sex seminar series. Supported by the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA) and the Netherlands Institute for Cultural Analysis (NICA). To register, please email the research assistant at


Rizvana Bradley, "Introduction" from Anteaesthetics: Black Aesthesis and the Critique of Form (2023), pp 1-45.

Rizvana Bradley/Denise Ferreira da Silva, “Four Theses on Aesthetics” in e-flux Journal #120,

University Library

Room Doelenzaal
Singel 425
1012 WP Amsterdam