Plural Wombs Research Group | #3
Kathy-Ann Tan reads Hortense Spillers

Tuesday, 4 August 2020, 7.30 pm, online

Workshop with
Kathy-Ann Tan | Dorine van Meel

In this third session of the Plural Wombs Research Group, Kathy-Ann Tan will address the work of the Black feminist scholar Hortense Spillers, best known for her article “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book”, and relate it to the questions of her own practice as a curator and scholar, committed to exhibition-making and institution-building that are attuned to issues of social justice in the contemporary moment.

The research group takes place online and there are 20 places available. If you would like to participate, please send an email to You will receive two texts and all practical information one week prior to the meeting.

The first part of the session will consist of a presentation by Kathy-Ann Tan, followed by a discussion with the participants. After the event has taken place, we will make the presentation publicly available here and as well as on the website of Kunstfort bij Vijfhuizen.

Kathy-Ann Tan is a Berlin-based curator, writer and independent scholar of the visual arts and performance, postcolonial and decolonial theory, critical diversity and gender/queer studies. She is interested in alternative models of art dissemination, exhibition-making and institution-building that are attuned to issues of social justice in the contemporary moment. Her ongoing project on decolonial aesthetics aims to collaboratively build a forum for Black and PoC artists and curators to develop ways of interrogating colonial narratives while establishing resources for empowerment and self-care.

Plural Wombs Research Group

Plural Wombs is a collaborative project that brings together a number of cultural practitioners, theorists and activists working on the subjects of social reproduction, reproductive justice, and the political dimension of parenthood. In confronting these subjects, we are committed to a multi- gendered feminist approach and the exploration of different possibilities of familial relations beyond their bourgeois, patriarchal and heteronormative forms.

In light of the current crisis, we believe that it has become only more urgent to explore what a commitment to polymaternal kinship might look like today and how the experimentation with such forms of kinship could make different structures of support and care possible. We have therefore rethought the project under the present conditions and changed its form to an open research group organised around online meetings where participants each time discuss and work through one text of a relevant thinker. These sessions will be led by invited artists and theorists engaging with these themes and texts in their practices.

Plural Wombs is initiated by the artist Dorine van Meel and has been made possible through additional financial support from the Mondriaan Stichting. The Plural Wombs Research Group is organised in collaboration within diffrakt’s reading group programme as well as Kunstfort Vijfhuizen.

Dorine van Meel is an artist based between Berlin and Amsterdam. Her practice unfolds in collaborative and discursive projects that may result in moving image installations and performances. By researching the work of feminist, queer, and decolonial thinkers she enquires into the operating modes of power structures and strives at developing a set of artistic tools to deconstruct existing patterns of thought and behavior as well as challenge their common acceptance.