SETTLER COLONIAL CITY PROJECT

The Settler Colonial City Project is a research collective focused on the collaborative production of knowledge about cities on Turtle Island/Abya Yala/The Americas as spaces of ongoing settler colonialism, Indigenous survivance, and struggles for decolonization.
The concept of “settler colonialism” has recently emerged as a name for a distinctive form of colonialism that develops in places where settlers permanently reside and assert sovereignty. While the settler colonial dimensions of American cities have been centered in contemporary urban activism, these dimensions have been, at best, only tentatively explored in contemporary architectural and urban studies. Investigating the settler colonial history and contemporaneity of cities on Turtle Island/North America (and similar examples beyond), we aim to foreground Indigenous knowledge of and politics around land, life, and collective futures, as well as settler colonialism as an unmarked structure for the distribution of land, possibilities of life, and imagination of those futures.


SITES
2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial, Chicago
American Indian Center, Chicago
The Night Gallery, Chicago

PUBLICATIONS
—Mapping Chicagou/Chicago
—Decolonizing the Chicago Cultural Center
—The Petro-Biennial Complex
Palace of the People
At the Border of Decolonization

NEWS
Press




Mark

This Property



SCCP 2019
THIS PROPERTY HAS BEEN PLACED ON THE ODAWA, OJIBWE, AND POTAWATOMI HOMELANDS BY THE SETTLER COLONIALISM OF THE UNITED STATES
American Indian Center, Chicago


As part of its project for the 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial, Decolonizing the Chicago Cultural Center, the Settler Colonial City Project designed this sign for a vitrine on the Randolph Street facade of the Chicago Cultural Center. The sign utilizes the format of the brass plaques that document the placement of the Chicago Cultural Center on the National Register of Historic Places, which are located on both the Randolph Street and Washington Street facades of the building. Instead of inscribing the building into the heritage of a state that disavows its settler colonialism, as these brass plaques do, the sign designed by the Settler Colonial City project points precisely to settler colonialism as that state's heritage.




Shortly before the opening of the 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial, the Settler Colonial City Project was informed that the biennial's curatorial team felt the Randolph Street façade should just include exhibition-related signage. The Settler Colonial City Project then asked for and received permission from the American Indian Center to display the sign at its building instead.

Like the Chicago Cultural Center, the American Indian Center is located on occupied Indigenous land. The American Indian Center is a place where this occupation can be pointed out, critiqued, historicized, and resisted without restriction. Once installed, members of the AIC have further elaborated on the message carried by this intervention.

Image courtesy of Heather Miller
           

Mark