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Into the Quiet and the Light
Virginia Hanusik
Jun 15, 2024 (2pm)
Book Launch

Free; RSVP required

During this presentation, photographer Virginia Hanusik discusses her first book, Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana (Columbia Books on Architecture and the City, 2024).

In South Louisiana, where the Mississippi River meets the Gulf of Mexico, water—and the history of controlling it—is omnipresent. Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana glimpses the vulnerabilities and possibilities of living on the water during an ongoing climate catastrophe and the fallout of the fossil fuel industry—past, present, and future. The book sustains our physical, mental, and emotional connections to these landscapes through a collection of photographs by Virginia Hanusik. Framing the architecture and infrastructure of South Louisiana with both distance and intimacy, introspection and expansiveness, this work engages new memories, microhistories, anecdotes, and insights from scholars, artists, activists, and practitioners working in the region. Unfolding alongside and in dialogue with Hanusik’s photographs, these reflections soberly and hopefully populate images of South Louisiana’s built and natural environments, opening up multiple pathways that defy singularity and complicate the disaster-oriented imagery often associated with the region and its people. In staging these meditations on water, life, and land loss, this book invites readers to join both Hanusik and the contributors in reading multiplicity into South Louisiana’s water-ruled landscapes.

The book includes texts by Richie Blink, Imani Jacqueline Brown, Jessica Dandridge, Rebecca Elliott, Michael Esealuka, T. Mayheart Dardar, Billy Fleming, Andy Horowitz, Arthur Johnson, Louis Michot, Nini Nguyen, Kate Orff, Jessi Parfait, Amy Stelly, Jonathan Tate, Aaron Turner, and John Verdin.

The presentation will be followed by a reception and book signing. A limited amount of copies of Into the Quiet and the Light: Water, Life, and Land Loss in South Louisiana will be available for purchase at the Graham Foundation bookshop.

Presented in partnership with MAS Context

Virginia Hanusik is an artist whose projects explore the relationship between landscape, culture, and the built environment. Her work has been exhibited internationally, featured in The New Yorker, National Geographic, British Journal of PhotographyDomusPlaces Journal, The Atlantic, MAS Context, and Oxford American among others, and supported by the Andy Warhol Foundation, Pulitzer Center, Graham Foundation, Landmark Columbus Foundation, and Mellon Foundation. She regularly writes and speaks on landscape representation and the visual narrative of climate change, and is on the board of directors of The Water Collaborative of Greater New Orleans where she coordinates multi-disciplinary projects on the climate crisis. She received her BA from Bard College and lives in New Orleans.

Virginia Hanusik, A Receding Coast: The Architecture and Infrastructure of South Louisiana, 2017 research grant

MAS Context shares ideas and facilitates discourse about urban design and the built environment. Deeply rooted in Chicago but with a global reach, MAS Context nurtures an inclusive community of creative thinkers across disciplines who are interested in the future of cities.