Apr 12th 2021

Panel: Dark Matter University and Anti-Racist Built Environments

On Wednesday, April 14 the College of Architecture will host Justin Garrett Moore and Shalini Agrawal, members of Dark Matter University, a democratic network of professionals working to create anti-racist outcomes in the built environment. They will speak on the organization’s mission and efforts to create more inclusive and equitable spaces through changes in both design practice and education, as well as on their own design and advocacy work.

Moore is a transdisciplinary designer and urbanist, and the program officer for the Humanities in Place program at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which seeks to promote fuller, more complex telling of American histories. His work focuses on advancing equity, inclusion, and social justice through place-based initiatives, built environments, cultural heritage projects, digital and ephemeral programs, and commemorative spaces and landscapes.

In addition to his work in the Humanities in Place program, Moore has extensive planning and design experience, from regional and urban systems, policies, and projects to grassroots and community-focused planning, design, public realm, and arts initiatives. Having served as executive director of the City of New York Public Design Commission, he led many planning and design projects, including the Greenpoint and Williamsburg Waterfront, Hunter’s Point South, and the Brooklyn Cultural District.

Agrawal has more than 25 years of hands-on experience in community-engaged practice, dedicating her career to bringing diversity and inclusive practices to architecture and design, and focusing her efforts on supporting women of color. She is co-director of Pathways to Equity, a leadership experience that brings public-interest design and self-reflective practice together to support responsible social-impact design practice. She is also founder and principal of Public Design for Equity, an equity-driven practice for equity-driven outcomes.

As associate professor in critical ethnic studies at the Decolonial School at California College of the Arts, Agrawal focuses her research and practice on revealing the historical legacies of colonization in architecture and design and dismantling its lasting impacts.

The discussion will begin at 5 p.m. CDT and is accessible via Zoom (passcode: 936031).