Hostile Terrains at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee examines the intersection of space, policy and violence in and around the US. This exploration is catalyzed by the Hostile Terrain 94 installation authored by the Undocumented Migration Project and directed by anthropologist Jason De León. Hostile Terrain 94 illustrates the consequences of government policy at the US-Mexico border. That border is a checkpoint of territorial control through which thousands of migrants pass each year. Many are deterred or detained, and many perish. Hostile Terrain 94 simultaneously reveals the massive scale of that invisible tragedy and its irreducibly personal human impact. It also directs us to examine the hostilities of our own terrains.
Surrounding installations in the exhibit analyze hostile landscapes in and around Milwaukee. Faculty curators, students, and community partners explore the interrelationships of identity, space, policy, and violence from the perspectives of Native People, Black Americans, Women, and Life in the Pandemic, among others. In Hostile Terrains, Milwaukee and the US-Mexico border are linked conceptually by boundary-making activities — some government-led initiatives, some societal traditions — in which the marginalization of certain groups is the precondition for and consequence of hierarchical power, social, and physical violence, and oppressive policy. Our objective is to center and amplify the voices of the silenced, reveal the invisible injustices embedded in our landscapes, and to cultivate connections between allies and organizations fighting for rights in and beyond Milwaukee. This is a safe space for all students, staff, faculty, and community members regardless of immigration status, personal or group identity.
You can view the Hostile Terrains exhibit:
Emile H. Mathis Gallery
Mitchell Hall, Room 170
3203 North Downer Avenue
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53211
Gallery Hours are Monday through Friday, 10 am to 4 pm and this exhibit runs September 30, 2021 – February 10, 2022