Abstract

In recent years many artists have turned to ‘socially engaged practice,’ striving to effect social or political change through community-based or participatory projects outside of traditional gallery spaces. In my presentation I will review projects by three contemporary artists who work with underserved communities to develop creative responses to social injustices they face and to help them develop powerful tools to impact their lives

Suzanne Lacy, one of the original California feminists of the 1970s, is well-known for her performance pieces and installations that engage with social issues through conversation within communities. Rape and violence against women have been a constant theme, as well as issues of aging, poverty, racism and more.

Sculptor Theaster Gates has rehabilitated a series of dilapidated buildings on the South Side of Chicago to serve as community centers for creative production. He finances his projects through sale of his sculptures which repurpose materials stripped from the rehabilitated buildings, creating a virtuous circle between fine art and social progress.

Pseudonymous French street artist and photographer JR travels internationally, setting up photo booths in regions of the world torn by strife to photograph residents, publically posting the giant black and white portraits on buildings and rooftops as well as on social media platforms. His projects bring people together on equal footing to celebrate their individuality and commonalities.

All three offer leadership to stimulate grassroots communities to tackle their own problems through creativity and cooperation.

Author Type

Faculty

Start Date

28-3-2018 3:10 PM

End Date

28-3-2018 4:00 PM

Presentation Type

Paper

Disciplines

Contemporary Art

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Mar 28th, 3:10 PM Mar 28th, 4:00 PM

Socially Engaged Practice: Three Artists

U-Hall 3-101

In recent years many artists have turned to ‘socially engaged practice,’ striving to effect social or political change through community-based or participatory projects outside of traditional gallery spaces. In my presentation I will review projects by three contemporary artists who work with underserved communities to develop creative responses to social injustices they face and to help them develop powerful tools to impact their lives

Suzanne Lacy, one of the original California feminists of the 1970s, is well-known for her performance pieces and installations that engage with social issues through conversation within communities. Rape and violence against women have been a constant theme, as well as issues of aging, poverty, racism and more.

Sculptor Theaster Gates has rehabilitated a series of dilapidated buildings on the South Side of Chicago to serve as community centers for creative production. He finances his projects through sale of his sculptures which repurpose materials stripped from the rehabilitated buildings, creating a virtuous circle between fine art and social progress.

Pseudonymous French street artist and photographer JR travels internationally, setting up photo booths in regions of the world torn by strife to photograph residents, publically posting the giant black and white portraits on buildings and rooftops as well as on social media platforms. His projects bring people together on equal footing to celebrate their individuality and commonalities.

All three offer leadership to stimulate grassroots communities to tackle their own problems through creativity and cooperation.