March 22, 2016 – Suzanne Lacy, a pioneering arts activist who helped shape the art of social engagement in the 1970s and has continued to be a preeminent figure in the movement, will give a multimedia presentation at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 4 in the Tillotson Room of the Tippie Alumni Center. The presentation, titled “Setting the Stage: Conversations Through Art, Gender Identity and Social Practice,” is free and open to the public.
A visual artist whose prolific career includes performances, video and photographic installation, critical writing and public practices in communities, Lacy will discuss several formative projects and describe the evolution of her art activism nationally and internationally.
In addition to Lacy’s public talk, she will moderate a Skype discussion, titled “From Talk to Action Part I: Feminist Artists and Activists on Violence Against Women” at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5. Joining Lacy through Skype will be artists Adaku Utah, Neda Moridpour and Jasmeen Patheja, whose work focuses on issues of violence and healing from sexual assault. A conversation centered on exposing rape culture will follow at 3 p.m.
Both sessions on April 5, in the Tillotson Room, take place on the college’s Gator Day, a day set aside each semester for students to further explore their academic, personal and career goals and for the campus community to explore issues that affect campus climate.
Lacy’s art works range from intimate explorations to large-scale public performances involving literally hundreds of performers and thousands of audience members. Her work has been reviewed in The Village Voice, Artforum, L.A. Times, the New York Times, Art in America and in numerous books and periodicals. She lectures widely and has published over 70 texts of critical commentary.
Lacy has exhibited at Tate Modern, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, the Whitney Museum, the New Museum and P.S. 1 in New York, and The Bilbao Museum in Spain.
Her scores of fellowships include the Guggenheim Foundation, the Henry Moore Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Her book “Mapping the Terrain: New Genre Public Art” was responsible for coining the term “new genre public art.”
Lacy is founding chair of the MFA in Public Practice at the Otis College of Art and Design. She holds a Ph.D. from Gray’s School of Art at Robert Gordon University in Scotland.
Lacy’s visit to campus was organized by Professor of Art Amara Geffen and Allegheny College’s interim Title IX coordinator, Gilly Ford, and the students in the Art & the Environment Class they are co-teaching this semester on Deconstructing Myths of Rape. The Allegheny College Counseling Center and staff from Women’s Services Inc. in Meadville are also providing support for the program.