Social Practice and Performance Art
SUN 05 FEB | 2PM | FREE
Join Regina José Galindo, Joseph Ravens, Lisa Vinebaum, and others for a roundtable discussion about socially driven artists and projects that engage the general public. In turbulent times, many artists focus on trying to make an impact on society by holding a lens to injustice. Many of today’s performance artists are turning to more active forms of spectatorship and public engagement to enact and perform works that engage with the political conditions of our times. These more social and relational practices can take the form of overt activism or poetic minimalism but the social interaction is at some level the art. The popularity of social engagement among today’s performance artists reflects a desire to more fully engage both politics and public. It also marks a pendulum swing away from the art market and a reaction against the excesses of technology, individualism, consumerism, and precarity.
REGINA JOSÉ GALINDO has developed a socially and politically motivated practice in which she strives to acknowledge the thirty-six years of civil war her country endured, but also looks forward to a more peaceful and productive future. In her most celebrated work, Who Can Erase the Traces? (Quién puede borrar las huellas?, 2003), she walked barefoot through the streets of Guatemala City, from the Palacio Nacional de la Cultura to the Corte de Constitucionalidad, carrying a basin filled with human blood into which she periodically dipped her feet. The trail of footprints visualized her reaction to the recent news that Efraín Ríos Montt, a former military dictator responsible for the most destructive period of the country’s internal conflict, had been permitted to run for president despite constitutional prohibitions.
Dr. LISA VINEBAUM is an interdisciplinary artist, critical writer, and educator. She holds a PhD in Art from Goldsmiths, University of London (UK); an MA in Textiles also from Goldsmiths, and a BFA from Concordia University in Montreal. She is an Assistant Professor in the department of Fiber and Material Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and Associate Editor of Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture (Routledge/Taylor and Francis). Current research and artistic investigations explore labor, performance and collectivity in the larger context of economic globalization and cutbacks to workers’ rights. She also writes about the social histories of textiles and their connections to contemporary fiber and socially engaged art.
JOSEPH RAVENS has presented his work throughout Asia, Europe, South America, and the US. He studied audiovisuals at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and is a graduate of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago with an MFA in Performance. Ravens is a two time recipient of the Illinois Arts Council Fellowship for New Performance Forms. Other grants, awards, and opportunities have allowed him to build an international reputation. Ravens was included in Live Biennale Vancouver (Canada 2015); 20th Bienal Internacional de Curitiba (Brazil 2013); Venice International Performance Art Week (Italy 2012); and Intrude: Art and Life 366 at Zendai MoMA, Shanghai (China 2008). Ravens is founder and director of Defibrillator Gallery, and co-founder and director of Rapid Pulse International Performance Art Festival. He is recognized for his work as an artist, an educator, and a curator.
Northern Illinois University is bringing Regina José Galindo to the US as part of an exhibition called (Re)Presenting Guatemala, January 17 – February 24, 2017 in DeKalb, Illinois.
This work is made possible with the support of Northern Illinois University College of Visual and Performing Art. The School of the Art Institute of Chicago Department of Performance and Department of Fiber and Material Studies.