What Can a Body Do? Investigating Disability in Contemporary Art Roundtable Discussion

Visual and Critical Studies Special Forum Lecture Series
February 17, 2012, 7:00–9:00 pm

Florence and Leo B. Helzel Boardroom, San Francisco Campus
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Info: 510.356.8001 or acachia@cca.edu

Speakers are Georgina Kleege, Carmen Papalia, Ann Millett-Gallant, Katherine Sherwood, Tobin Siebers, Laura Swanson, Sunaura Taylor and Rosemarie Garland Thomson, moderated by Graduate Program in Visual and Critical Studies student Amanda Cachia.

The intent is to explore the dominant paradigms at the intersection of disability and contemporary art. How can reductive representations of the disabled body, ranging from the freak, cripple, deformed, grotesque and the monster, as seen in Western artistic and curatorial discourses, be destabilized? How can the contemporary art world begin to shift these negative perceptions and meanings of the disabled body in order to make room for its more nuanced, complex representation across diverse artistic fields? What are some new methodologies and strategies being employed by disabled artists today in conveying a new visual and textual language around the association between visual representation and identity?

Preceding the roundtable from 4-5 p.m. will be the Blind Field Shuttle walking tour, a nonvisual shuttle service in which the Portland-based artist Carmen Papalia transports groups of persons to and from given locations. The tour culminates in a group discussion regarding the experience.

Support provided by Southern Exposure's Alternative Exposure Grant Program, the CCA President's Diversity Steering Group, and the Graduate Program in Visual and Critical Studies.

(artwork: Sunaura Taylor, No Arms! (Self-Portrait), 2010)