‘Performing (Place Placing) Identity’ – VCU’s Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies Spring Art Show Opens Thursday
The Department of Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University is hosting their Spring Art Show ‘Performing (Place Placing) Identity.’ The show opens Thursday, April 24, 5:00 – 9:00 PM at Crenshaw House, 919 West Franklin Street. The event is free and open to the public.
The arrangements are as follows: there will be a 6:00 Panel Discussion with Celina Williams, Ha Tran, Brooke Inman, and more. Open Mic is at 7:00—bring your haikus, ranty Facebook statuses, Twitter prose, and love songs. Film Screenings will begin at 8:00. An extensive and diverse range of featured artists’ work will also be installed throughout the space as well.
Rachel Ludwig, a Sculpture + Extended Media senior at VCU, is one of the artists featured in the show. Ludwig will have a series of four digital prints installed on the second floor of Crenshaw House. The print series, originally existing as stills, are from Ludwig’s most recent film.
“I like that the show is not restricted to the department or even just students for that matter—it’s open to anyone in the community,” says Ludwig. Largely student run and organized, ‘Performing (Place Placing) Identity’ will focus on how we perform in different aspects of our identity. “It’s about your identity as a creative maker, as a person, how that can change, the different ways you perform, making art as yourself, and what part of your identity goes into your art,” Ludwig says.
The Crenshaw House is a unique venue in that it functions more like a house than a typical gallery space. Students had to take into consideration things like water fountains, bathrooms, and fireplaces when preparing for the show. “The installation was very fun,” says Ludwig, “We were figuring out where objects should go in relation to the space, thinking about the content and how it related to the building. It’s not like a regular gallery.”
Ludwig is looking forward to the Panel Discussion at 6:00 on Thursday. “Artists and activists from our community will be discussing how being an artist and being an activist are related, their creative practices, and social practices,” she says, “I think it will be such an enriching experience to hear what other artists from all different backgrounds have to say about their relationships to their identity and about making art.”
“Having these conversations about gender, identity, representation, and sexuality has definitely informed my work recently,” says Ludwig. Having participated in previous Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies art shows, Ludwig is more than ready for this Thursday. She hopes to continue to explore these ideas in her studio practice. “Everyone is so nice and intelligent in the department,” Ludwig says, “Unfortunately I am graduating and only had time to take one Gender Studies class—Queer Cinema—but whether or not it’s from a class or just the community around me, I’m definitely inspired.”
Ludwig hopes that people will come to the show with open minds. “I think the work really makes you ask questions,” she says, “So I hope people think about why we make art and look at the work in the context of these conversations and ideas.”
“What’s unique about this show is that it’s not just an art show. It’s more like a gathering of the community,” says Ludwig.
I’m Lindsay Hawk. I am currently studying Sculpture + Extended Media at VCU, along with Biology and Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies. I enjoy making art about social issues, nudity, and sexuality. If I’m not in the studio, I’m probably exploring the outdoors, visiting art openings, talking to strangers, or chowing down on some local RVA cuisine. Find more of my work at www.lindsayhawk.com
Last Thursday, April 24, was a night of thought-provoking artwork, button-pushing conversation, and stepping-out-of-your-comfort-zone festivities. Guests found themselves confronting a variety of issues, and the concept of identity was revisited and redefined. The event featured a panel discussion led by Ha Tran, Brooke Inman, Dr. Tawnya Pettiford-Wates, Angelica de Jesus and Celina Williams among other phenomenal minds. [...]April 29, 2014
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