ARTISTS FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE 2020
Curated by Virginia Mallon
A collaborative group exhibition featuring artists whose work reflects the multitude of crisis in our country and on our planet today.
In response to the current political crises in America, a cadre of diverse and talented artists are launching a year-long cross-country show into the heartland of America, united by the belief that art is and should be a catalyst for change. This timely exhibitions support those who are striving for freedom and resisting oppression.
The art features Donna Bassin’s powerful portraits of resistance from the daily onslaught of obliteration and silences; Marissa Bridge’s mixed media tributes to the children incarcerated at our borders; Barbara Friedman’s delicate landscapes touch upon the fragility and precarious future of our natural world. Additionally, Holly Gordon’s photography captures climate crisis in China. Virginia Mallon’s work addresses refugee and immigrant issues, while fiber artist Dee Mallon focuses on the abandonment of thousands in the aftermath of natural disasters. Australian artist Jessica Waddington’s images spotlight the threat of rising waters and catastrophic fires faced in her homeland. Lydia Makepeace’s work celebrates the long-ignored contributions of women of color, and Beatrice Lebreton comments on women’s contributions to contemporary society. Jessica Nissen explores the human role as conservator and destroyer of the natural world. Maggie Rose’s collages touches upon racial diversity and social justice, while the sculptures of community activist Yvonne Shortt center on equality, race and disability. Photographer and author Susan Saunders uses language and images for her work on immigration and Jonathan Talbot’s work is a commentary on the border wall with Mexico.
The tour remains virtual due to the covid-19 crisis, but has launched digitally at not only at the Kupferberg Center for the Arts at Queens College but also at the Social Distance Festival out of Toronto, Canada.
2021 exhibits include the ARC Gallery & Educational Foundation in Chicago, and to the New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary art from mid-August to October, 2021.
The Queens College Art Center strives to serve as a resource for CUNY-generated initiatives, both in and outside of the classroom, to offer emerging artists a space to experiment and grow, and to foster interdisciplinary partnerships founded in the arts—all with a spirit of openness and inclusivity. Above all else, Art Center programming aims to encourage visitors to ask questions—of themselves, of the featured artists and exhibitions, and of one another—as well as to consider a perspective outside of their own, even if only for the short time that they experience the art.
The Queens College Art Center is a successor of the Klapper Library Art Center that was based in the Queens College Art Library’s gallery founded in 1960. With more than 200 exhibitions to date, it has shown masters like Alice Neel, Joseph Cornell, Elizabeth Catlett, and Henry Chalfant and introduced scores of artists from around the globe along with emerging artists who later went on to major careers.
The Art Center’s unique rotunda layout lends itself to a range of installation possibilities, allowing for entire exhibitions to be viewed as a whole, from any point in the gallery. To this end, the Art Center offers 3-5 free and public exhibitions per year, in partnership with the Kupferberg Center.