Each term, Bennington offers a program of lectures by visiting arts professionals: artists, curators, historians and critics, selected to showcase the diversity of contemporary art practices. Designed to enhance classroom activities of various disciplines in the Visual Arts and to stimulate campus dialogue around topical issues of contemporary art, these thematically connected presentations will build on each other, offering students the opportunity to explore ideas from multiple perspectives over the course of the term. Events are free and open to the public. Unless otherwise noted, lectures are held in Tishman Lecture Hall on Tuesday evenings, from 7-8:30pm. Please see the schedule below for specific dates
March 6: Maren Hassinger ‘69
March 20: Daphne Brooks
April 3: Tschabalala Self
April 17: Byron Kim (Adams-Tillim Lecture)
May 1: Margarita Cabrera
May 15: Odili Donald Odita MFA ’90
Maren Hassinger ‘69
Director of Rinehart School of Graduate Sculpture at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, sculptor Maren Hassinger creates “installations, videos, performances and public artworks that deal with equality and our changing relationship to nature.” Hassinger’s work was featured in the Brooklyn Museum’s recent blockbuster: We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965-1985.After graduating from Bennington, Hassinger went on to receive an MFA from UCLA.
Professor of African American Studies and Theater Studies at Yale, Daphne Brooks writes about race, gender, performance and popular music culture. Author of two books and numerous articles, her current project is Subterranean Blues: Black Women Sound Modernity (Harvard University Press, forthcoming). Brooks, who taught at Princeton before joining the faculty at Yale, received her PhD in English from UCLA.
26-year old Tschabalala Self has recently appeared in the pages of The New York Times, W, and Art in America. Self’s multi-media works range from machine-stitched textiles and acrylic collage to, more recently, drawing and animation. She describes her current work as “primarily devoted to examining the intersectionality of race, gender and sexuality.” Self received a BA from Bard College and an MFA in painting from Yale.
Byron Kim Adams-Tillim Lecture
A senior critic at Yale, Byron Kim is perhaps best known for “Synecdoche,” his ongoing work, begun in 1991, and since on display in the National Gallery in Washington DC. Kim’s most recent work, a series of hauntingly mimetic, large-scale ‘bruise paintings’ described by Art in America’s William Smith as “a strange form of realism,” can also be readily viewed as a return to his longstanding exploration of the tensions between modernist abstraction and identity politics. Kim received a BA from Yale University and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.
Margarita Cabrera’s socio-political multi-media art combines studio practice and social activism, often as a means of “venerating the lives of Mexican immigrants, paying careful attention to the contributions of the women who make consumer goods that are sold in the United States.” Cabrera, who grew up in Mexico City, creates soft-scale fabric sculptures, sometimes made from recycled Border Patrol Uniforms, as well as grid-based printed textiles. Cabrera attended the Maryland Institute College of Art and received a BFA and MFA from Hunter College. She is currently assistant professor of art at Arizona State University.
Odili Donald Odita MFA ’90
Nigerian-born, Philadelphia-based Odita has been described as “an abstract painter whose work explores color both in the figurative historical context and in the sociopolitical sense.” Odita has received commissions for large-scale murals by Duke University’s Nasher Museum of Art, the New Orleans Museum of Art, and the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, among others. Odita is currently associate professor of painting at Temple University’s Tyler School of Art. Earlier this year (along with fellow VALS speakers, Ellen Gallagher, and Margarita Cabrera), his work appeared in New Orleans’ citywide art triennial, Prospect 4.