Empathy, as a gesture to identify with the experiences and conditions of others, can be wielded by artists to create worlds that challenge complexity in community structures, systems, and/or themselves. bell hooks, in a conversation with Alison Saar, offers that ”Imagining [is] a way to be empathic, to move into worlds we have not experienced yet have come to understand…”.

We will focus on the works of several contemporary visual artists and discuss how they are using history, fiction and autobiography within their art practice to connect to their audiences. Students will be asked to create a work that responds to the experience of another or promotes a deeper understanding of their own practice. The work may be visual, poetry, sound installation, etc. There will be time for presentations and discussion on the final workshop day.

Short Suggested Reading, to begin with:

Berger, John. ‘Uses of Photography: For Susan Sontag’, About Looking, Pantheon, 1980. 48-63

Chan, Nelson. ‘Performing Selves: Nelson Chan in Conversation with Genevieve Gaignard.’ Spot Magazine, Fall 2017, 26-35

hooks, bell. ‘Talking Art with Alison Saar’, Art on My Mind: visual politics, The New Press, 1995. 22-34

Click here to register online or call 585-442-8676 to register by phone.