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April 29, 2014 | 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. View Recurrence Dates
Category: Art Show
Location: Old Main Elaine L. Jacob Gallery | Map
4841 Cass
Detroit, MI 48201
Cost: free
Occurring: Weekly on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, until June, 28th 2014 View Recurrence Dates
Audience: Alumni, Community, Current Graduate Students, Current Undergraduate Students, Faculty, Parents, Prospective Students, Staff

The exhibition PRAXIS focuses on the political factions evolving in the United States
of America during the late nineteen sixties that came to fruition in the seventies,
including the liberation sought by Black Power movements, the freedom from tyranny
advocated by wide-spread anti-Vietnam War struggles, and the foundations of gender
equity forwarded by feminist activists. Just as such political groups emerged
simultaneously, influencing each other, works in the exhibition associated with each
of these domains will thematically and politically cross-reference one another,
creating a dense fabric of meaning, image, and sound evocative of that turbulent

Given their pivotal contributions to the Black Power Movement, political figures like
Stokely Carmichael and Angela Davis are highlighted in the show. One part of the
exhibition features background material depicting the activities of the founding
political organizations and individuals associated with COINTELPRO. Other sections
will focus on the political demonstrations of the Vietnam War and the Detroit riots.
Another aspect of the exhibition will feature feminist movements that gained full
strength through the activities of writers such as Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan.

Some artists engaged with the public in performative activities or even created their
own community spaces to disseminate their work, while others utilized the power of
speech to reach audiences.

The exhibition embodies the interaction and layering that defined the 1970s, while
mirroring the public activity of those times. The installation allows visitors to
listen to original recordings of historical value, read through period magazines and
books, and consider the cultural context of the era, as they view works of art on

Materials like Romare Bearden’s 1968 cover of Time magazine, Langston Hughes’s
“Writers of the Revolution” recordings, Robert A. Sengstacke’s documentary
photography, and Gloria Steinem’s writings for the original Ms. magazine will be on

The show includes some of the most groundbreaking artists from that time. The urgency
their works evoked remains recognizable and powerful today. The nudity of Sylvia
Sleigh’s painting is still provocative while Yoko Ono and John Lennon’s poster action
War Is Over (if you want it)- which will be visible throughout the city of Detroit
during the course of the show – has lost none of its relevance in the decades that
followed. Adrian Piper’s performance The Mythic Being and Cindy Sherman’s photographic
Bus Riders ask us to recognize apparent gender and race issues in a very personalized
way. The exhibition further incorporates the iconic, slogan-based works of such
AfriCOBRA artists as Barbara Jones-Hogu whose calls for changes in societywere taken
to the streets.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog, with reprints of writings including
German philosopher Marcus Steinweg’s “Politics – Semiology – Contingency” and Grace
Lee Bogg’s “From Marx to Malcom and Martin.”

Artists in the show: Judith Bernstein, Barbara Kruger, Yoko Ono, Adrian Piper, Martha
Rosler, Robert A. Sengstacke, Cindy Sherman, Sylvia Sleigh, and AfriCOBRA group
(Casper Banjo, Barbara Jones-Hogu, Carolyn Lawrence, John Riddle Jr., Nelson Stevens,
Gerald Williams).

The Elaine L. Jacob Gallery is in the Old Main Annex building. Enter at 480 W. Hancock Street.

For more information about this event, please contact Tom Pyrzewski at 313-577-2423 or tpyrzewski@wayne.edu.