Michael Casselli, Antioch College Assistant Professor of Sculpture and Installation, shares his talents as an arts professional throughout the region. He has partnered with the Dayton Visual Arts Center (DVAC) as guest curator and juror of Breathing Deeply, Pushing Back: An Exhibition Exploring the Artist as Activist, on view at DVAC August 25 through September 23, 2017.
The exhibition’s concept arose from the conversation that ensued after artwork created by Dayton Regional STEM School students was removed by the City of Dayton two days after it went on display at the Dayton Convention Center in February 2016 due to its political nature. The artwork, created as part of a ninth grade history class, explores experiences of marginalized groups.
Casselli further explains the exhibition, which is meant to open up a dialog to “engage with the issues raised by this powerful work.” He notes:
“I am more interested in the idea of creating commonality and community between each other, recognizing the space we share and developing lasting alliances that will help as we move forward expansively. I am interested in listening, listening deeply and holding my voice so that others can speak. I am interested in pushing back, pushing back against the ideologies that take us further away from each other, pushing back against the actions that reinforce a separation based on being on the ‘winning side,’ pushing back so we can breathe more deeply than we ever have before.”
In addition to artworks by Dayton Regional STEM School students, the show will include pieces by guest artists Carris Adams, Christina Springer, former Antioch College Visiting Assistant Professor of Performance Juan-Si Gonzalez, as well as selections from an open call.
Image: Same People, Different Stereotypes, Dahle, Croake-Uhlman, Arnold