The Dark Madonna 1985-1986

1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 The Dark Madonna began with a symposium sponsored by UCLA’s Center for the Study of Women in November of 1985, continued through various community dialogues, and culminated in a performance created by Suzanne Lacy with the UCLA Wight Gallery on May 31 1986.

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 The origins of the Dark Madonna lay in a walk Wight Gallery director Edith Tonelli took with the artist Suzanne Lacy through the Franklin D. Murphy sculpture garden on the campus of UCLA.  As the two women took in the statues, mostly by male artists, they conversed about the possibilities of the space.  Tonelli later confessed she drew Lacy to the garden in the hopes she’d be inspired to create one of her large scale performance pieces in the space.[1]  Tonelli wanted to create art that spoke to a larger community, and the answer seem to lay in bringing in artists with extensive experience working with people outside the art world.[2]

3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 At the same time, UCLA’s recently authorized Center for the Study of Women (CSW), an organized research unit that drew faculty from disparate disciplines, sought ways to involve broad constituencies in their work, and to also bridge the divide between the university and groups in the community. Tonelli, who had offered the Wight Gallery during the exhibition of Judy Chicago’s The Birth Project as the venue for the opening reception of the CSW, brought the idea for a project in the sculpture garden to CSW director Karen Rowe.[3]

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8 Leave a comment on paragraph 8 0 [2] Lacy’s previous projects included Evelina and I: Crime, Quilts and Art (1978) as well as Whisper, The Winds, The Waves, 5355 says she has worked with Watts Community Housing Corporation since 1977

9 Leave a comment on paragraph 9 0 [3] In fall of 1983, during the exhibition of The Birth Project, a conference Cultural/Medical Context of Birth in Three (societies) occurred scrimshaw, Moore, Clark,  Engle funded y the NIMH, Winter of 1984 co-sponsored, along with Women’s Studies Undergraduate Association, Women Rising a history conference that involved feminist activists from the Los Angeles Area.  Oct 1983 project descriptions does not include so much have been after that


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