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Conference Schedule
Saturday October 15, 2011

10:00 am - 11:30 am RISD Museum, 20 North Main Street, Providence

Site visit: Distant Mirrors

with Ellen Driscoll (RISD Professor and Head of Sculpture) and Marcel Lussier (Materials Recycling Facility Business Manager at Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation)

12:00 pm - 2:30 pm Ximedica, 55 Dupont Drive, Providence

A Conversation with Holly Ewald (Urban Pond Procession) and Drake Patten (Steel Yard Executive Director)

*includes lunch from Apsara, 12-12:45PM

3:00 pm - 5:00 pm The Spot Underground, 15 Elbow Street, Providence

Site visit: Jewelry District site-specific public art installations

with Betsey Biggs (Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies, Brown University) and students

* Projects will be on view 1-4PM; maps will be available on the corner of Point and Richmond Streets (near Olga's Cup and Saucer) starting at 1PM and at the Spot starting at 3PM. We will convene at the Spot at 4PM for a discussion of the work.

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm Roots Cafe, 276 Westminster St, Providence

A Conversation with Carol Bebelle, Artistic Director of Ashe Cultural Arts Center (New Orleans), Dorothy Jungels (Everett), and Elmo Terry- Morgan (Rites and Reason Theatre), moderated by Nehessaiu deGannes (Independent Actress, Poet & Rhode Island College Faculty)

Ellen Driscoll is a Providence and New York-based artist who is currently head of the Sculpture Department at RISD. Ellen will be one of more than a dozen contributors to the first installment of AIC's Artists' Prospectus for the Nation. She and her team are currently building a website and mobile app to be launched in conjunction with Distant Mirrors to provide historical, environmental, economic, political and social context for the installation.

Watch Ellen's presentation here.

Marcel Lussier is Business Manager-Materials Recycling Facility Waste Manager at the Recycling Department. Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation. RIRRC is responsible for managing Rhode Island's solid waste and recyclables. They are landfill management and recycling professionals, committed to providing economically sound and environmentally safe solid waste management services to the Rhode Island community.

Watch Marcel's presentation here.

Holly Ewald has developed an approach to making art that increasingly merges her studio practice with facilitating community engagement. Since receiving her MFA in Painting from Brooklyn College and moving to Rhode Island she has initiated several locally based projects in collaboration with other artists, scholars, technicians, and the public. They have included installations, street processions, and visual dialogue correspondence.

Watch Holly's presentation here.

Drake Patten is the Executive Director of the Steel Yard, and a frustrated gardener-jeweler-lamp maker-bread maker who presently considers herself a ‘once-was-artist.’ She hopes there is still time. Meanwhile, she worries about things like the frequent misuse of the apostrophe and the possibility of bumping into clowns on a dark night-or a bright one for that matter. Among her previous personal manifestations: viking archaeologist, anthropologist studying race and class in the American south and executive director of the RI Humanities Council. She also pulls a mean espresso shot.

Watch Drake's presentation here.

Betsey Biggs is an artist and composer whose practice in music, sound, video and installation aims to explore the resonance  between sound and image, to actively engage the audience, and to explore the relationships among sound, memory, and geography. She holds a Ph.D. in Music Composition from Princeton University and is currently Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies at Brown University.

Watch Betsy's presentation with her students here.

Carol Bebelle (a.k.a. Akua Wambui) is a native New Orleanian and a proud product of the New Orleans Public School System. She received her undergraduate degree from Loyola University in sociology and her master's degree from Tulane University in education administration. Bebelle is a published poet whose work has appeared in several anthologies and journals She spent nearly 20 years in the public sector as an administrator and planner of education, social, and health programs. Bebelle realized that the cultural and creative heartbeat of New Orleans was an un- and under-tapped resource on the landscape of community development. She realized that the power of culture and creativity combined could unleash progress, improvement, and economic inclusion for much of the under-represented members of the New Orleans community. In 1998, Bebelle and Douglas Redd founded Ashe' Cultural Arts Center in Central City, New Orleans. Ashe', as it is familiarly known, is a pivotal force for the revitalization and transformation of Oretha Castle-Haley Boulevard, formerly known as Dryades Street, into an African and Caribbean cultural corridor. Bebelle and Redd have made an invaluable commitment to building bridges, accessing resources, and helping to make being an artist and a culture bearer a part of the creative industries in Louisiana.

Watch conversation with Carol Bebelle here.

Dorothy Jungels co-founded Everett: Company, Stage and School in 1986 with her son Aaron and her daughter Rachael. They have provided artistic direction for the company, stage, and school ever since. The company has toured across the country and has been recognized with a Bessie, a New York dance and performance award; a Pell Award for excellence in the arts; and the RI Alliance in Education Award for combining science and art. The School provides long-term, professional-level training in the performing arts to inner-city youth. Through the apprenticeship program many of the youth go on to become professional performers and teachers. Originally from Chicago, Dorothy studied dance with Lidia Pettine in RI and worked for RI State Council in the Arts in the 1970’s. Her work at RI State Council on the arts brought her to mental hospitals, children’s hospitals, prisons and senior citizen sites. In preparation for this work RISCA sent Dorothy to East St. Louis to study with Katherine Dunham. Dunham was known for her deep community involvement and her innovations in bringing music and dance to the most isolated of populations

Elmo Terry-Morgan is Associate Professor at Brown University in the Departments of Africana Studies and Theatre Arts and Performance Studies; and is also Artistic Director of Rites and Reason Theatre. His areas of expertise are in African-American Theatre and Dramatic Literature, African-American Cultural Expressions, Black LGBTQ Plays, Introduction to Playwriting, Research-to-Performance Method (RPM) Playwriting and dramaturgy. He is also an Associate Director and Playwright with the National Black Theatre of Harlem. One of his major works is Heart-to-Heart: Ain’t Your Life Worth Saving?, an educational play about heart disease and stroke among Women of African descent, which was commissioned by the American Heart Association/Rhode Island Chapter and LifeSpan Hospitals.

Nehassaiu deGannes is an actress, poet & educator. Winner of the 2011 Center For Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Award, she also received the 2010 Inaugural Cave Canem Fellowship to the Vermont Studio Center, the 2008 Poetry Fellowship from The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, and the 2001 Philbrick Poetry Prize. Recent acting credits include: “The Nurse,” in Tony Walton’s production of EQUUS opposite Alec Baldwin (Guild Hall); the world premiere of The Tallest Building In The World (Luna Stage); “Octavia & Menas,” Antony & Cleopatra (TWAS); “Betty,” A Song For My Father by David Budbill (Oldcastle Theatre), poet & mover in the national tourof Rigidigidim De Bamba De: Ruptured Calypso with Cynthia Oliver’s COCo Dance Theatre; “Roberta Charles,” Room For Cream (Theatre of The Two-Headed Calf & LaMAMA ETC); as well as roles at Perishable, The GAMM, Providence Black Rep and Trinity Rep. Nehassaiu is currently Assistant Professor of Theatre at Rhode Island College and a volunteer at the 52nd Street Project in New York City, where she lives.