"Reading Between The Lines: Image and Text by Contemporary African American Artists" brings the visual image and the written word together in art works of great directness and elegance by four of today's most progressive artists. For them, the incorporation of text and image is a natural result of deeply introspective and intellectual approaches to their lives and communities. Each artist utilizes these distinctive elements to fulfill her natural role as visual artist, story teller, educator, historian and cultural healer. Each artists has looked deep within herself and her community, and has turned a critical eye toward history, social norms, contemporary race relations, political events, figures and promises. The artists explore a wide range of issues including relationships, family, community, gender roles, AIDS and global politics. Interwoven throughout their work are also issues more clearly defined by American race relations including slavery, the Civil Rights Movement, past and present stereotypes, media representation, ethnic identity and contemporary race relations. These exceptional artists explore diver and vital issues with wisdom of a teacher, the craft of a story teller, the frankness of a journalist, the understanding of a sociologist and the anger of a protester. Exhibition held in the Main Gallery space.
In celebration of and in collaboration with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Utah, and in honor of their 50 years of advocacy in defending civil liberties, the Salt Lake Art Center has organized “Liberties Under Fire.” This exhibition features artwork by five artists who depict or suggest pivotal civil liberties issues identified by the ACLU of Utah. To provide informed and unique perspectives about each issue, six prominent authors have been invited to write short personal essays. And to place these artworks and essays in a legal framework, the ACLU of Utah has provided short texts related to each issue. The root issue is the First Amendment – freedom of speech and expression – which is explored in an introduction by Katharine Coles, PhD, Utah Poet Laureate and Professor of English, University of Utah. The five civil liberties issues addressed by pairings of artists and writers include: Abuse of Power: artist Sue Coe and author Forrest S. Cuch; Church and State: artist Enrique Chagoya and author Terry Tempest Williams; LGBT Equality: artist John Trobaugh and playwright Julie Jensen; Racial Justice: artist Kara Walker and author Forrest Crawford; and, Torture, Imprisonment, and War: artist Jenny Holzer and author/journalist Mary Dickson. Exhibition held in the Main Gallery space.