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The Info Commons presents Inside Art: Talks with Artists & Art Educators about Contemporary & Modern Art 

Michael Kelly Williams, a New York artist working in sculpture, prints, and works on paper, will share his works and process with us, starting with a slide show of his earlier work and then moving to a studio tour, where he will share his recent and current works in progress. His art is inspired by music, poetry, literature, nature and mythology. He draws heavily from the art of the ancients, folk art, and art from the Afro-Atlantic diaspora. Concepts that interest him are the spiritual in art, environmental concerns, equality and justice.  He will also talk about the importance of mentors, and the critical role of art education.   

This workshop will take place online via Zoom. Please RSVP to receive the Zoom link prior to the event.

Michael Kelly Williams graduated with a B.F.A. in Printmaking from the University of Michigan in 1975. He was the art director for “Daughters of the Dust,” a 1991 PBS-American Playhouse Production directed by Julie Dash. Williams has also been an educator with the Children’s Art Carnival, Studio in a School, and the New York City Department of Education system for many years. His work can be found in several museums and institutions, such as The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture; The Library of Congress; The Detroit Institute of Arts; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; and The Bronx Museum of the Arts. Williams has been commissioned for various permanent installations, including two mosaic murals located at the Intervale Subway Station in the Bronx as well as several glass murals in P.S. 82 Hammond School in Queens, New York. Most recently he has had residencies at Materials for the Arts and Wave Hill and was awarded the first Robert Blackburn Legacy Publishing Fellowship. He is also a recipient of a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. He is currently showing in a group exhibition at the Abrazo Interno Gallery of the Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center in New York City.

During the long months of quarantine, many of us found ourselves missing art: the deep encounters that surprise and move us, helping us to understand the world (or reevaluate what we think we know about it). Virtual encounters with art, while not the same as face-to-face, allow us access to art with tour guides — artists, art educators, and institutional directors who can guide us to new understandings of iconic art or introduce us to art we have never seen before. The Info Commons presents Inside Art: Talks with Artists & Art Educators about Contemporary & Modern Art, a monthly series, to take a deep dive into some NYC exhibits, to (re)examine some dominant narratives of modern art, and to explore the practice of working artists in their own words. We hope you’ll join us online. 

Upcoming Events:

Mar. 11th: Betye Saar: "Conscience of the Art World"

We want to hear from you!

Art and Society Census is a new project soliciting public opinion and group visioning designed to evolve the role of the arts and culture in contemporary life, developed in collaboration with independent curator and Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art Interim Executive Director Laura Raicovich and in partnership with Hyperallergic. Open for public comment until March 1, 2021, the Art and Society Census aims to invite a collective rethinking that would dissolve the boundaries of canonized art and institutions, in the hopes of finding new approaches, values and actions that would restructure the cultural field based on what audiences deem most important or overlooked, inviting a grassroots transformation of the arts sector. As museums, performing arts institutions, libraries, and other cultural organizations nationwide need to reassess how they are serving their communities, BPL’s Art and Society Census aims to be a leading organizer of a public referendum on culture. 

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