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U-M Arts Initiative Signature


Jul 12 2022 | Using the Arts to Flip Understanding

Hosted by a2ru – In our work as faculty, practitioners, and researchers, we may find ourselves getting stuck in the same places, finding that our familiar approaches fail to move us forward. How do we refresh and jumpstart inspiration? To get “unstuck,” we need to try new perspectives and approaches. In this workshop, we use arts-based activities to open up new neural pathways. We refresh our thinking and jumpstart inspiration with poetry, visual art, and movement. This class calls upon a range of intelligences and skills inherent in us all – no formal arts training required.

Apr 8 2022 | Bridging the Divide: Project Showcase

The arts have a unique way of bringing people together. During Spring 2022, the inaugural cohort of Arts Initiative Creative Fellows has worked on projects focused on "Bridging the Divide," exploring the ways the arts can connect us to one another, encourage collaboration across disciplines, and promote joy and healing.

Apr 2 2022 | UM Sustainable Food Program's Tiny Talks for Food Justice

As a part of their Rooting for Change: Student Food Summit, The University of Michigan Sustainable Food Program will present "Tiny Talks For Food Justice." These eleven bite-sized student keynotes contemplate our relationship to food in the era of intersectional environmental and social crises.

Jan 20 2022 | POSTPONED: UMMA and the Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series Present artist Titus Kaphar: Unsettling Histories

POSTPONED Titus Kaphar is an artist whose paintings, sculptures, and installations examine the history of representation by transforming its styles and mediums with formal innovations to emphasize the physicality and dimensionality of the canvas and materials themselves. His work, Flay (James Madison), is the centerpiece of Unsettling Histories: Legacies of Slavery and Colonialism, UMMA’s reinstallation of the gallery of eighteenth century European and American art.

Oct 15 2021 | Building Equitable Ecologies of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: A mini-symposium with artists & data scientists

Big Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) have become a major force that impacts our daily lives in essential ways, from how political messaging and marketing are designed, to automating the process of deciding who gets hired or which neighborhood should be intensely patrolled. Big Data and AI can be an important agent for social justice and equality; or they can also be used to perpetuate injustice and hurt populations that are already disadvantaged and marginalized. Artists have been at the fore­front, together with scientists, in explor­ing ways in which AI sys­tems can be more equi­table, trans­par­ent and inclu­sive. This mini-symposium brings lead­ing voices in the field together.

Oct 14 2021 | Future of Art: Coco Fusco The Right to Have Rights

Artist, writer and scholar Coco Fusco presents a vir­tual talk, presenting research on Cuban artists con­fronting the state, and work deal­ing with repressed his­to­ries of the rev­o­lu­tion­ary era in Cuba. This talk will be fol­lowed by a Q&A mod­er­ated by U‑M Pro­fes­sor Larry La Foun­tain-Stokes (Amer­i­can Cul­ture, Latino/​a Stud­ies, Romance Lan­guages and Lit­er­a­tures, and Wom­en’s and Gen­der Studies).

Sep 23 2021 | A Travel Guide for Talking Hearts

How would you map what you have felt and experienced over the last 18 months? Join Yo-Yo Ma, Michigan artists Nour Ballout, Tunde Olaniran, and Avery Williamson, and four U-M students on a journey into our hearts.

Sep 17 2021 | Talking Hearts Conversation Spaces

Students and the U-M community are invited to visit the Talking Hearts Conversations Spaces where they can reflect on the past 18 months using the Conversation Guide or the Drawing Guide, created to help people to get in touch with their emotional journeys from throughout the pandemic.

Apr 19 2021 | Technology and the Future of Art

Join American Artist and Salome Asega, artists whose work explores themes of art, technology, and activism in conversation with Marisa Olson, a fellow practitioner and Executive Director of the Digital Studies Institute. They will discuss the role of the arts in framing and producing social justice commentary and the ways in which they use technology to both critique and intervene in the problematics often posed by technology.

Nov 9 2020 | Info Session: Envisioning an Anti-Racist World Creative Challenge

Moving toward an anti-racist future requires imagining it. This year the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Arts Initiative, the Center for Socially-Engaged Design and the XR Initiative at the Center for Academic Innovation are hosting a Creative Challenge: Envisioning an Anti-Racist World that invites students to create projects in the Winter 2021 semester that imagine, through art and technology, the anti-racist future we want to build. Learn more at an info session on November 9.