Social Justice Art

The Visual Art and Performance for Social Justice and Self-Healing is a part of a multilayered approach, led by social work Professor Rogério M. Pinto, to advance critical consciousness and social liberation through research and practice.

As an interdisciplinary team, students will apply their talents and skills to concretely advance the dissemination of research findings in the format of installations and performances. The 2023 cohort of students will be involved in the design, building, and delivery of an art installation focused on colorism – prejudice and/or discrimination against individuals with darker skin tones, usually within the same ethnic and/or racial group. Research has shown that individuals with darker skin tones are more likely to face negative outcomes in education, work, and health.

The art installation on which students will work includes visual art, technologies, performance, and props. It will include five parts, each containing videos and photographs in intricate displays. Therefore, students will be able to learn and to use existing skills in video-making and editing, photography/Photoshop, designing and building exhibit models and scenic models, building glass and wood displays, and lighting design. This is not an exhaustive list – students will be encouraged to contribute their own ideas to the final project. For examples of past projects led by Professor Pinto, please see Realm of the Dead: An Installation Performance, and Pinto’s performance as he accepts the 2020 Carol Hollingshead Inspire Award.

Students in this FEAST project will be required to join the School of Social Work Social Justice and Self-Healing Art Collective and to attend one-hour meetings every two weeks. As a part of their work, FEAST students will collaborate with other students, staff and community members in workshops, events, and discussions. FEAST students will assist in the preparation of the Collective’s end of the year Variety Show (Spring 2023 Variety Show). FEAST students will also have an opportunity, if desired, to take a master’s level, 3-credit social work course in winter 2023, Global Art-Centered Social Justice Practice & Self-Healing.

By participating in the Arts Collective and in the proposed FEAST, students will learn how to advance social justice as they heal themselves, as perpetrators and/or the recipients, of different forms of oppression. Students will accomplish this by applying insights from social work, behavioral science, art and design, technology, and performance. Ultimately, students will deploy the power of the arts toward the development of critical consciousness and social liberation.

Social Justice Chart

Students apply to a specific role on team as follows:

Exhibit/Model Designer (2 Students)

Preferred Skills: Architecture, prop-making, fabrication, scenic modeler

Likely Majors/Minors: ARTDES, ARCH

Videographer/Photographer (2 Students)

Preferred Skills: Videography, filmmaking (storyboarding), camera skills, editing with Adobe Premiere, Final Cut Pro, and/or AVID, experience using and/or constructing camera rigs, photography/Photoshop, and lighting design

Likely Majors/Minors: ARTDES, FTVM

Web Designer (1 Student)

Preferred Skills: HTML, data management, videography, photography

Likely Majors/Minors: CS, DS, SI

Faculty Project Lead

Rogerio Pinto

Born in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Rogério M. Pinto uses art-based methods to conduct community-engaged research in the United States and Brazil. Funded by the National Institutes of Health and other sources, Pinto investigates strategies for improving delivery of services (HIV and drug-use prevention and care) and develop/test interventions to help racial/ethnic and sexual minoritized groups develop critical consciousness and health promotion behaviors.

Pinto performed “Marília,” his one-person play, on New York City’s Theatre Row in 2015 and at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, Vrystaat, South Africa in 2016. “Marília” won the United Solo Festival Best Documentary Script. In “Marília,” Pinto explores the tragic death of his three-year-old sister and how it haunts and inspires the family she left behind. He built the “Realm of the Dead,” an art installation to investigate his own marginalization as a gender non-confirming, mixed-race and Latinx immigrant. “Realm of the Dead ” was presented at the School of Social Work as part of its Centennial celebration (2021), and at the Annual Conference for Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (2022).

Students: 5

Likely Majors/Minors: ARTDES, ARCH, CS, DS, FTVM, SI

Meeting Details: Mondays, 6 pm (Hybrid)

Application: Consider including a link to your portfolio or other websites in the personal statement portion of your application to share work you would like considered as part of your submission.

Summer Opportunity: Summer research fellowships may be available for qualifying students.

Citizenship Requirements: This project is open to all students on campus.

IP/NDA: Students who successfully match to this project team will be required to sign an Intellectual Property (IP) Agreement prior to participation.

Course Substitutions: CoE Honors