Faculty Member Gregory King to Present at Open Engagement conference on socially engaged art | School of Theatre and Dance | Kent State University

Faculty Member Gregory King to Present at Open Engagement conference on socially engaged art

Assistant Professor of Dance and Kent Dance Ensemble artistic director Gregory King will present at Open Engagement, an annual, three-day, artist-led conference dedicated to expanding the dialogue around and creating a site of care for the field of socially engaged art, on May 12, 2018 at the Queens Museum in New York. 

King will present his and fellow dance faculty member Megan Young's research into Measuring Digital Resistance, which examines the ways artists from marginalized communities utilize digital tools to reclaim space within the spheres of public discourse, public landscape, and public consciousness. The initial stages of King and Young's work will feature black identified dance artists, aesthetics, and methods. The research considers the historic exclusion of black artists from prominence in mainstream theatrical spaces and asserts that dance artists of color have found expanded opportunities within the digital spaces of DIY video production, social media distribution, and similar.

King's presentation, "Digital Activism: Black Bodies Reclaiming Public Space," discusses the curation of a virtual space of interactive installations and digital portraits, threading a linear/ familiar narrative between artists of color who continue to work in white spaces… uncomfortable spaces, and whose works have sometimes been marginalized, misinterpreted, and gravely misunderstood.  

Open Engagement (OE) is an annual, three-day, artist-led conference dedicated to expanding the dialogue around and creating a site of care for the field of socially engaged art. The conference, Open Engagement 2018 – SUSTAINABILITY running May 11 – 13, 2018, highlights the work of transdisciplinary artists, activists, students, scholars, community members, and organizations working within the complex social issues and struggles of our time.

Since 2007, OE has presented eight conferences in two countries and six cities, hosting over 1,600 presenters and over 6,000 attendees. Annual programming is selected by committees comprised of artists, educators, professionals, and community members from a free, open call for proposals.