Opening Reception: Amy Cousins
5 to 7pm
Amy Cousins’ large-scale sculptures and installations are based on her research into rare protest ephemera, out-of-print feminist newspapers, and first-person accounts of radical queer histories. From the Lesbian Feminist Declaration of 1976 to the Gay Liberation Dances that emerged across the U.S. in the 1970s, Cousins reimagines these remarkable yet poorly documented events and reveals captivating examples of inventiveness in queer protest. Her sculptural reinterpretations are produced with a range of processes and materials: wall hung appliqué textile figures, text made from shag fabric, a ten-foot-tall papier-mâché puppet, and an off-kilter tufted patent leather vinyl vitrine—complete with kinky lavender fur—to name a few.
In conjunction with her exhibition, Cousins will collaborate with Illinois State University’s Normal Editions Workshop to produce a limited edition of prints, of which two impressions will become part of University Galleries’ permanent collection. In 2016, Cousins won the Curator’s Choice Award for Beyond the Norm: An International Juried Print Exhibition, which was organized by N.E.W. to celebrate their 40th anniversary and hosted by University Galleries.
Cousins’ work has been exhibited nationally at venues including Washington Printmaker’s Gallery, Silver Spring, Maryland; Vox Populi, Philadelphia; Moore College of Art, Philadelphia; Visual Arts Center at Boise State University, Idaho; Peephole Cinema, San Francisco; and IS Projects, Fort Lauderdale. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, and a Master of Fine Arts in printmaking from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University, Philadelphia. Originally from Houston, Cousins currently lives and works in Philadelphia, where she is also an active member of the experimental animation collective, OOF.
This event is sponsored by the Harold K. Sage Foundation and the Illinois State University Foundation Fund. Programs at University Galleries are sponsored in part by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency. The artist reception is co-sponsored by Hyatt Place, Bloomington-Normal. The dance party is co-sponsored by Women’s and Gender Studies.