PREVIEW: The Vagina Monologues

For the past five years, the group Students for Choice has put on the Vagina Monologues at U of M. In case you don’t know, the choice is a live performance of Eve Ensler’s play of the same name. As you can probably tell, vaginas will be mentioned often, and in detail.

From the event page:

TVM raises awareness about the violence against women and girls, celebrates women’s sexuality, and talks about experiences excluded from the dominant narrative.

When: Friday, March 17 and Saturday, March 18 from 8:00-10:00 PM
Where: Rackham Auditorium.
Cost: $5 in Advance and $10 at the door
All ticket proceeds go to SafeHouse Center and V-Day.

Also feel free to like and explore the UofM Vagina Monologues Page!


REVIEW: Consent by De-Zine Release Party

Cover of the SAPAC’s zine “Consent by De-Zine”

I wander into a room that sings a song from hidden speakers while people are arranged in clumps by the pizza table. A banner of hearts that reads “CONSENT BY DE-ZINE” is sprawled over that table. Unfamiliar with those around me, I slowly walk around until I stop at a table that has little blue books sprinkled on it. That’s when I see a girl with short, jet-black hair who greets me with a smile.

She introduces herself as D, the graphic designer of SAPAC: the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center. I’m at the release party for their zine, but I don’t really know anyone at the event or know what’s going on (I showed up late because of a meeting). D fills me in: this zine, called “Consent by De-Zine” is a compilation of visual art and poetry that students from campus submitted. The content ranges from healthy relationships to the topic of consent, both being very delicate yet important points of conversation on a university campus setting. This zine happens to be the first that SAPAC has put together, and so this achievement is being celebrated through music, food, and good company. I share D’s delight in this accomplishment, and then she takes me over to other members of SAPAC so that I can have a chance to meet more of board.

Page 12 of the zine. Created by Liana Smale
Page 17 of the zine. Created by Lena Briggs

Through energetic conversations and warm smiles, I meet Christina Kline, the investigator with the UM Office of Institutional Equity. I also meet members of SAPAC such as Rodrigo, who shared the experiences he’s had so far with SAPAC. At some point, some SAPAC members and I discuss the content of the zine. Grabbing one from the table in the front of the room, I flip through the colorful pages of the zine, impressed by my peers for taking the step of courage and publishing work that pertains to such delicate topics. D eagerly shows me her favorite page of the zine, which features cats and a lovely background of yellow. I continue to chat with her and others, about the zine, SAPAC, and eventually random things like speaking in different languages when drunk.

D’s favorite page from the zine!

By the end of the night, I’ve made some new acquaintances, learned more about SAPAC, and got my own copy of the zine. I thanked D and Christine and others for being so open, and made my way out. I’m definitely planning on attending future SAPAC events, such as the their 12th annual art show: rEVOLUTION: Making Art for Change. There’s just something about taking heavy topics such as sexual assault & relationships, and translating that into works of art and words, that allow viewers to digest content that would normally make them turn their heads the other way.

PREVIEW: Artists of the Photo-Secession Gallery Tour at UMMA

When did photography become an art? At some point, people took cameras and tried to capture people and places and things not simply for the sake of capturing them, but for the beauty of it. This was the beginnings of pictorialism.

As the UMMA web site states about the early pictorialist photographers:

Their poetic compositions drawn from contemporary life, combined with the use of expensive and labor-intensive printing materials such as platinum and gum bichromate, established these photographs as complex and nuanced works of high artistic quality.

The exhibition is open now and will remain open until March 5th.

Their next FREE upcoming gallery talk/tour is:

Sunday, December 11th at 2pm

Check out their calendar here for more information on the other upcoming gallery talks:

January 15th at 2 pm

February 19th at 2 pm

Preview: Dance for Mother Earth Powwow

From the Native American Student Association:

The Native American Student Association is hosting the 40th Annual Dance for Mother Earth Powwow next weekend, March 17 and 18, at Pioneer High School. Powwows are gatherings that Native American people use as a place to meet, dance, sing and otherwise renew and strengthen our rich culture.
These gatherings are held year-round and many Native people travel great distances to attend them.

Today, the Dance for Mother Earth Powwow is one of the largest university powwows in the nation; according to USA Today Travel, it is one of “10 great places to be wowed by American Indian culture.” The 2012 Powwow will continue the tradition of providing a gathering place for Native Americans to celebrate and share their culture with one another, and for others who are interested in learning about our country’s strong indigenous heritage. This year’s Powwow will host over 150 dancers, 12 drums, and over 33 vendors/artists from across the nation and throughout Indian Country. In addition, there will be special celebrations to pay tribute to 40 strong years of powwowing for Mother Earth.

Blue Michigan buses will be running from the Michigan Union every half hour all Saturday and Sunday.

40th Annual Ann Arbor Dance for Mother Earth Powwow
40th Annual Ann Arbor Dance for Mother Earth Powwow