Past Events

Ken Gonzales-Day's interdisciplinary and conceptually grounded projects consider the history of photography, the construction of race, and the limits of representational systems ranging from the lynching photograph to museum display. For Traction: Art Talk, Gonzales-Day will be joined in conversation by Professor Karolina Karlic.

Revolutionary Greetings! in Tim Young's cursive

The Sesnon Gallery Speak Up Series aims to provide a safe space for students and the UC Santa Cruz community to engage with ideas generated from the exhibition Barring Freedom. Sesnon Gallery Speak Up presents Revolutionary Greetings!, a series of events focused on letter writing and open discussion about connecting with people who are incarcerated.

Detail from Undoing Time/PLEDGE, Sharon Daniel

Join us for the next event in Sesnon Gallery Speak Up Series, featuring a discussion with Professor Sharon Daniel currently in Barring Freedom on view at the San José Museum of Art. 

Jennifer Baszile and Isaac Julien

A conversation with Isaac Julien and Jennifer Baszile moderated by Porter Provost Gerald Casel with introductions by Sesnon Gallery Director Shelby Graham. Presented by the Mary Porter Sesnon Art Gallery in collaboration with the UC Santa Cruz Institute of the Arts and Sciences. 

Abolition Then & Now with historian and cultural theorist Robin D. G. Kelley and artist and filmmaker Isaac Julien, co-presented with McEvoy Foundation for the Arts, is the next event in Visualizing Abolition.

Video still from Planting Abolition by Color Study Group

Participate in a discussion on how planting can relate to a broader vision of a landscape without prisons. If abolition is about building new systems, modes of being, and networks of care that make prisons obsolete, in what ways goes gardening fit into a broader abolitionist agenda? In what ways does relationship building with plants - through creative, embodied use of them - align with “planting” abolition?

The third event in the Visualizing Abolition series brings together visual and cultural theorists Nicole Fleetwood, Herman Gray and Nicholas Mirzoeff to consider the roles of visual culture in normalizing mass incarceration and the racist brutalities of policing within the social landscape and political vision of America.

Moor Mother

Indexical presents: Moor Mother—a Philadelphia artist praised as part of “a new generation of visionary black storytellers” (NYTimes)—premieres a new video followed by a discussion of Black Quantum Futurism theory and practice with her collaborator Rasheedah Phillips.

Hank Willis Thomas, If the Leader Only Knew, 2014

Barring Freedom is a contemporary at exhibition engaging issues of prisons, policing, and justice on view at San José Museum of Art October 30, 2020-April 25, 2021.

Founder/executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) Bryan Stevenson is the featured speaker for the second event in Visualizing Abolition, joining Gina Dent for a conversation about art,