Based on Coburn’s most recent body of work Anatomy of A Protest, this artist talk focuses on the critical eye artists can bring to grass-roots movements including alternative interpretations of media representations and a vigilant reading of the signs, amidst the signs. If large scale protests are an effective means of change, and public awareness and support can make a life or death difference for so many, images can play a liberatory role, or be used to exploit and reassert disciplinary control in the contest for meaning.
Wendy Coburn is a Toronto-based artist and an Associate Professor in the Sculpture Installation Program and Art & Social Change Minor in the Faculty of Art at OCAD University. Coburn's work explores ideas of nationhood, citizenship and the role of images and the spectacle in mediating cultural difference. Wendy Coburn worked for several years as Assistant and Associate Dean in the Faculty of Art at OCAD University and is currently a Fellow in the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies at University of Toronto.