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OFF ROAD with Vincent Valdez and John Keene
Valdez and Keene both, in their individual practices, seek to shed light on the often overlooked and erased stories of American history. Their conversation in Houston promises to address contemporary issues in our society in an open, honest, and thought-provoking manner.
Glasstire launched OFF ROAD in 2015, to invite our digital audience to log off of their devices and experience an exchange of ideas with artists live and in-person. OFF ROAD invites the great minds of our time to engage in conversations about their work and ideas.
Vincent Valdez focuses on painting, drawing, and printmaking, and his artwork often emphasizes themes of social justice, memory, and ignored or under-examined historical narratives. His drawn and painted subjects remark on a universal struggle within various socio-political arenas and eras. “My aim is to incite public remembrance and to impede distorted realities that I witness, like the social amnesia that surrounds me,” states Valdez. His exhibitions and collections include the Ford Foundation, New York, NY; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA; Blanton Museum of Art, Austin, TX; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Smithsonian Museum of American Art and National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC; among others.
John Keene, awarded the prestigious MacArthur Fellowship in 2018, is a fiction writer exploring the ways in which historical narratives shape contemporary lives while simultaneously re-envisioning these narratives from the perspectives of those whose voices have been suppressed. Through innovations in language and form, he imbues with multifaceted subjectivities those who have been denied nuanced histories within the story of the Americas — primarily people of color and queer people — and exposes the social structures that confine, enslave, or destroy them. Before joining the faculty at Rutgers University-Newark, where he is now chair of the Department of African American and African Studies and a professor of English and African American Studies, he taught at Brown University and Northwestern University, among other institutions.
Copies of John Keene’s book, Counternarratives, will be available for sale and signing by the author.
This event is made possible in part through the City’s Initiative Grant. It is also supported in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts.
The venue is wheelchair accessible and the event will have live ASL interpretation provided by MasterWord Services. Event is suitable for ages 13 and up.