Suzanne Lacy, Julio César Morales, and Unique Holland, Code 33: Emergency, Clear the Air!, 1997–9, from The Oakland Projects, 1991–2001; performance, October 7, 1999, City Center West Parking Garage, Oakland; © Suzanne Lacy; photo: Kelli Yon

Where We Are: Defining Youth Engagement and Social Practice

Related Exhibition Suzanne Lacy

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

Free and open to the public; museum admission is not required

Inspired by conversations and ideas brought to light while co-developing Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here with SFMOMA, YR Media, Youth Speaks, MediaJustice, Martin Luther King, Jr. Academic Middle School, Caleb Duarte, and the eponymous artist, YBCA presents an afternoon convening that explores youth organizing, civic engagement, and social practice.

The event opens with a keynote address by exhibition co-curator Lucía Sanromán, current director of Laboratorio Arte Alameda in Mexico City, which is followed by two moderated panel discussions — “Civic Engagement and Working with Youth” and “Civic Engagement and Social Practice” — each followed by an opportunity for the audience to engage with the panelists.

“Civic Engagement and Working with Youth” features artist, cultural strategist, and past participant and collaborator in The Oakland Projects Unique Holland in conversation with youth artist and advocate Glory Rubio and Loco Bloco teaching artist Anttwan Stanberry. Moderated by poet and teaching artist Leticia Hernández-Linares — who worked with the students of Martin Luther King, Jr. Academic Middle School on their contribution to the exhibition — they address questions such as What is the problem you’re trying to solve? How do you engage youth? and What does success look like?

“Civic Engagement and Social Practice” features Suzanne Lacy and fellow social practice artist Gregory Sale (currently exhibiting in Future IDs at Alcatraz) discussing the role of social practice in communities and in art institutions. Moderated by curator Liz Thomas, they explore the origins of social practice, the issues facing the field today, the motivations and challenges of exhibiting social practice art, and how artists can create social change and for what audiences.

The panels conclude with a hosted happy hour in the Grand Lobby, where speakers and attendees can continue the conversation.


1:30 p.m. – Doors open
2:00 p.m. – Keynote address by Lucía Sanromán
2:20 p.m. – Panel 1: “Civic Engagement and Working with Youth”
3:20 p.m. – Intermission
3:35 p.m. – Panel 2: “Civic Engagement and Social Practice”
5:00 p.m. – Cocktail Hour in the YBCA Grand Lobby

Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here is co-organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.