Suzanne Lacy

Suzanne Lacy, Storying Rape, 2012. Photograph by Kelly Akashi

Suzanne Lacy, Storying Rape, 2012. Photograph by Kelly Akashi

Since the 1970s, artist, educator, writer and activist Suzanne Lacy has been known for her large scale, ambitious performances. Her approach is to focus on social themes and urban issues that are pertinent to the places where the interventions happen, often starting her projects by asking what that community most needs. Through a process of engagement that often takes place over a number of years, her intent is for the projects to have real political impact, and to create social change.

As part of Liverpool Biennial, Lacy extended her project to raise awareness and debate around the problem of rape and domestic violence. At the Cunard, she presented a screening of Storying Rape, a performative conversation that took place between seven civic and cultural leaders at the top of Los Angeles City Hall.

Shaped by literary theory, this conversation focused on how the narrative of rape is presented in various public spheres – and how re-framing this narrative might improve public understanding and lessen this form of against women.

A second room presented a social media campaign that was launched during the Biennial, accompanied by a series of conversations about rape and domestic violence that took place around the city including at METAL. Young people, politicians and community leaders discussed a subject that for many remains taboo.

Suzanne Lacy (b. 1945, Wasco, California) is an artist and writer who lives and works in Los Angeles. Recent exhibitions include Under the Big Black Sun: California Art 1974-1981 (Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, U.S.A., 2011) and The Crystal Quilt, installation at Tate Modern, 2012. Books include Leaving Art: Writings on Performance, Politics and Publics, 1974-2007 (Duke University Press, 2010).

Suzanne Lacy at Liverpool Biennial 2012

Storying Rape, 2012 

Three Weeks in January, 2012
Screening and a series of conversations
Commissioned by LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions) for the Getty Pacific Standard Time Performance Festival

Exhibited at The Cunard Building and METAL