Opening reception: Insert Missing History Here

Event Image
Image description A picture of blank white rectangle with a midnight blue background. The white text above the rectangle reads: Shaped by the American Dream, Deaf History through Deaf Art. Below the rectangle, a handwritten note in yellow reads: INSERT MISSING HISTORY HERE with an arrow pointing to the white rectangle.

"Insert Missing History Here" is a curator's response to “Shaped by the American Dream, Deaf History through Deaf Art.” This exhibit includes 100 years of artwork from Dyer Arts Center’s collection, loans from private collectors, and recent donations. It attempts to address the “pressure on Deaf Americans to embrace a national identity” and “liberated deaf and hard of hearing people to create art from their experience.” While the exhibit shows a vast collection of acclaimed deaf artists, it is vital to note that Cutapuis aka John Lewis Clarke, a Blackfoot artist from East Glacier, Montana is the only artist of color in this exhibit.

Headlined on the front page of the international art periodical The Art Newspaper, reads: “A whiter shade of protest, a blank sheet becomes a cry for freedom.” The article explains the history of artists to include work that in its simplicity draws, resistance to oppression. From the Untitled white paintings of Robert Ryman in the 1960’s to blank sheets of copy paper in the hands of recent Chinese protestors, blank white paper or walls can, in its purity also imply absence.

Fran Flaherty, a noted artist and activist, upon her directorship of Dyer Arts Center, inherited this exhibit and immediately saw the potential to create conversation on the absence of representation. With three white walls, Flaherty invites visitors to view the exhibit, then contemplate the blankness of the walls and prompts us to insert our missing history. Paper, pencils, push pins, post its and other paraphernalia will be available for visitors to write about how their own experiences are missing from history. “We are inviting people to participate in shaping the American Dream. We want people to write about their experiences and add their statements to the wall.”

"Insert Missing History Here" will be on view from Feb. 1-28, 2023 in celebration of Black History Month. Dyer Art Center for the Advancement of Deaf Culture is located in the first floor of Lyndon B Johnson Building of RIT/NTID. An opening reception is scheduled for February 1, 2023 from 3:00 – 5:00 PM.

Dyer Arts Center
Event Snapshot
When and Where
February 01, 2023
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Room/Location: 60-1000

Open to the Public

Interpreter Requested?


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