Disability Art at the de Young

Posted October 4th, 2013 by Anthony

Over the past four years I have had the incredible opportunity to produce lectures on disability in the fine arts at San Francisco’s de Young Museum. The museum is housed in a new lavish, cutting edge building. In my typical fashion I had forgotten to document them until a couple of months ago. So, this is to make up for that lack.

The Disability Culture Lecture Series began as a way to highlight disability arts and culture at the de Young Museum’s annual Disability Advisors Open House. The idea for a disability culture lecture series started informally. Tish Brown, who was then leading disability access for the museum, and I brainstormed ideas for ways to bring more disability culture to the Open House. I suggested my lecture on disability and music. That initial lecture drew over 100 people to the Piazzoni Mural Room, and attracted a number of disability scholars from the Bay Area. The success of the lecture led to incorporating a disability culture lecture into the Open Houses on a regular basis. In addition to the Open Houses, a number of lectures were added as different exhibits were shown.

The Disability Culture Lecture Series evolved into a means to bring disability arts and culture into the offerings of the de Young Museum. The focus has been disability—defining disability as a positive cultural identity.

March 28, 2009 Access Advisors Open House and Disability Arts Festival, 2009 Goin’ to the Dance: Disability & Desire Disability Culture Presentation. Anthony Tusler

October 2, 2010 Access Advisors Open House and Disability Arts Festival, 2010 Toulouse-Lautrec and Disability Culture Anthony Tusler, The paintings and posters of Henri Toulouse-Lautrec as deciphered by 21st-century disability culture. Live Nude Girl written and performed by Ann Colby Stocking, Koret Auditorium

March 31, 2012 Access Advisors Open House and Disability Arts Festival, 2012 From the Doctor’s Office to the Art Gallery: Sandie Yi’s Radical Vision of Beauty, Sandie Yi, Amanda Cachia, and Anthony Tusler, Koret Auditorium

October 13, 2012 Chuck Close, Prosopagnosia, and Pixels Amanda Cachia with introduction by Rosemarie Garland Thomson, Koret Auditorium

May 25, 2013 Rembrandt’s Beggars and the Representation of Disability and Poverty Susan Schweik, Koret Auditorium

One Response to: “Disability Art at the de Young”

  1. Fran Osborne responds:
    Posted: July 16th, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    Hi Anthony, didn’t know about your blog until today! Great stuff. Would love to now more about your experience at the deYoung experience and what feedback you’ve been getting from the public. Did you know the people who came? Will the program continue this fall? Always so many questions.

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