Where is the field of self-taught art heading? This discussion will bring exhibition curator Valérie Rousseau, curator Robert Cozzolino (Minneapolis Institute of Art), and curator Raina Lampkins-Fielder (Souls Grown Deep Foundation) into conversation about the expansion of the field of self-taught art through the study of archival material and oral history, around the theme of the supernatural, and across continents.
Robert Cozzolino, is a Paris-based curator and cultural programmer. She is currently the curator for the Souls Grown Deep Foundation & Community Partnership which are dedicated to promoting the work of African-American artists from the South, and supporting their communities by fostering economic empowerment, racial and social justice, and educational advancement. Formerly, she was the artistic director and curator of the Mona Bismarck American Center for Art and Culture in Paris focusing on 20th century and contemporary American art and the deputy editor of SOME/THINGS Magazine, a bi-annual international curated arts and culture journal, and director of arts programming at SOME/THINGS SECRET Gallery in Paris. She was the director of academic advising at Paris College of Art (formerly Parsons Paris School of Art + Design). Previously, she served as Associate Director of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, overseeing education and public programs. She has worked for over 20 years in museums and cultural institutions, including the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, and the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Raina has curated many exhibitions, served as a juror for artist residency programs, organized and participated in numerous academic conferences and has spoken widely on audience accessibility to the arts in the United States and abroad. Raina has a BA in English from Yale University and an MA in the History of Art from the University of Cambridge, England.
Valérie Rousseau is senior curator of self-taught art and art brut at the American Folk Art Museum. Since 2013, she has curated exhibitions on artists from various countries, including the AAMC Award–winning When the Curtain Never Comes Down on performance art (2015); Once Something Has Lived It Can Never Really Die on Ronald Lockett, Melvin Way, Native American effigies, and Brazilian ex-votos (2016); Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet (2015); and shows on Bill Traylor (2013) and William Van Genk (2014). The director of Société des arts indisciplinés, Montreal, from 2001 to 2007, Rousseau built an archive on art practices emerging outside the art mainstream and organized exhibitions—notably, Richard Greaves: Anarchitect (2005–2007). Rousseau holds a PhD in art history and an MA in art theory, both from Université du Québec à Montréal, as well as an MA in anthropology from École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. She is the author of the essays “Visionary Architectures” (The Alternative Guide to the Universe, Hayward Gallery, 2013), “Revealing Art Brut” (Culture & Musées, 2010), and Vestiges de l’indiscipline (Canadian Museum of Civilization, 2007).
Images: Sam Doyle (1906–1985, St. Helena Island, SC); Penn School Drumer 1920; late 1960s–early 1970s; house paint on tin; 46 x 27 1/4 in.; Collection of Audrey B. Heckler. Photography © Visko Hatfield, courtesy of the Foundation to Promote Self Taught Art and Rizzoli International Publications, Inc.
Charlie Willeto (1897–1964, Nageezi, Navajo Reservation, NM); untitled; 1961–1964; paint and cotton on cottonwood and pine; 161/4 x 7 1/4 x 2 3/4 in.; Collection of Audrey B. Heckler. Photography © Visko Hatfield, courtesy of the Foundation to Promote Self Taught Art and Rizzoli International Publications, Inc.