You Select reveals the power of community. This exhibition considers the intersections between Clyfford Still’s own networks and the Museum’s communities, and invites visitors to think about their own supportive networks. While Still was often perceived as being difficult, holdings in CSM’s archives demonstrate that Still felt strongly about art institutions being better for both artists and patrons. The purpose of critique is to improve. Still wanted museums to be better, and many people today are focused on this work. This panel will explore the concept of community, Still’s view on museum practice, and current issues in the field.
Moderated by Joyce Tsai, PhD, panelists include Lisa Yun Lee, Sierra Van Ryck deGroot (co-president, national emerging museum professionals network), and Seph Rodney.
This program is free and registration is required to attend in person at the Sharp Auditorium at the Denver Art Museum. This conversation will also be simulcast live on CSM’s YouTube channel (registration not required for livestream). Registration will open soon.
Lisa Yun Lee
Lisa Yun Lee (BA, Bryn Mawr College, PhD, Duke University) is the ED of the National Public Housing Museum, a cultural activist, and an Associate Professor at UIC. She teaches with the Prison Neighborhood Art Project, and is a member of the Chicago Torture Justice Memorials. Lisa served as Co-Chair of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s Arts & Culture Transition Team, and on the Mayor’s Committee for Monuments, Memorials and Historical Reckoning. Lisa is working with public housing residents to open a museum in the last remaining building of the historic Jane Addams Homes, with the mission to preserve, interpret and propel housing as a human right. NPHM includes the world’s largest collection of oral histories of people who grew up in public housing, restored apartments from different generations of diverse public housing families, spaces to bridge the arts and innovative public policy, an Entrepreneurship Hub with a museum store that is a cooperative owned with public housing residents, and contemporary art spaces. She is a board member of the Field Foundation, 3Arts, and the Illinois State Museum.
Sierra Van Ryck deGroot
Sierra Van Ryck deGroot is the Deputy Director of Museum Hue. A proud alumna of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Program at Seton Hall University and Bank Street College of Education, Sierra has her B.A. in Art, Design and Interactive Media; Fine Arts; and Art History and M.S.Ed in Museum Education. A child of Guyanese immigrants, she is proudly born and raised in Central Jersey (NJ), which does exist and it is pork roll, not Taylor Ham. She is also half of the former Sierras co-presidential leadership team of the National Emerging Museum Professionals Network, a current board member for the New Jersey Association of Museums, and participating in many side quests related to advocating for change in the GLAM sector, especially in museums, around salary transparency, actionable equity in hiring practices, the abolition of unpaid internships, and the practice of rest for all museum workers. You can read more about her at sierravrd.com or on Twitter at @sierra_vrd.
Seph Rodney, PhD, was born in Jamaica, and came of age in the Bronx, New York. He has an English degree from Long Island University, Brooklyn; a studio art MFA from the University of California, Irvine; and a doctorate in museum studies from Birkbeck College, University of London. He is a former senior critic and opinions editor for Hyperallergic, and now regularly contributes to The New York Times. He has written for CNN, NBC, American Craft Magazine and penned catalog essays for Crystal Bridges Museum, the Mississippi Museum of Art, Teresita Fernandez, Meleko Mokgosi, and Sarah Oppenheimer. He can be heard weekly on the podcast “The American Age”. His book, The Personalization of the Museum Visit, was published by Routledge in May 2019. In 2020 he won the Rabkin Arts Journalism Prize. Find him at sephrodney.com.
Joyce Tsai is the director of the Clyfford Still Museum and is an internationally acclaimed curator, scholar, and teacher. She arrived at CSM from the University of Iowa, where she served as Chief Curator of the Stanley Museum of Art and Associate Professor of Practice in the School of Art and Art History. During her tenure at the University of Iowa, she led initiatives that have positioned the museum as a major catalyst for innovative, high impact teaching, research, and outreach. Dr. Tsai is trained as an intellectual historian and art historian — Princeton, AB (History, cum laude); Johns Hopkins University, MA (German), PhD (Art History and Humanities). Tsai’s first book, László Moholy-Nagy: Painting after Photography (UC Press, 2018) garnered critical acclaim for its integrated approach to avant-garde art, practice, and theory and is winner of the Phillips Collection Book Prize. She has published extensively in the field of technical art history with conservators and conservation scientists at the National Gallery of Art, Harvard Art Museums, Guggenheim, and the Art Institute of Chicago, among others.