"Guns in America: A TIME and JR Project" is curated by #UNLOAD founders Mary Himes and Helen During, in partnership with the Fairfield University Art Museum (FUAM). Over the span of three weeks the public is invited to engage with this incredible video mural installation in the Quick Center lobby, to explore and stimulate conversations on gun culture in America. Through curated guest speakers, the mural will become a space for discussion and making a difference, in search of common ground.
To further the conversation, the Quick also invites you to attend our Global Theatre Series presentation of gUN COUNTRY: A Theatrical Exploration of Firearms in America on Tuesday, April 16 at 8 p.m.
Wednesday, April 3 at 12 p.m.: Fairfield University English Professor Beth Boquet, PhD, will facilitate a conversation in the Quick Center lobby using an inquiry-based approach to gun violence prevention and harm reduction. So many questions follow a shooting: "Why?" "What can we do to make it stop?" "When will enough finally be enough?" In this curated session, Dr. Boquet will help participants consider the questions that follow these questions… the questions that help us to construct better questions… and those that move us closer to action, to help us determine what Bruno Latour has described as "the right ways to build."
Tuesday, April 9 at 5 p.m.: Carol Ann Davis, professor of English at Fairfield University, will read from her forthcoming book, The Nail in the Tree: On Art, Violence, and Parenting, which narrates her experience of raising two sons in Sandy Hook, Conn., on the day of — and during the aftermath — of the shooting there. Davis will invite participants to think broadly about how gun violence affects all of us, from our children's experiences of lockdown drills to the disparate ways in which gun violence is covered in the media, depending on where it happens and to whom.
Wednesday, April 10 at 12 p.m.: Brown bag lunch discussion moderated by #UNLOAD co-founder, Mary Himes, titled “How to talk to Gun Owners.” The discussion will feature: Po Murray, chairwoman of the Newtown Action Alliance; Kristin Song, who after the death of her son became an advocate for safe gun storage; Melissa Kane, Selectwoman of Westport and Chair of the Board of CAGV; and a law enforcement official.
Wednesday, April 10 at 5 p.m.: Danielle Ogden, an adjunct professor of art history at Fairfield University and a museum specialist in adult learning at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, Conn., will speak about French street artist and photographer JR, and lead a conversation on social activism and art.
Monday, April 15 from 11:15 a.m. until 12:15 p.m.: Senator Chris Murphy talks about his experience making the mural, working on gun violence prevention, and talking to gun owners.
Tuesday, April 16 at 8 p.m.: gun Country, A Theatrical Exploration of Firearms in America
Thursday, April 18 from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m.: Art Café hosted by #UNLOAD co-founder, Helen During, and the Artists Collective of Westport, with a screening of the JR film, Faces Places (French: Visages Villages), a 2017 French documentary film directed by Agnès Varda and JR that was screened at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival and won the L’Oeil D’or award. The film follows Varda and JR traveling around rural France, creating portraits of the people they come across.
Please check this site frequently for announcements of additional Curated Moments.
"Guns in America: A TIME and JR Project" MISSION STATEMENT:
It's a truly American story: 325 million people, more than 265 million guns, 35,000 deaths a year and one 227-year-old constitutional right. To move beyond the familiar, TIME magazine partnered with JR, an artist and photographer known for documenting social issues. In three U.S. cities profoundly affected by guns — Dallas, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. — we invited people to share their views, describe their experiences, and search for common ground. We met hunters and activists, teachers and police officers, parents and children. JR photographed 245 people to create this mural for TIME's November 5, 2018 cover.
THE VIDEO MURAL:
JR and his team have created a compelling video mural featuring all 245 participants in the project. Individuals were filmed in slow motion, interacting with someone else in the mural, to create a living artwork that vividly depicts the issue of guns in America. Each side of the issue is represented by individuals and groups sharing their stories and visual interactions. On a broader level, the video mural will be projected in installations all around the country and will be made available for the public to use as a tool to gather communities and create meaningful dialogue.
Only through art can all these people, with such opposing views, be brought together. We invite you to visit the mural and use it as a tool for discussion and to find common ground.
#UNLOAD’s mission is to use the arts to encourage more Americans to join the effort to reduce gun violence. We harness the power of the arts to drive inclusive conversations that will empower more people to speak up: students, physicians, responsible gun owners, and veterans. We believe that there is strong national consensus about how to reduce gun violence, we just need to catalyze this new, broad coalition of citizens.
The Fairfield University Art Museum (FUAM) is a dynamic space for engagement with the visual arts on the campus of Fairfield University. In its Bellarmine Hall Galleries, FUAM presents its small but choice permanent collection of European and American paintings, drawings, prints and photographs, as well as Asian, African and Pre-Columbian objects. Objects on long-term loan include antiquities and medieval pieces from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Penn Museum, the Worcester Art Museum, and the American Numismatic Society; Asian art on loan from the Columbia University Collection; and European paintings and objects borrowed from private collections. FUAM presents special exhibitions showcasing works of art in all media from a broad swathe of time periods and world cultures, ancient to contemporary, in both the Bellarmine Hall Galleries, and the Walsh Gallery in the Quick Center for the Arts. FUAM is an essential academic and cultural resource that brings original works of art to the Fairfield University community, and to the residents of Fairfield County and beyond by partnering with local schools and cultural institutions, and by serving all audiences through outreach, free admission and free events.