“SCAD deFINE ART 2021 marks another first in the event’s twelve-year history—our inaugural virtual edition,” said SCAD President and Founder Paula Wallace. “In a season of reimagination, SCAD’s renowned fine arts program showcases the shifting explorations and revelations of self. From Sanford Biggers’ ‘future ethnographies’ to Kate Cooper’s representations of the feminine 'ideal,’ SCAD deFINE ART constructs—and deconstructs—identity through works by internationally celebrated contemporary artists. This year, your home and SCAD museums become one. Take a look!”
Biggers (b. 1970, Los Angeles) will deliver the keynote lecture Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 6 p.m. ET, and participate in programming throughout the three-day event. Biggers’ solo exhibition Contra/Diction at the SCAD Museum of Art’s Walter O. Evans Center for African American Studies functions as a selective survey, bringing together an array of works that spans the past twenty years of his prolific practice. Beyond its compelling visual potency, Biggers’ work is a visceral experience and a clarion call to combat racial injustices that threaten the lives of Black Americans.
He communicates feeling rather than a fidelity to history, combining a trove of narratives to form a vision of human experience. “I have a firm belief that art has the power to reach a wide audience and can stimulate change that reflects the current desires of people and culture,” said Biggers. “I've dedicated my life, as an artist and an educator, to remind people that art can be both an aesthetic and political act that not only empowers and inspires people but has the ability to operate outside of the system. It is my honor to receive this recognition and be able to connect with young artists in hopes to inspire the power to create and use art as a tool to move culture forward as well as a platform for deeper dialogue.”
Dzama (b. 1974, Winnipeg, Canada) creates works rooted in performativity and storytelling. He is widely known for paintings and drawings that exude a storybook charm, while simultaneously confronting viewers with timely political realities. A conversation with Sedaris inaugurates this year’s programming Tuesday, Feb. 23, at 11 a.m. The artist’s son will interview Sedaris, who will play the role of Dzama. After the dialogue, Dzama joins SCAD MOA associate curator Ben Tollefson to premiere the artist’s exhibition An End to the End Times, followed by a Q&A with viewers.