Angela Hennessy in Conversation with Elena Gross, Jacqueline Francis and Leila Weefur

Public Program

Angela Hennessy in Conversation with Elena Gross, Jacqueline Francis and Leila Weefur

Saturday, December 2, 2017
7:00 – 9:00 PM

In conjunction with Angela Hennessy's solo exhibition When and where I enter, the artist speaks with Elena Gross and Jacqueline Francis. Artist Leila Weefur moderates the conversation. Hennessy will also read from The School of the Dead, recently published by Special Collections, a socially engaged, small-run, risograph-based art book press at School of Art / College of DAAP, University of Cincinnati. A reception will follow.

Just as the white walls of Southern Exposure were painted black, the panelists invite the audience to an exercise in disruption. The work in When and where I enter asks us to enter into the unknowable and to question our proximity to Blackness. Together four queer Black women participate in a conversation questioning the systems and structures of Black Death, Black intimacy, and Black collectivism as active resistance to the white institution.


Angela Hennessy in Conversation with Elena Gross, Jacqueline Francis and Leila Weefur from Southern Exposure on Vimeo.

About the Speakers

Angela Hennessy is an Associate Professor at CCA and lectures and leads workshops on the decolonization of death and grief. She has exhibited at the Bellevue Arts Museum, Exit Art, Ampersand International Arts, Pro Arts Gallery, The Richmond Art Center, The Small Gallery, and The Oakland Museum of California. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Cornell Fine Arts Museum and was featured in the Journal of Cloth and Culture and in Julia Bryan-Wilson’s recent book, Fray: art and textile politics.

Jacqueline Francis, PhD, is the author of Making Race: Modernism and “Racial Art” in America (2012) and co-editor of Romare Bearden: American Modernist (2011). Francis presently serves on the Advisory Boards of Panorama: Art and Visual Culture of the United StatesThird Text: Critical Perspectives on Contemporary Art and Culture, and San Francisco’s Luggage Store Gallery. She is the Board President of the Queer Cultural Center (QCC), a multidisciplinary resource and advocacy site for LGBT artistic expression in San Francisco.

Elena Gross is an independent writer and cultural critic living in Oakland, CA. She received an MA in Visual & Critical Studies from the California College of the Arts in 2016, and her BA in Art History and Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies from St. Mary’s College of Maryland in 2012. She specializes in representations of identity through fine art, photography, and popular media. Elena is the host of the arts & visual culture podcast, what are you looking at, published by Art Practical. Her most recent research has been centered around the work of artist Lorna Simpson and conceptual and material abstractions of the body in photography.

Leila Weefur lives and works in Oakland, CA. Weefur received her MFA from Mills College in 2016. She uses video & printmaking to investigate how an individual is impacted by the shifting boundaries of language and how our bodies have to negotiate space with the words used to identify us. She is a recipient of the Hung Liu award, the Murphy & Cadogan award, and recently completed an artist fellowship at Kala Art Institute. Weefur has exhibited her work in local and national galleries including Southern Exposure and SOMArts Gallery in San Francisco, Betti Ono in Oakland, and Smack Mellon in Brooklyn, New York. She is the Audio and Video, Editor In Chief at Art Practical and the Creative Director and co-curator of The Black Aesthetic.