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Art and Activism in the Americas

Talking to Action at the Ben Maltz Gallery
‘Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas' at the Ben Maltz Gallery, Part of the Getty's Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative

The Ben Maltz Gallery at Otis College of Art and Design will present Talking to Action: Art, Pedagogy, and Activism in the Americas, an exhibition and publication that investigates contemporary, community-based social art practices in the Americas curated by Bill Kelley, Jr., with Karen Moss as consulting curator. Talking to Action, on view September 17 through December 10, 2017, is part of the Getty’s initiative Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles. A public opening reception featuring a curator and artist led walk through will be held on Sunday, September 17 from 3-5pm.

Talking to Action addresses critical issues such as migration and memory, spatial mapping, environmental issues, gender rights and legislation, indigenous knowledge, and racial violence in work created by contemporary social practice artists and collectives from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, and the United States. Major support for this exhibition and publication is provided through grants from the Getty Foundation.

In addition to a diverse array of projects, the exhibition builds upon the educational imperative found in many of the artists’ practices as well as Otis College’s academic commitment to social practice through curricular programming and studies.

Artists in the exhibition include Liliana Angulo Cortés, Efraín Astorga Garay, BijaRi, Giacomo Castagnola, Cog•nate Collective, Colectivo FUGA, Sandra de la Loza and Eduardo Molinari, Dignicraft, Etcétera..., Frente 3 de Fevereiro, Grupo Contrafilé, Clara Ianni and Débora Maria da Silva, Iconoclasistas, Kolectivo de Restauración Territorial, Suzanne Lacy, Alfadir Luna, Taniel Morales, Andrés Padilla Domene and Iván Puig Domene, Polen Audiovisual, Gala Porras-Kim, and Ultra-red.

Bill Kelley, Jr. is Lead Researcher and Curator of Talking to Action, a writer and scholar of community-based practices in the Americas, and assistant professor of Latin American and Latino Art History at California State University at Bakersfield. Karen Moss is Consulting Curator and adjunct professor of Public Practice at Otis College of Art and Design. Kelley led the two-year research phase for the exhibition, coordinating the efforts of a team of researchers from six different cities in the Americas to inquire into the issues and artist methods that connect the various cities in the hemisphere.

Led by the Getty, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles taking place from September 2017 through January 2018. For more information on Talking to Action visit


Event Details

Opening Reception
Sunday, September 17, 3-5pm.
Curator and artist led walkthrough at 3:30pm

More programming to be announced, visit for an updated schedule. 


Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA


Image: BijaRi, Contando con Nosotros, 2011. Digital photo. BijaRi on the rooftops of Santo Domingo as part of the intervention project Contando con Nosotros. Encuentro Internacional de Medellín MDE11. Museo de Antioquia.