Martha Willette Lewis Fall Art News:


Some viewer response to QuarantineCineGram on social media:
“I love your message window. It's like a political Jack-o-lantern....”-Comment on Instagram
 “a big thank you for keeping spirits up in these dark days. While many struggle to maintain self-care, you remain vigilant, steadfast and mindful of others. Your sensitivity to fellow creatives and daily nurturing have kept us upright and buoyant, and for these reasons you are our LIGHTHOUSE.”- Comment on FB
The QuarantineCineGram is absolutely spot on and amazing every time.”- Comment on FB


Quarantine Cine Gram, my COVID Calendar Art Project is now past it's 150th consecutive Nightly Message!

To celebrate, I am creating an updated video of the  Posts and doing a Live Reading (TBD) at the exhibition  NOW, organized by Margaret Roleke. at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art In New Haven The exhibit runs September 13 - November 1, 2020. I am honored to be participating in this exciting group show. Visit the Ely Center of Contemporary Art, 51 Trumbull Street, New Haven, CT 06510 
More information is here:

What Is QuarantineCineGram?

QuarantineCineGram is a living calendar, a visual arts project, a protest, and a support of science and the arts during COVID 19.  It offers an urge to follow safe practice, a work of daily poetry and a way of connecting with people locally and virtually. I project a new message each night from my kitchen window, and live post it online. At a time when we are all being forced to be increasingly online, it invokes the handmade and the analog lit screens of past shadow plays, by using simple mechanical means to produce each message and transforms my domestic living quarters into a nightly cinema.
This project structures my day as it goes up at dusk each evening to go live on social media at 9 pm. with a short video reveal of the day’s message. I use a vintage overhead projector and have stretched a “screen” made from a yellow silk sari across my kitchen window. The projector blocks my fridge and the Kitchen must be kept dark, and then the machine cooled down and shut off at closing time. For Phase II and to give myself some flexibility I have developed a remote travelling version for phase II involving nightly message videos coming from wherever I happen to be. This adds nice texture and surprise to the mix.
Most of my content is original, with some messages suggested by viewers and friends. I try to find content that sums up the day in some fashion, and try to emphasize the importance of the arts and creativity in making this pandemic mentally survivable. This is the first time I have used projections, video, my own words, and performance all together in one work, and is certainly the longest continuous project I have ever produced. It also Is the first time I have constructed a work specifically to engage Social Media and is by far the most impactful artwork I have ever made. My messages get reposted and shared and responded to in a way that lets me know the value of this project extends well beyond myself in my kitchen. Art is often treated as a luxury or boutique item, when in fact it is what we turn to most often in a crisis.
Art Saves My Life Every Day.
QuarantineCineGram is a proud recipient of the Connecticut State Council on the Arts Artists Respond Award, for which I am profoundly grateful. 
Three Nice Articles on QCG in the press about the project
Here and Here and Here
QCG can be found on the Web, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

I am pleased to be organizing another exhibit at the Institute Library. Declaration of Sentiments will be online as well as actual in the Gallery and is in celebration of the anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. 

Exhibition Dates: September 25, 2020 to December 15, 2020.

"In Honor of the Centenary of the 19th amendment, the gallery is proud to present “Declaration of Sentiments” an exhibit celebrating suffrage* - and the women’s right to vote! As we head towards the elections in November it becomes more important than ever to motivate, activate and reflect upon our right to participate and to have representation in our government. The show will combine contemporary art, historic documents, and books from the library’s collection. This exhibit addresses suffrage and voting in the United States, offering a mixture of photography, drawing, prints, textiles, sculpture, painting and more, to offer a visually rich exploration of voting and the importance of women’s voices in the democratic conversation. In the interests of highlighting Democracy in action, the exhibit included a free-of-charge open-call to participate. This exhibit is particularly pertinent to our institution, as several of the historic speakers in our halls were activists for women’s suffrage: Frederick Douglass, Anna E Dickenson and Grace Greenwood aka Sara Jane Lippincott. The exhibit will feature their contributions to the movement, from our collection and beyond. “Declaration of Sentiments” was organized by Gallery Curator Martha Willette Lewis who is being helped with organization and research for the exhibit by Ava Hathaway Hacker, who is acting as our Gallery Intern this Fall! Ava is a student currently majoring in History and Art History and brings her finesse to the exhibition research and  texts for this show. We are delighted to have her participation!"

The Gallery Upstairs at the Institute Library is located at 847 Chapel Street · New Haven, Connecticut 06510 
visit for more information.


Live Culture 64:
How to Make a Scaffolding of Care...

August 29, 2020 from 11-12 noon  
Listen on 
WPKN 89.5 FM, at 
and as a podcast on

This month on Live Culture I am in conversation with Curator/Activist La Tanya S. Autry, and Artist/Activist Amanda D. King. La Tanya is Gund Curatorial Fellow at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland, where the exhibit she curated -Temporary Spaces of Joy and Freedom -is now on view. Amanda is an  Artist, Activist, Founder and Creative Director of the groundbreaking art and advocacy initiative Shooting Without Bullets.

We discuss a recent upheaval at The Museum of Contemporary Art (moCA) Cleveland, where an exhibition of drawings by noted artist Shaun Leonardo, depicting police violence, was cancelled after concern over the content was voiced. This resulted in an outcry from the artist, subsequent apologies to him from the museum and the director stepping down. Both Amanda and La Tanya were involved in raising objections to showing the work in the museum, along with Miss Samaria Rice, the mother of Tamir Rice, who was the subject of one of the drawings.

Much has been written about the artist being censored, but there is more to it. This is a complex story which the two help untangle as we discuss institutionalized racism, community, and the impact of images. At the center of it all is the heartbreaking issue: what rights do family members of victims of violence have over the images of their loved ones? How do we sensitively navigate the line between public and private? And more broadly, what can we do about institutionalized racism in museums and the art world?
About my guests:
Amanda D. King is a Cleveland-based artist, activist, and educator. Her civically engaged practice utilizes arts education, cultural production, and cultural organizing to spread progressive ideas and messages of social justice.

Amanda is the Founder and Creative Director of Shooting Without Bullets, a for-impact organization utilizing cultural production, artist education and development, activism and advocacy to model an alternative arts ecosystem that accelerates movement Black and Brown youth and their communities need to thrive.

Amanda holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Art History from Bryn Mawr College and a Juris Doctor Degree from Case Western Reserve University where she received the Martin Luther King Jr.Diane Ethics, and Dean’s Community Service Awards.

More about Shooting Without Bullets here:

As a cultural organizer in the visual arts, La Tanya S. Autry centers collective care in her decolonial, abolitionist curatorial praxis. In addition to co-creating The Art of Black Dissent, an interactive program that both promotes public discussion about the Black liberation struggle and engenders fighting antiblackness through the collective imagining of public art interventions, she co-produced #museumsarenotneutral, an initiative that exposes the fallacies of the neutrality claim and calls for an equity-based transformation of museums and the Social Justice and Museums Resource List, a crowd-sourced bibliography.

La Tanya has curated exhibitions and organized programs at moCA ClevelandYale University Art Gallery, Artspace New Haven, and other institutions. Through her graduate studies at the University of Delaware, where she is completing her Ph.D. In Art History, La Tanya has developed expertise in the art of the United States, photography, and museums. Her dissertation The Crossroads of Commemoration: Lynching Landscapes in America, which analyzes how individuals and communities memorialize lynching violence in the built environment, concentrates on the interplay of race, representation, memory, and public space.                                        
More about the Temporary Spaces of Joy and Freedom exhibition:  
More about The Art of Black Dissent:
More about Museums Are Not Neutral:
More about The Social Justice & Museums Resource List:

Further reading here:

About the Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center:
About the cancelled exhibition:

Live Culture is a monthly discussion about the arts, Hosted by visual artist Martha Willette Lewis and  airing on WPKN, Radio 89.5 fm  Bridgeport, available online at The show airs on  the final Saturday of each month  from 11-12 noon and is available for two weeks on ARCHIVES and *EVER AFTER* as a PODCAST, for ON-Demand Listening. Live Culture has a playlist on the WPKN soundcloud page available here
Fall Art Exhibitions/Events
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