Pair of blue high heel shoes where the actual heels have been replaced by the curved handle of a wooden cane.


Events/Lectures | Fall 2018

In Madison:

September 17: Julie Avril Minich, “Sugar, Shame, and Love: Reimagining Diabetic Latinidades”

4 p.m, Sterling 3401, UW-Madison

Associate Professor, Gender & Women’s Studies and Mexican American Studies, University of Texas-Austin

“Sugar, Shame, and Love: Reimagining Diabetic Latinidades”

This talk engages with disability theory in order to examine engagements with diabetes in works by contemporary Latinx writers and artists. Diabetic Latinx art responds to an urgent health crisis affecting Latinx communities throughout the United States; for instance, diagnosis rates among U.S. whites were reported at 7.4% in 2017, compared to 12.1% for Latinx populations. Because diabetes is so closely correlated to lifestyle, those experiencing it are often subjected to overt and insidious public shaming, treated by family members, acquaintances, employee benefits administrators, media pundits, and even health professionals as though they are to blame for their condition. In response, Latinx cultural workers addressing this crisis – like Tato Laviera, Gloria Anzaldúa, Aurora Levins Morales, Virginia Grise, Irma Mayorga, and ire’ne lara silva – work to represent Latinx people with diabetes with dignity and to treat the Latinx diabetic body as an object of love. Their work simultaneously politicizes the condition – prompting us to view the prevalence of diabetes in Latinx communities as inextricably linked to larger formations of race and class – and offers a compassionate view of those affected by it.

Wheelchair accessible, free, and open to the public. For ASL interpretation or other accessibility requests, please contact by Sept 10th.

October 4: Jay Dolmage, Title and time TBA

Associate Professor, English, University of Waterloo, Author, Academic Ableism: Disability and Higher Education

Sponsored by the Rhetoric and Composition Colloquium of the Department of English

October 15, 2018: Gallery Night at the Wisconsin Council of the Blind

Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired, 754 Williamson St, Madison, Wisconsin 53703

On Friday, October 5 from 5-8 p.m., the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired will proudly showcase work from artists who have vision loss. This event is a part of the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art(MMoCA) seasonal gallery nights and one of nearly 70 locations throughout the city featuring art and entertainment. Participating artists will display and discuss how they create art. Attendees are welcome to browse the artwork, enjoy live music, refreshments and talk to the artists. Artwork will be for sale for those interested. Registration is not required. Event is free and open to the public.

Do you have a friend or family member who is blind or visually impaired? Artists who are blind or visually impaired across the state of Wisconsin are invited to apply to submit their artwork to the event. Previous featured artwork includes: woodworking, textiles, photography, watercolors, copper relief and pottery. To apply, send PDF or JPEG samples and descriptions of your art to Denise Jess at by Friday, September 14. Call 608-255-1166 with any questions.

Around the Region:

September 14, 2018: Opening Reception: Chicago Disability Activism, Arts, and Design

Gallery 400, 400 S Peoria St, Chicago, Illinois 60607

Join us for the opening reception of “Chicago Disability Activism, Arts, and Design: 1970s to Today” on September 14 from 5-8pm.

“Chicago Disability Activism, Arts, and Design: 1970s to Today” explores how Chicago artists and designers with disabilities were integral to the development of a local and national disability rights movement, creating radical change for more than one fifth of the US population, as well as for all of American society, and influencing lasting transformation in the visual art and design fields. At its heart a research project and inviting new contributions, the exhibition focuses on the history of the disability arts movement in the late 20th century, the role artists played in that activism, and the development of a disability aesthetics, as evidenced in work artists are making today.

Through artworks (paintings, drawings, sculpture, installation and video), graphic design, architectural documents, oral histories, archival documents, and other ephemera, the exhibition will tell the stories of how Chicagoans with disabilities and their allies broke barriers, created change in policy and federal law, and changed culture at a time when the reality of life for many people with disabilities was the restrictions imposed by institutionalization and segregation. People with disabilities in Chicago changed the cultural agenda, challenged the medical model of disability, and told the world that ‘disability’ wasn’t a people with disabilities’ problem; it was society’s problem for having disenfranchised people by creating barriers to full participation and engagement. Artists with disabilities have played—and are playing—a central in that activism and have created work that formulates a disability aesthetics, an aesthetics that challenges traditional modes while exploring conflicting categories and definitions.

At 6:30pm, movement artist Barak adé Soleil presents a performance within the exhibition space. “from here to there” is a live art installation with a performance component, presented as part of the opening and closing of the exhibition at Gallery 400. “Archive” from Barak’s lived experience will also be on display as a performative installation throughout the run of the exhibition, including a film of the opening performance.

This event is free and open to all!

See more at:

September 26, 2018: Fashioned: Art and Style of Disability / ArtPrize Studio Series

Rosa Parks Circle, 135 Monroe Center St NW, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503

How do the worlds of fashion, art, and style accept or reject experiences of disability?

Join us to hear local and national voices from the Disability Art community to discuss this important question, as well as DisArt’s 2018 Process and Presence Fashion Show. Stick around after the panel to see a rebroadcast of the September 22 Fashion Show on the big screen in Rosa Parks Circle.

Panelists include:
Sandie Yi (artist/designer)
Liz Hilton (designer)
Rynita Shephard (artist/DisArt model)
Chris Smit
Jill Vyn

This event is open to the public and free to attend.