Tuesday, September 15, 2009

ART MAKES PLACE discussion at Frist - Sept 17, 2009

Please join us Thursday, September 17th, 6:30 - 7:30 pm at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts as Adrienne Outlaw presents the seventh and final project of the year-long program ART MAKES PLACE: contemporary artists make community-oriented, temporary and performance-based art for public spaces, or AMP.

Working with neurologists, ethicists, lawyers, philosophers, doctors and historians, Outlaw is making a multi-part artwork about the ethics of pharmaceutical cognitive enhancement. On the 17th, she will lead a conversation with a panel of experts debating the ethics of healthy people taking prescription drugs to enhance brain power. Audience members may participate in the conversation.

Participants invited to the Frist Center conversation include four distinguished scholars from Vanderbilt University.

Director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics and Society and Professor of Law and Pediatrics, Ellen Wright Clayton, Ph.D., J.D., M.D., is an internationally respected leader in the field of law and genetics. Associate Professor of Law and Philosophy, Nita A. Farahany, J.D., M.A. & Ph.D., focuses on the legal, philosophical, and social issues arising from biosciences, particularly related to behavioral genetics and neuroscience. Dr. Howard Kirshner is a Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry, and Hearing and Speech Sciences. Board certified in vascular neurology, he is also Vice Chair for the Department of Neurology and Director of the Vanderbilt Stroke Center. Interested in the social and cultural impacts of technological change, Chancellor's Professor of History Michael Bess, Ph.D, is currently working on his fourth book entitled "Icarus 2.0: Technology, Ethics, and the Quest to Build a Better Human." Interested in bioethical issues developing with the rapid advancement of technology, cross-disciplinary artist Adrienne Outlaw exhibits internationally in public art collections, galleries and museums. She holds an MLAS from Vanderbilt University and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Outlaw considers the talk at the Frist Center as the first public phase of her piece titled "The Enhancer." During the summer she met with small groups of teenagers, college students and professionals to discuss ideas behind the work. In these smaller talks, many people admitted taking or knowing someone who has taken non-prescribed drugs such as Ritalin to help them focus. The Frist Center talk kicks off the public phase of her project. The next phases include a conversation about drugs and creativity, an informative and participatory blog, 1000 brain-shaped, hand-held viewfinders distributed to the public, and an interactive installation for the AMP exhibit at the Nashville Public Library, which opens Oct. 14th.
Encouraging partnership between artists and the public, AMP projects address the artist's role in society and how artists help to create a sense of place and identity within a society. Projects, which began last fall, have each started with a lecture/workshop with public school students, continued with participation from Vanderbilt University and the larger Nashville community, and result in a temporary artwork presented in public spaces throughout Nashville. AMP culminates in fall, 2009 with a catalogue and an art exhibition at NPL main gallery.

AMP is organized by the Nashville Cultural Arts Project and has as its collaborative partners Metro Nashville Public Schools, Frist Center for the Visual Arts and Vanderbilt University. AMP funding and assistance comes from Metro Nashville Arts Commission, Vanderbilt University, Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and FCVA.

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