Campus & Community Events
Sheryl Oring offers a range of events designed for university students and community groups.
Download a full portfolio of her offerings including client list, press list and description of events.
I Wish to Say: 2020
After typing nearly 4,000 postcards to the president from dozens of campuses and other locations around the country, I WISH TO SAY is making another round of campus and community visits in 2019-20 to engage students and others in discussions about politics and social change. For each 2-hour show, artist Sheryl Oring dresses in vintage 1960s secretary attire and sets up a makeshift public office on campus – complete with a manual typewriter – and invites students to dictate postcards to the next president. Each card is typed verbatim; originals may be exhibited on campus and then sent to the White House, while Oring keeps a carbon copy for her project archive. To date, Oring has presented more than 100 “I Wish to Say” performances at dozens of venues across the country. In the 2019-20 election season she is highlighting student concerns through this show. A complete archive of the project is hosted by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro Library.
“Urgent”, “Past Due”, “Final Notice” are stamped on postcards typed from dictation of ordinary people and subsequently sent to the president. By listening to and transcribing people’s hopes, dreams, anger and pleas, Sheryl Oring’s “I Wish to Say” is a performative speaking truth to power.
Dread Scott, artist
How refreshing and pure these performances are. How lucid are the opinions of the participants.
Mark Ormond, Curator of Exhibitions, Ringling College Galleries
PRESS FROM RECENT CAMPUS SHOWS
Sept. 30, 2018: “W&L Students Share Postcard Messages to Donald Trump in Visiting Art Project”
Sept. 27, 2018: “Art Display on Freedom of Speech at Washington and Lee”
February 2019: “The Politics of Art”
Oct. 1, 2018: “World renowned artist invokes a conversation about conversation”
Exhibitions offer an opportunity for deeper engagement with the work and can easily be tied to community discussions or classes ranging from printmaking and book arts to photography, time-based media, performance and socially engaged art. At Ringling College of Art and Design, Oring’s work was featured in a Fall 2018 show called Agitype: Changing the World One Letter at a Time at the Lois and David Stulberg Gallery. Students participated in various aspects of creating the show and a book arts class worked with Oring to create a limited edition artist book that featured postcards to President Trump typed in 2017.
The focus of this exhibition is Sheryl Oring's contribution to our understanding of history and ourselves. It could not have been better timed.
Mark Ormond, Curator of Exhibitions, Ringling College Gallerie
Agitype: Activating Democracy through Art
With this image and video-rich presentation, Sheryl Oring shares inspirational stories about two decades of art-making. Oring, a former journalist who worked for publications including the San Francisco Chronicle and The New York Times, first turned to art while living in Berlin, Germany. There she created a sculptural installation called “Writer’s Block” in which hundreds of typewriters are “caged” behind steel bars in a work that began on Berlin’s Bebelplatz, site of a Nazi bookburning in 1933. The work later traveled to Budapest, Boston and New York and is currently on a tour around the U.S. After launching this work, Oring took the typewriter out of the cage and hit the streets, setting up a portable public office and inviting people to dictate postcards to the President with her “I Wish to Say” project. This work began in 2004 and has been performed more than 100 times in dozens of locations around the country; it continues to this day.
Activating Democracy: Making Manifestos
In this workshop, participants will be invited to create their own political manifestos that address the issues they value most and discuss how this relates to their own art practice. The workshop begins with a look at historical artist manifestos culled from the archives of the Museum of Modern Art and other sources. These historical documents serve as models for translating the group’s discussions into powerful prose. Clients include the Museum of Modern Art; University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the Greensboro History Museum.
Length: 1-3 hours. (a one-hour workshop will create a group manifesto; longer workshops all time for participants to create their own as well.)
Participants: up to 15
An Artist’s Guide to Getting Your Social Practice Project Off the Ground
As an artist, you want to make an impact on your audience. But how do you make your project a reality and engage meaningfully with your community? From finding funding and volunteers to securing sites and sparking your audience’s interest, getting your social practice project off the ground can be a challenge. This hands on workshop offers practical advice on how to navigate your project from concept to reality.
Length: 1.5-2 hours
In Search of the Quintessential Question: Understanding What Drives You to Create
A question or questions lie at the heart of most art and yet often it’s hard for artists to verbalize the ideas that drive their work. In this workshop, artists are asked to come up with a list of questions that inform their work and then, through discussion and exchange, each person refines their questions. In doing so, participants achieve a much deeper understanding of their work and learn new ways of discussing their creative projects.
Length: 1.5-2 hours