Geoff’s Letter, Corrected
The first phase of the installation at the Berkeley Center for New Media window space (outside Mofitt Library, Sept-Nov 2015) featured a blown-up apology letter written by Geoff Marcy, who resigned after public outcry over his history of sexual harassment. Passerbys were given an opportunity to correct his nonapology; the installation became a forum to address Marcy’s unwillingness to acknowledge the harm he caused, and the failure of the administration to take action against his abuses. The building management requested that the Center for New Media remove the installation, stating that it was an “eyesore.”
Opossum Impressions is a response to the phenomenon of opossums appearing in Title IX sexual assault trainings, where the marsupials infamous defense mechanism of “playing dead” is used as a way to explain why people might not “fight back” during an assault.
The installation asks, though it is no doubt important to educate people on the physiology of trauma, is the opossum a useful (or accurate) comparison?
Video loop from digital plaque
A main component of the installation is a digital plaque, where text shifts from a description of opossums to survivors.
On Saturday, April 2, the beginning of national Sexual Assault Awareness Month, join us for Survivors’ Symposium, a daylong event organized by survivors and allies to re-center the needs and demands of our varied communities.
Drawing on art’s capacity for affective, nonverbal communication, exploring bodily movement through boxing and somatics, and articulating organizing values that prioritize intersectional, survivor-centered analyses, together we will develop and share community survival strategies. Our day will culminate in a group discussion where we will design ways to reclaim authority over narratives about our experiences and bodies.
We love input and are open to ideas for collaboration.