Arts and Wellbeing

The arts play a transformative role in both individual and social health and wellbeing. We seek to develop opportunities for visiting artists and artists in residence to expand their reach and programming both on campus and in local communities. These efforts center the voices and experiences of women and other historically marginalized people.

STREETS and ArtWorks

Golden Doors to Freedom

In the spring of 2017, ArtWorks for Freedom and STREETS worked with trafficking survivors, allies, and master gilder William Adair to convert discarded wooden doors into freedom portals. At that year’s 4W Summit, nearly 700 attendees had the chance to create their own Golden Door of solidarity and support. Both doors were displayed in Washington, D.C. for a two-month awareness raising campaign by ArtWorks for Freedom.

STRUT 2015

Laura Anderson Barbata

STRUT and Community Arts Practice

In May 2015, 4W Leader Carolyn Kellenborn hosted visiting scholar Laura Anderson Barbata; STRUT! is the culmination of Barbata’s Spring 2015 Interdisciplinary-Arts Residency and her course Community Arts Practice.

Rhodessa Jones:

Art for Social Agency

With support from the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Educational Achievement and in collaboration with the Department of Afro-American Studies, 4W hosted Rhodessa Jones for a two-day program in April 2015. Jones is an actor, writer, director, and founder of the internationally acclaimed “Medea Project: Theater for Incarcerated Women.” Now more than 30 years old, it has become a model for community-based, process-oriented theater for incarcerated women around the world.

Kelly Parks Snider

Kelly Parks Snider explores contemporary cultural and social issues. Using art and words, she educates communities, stimulates dialogue about target issues and creates social change. Parks Snider is the co-founder of Project Girl, a nationally recognized nonprofit, award-winning program, and touring exhibition that combines art, media literacy, and youth-activism into a unique educational experience.

The Human Trafficking Clothesline is a collaborative installation facilitated by artist Kelly Parks Snider, created at the 2015 “Streets of Hope” Research to Practice Forum put on by the 4W STREETS Initiative. The hands-on workshop provided participants with an opportunity for critical reflection and expression among survivors, artists, thinkers, and doers. It brings viewers face to face with human trafficking, hung on the clothesline for the world to see.

Project Girl: Educator and 4W scholar Amy Bintliff, along with Snider, have created a curriculum exploring the concept of wellbeing—a holistic model being developed by 4W—through arts-based expression. Adult human trafficking survivors have explored wellbeing with respect to their lived experience. A group of middle and high school girls have used the curriculum to challenge systems of objectification of women.