Ida Beam Distinguished Visiting Professors Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Felicia Rice

March 28, 2016 to March 30, 2016
Theatre B, Theatre Building; Special Collections, Main Library; 240 Art Building West

On March 28th, the University of Iowa welcomes Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professors Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Felicia Rice. Gómez-Peña is a Mexican-American performance artist whose work in the media of live art, video, radio, photography, and writing have earned acclaim -- and many awards, including a MacArthur Fellowship -- over the past thirty years. Rice’s design, printing, and publication work for her Moving Parts Press (Santa Cruz, CA) has been exhibited at major book fairs in New York and Frankfurt, and collected by the Whitney, the Bodleian, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, among others. Together, Gómez-Peña and Rice have published extraordinary artists’ books, including Doc/Undoc: Documentado/UndocumentedArs Shamánica Performática (2014). Gómez-Peña and Rice will engage with UI students and community members in a series of workshops, performances, and conversations about art, media, activism, and US-Mexico border politics.

Gómez-Peña is artistic director of the transnational performance collective La Pocha Nostra. In recent years, the group has begun to offer intensive workshops like the one Gómez-Peña will facilitate during his UI visit. Rice is also an educator who teaches courses in letterpress printing, typography, printmaking, typography, and bookmaking at institutions ranging from UC-Santa Cruz to the Santa Cruz YWCA. 

As artists and as educators, Gómez-Peña and Rice work between and across cultures, as as well as media, suggesting that their visit will be of interest to students and faculty in many UI departments. Gómez-Peña has been performatively crossing borders -- national, racial, ethnic, linguistic, sexual, gender, and artistic -- for nearly four decades, and his fearlessness, sharp insight, sly wit, and willingness to engage with diverse audiences are as necessary as ever. Rice has long promoted cultural and linguistic diversity, publishing a highly regarded Chicano/Chicana Literature series, and she has recently begun to perform, both solo and with La Pocha Nostra.

Given their commitment to education, Gómez-Peña and Rice are especially pleased to hear that Doc/Undoc is living near the Center for the Book. Events of special interest to UICB students and faculty include:

  • Guillermo Gómez-Peña, "Gómez-Peña Unplugged”: Monday, 3/28, 7:30 p.m., Theatre B, Theatre Building
  • Felicia Rice, “DOC/UNDOC: Collaboration and Metamorphosis,” followed by a conversation with Guillermo Gómez-Peña: Wednesday, 3/30, 5:00 p.m., Special Collections, Main Library
  • Guillermo Gómez-Peña, "Multiple Journeys: The Life of Gómez-Peña”: Thursday, 3/31, 7:30 p.m., 240 Art Building West