“Exhibiting Racism in Museums” Online Puppet Forum with William F. Condee and Schroeder Cherry on 10/14 at 7 p.m. ET

For its second installment of the 2021 Fall Puppet Forum Series, and in conjunction with the Puppetry’s Racial Reckoning exhibition, the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry will host “Exhibiting Racism in Museums” with professor William F. Condee and puppeteer and museum educator Schroeder Cherry on Thursday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. ET. This forum will take place on Zoom (registration required: us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_MY1VOc-gQoOzaXYOTgGWvw) and Facebook Live (facebook.com/BallardInstitute/) and will be available afterwards on Facebook and the Ballard Institute YouTube Channel (youtube.com/channel/UC3VSthEDnYS6ZjOwzT1DnTg). 

The exhibition Puppetry’s Racial Reckoning at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry (closing October 30) raises important questions about displaying objects that are explicitly or implicitly racist. Is it right to give such objects a place in a museum? How to contextualize and introduce the objects and generate productive and meaningful conversations based on the exhibition? Addressing these questions are Dr. William F. Condee, who is writing about puppets representing minorities and foreigners at five major collections in Germany, and Dr. Schroeder Cherry, a puppeteer and a curator at James E. Lewis Museum of Arts who has extensive experience discussing racism in museum contexts with exhibition visitors. This forum will be an opportunity to think through ethics and methods of curating racist objects and how to broaden perspectives on the roles of museums in relation to anti-racism. This forum is co-sponsored by the UConn Human Rights Institute. 

Originally  from Washington, D.C., Schroeder Cherry, Ed.D. is now a Maryland-based artist and 2019 Sondheim competition finalist who captures everyday scenes of African diaspora life. He earned a bachelor’s degree in painting and puppetry from The University of Michigan; a master’s degree in museum education from George Washington University; and a doctorate in museum education from Columbia University. His works are found in private and public collections across the US. In 2020 He was awarded the Municipal Art Society of Baltimore City Artist Travel Prize for research in Bahia, Brazil.  In 2021 he received an Individual Artist Award from Maryland State Arts Council. Cherry’s museum career spans more than thirty years, with positions held at the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Museum in Washington, D.C.; Studio Museum in Harlem; J. Paul Getty Museum in Malibu; The Baltimore Museum of Art; and Maryland Historical Society. He served eight years at The Institute of Museum and Library Services, first as Deputy Director for Museums, and later as Counselor to the Director. He was recently appointed Curator at James E. Lewis Museum, Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland.

Dr. William Condee (J. Richard Hamilton Professor Emeritus of Humanities, Ohio University) is the author of Coal and Culture: The Opera House in Appalachia (Ohio, 2005) and Theatrical Space: A Guide for Directors and Designers (Scarecrow, 1995). His articles on Southeast Asian puppetry have been published in Puppetry International, Studies in Theatre and Performance and Asian Journal of University Education. Articles on other subjects have appeared in Theatre Survey, Theatre Topics, and Theatre Annual. He has co-authored work (with Thomas Irmer) on German theater in A History of German Theatre (Cambridge University Press, 2008) and Theatre Journal. His most recent work on Nonmaterial Performance has appeared in Imagined Theatres andTDR: The Drama Review, co-authored with Barry Rountree. Condee was the Kohei Miura Visiting Professor at Chubu, Japan; a Fulbright Senior Specialist at University of Leipzig and University of Malaya; and has lectured at universities including East China Normal, Tsinghua, Nanjing, Dankook, and Hindu Dharma Institute (Bali).

For more information and to learn about other Ballard Institute online programming, visit bimp.uconn.edu or email bimp@uconn.edu.