Creativity in the Time of COVID-19: Art for Equity and Social Justice

Nancy DeJoy, College of Arts and Letters
Capital City Film Festival
Impression 5 Science Center
Lansing Art Gallery and Education Center
REACH Studio Art Center
Refugee Development Center

Nancy DeJoy’s community-university partnerships at MSU span 15 years. Focused on social justice issues related to identity, DeJoy has worked with survivors of sexual violence and several community partners. These partnerships have resulted in art exhibits/installations and conference presentations, expanding the public spaces for voices of people often not heard in the stories we tell about who we are as a community. Her most recent collaboration, “Creativity in the Time of COVID-19: Art for Equity and Social Justice,” makes space for the creative work of those disproportionately affected by the pandemic. DeJoy and her partners collaborated to write a grant for the project. Funded by the Mellon Foundation, the exhibit included over 200 pieces of art from seven continents. Satellites to the main exhibits were installed at the Refugee Development Center, REACH Studio Art Center, Lansing Art Gallery and Education Center, and Impression 5, ensuring that diverse populations could view and respond to the stories told by exhibit materials. MSU Libraries will house a repository of the exhibits, making them available to people around the world and adding to the story of the pandemic the voices and creative work of many who often go unheard.