May 10, 2022

Lawrence Arts Collective Announces Programming for May, 2022

by Felicia Cheney

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The Lawrence Arts Collective is pleased to announce the continuation of spring and summer programming. The Collective is a pilot artist-in-residence program supported by the Lawrence Public Library in partnership with 599 Studios, Ateneo Dominicano, El Taller Cafe & Bookstore, Elevated Thought, Essex Art Center, Izizwe Dance Studio, and Merrimack River Watershed Council. 

The program matched each organization with an artist-in-residence selected through a competitive application process, which took place in the summer of 2021. The artists and their partner sites are working together to develop collaborative, community-focused arts programming. The 2021-2022 artists-in-residence are Kate Delaney, Sherly Garcia, Erick Maldonado, Eliza Malecki, Jeffrey Mansfield, Y-Bình Nguyễn, and Tina Thu. Their culminating work features a dynamic array of gallery shows, art installations, performances, immersive experiences, and community workshops.    

mourning those who are still living

May 20, 2022 8:00 p.m.

El Taller (275 Essex St, Lawrence, MA 01840)

On Friday, May 20th, collaborating artists Y-Bình Nguyễn, Tina Thu, and Sherly Garcia present 

mourning those who are still living, a poetry & design exhibit 

Writer and curator Y-Bình Nguyễn’s poetry tells a story of grieving and growing. They write to reckon what has been lost to them and many others as byproducts of the imperial projects of empire building. Their writing is a journey through reconciling violent narratives–colonialism, sexual assault, and racial capitalism–through recapturing ancestral practices.  

Using structured creative practices, these artists chơi through the fields of mourning. Printmaker Tina Thu uses the processes of cyanotyping, silkscreening, marbling, ink painting, bitmap texturing, and joss paper burning to landscape scenes of nostalgic childhood in the Mekong Delta. The physical manifestations of lục bình‎ (water hyacinth), bông cúc (chrysanthemums), nước (water/country), đốt nhang (incense burning), lacquer panels, and ancestor veneration have been curated together as a way of altar building. Custom designer Sherly Garcia interprets a modern form of the Vietnamese áo dài as the final staple of celebration. This exhibit finally unpacks the estranged traditional practice and makes it, spiritually, their own offering. 

Flow and Gather

Sunday, May 22nd, 6:00 p.m.

Essex Art Center (56 Island St #1, Lawrence, MA 01840)

On Sunday, May 22nd, choreographer and producer Eliza Malecki will present two brand new dance pieces developed during her time as an artist-in-residence at Izizwe Dance Studio. According to Malecki, “The inspiration for this show is finding a sense of place, which extends to both our internal senses of belonging, community, and home and the external factors of the place where the work was made.” Performed alongside Izizwe company members, Flow and Gather features Lawrence artists, including choreographer Amy Xotyeni and musicians Evelyn Blush and Lone Sol. Additionally, this show will feature the work of Jeffrey Yasuo Mansfield, whose exhibition, The Architecture of Deafness, is currently on view at Essex Art Center. A brief artist talk will follow the performance.

Tickets are $15-$25 and free for Lawrence residents and can be purchased at

The Architecture of Deafness 

Ongoing through June 2nd, Gallery Hours: Monday – Thursday: 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m., Friday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Essex Art Center (56 Island St #1, Lawrence, MA 01840)

Jeffrey Yasuo Mansfield’s exhibit, The Architecture of Deafness, is an archive of the history of schools for the Deaf in New England and beyond. His work explores how these spaces reflect our values as a society and form cultural attitudes that shape our communities, our relationships with each other, and our capacity to understand experiences different from our own.

The City of Lawrence will be abuzz this spring and summer as the rest of the artists in the Collective roll out their projects. For updates on the Lawrence Art Collective’s programming, follow @lawrenceartscollective on Instagram or visit

The Lawrence Arts Collective is supported by the Barr Foundation through the MassDevelopment TDI Creative Catalyst Grant program, which supports public-facing projects that enhance local arts and cultural infrastructure and contribute to economic revitalization. 

What is Creative Collective?

Creative Collective is a group of economic development strategists, small business supporters, activation specialists, and believers in the importance of the creative workforce. We foster growth, sustainability, and scalability for small businesses, creative thinkers, organizations, entrepreneurs, and innovators.

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