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A Night to Remember:
A Reflection on Gillian Laub's Southern Rites

A student group response to Gillian Laub's Southern Rite exhibition at the Chazen Museum of Art, created by The Studio Arts Collective. This group of students was formed within The Studio Resident Learning Community at UW-Madison. The installation highlighted the importance of self-reflection, specifically on the presence of segregation and systematic oppression that Laub's work illuminates. The work explored the uncomfortable acknowledgement of one's internal biases that further perpetuate these issues outside of the context of a single town in the American South. As Laub explained in her work, the murder and segreated prom of Mount Vernon were not isolated incidents. Instead, the ideologies that drove both occurrences stem from a single source of racism, disguised as adherence to tradition and an unwillingness to self reflect. 

The space included music created by Deryk Gonzalez played on repeat, a poem by Heron Splinter, an interactive blackboard conversation, dress wear deconstructed by Karina Naze, and hanging bodily forms constructed into a spiral co-created by the group's members. Serendipity Stage acted as student administrator of show and corresponded between the group, faculty director, and Chazen Museum of Art.


Deryk Gonzalez

Sidney Hestres

Kyi Phyu Khaing

Veronica Kuffel

Keegan McCance

Karina Naze

Caitriona Quirk

Larryn Smerling

Heron Splinter

Serendipity Stage

Gabrielle Whisler

Dr. Faisal Abdu-Allah, faculty director

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