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Mirrors and Misconceptions: Poetry Reading + Activation

A ornate black mirror hangs on a gallery wall

Part I in a Series of Activations Focused on Themes of Black Identity and Perception

Mirrors and Misconceptions is a special series exploring Black identity. It pairs the visual art of Fred Wilson’s Murano Glass sculpture, Act V. Scene II Exeunt Omnes—the final stage direction in Shakespeare’s Othello—with Court Theatre’s production of The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice to build conversation and community while exploring themes on how Blackness is othered and perceived.

Poets, commissioned by Smart Museum of Art and Court Theatre, will activate the exhibition Toward Common Cause at Stony Island Arts Bank with public readings of original or archival poems and prose inspired by the themes of Black Lives, misconceptions, mirrors, and the moon in front of Wilson’s sculpture. Commissioned poets include Runako Jahi, Tarnynon Onumonu, rebecca brown, Reginald Rice, and others.

FREE, but space is limited. Please register in advance. 


Participants are encouraged to view a live or streamed performance of Court Theatre’s production of The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice prior to attending this event.

Fred Wilson, Act V. Scene II –Exeunt Omnes, 2014. Murano glass and wood, 87” x 10’8” x 8 3/8” (221 x 325.1 x 21.3 cm). © Fred Wilson, courtesy Pace Gallery. Photo by Kerry Ryan McFate.