Criminal Justice?, an exhibition featuring the work of Stamps Professor Carol Jacobsen and Andrea Bowers, is on display at BGSU’s Willard Wankelman Gallery from October 29 — November 20.
In the U.S., one-third of female murder victims are murdered by male partners, and women survive an estimated 4.8 million rapes and physical assaults each year at the hands of their husbands or boyfriends, according to the Michigan Women’s Justice and Clemency Project. Each year, the BGSU Silent Witness Unveiling reveals the deaths of girls and women in our region as a result of violence. In the vast majority of sexual assaults the perpetrators never serve time in prison — 97 percent of cases, an analysis of Justice Department data by the anti-sexual violence advocacy group RAINN concluded. Recent rape cases on campuses have foregrounded this disturbing scenario, and the gender disparities in prosecution and sentencing.
Jacobsen’s art has been exhibited and screened at venues worldwide, including New York’s Lincoln Center, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Centre de Cultural Contemporanea in Barcelona, the Kunstforum in Bonn, the Brussels International Film Festival, Rome’s Temple Gallery, the Photography Biennial of Wanganui, New Zealand, Human Rights Watch of Beijing, and by many grassroots organizations.
A Stamps School of Art and Design faculty member at the University of Michigan, Jacobsen was the 2005-06 Human Rights Fellow at the university.
Her work includes two video interviews with women imprisoned for killing their abusers, and digital photographs and images that depict imprisoned women victims, such as “Nightclub Girl in a Curfew Town,” about one woman in the 1920s in Marionville Prison in Ohio.
Bowers’ video “#sweetjane” and drawings explore the 2012 Steubenville, Ohio, rape case and the citizens whose activism resulted in two rape convictions. The drawings reproduce the text messages sent among the teenage witnesses to the assault on an underage young woman. Bowers received her bachelor of fine arts from BGSU in 1987.
Taken together, the installations, images and videos provide discouraging evidence of the tolerance in this country toward sexual assault, as demonstrated by the sentences meted out to battered women who acted in self-defense but were convicted of murder and those of students convicted of rape.
Work by Carol Jacobsen and Andrea Bowers
Exhibition Dates: October 28 — November 20, 2016
The show will open at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, October 28 with a gallery talk by Jacobsen, an award-winning social documentary artist whose works in video and photography address issues of women’s criminalization and censorship.
Willard Wankelman Gallery
Bowling Green State University School of Art
1000 Fine Arts Center, Bowling Green, OH, 43403 – 0204
Gallery hours: 11 am — 4 pm Tuesday through Saturday, 6 — 9 pm Thursdays, and 1 — 4 pm Sundays