Alison Saar named Jo Hockenhull Distinguished Lecturer for 2022

A closeup of the painting Snake Man by Alison Saar.
Alison Saar, Snake Man, 1994. Photo courtesy of of LA Louver.

Printmaker and sculptor Alison Saar will deliver the distinguished lecture for the Jo Hockenhull Lecture series at 4:30 p.m., Thursday Feb. 10. 

Saar will discuss the connections between art and social justice as she provides an overview of her work in sculpture and printmaking for the event, organized by the Program in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS), the Fine Arts Department, and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU.

The lecture will be held virtually and is open to the public. Registration is available via Zoom. 

Alison Saar

Saar is considered a master of printmaking and sculpture. She employs a personal vocabulary informed by history, race, and mythology. Her influences range from ancient Europe and Africa to American folk art. Saar’s works narrate stories of the African American experience, moving effortlessly from the personal to the political. In many of her works, she charts the tragic history of slavery in America, but her figures symbolize defiance and strength. Other recurring images are informed by jazz, romance, and desire.

Saar’s exhibition, Mirror, Mirror: The Prints of Alison Saar: From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation, is on view at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU through March 12.

The Hockenhull lecture series was launched in 1996 by the Women’s Studies Department in collaboration with the Department of Fine Arts to honor Jo Hockenhull, a WSU emeritus professor of Fine Arts who served as director of Women’s Studies for more than a decade. At WSU, Hockenhull focused on building programs and initiatives supporting diversity, the liberal arts, free speech, and critical thinking. Past lecturers have been visual artists, poets, and performance artists who have emphasized the important connections between art, social justice, and political practice. They have included artists such as Arshia Fatima Haq, Marie Watt, Alma Lopez, Faith Ringgold, Octavia Butler, and the Guerilla Girls, to name a few.

For more information, contact Nishant Shahani at 509-335-5286 or

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