Share your story of change making: A call for alumni participation

Share your story of Change Making: A call for alumni participation

Prompted by the cover story in this issue of The Independent, the Herndon Gallery will host a collaborative exhibit curating stories of change making during the months of June, July, and August 2014. Activate Now, a collaborative exhibit, hopes to advance creative dialogue on activism— both historical and contemporary— at Antioch College.

The Activate Now curatorial team asks students, faculty, alumni, and community members to submit personal archives or imaginative works that may broaden understanding of our history, animate current campaigns, and embolden our future as an activist community that embraces “an optimistic view of the possibilities in social change”.

Activate Now will also feature the art of Stephen Marc, a photographer and digital artist who creates compelling large-scale narratives using archival materials merged with contemporary images of place and struggle connected to the Underground Railroad, Emancipation, and the Civil Rights Movement. Films by Ken Jacobs will also be found within the exhibit. Jacobs, a pioneer in the creative use of archival images, is one of few living artists whose work has been deemed a “National Treasure” by the Library of Congress. A Distinguished Professor Emeritus, and founder of the Cinema department at SUNY Binghamton, Jacobs' work has shown at MOMA, the Louvre, the Getty Center, and other venues.

Alumni are invited to work with curators and current students to share how your own experience of activism and change making began at Antioch. How are the big issues of today the same or different than those that framed your Antioch experience? What kind of skill sets does one need to be a change maker?


Alumni are invited to contribute to Activate Now in these ways:

  • Participatory Events - A series of events called Activate Now! 101 are being planned to include open forum panel conversations and workshops about activism. Discussion topics could include: Current student activist efforts; effective activism today; the art of difficult conversations; learning vs. action. We invite proposals from alumni to initiate or suggest topics or events.
  • Archival Pieces - Visual and aural material from Antiochiana and the WYSO Audio Archive, and other alumni archival material documenting change making experience. This will be integrated into a shared archive. Alumni are invited to contribute archival material and work with the curatorial team to wrap a story around it.
  • Writings, Publications, Memoir for the Reading Nook- We seek alumni contributions to the reading nook which will be located within the Herndon exhibit space. We welcome contributions of alumni writing, historical and contemporary, on how to organize for social change, and what it means to be a change agent. How do we activate the Antioch mission?


Students Seek Alumni Connection through Activate Now

By Jane Forman ‘17

Many of the buildings on campus today are closed—from the Student Union to Main Building, West Hall to Weston—and as we walk past them it’s almost impossible not to wonder what used to happen inside. We’re constantly told that we’re here to rebuild an institution, one that meant a lot to people and has taken a lot of energy to get back on its feet. It seems natural to be curious about what it is that we’re rebuilding, especially when a lot of us are here due to an interest in the history of this place—after all, coming here in 2013, there wasn’t a single graduating senior who could explain what their time at the current iteration of Antioch meant to them. As a current student, the question of Antioch’s past is an exciting one.

Activate Now is compelling for me because it provides a way for current students to connect with the people who came before us, who might have had similar interests, been involved in successful independent groups, or even made a tangible difference at Antioch and in the world at least in part because of their experience here. Sitting with Raewyn Martyn and other students in Antiochiana, gathering material for the collaborative archive, is the most rewarding when we stumble upon mundane things that can provide frameworks or tools for related work today, such as meeting notes, committee schedules, and event calendars. They’re not as glamorous as sharp photos of demonstrations, but they help provide a tangible way of learning from what has already been done. For people attending Antioch today, with many frameworks undefined and student groups just beginning, I hope that interacting with the show’s reading nook and collaborative archive be inspiring and informative, providing not just a window into the past but also a guide for the future.


Activate Now— A Collaborative Exhibit Sharing Stories of Change Makers

Call for Alumni Participation

E-mail Raewyn Martyn, Visual Arts faculty, to discuss contributing to Activate Now or to get more info:

E-mail Brooke Bryan, Co-op Faculty, to schedule an oral history interview documenting your Antioch experience during your campus visit:

Contribution proposals due by: Thursday, May 1

Final submission of alumni contributions: Friday, May 23

Herndon Gallery show begins: Tuesday, June 3

Opening event during alumni reunion: Friday, June 13