Thank You, Nicole!
Today is IRW Director Nicole Fleetwood's last day. We wanted to publicly thank her for three extraordinarily generative years. The institute has thrived under Nicole, with vibrant programming connected to three annual themes: Decolonizing Gender/Gendering Decolonization (2013-14), Feminist Optics: Gender and Visual Studies (2014-15) and Poverty (2015-16). In particular, Nicole was the inspiration for “Marking Time: Prison Arts & Activism,” a project to explore the cultural aspects of imprisonment with a focus on art produced by prisoners and in response to mass incarceration. Among “Marking Time’s” components were a three-day conference on prison art and activism, a month-long exhibition of art by current and formerly incarcerated individuals on six different sites throughout New Brunswick, and a prison-based art workshop at Mountainview Youth Correctional Facility in Annandale, New Jersey. Bold, brilliant, and innovative, Nicole has steered IRW to new levels of creativity and achievement. We have enjoyed working with her and wish her all the best as she hands over leadership to Arlene Stein on July 1.