DEAF VIEW/IMAGE ART
Over the past year we have lost two beautiful Deaf artists who also were pioneers in the De'VIA movement. De'VIA is short for Deaf View/Image Art. This movement was officially recognized at the Deaf Way Festival at Gallaudet University in 1989.
"De'VIA represents Deaf artists and perceptions based on their Deaf experiences. It uses formal art elements with the intention of expressing innate cultural or physical Deaf experience. These experiences may include Deaf metaphors, Deaf perspectives, and Deaf insight in relationship with the environment (both the natural world and Deaf cultural environment), spiritual and everyday life." deafart.org
|C. Baird, Art No. 2, (ASL sign for Art) De'VIA Poster, 1999 Tour|
CHUCK BAIRD - (1947-2012) Chuck Baird shared a special relationship with our school here at The Learning Center for the Deaf. He was an Artist-in-Residence here in 1995 and completed a mural in our cafeteria that shows the rich history of ASL (American Sign Language). Our ASL department created a video explaining the history and can be found on youtube. During an interview Chuck Baird mentioned that his research on ASL during this project had a profound impact on him. More from this interview can be read here. I personally met Chuck Baird in 2002 when I was living in the graduate student dorm at Gallaudet University. I was hosting a dorm event with my roommate who was an RA. I set up an art exhibition and reception in the lobby and Chuck Baird came to participate as he was living in the dorm as well. He did a live demonstration of his artwork and that piece was exhibited during the Deaf Way II festival. Chuck Baird and I became friendly and he invited me to participate on the committe for Deaf Way II. I immensely enjoyed my experience meeting international Deaf artists, and planning for the Artist Seminar and creating a docent guide. I am forever grateful to Chuck Baird for this invaluable and inspiring experience. More about Chuck Baird's art can be found here.
|C. Baird, Sunset|
Dr. BETTY G. MILLER -(1934? - 2012) I also met Betty Miller at the Deaf Way II festival and I vividly remember her collaborative neon art projects with other artists. Betty Miller is considered the Mother of De'VIA and led the workshop that created the De'VIA manifesto. While Chuck Baird's artwork shows the connection of ASL with imagery, Betty's work shows her personal experience as a minority and memories of oppression. Chuck Baird noted that Betty Miller was ahead of her time and called her the first artist to express Deaf experiences in her work. More about his thoughts on Betty Miller can be found here. More about Betty's work can be found here, here and here.
|B.Miller, TTY Call|
|TLC Student, My Deaf Eye|