Wayward Refusals

Wayward Refusals

USC Roski School of Art and Design

October 19, 2023
Wayward Refusals
USC Roski MA Curatorial Exhibition
October 31–November 27, 2023
Opening reception: October 30, 5–8pm
USC Roski Graduate Programs
1262 Palmetto St
Los Angeles, California 90013
United States

Wayward Refusals explores the radical creativity that results from experiences of oppression, marginalization, rejection, and non-belonging. Including painting, sculpture, video, photography, collage and NFT, this exhibition highlights how conscious acts of refusal by minoritarian subjects can become sources of disorderly power that dismantle the status quo. Featured artists develop world-making actions despite ever-present threats of social, legal, and psychological punishments in life under capitalism. They refuse to hide, blend into crowds, or conform to norms. Together, their works embody what Saidiya Hartman describes as “wayward experiments,” celebrating practices of refusal that forefront alternative ways of living. Exhibited artists demonstrate how it is possible to not only survive but thrive within the strangely liberating realms of vulnerability, failure, ambiguity, and excess. We hope that the liminal gatherings this exhibition brings together will leave enduring marks. Wayward Refusals invites us all to think through our own practices of denial, forging community and unlocking more life in the process.

Participating artists: RUTH, Lucy Black, Cyshimi, Katinka Huang, Young Joon Kwak, Julia Mata, Coyote Park, Toni Smalls, and Peidi Zhang.

Gallery hours: Tuesday–Saturday 12–4pm.

Wayward Refusals is organized by the 2024 MA Curatorial Practices cohort: Ashley Ascencio, Chenyang Nie, Hattie Schultz, Linna Wang, Yishan Xin, Alice Zhao, Hang Zhang.

Apply now to the USC Roski MA Curatorial Practices Program. Study with renowned faculty and peer collaboration within a world class research university located in the thriving Los Angeles Arts District. Application deadline: January 15, 2024.

Graduate programs information sessions
In-person information session:
 Tuesday, November 7, 2023 at 5:30pm. Includes a Roski Talks panel discussion with USC Roski faculty Jennifer West and Andy Campbell.

Virtual information session: Monday, December 11, 2023 at 6pm PST. For more details, contact: roski [​at​] usc.edu.

One of the key features of USC Roski School graduate programs is the unparalleled access students have across diverse fields of study at USC—a leading research university, and home to 19 professional schools—allowing for interdisciplinary experimentation through complementary fields of study. 

The Masters in Curatorial Practices and the Public Sphere is an intensive master’s-level program in the practice and history of curating studied through lenses of critical theory, art history and visual culture. During two years of full-time academic seminars and professional training, students explore a range of curatorial practices applicable to diverse institutions and curatorial formats. The program is housed in a new facility located in the vibrant Los Angeles Arts District—home to dozens of museums, galleries, design firms, artists and designers. The space includes the MA seminar conference room, a makerspace, and the Roski Graduate Gallery.

USC Roski students work with renowned faculty, including Roski’s acclaimed artists, scholars, critics and curators. Current MA faculty includes Andy Campbell, Meiling Cheng, Suzanne Hudson, Amelia Jones, Annette Kim, Suzanne Lacy, and Jenny Lin (MA program director). In addition, students have one-on-one access to artists, performers, curators and critical thinkers through the Visiting Artists and Scholar Seminars. Participants have included Sadie Barnette, Andrea Bowers, Coco Fusco, Carolina Caycedo, Anne Ellegood, Theaster Gates, Vishal Jugdeo, Candice Lin, Julio César Morales, Legacy Russell, and Gabriela Urtiaga. 

Over the course of three semesters, students conceptualize and curate an exhibition or other curatorial project and produce a related publication or alternative public interface. Additionally, students complete scholarly research and write on a topic of their choice for the MA Thesis. 

Recent Roski MA alumni work in galleries, museums, and other venues including the Academy Museum; California African American Museum; Getty Research Institute; Hauser & Wirth Gallery; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA); Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE); Vincent Price Art Museum; Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA); Armory Center for the Arts; Prospect New Orleans; Rhizome; and the Whitney Museum. 

Funding available on a competitive basis.

USC Roski Graduate Building: 1262 Palmetto Street, Los Angeles CA 90013 (Los Angeles Arts District). USC Roski School of Art and Design Main Office  /  University of Southern California 850 West 37th Street, Los Angeles, California 90089.

*Images above: (2) MA Curatorial Practices ’24 cohort Wayward Refusals planning session, 2023. (4) MA Curatorial Practices cohort organized Poetry Slam, 2022. (5) MA Curatorial Practices presented performance by Angel Lartigue in collaboration with HC-(M) & Qais Assali, 2022.

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USC Roski School of Art and Design
October 19, 2023

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