Framework #23: Connecting Communities Through Critical Discourse


FRAMEWORK PANEL #23: Connecting Communities Through Critical Discourse

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


NPR Studio One 

1111 North Capitol Street NE 

Washington, DC 20002

Attendance is FREE. Advanced Registration Required:​

Transformer is proud to continue our ongoing FRAMEWORK Panel Series with FRAMEWORK Panel #23: Connecting Communities Through Critical Discourse. Examining the role of critical writing within the arts community through various models of coverage and criticism, panelists will include:  James McAnanaly, Temporary Art Review (St. Louis, MO); Taylor Renee, Arts.Black (Detroit, MI); Cara Ober, BmoreArt (Baltimore, MD) and Kriston Capps, Washington City Paper (Washington, DC). 

Exploring alternative artist-centered platforms and how arts communities can take/have taken the lead in nurturing critical discourse - this panel, co-moderated by Victoria Reis, Co-Founder, Executive & Artistic Director of Transformer, and Andrew Limbong, Assistant Producer of NPR's Arts Desk - will aim to investigate current models and imagine future possibilities for creating discourse and connecting communities.

Launched in December 2002, Transformer's FRAMEWORK Panel Series engages local, national, and international artists, arts professionals, cultural leaders, and DC audiences in conversation to create an oral 'field guide' to encourage and support individual emerging artists in our community, and to educate audiences through the sharing of best practices within the contemporary visual arts. FRAMEWORK Panels are presented 2-3 times per year in collaboration with a broad range of educational & cultural institution partners. Transformer is honored to have Connecting Communities Through Critical Discourse hosted by NPR at their Studio 1 theatre.

Transformer’s 2015/16 FRAMEWORK Panel Series is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts' Access to Artistic Excellence grant, "to encourage and support artistic excellence, preserve our cultural heritage, and provide access to the arts for all Americans.”

Connecting Communities Through Critical Discourse is presented in tandem with the announcement of Transformer’s 13th Annual Exercises for Emerging Artists ProgramE13: Discourse. Focusing on a different artistic discipline each year, E13 will partner a group of emerging local writers with a series of rotating mentors from the national arts writing community for a rigorous critique process. Writers will be invited to participate in this year’s Exercises via nominations by Transformer staff, Advisory Council, and area arts educators and curators.


Kriston Capps is a staff writer for CityLab, the urbanism site for The Atlantic, where he writes about architecture, housing, and design. His work has been published in Slate, New York, Artforum, and The Washington Post. Capps is a longtime art critic for Washington City Paper. Barbecue and Brutalism are two topics close to his heart. 

Taylor Renee received her M.L.A from Harvard University in Museum Studies. She received her B.A from Howard University in Art History and Business Administration. Taylor has worked at the The Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African & African American Art (Harvard University), and has been awarded with the Goldman Sachs Junior Fellowship at The National Museum of American History (Smithsonian Institutions). In 2015, she co-founded ARTS.BLACK, an online publication for art criticism from black perspectives. Taylor Renee is currently working as an arts administrator and writer in her hometown, Detroit, Michigan.

James McAnally is the executive editor and co-founder of Temporary Art Review. He is an artist, curator and critic whose work seeks to create a space of expanded authorship and exchange, considering the role of the artist within a broader landscape of production, conception, and consumption. He is a founder, Co-Director, and Curator of The Luminary, an incubator for new ideas in the arts based in St. Louis, MO. In his artistic practice, he works as a part of the collaborative US English. He is a 2015 recipient of the Creative Capital | The Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant for Short-Form Writing.

Cara Ober is the Founding Editor at BmoreArt, Baltimore's daily online art and culture magazine since 2007 and now a new print journal. Ober earned an MFA in Studio Art from MICA in 2005 and has been published in ARTnews, Art Papers, Hyperallergic, BurnAway, the Baltimore Sun, Baltimore City Paper, and Urbanite Magazine. Although she loves penning an occasional juicy critique, her passion as a writer is economic, political, and professional empowerment for artists.


Victoria Reis is the co-Founder and Executive & Artistic Director of Transformer, a Washington, DC based nonprofit, artist-centered visual arts organization. Established in summer 2002, Transformer connects and promotes emerging artists locally, nationally and internationally through exhibitions, mentorship programs, and educational programs. Through Transformer, Reis has worked with hundreds of emerging visual artists, supporting them in the development and presentation of their work and their artistic careers. Reis began her career in contemporary visual arts at the National Association of Artists’ Organizations/NAAO (1992-97), developing programs and field-wide initiatives in support of artist-centered and artist-run organizations and the artists they serve. Reis is a founding member of CommonField, a newly developing national alliance of artist-centered and artist-run organizations.

Andrew Limbong is an assistant producer for NPR’s Arts Desk, where he produces, reports, and mixes arts pieces of all kinds. Previously, he was a producer for Tell Me More and produced segments, directed the program, and line produced the show. He originally started at NPR in 2011 as an intern for All Things Considered. Limbong received a Bachelor of Arts in English, with a minor in Journalism, from the State University of New York at New Paltz. Between graduating and arriving at NPR, he spent time living in Indonesia.