Off the Beaten Path: Violence, Women and Art

An International Contemporary Art Exhibition

Thirty-two contemporary artists from 25 countries address violence against women and girls globally and their basic human rights to a safe and secure life. The beauty of this project is that it combines the highest integrity of art with important social messaging and storytelling to help create awareness, inspiration, and address systems for positive social change and action.

Exhibition curated by Randy Jayne Rosenberg.

Stenersen Museum, Oslo, Norway
June 20 – August 9, 2009

University Art Gallery, San Diego, USA
October 22 – December 12, 2009

Centro Cultural Tijuana, Mexico
22 January – 4 April, 2010
Paseo de los Héroes No. 9350, Zona Urbana Río, Tijuana, Baja California, México.
Tel. 01 (664) 687-9600

then travelling to:
Museo Universitario del Chopo, Mexico
August – October, 2010

Virtual Tour of the exhibition here.

Previous report on of the San Diego showing, with more pictures & info  here.


Global Art Show Inspires New Perspective on Gender-Based Violence

Premised on the visionary potential in art, the exhibition avoids tabloid and sensational imagery. The invited artists were asked “to help us create new representations through their artworks and, in doing so, help us feel and understand the essence of the problem of violence against women,” says Rosenberg.

The goal of the exhibition is to help create a new conversation on the full spectrum of issues that surround this important topic. Within the context of the exhibition, Art Works For Change explores various definitions of violence against women and girls as it relates to the themes of Violence and the Individual; Violence and the Family; Violence and the Community; Violence and Culture; and Violence and Politics. The hope is that the audience leaves the exhibition with a better understanding of the roots of abuse, a feeling of empathy, and an awareness of choice in their actions and beliefs.

These problems, though widespread, are often invisible, says Rosenberg. “When we encounter violence against women, we often overlook the facts and experience a sort of blindness. We choose not to see the devastation of domestic violence, calling it ‘a family affair’. Honor killings of women in faraway regions of the world become nothing more than a ‘cultural difference’. We find it hard to believe that sex trafficking and exploitation occur in our cities, close to home. The rape and torture of women during armed conflict is the inevitable ‘messiness of war’. As such, the political and systemic sources of violence are often underestimated or overlooked.”

To promote social change, Art Works For Change and its exhibitions serves as a catalyst within the community. Through its partnerships with museums, galleries, and advocacy and educational organizations, Art Works For Change provides a forum for which local education and outreach can take place within each host city the exhibition travels.

Organizational partners for “Off the Beaten Path” include Amnesty International; Art for Amnesty; Five Women who Care; Global Fund for Women; International Rescue Committee; the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM); and The Voices and Faces Project.

Participating artists include Agency: Volontaire; Marina Abramovic; Jane Alexander; Laylah Ali; Louise Bourgeois; Lise Bjorne Linnert; Maria Campos-Pons; Patricia Evans; Luciana Fina; Maimuna Feroze-Nana; Global Crescendo Project; Mona Hatoum; Icelandic Love Corp; Yoko Inoue; Kim Myung Jin; Jung Jungyeob; Amal Kenawy; Hung Liu; Almagul Menlibayeva; Gabriela Morawetz; Wangechi Mutu; Miri Nishri; Yoko Ono; Lucy Orta; Cecilia Paredes; Susan Plum; Cima Rahmankhah; Jaune Quick-to-See Smith; Joyce J. Scott; Masami Teraoka; Hank Willis Thomas; Miwa Yanagi.

“Off the Beaten Path” will run through April 4, 2010, before touring to other cities including Paris; Hanoi; Bogotá; São Paulo; Mexico City; Chicago; Ottawa; Toronto; Accra; Cape Town; Johannesburg; and more. It opened in Oslo, Norway, in June, 2009 and traveled to San Diego, California, United States, in October, 2009.

For more information, visit


Art Works for Change produces contemporary art exhibitions to address social and environmental issues. It uses the power of art as a vehicle to promote dialogue and awareness, and to inspire action and thought. Art Works for Change operates under the fiscal umbrella of the Tides Center, a tax-exempt organization.

Laylah Ali, USA
Untitled, 2002
Ink on Paper, 16.5″ x 11.75″

Miri Nishri, Israel
Esther-Queen of the Swamp, 2009
Video Projection

Wangechi Mutu, Kenya
Cleaning Earth,2006
DVD Video
Courtesy of
Sikkema Jenkins & Co.

Yoko Inoue
Photograph of a
36″ x 36″

Yoko Ono, Japan
Cut Pieces, 1965 + 2003
Video (2 Monitors)

Q+A with Yoko Ono for Dagbladet MAGASINET June 5, 2009

How is life? Are you doing well?
So far, so good

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning?
I hope it’s a good day.

What will you say about your work, Cut Piece 2003 and 1965, which are showed in Oslo this summer as a part of the exhibition “Off the Beaten Path?” In what way does this work represent violence against women?
I want to express works like Cut Piece, to heal.

Are you still producing new material as an artist and musician?
I just finished installing my show in Palazzetto Tito. I think it is my best work, so far, of 76 years. I also just finished making my latest album: BETWEEN MY HEAD AND THE SKY produced by me and Sean Lennon. Four of the songs are coming our in June 9th on iTunes. The whole album will be coming out September 21st. I’ll be doing a few concerts for that. Calling it a tour will be an exaggeration. I’m just doing five or six concert around the world.

What inspires you?
What inspires me comes from BETWEEN MY HEAD AND THE SKY. My head is opened to the sky. The passage is totally clear. That does it, I think

It has often been said about your work that you erase the boundaries between your art and your private life. Do you agree?
I am one of the people I sing about. I often sing about somebody else in my song, but it all comes back to me, anyway – probably because we are all so closely connected: one world, one people

What is it you want to accomplish with your work?
I want to give inspiration and encouragement to people to make a great life for themselves. I also want to bring out sad situations in life so they will be healed.

What are you looking most forward to right now?
I just want to have a good day, every day in life

Who was your first love?
My mother.

Who would you like to send off to a desert island?
I can’t name them all because there are so many! (just a joke!:) My heart gets upset just like anybody else’s when somebody is mean to me. But my brain tells me that it is probably a blessing in disguise and I should not get too upset about them

What’s most important in your life right now?
My eternal health, spiritually, mentally and physically…And my relationship with my son. Not necessarily in that order!

If there was a heaven, what would you want God to say when you arrived?
He doesn’t have to say anything to me. I think I more or less know what he would say. “Welcome, my child,” or something of that nature. I have a few questions I want him to answer. Depending on that, I may not want to be his guest.

yoko ono Venice, ’09