In this critical examination of Suzanne Lacy, Sharon Irish surveys Lacy's art from 1972 to the present, demonstrating the pivotal roles that Lacy has had in public art, feminist theory, and community organizing. Lacy initially used her own body-or animal organs-to visually depict psychological states or social conditions in photographs, collages, and installations. In the late 1970s she turned to organizing large groups of people into art events-including her most famous work, The Crystal Quilt, a 1987 performance broadcast live on PBS and featuring hundreds of women in Minneapolis-and pioneered a new genre of public art.
Sharon Irish holds a joint appointment in the School of Architecture and the Community Informatics Initiative/Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She is the author of Cass Gilbert, Architect: Modern Traditionalist.