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Mary Rothlisberger

County: Whitman County




Fellowship Awards 2017
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Mary Rothlisberger is a citizen artist and relationalist from Palouse, Washington (pop. 998), working in collaboration with rural communities and remote landscapes. She builds spaces that help people and places work better together. Her creative practices are driven by systems of sharing in order to enable positive change and compassionate action. She uses conversational research, publications, performance, picnics, and play to express and understand the environments we situate ourselves within.

In recent years, Mary has focused on rural cultural advocacy and building community through arts initiatives. Being a neighbor and an active citizen are necessary components of her career as a socially engaged artist. Her studio projects and social programming go hand-in-hand to create radical contemporary dialogue in unexpected situations. Rural communities are a minority voice among cultural producers and she has diligently built a practice that reaches out to audiences beyond the urban elite. Mary brings a nuanced perspective to the contemporary field, as a citizen artist working in service to small towns, as a cultural producer across American geographies, and as facilitator of entrenched place-based arts programming.

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Image: Al Gilliom, 2022 GAP; PC: Ricky Osborne


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