Beauvais Lyons gives a talk during his residency at the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop (New York City) in June 2008.
Mock Documentation This lecture provides a survey of works of parafiction by contemporary artists who have mocked
the authority of the academy, the museum, science, history and commerce. This talk surveys a great many disciplines
represented through a variety of art media (painting, prints, sculpture, ceramics, photography and design) and has a
broad appeal for artists, academics and the general public. This talk is 60 minutes and requires a digital projector.
Prank Theory A prank is defined as “a trick of an amusing, playful, or sometimes malicious nature, or to dress or
adorn in an ostentatious manner.” The prankster creates deceptions that reveal larger truths, while also calling
attention to the relationship between creativity and mischief. Pranksters can disrupt our normative experience and
the status quo, and can rupture or preconceptions about the world. As a form of creative rebellion, pranks can critique
social, political, religious and institutional systems, and provide a tool for those who do not have access to systems
of power. In this lecture, I offer a case for the cultural and artistic importance of pranking, which has precedence in
the trickster and the court jester, but also finds expression during the past century in Dada, Surrealism, and Fluxus.
Essential to many pranks is the use of irony as an aesthetic, social and political strategy – which links pranking to
both parody and satire. Pranking crosses all form of culture, both high brow and low brow, and has currency fine art,
academic and scientific contexts, as well as the popular arts, from Candid Camera and Improv Everywhere to the MTV
The Art and Scholarship of Everitt Ormsby Hokes
This mock-academic lecture includes biographical material on the
founder of the Hokes Archives. The talk includes an introduction to the art and culture of the Apasht and the Aazud,
medical and zoological prints and “The George and Helen Spelvin Folk Art Collection.” This talk is 50 minutes and
requires a digital projector.
Do You Believe in Centaurs?
This lecture examines the process by which William Willers' "Centaur Excavations at Volos"
was brought to the Hodges Library at the University of Tennessee. The role of art in a university setting, the uses of
hoaxing as a pedagical tool and the Evolution vs. Creationist debate are addressed . This talk is 50 minutes and requires
a digital projector.
Issues in Folk Art
Through an examination of Art Brut, the writings of Gary Alan Fine, Julia Ardrey and Eugene Metcalf,
this presentation examines the mythologies present in the collection and display of contemporary outsider and folk art.
The talk includes information on the George and Helen Spelvin Folk Art Collection. This talk is 50 minutes and requires
a digital projector.
The Vernacular Print This lecture applies the theories of Robert Venturi’s Learning from Las Vegas to considering the cultural,
social and economic significance of print media. The vernacular print argues for the power of printmaking to engage audiences
outside of the museum and gallery, as a tool for artists working with gift economies, social practice and grassroots political
actions. This talk is 50 minutes and requires a digital projector.
Exchange Portfolios as Relational Art
Over the past three decades exchange portfolios have become an increasingly
important practice in contemporary printmaking. This talk examines the history of the exchange portfolio and advocates
for forms of the practice that emphasize the relational and collaborative aspects of the practice. The talk draws on the
theories of Nicolas Bourriaud and Lewis Hyde. This talk is 50 minutes and requires a digital projector.
PECHA-KUCHA TALKS (20 slides x 20 seconds)
Teaching Pranks Why do we find pranks on MTV’s Punk’d or Jackass interesting? For over 3 years I ttaught a one-credit
Freshman Studies seminar at UT Knoxville on the topic “Pranks.” In this course we study and stage a number of pranks
during the semester to explore the social, political, ethical and artistic uses of the prank. Students in the course come
from all across the university, pursuing majors including engineering, business, arts and sciences, nursing, agriculture,
and social work. Most of the course materials are on a Blackboard website with numerous short readings and videos.
The course has five assignments, including a prank letter, an "Improve Everywhere" inspired group action, an annotated
bibliography, a prank poster and a final project involving the creation of a fake student organization. Information about
the course see: http://web.utk.edu/~blyons/teachingpranks.htm
Association for Creative Zoology This talk presents the theories of the Reverend James Randolph Denton, founder of
the Association for Creative Zoology, who posited that species diversity is not the result of natural section, but is evidence
of collage techniques, or “zoomorphic juncture” by God to produce hybrid creatures such as centaurs other chimera. Working
with Hokes Scholarly Lithography, Reverend Denton authored Rare Zoological Specimens and other publications providing a
visual record of hybrid creatures, many of which perished during the Great Global Flood. The talk also includes examples
of two kiosks used by Denton as part of his public education campaign in the 1920s, which displayed hybrid taxidermy.
Half-Naked Painting This talk offers an artistic, social, economic and political examination of “Des Nudas,” the bare–breasted, body-painted women who busk in Times Square. Themes addressed in the presentation will include differentiation of naked and nude, the top-free movement and gender equality, historical and contemporary applications of body painting, freedom of speech and commerce, patriotism as a visual motif and art in public spaces.
DEMONSTRATIONS AND CRITIQUES
Recent developments in photo-lithography make the process safe, relatively
inexpensive and simple. This presentation covers the principles of making transparencies for printing from both
positive and negative plate systems. This presentation takes about three hours and requires a platemaker, a
lithographic press with plate backing, a roller and litho inks.
Individual and Group Critiques
As a Visiting Artist, Beauvais Lyons has experience in facilitating critiques with students
in a broad range of disciplines. Individual critiques should generally be scheduled for at least one half hour while group
critiques generally take place in the context of a class assignment or period.
The standard fee is $500/day plus travel and lodging.