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Susan Harbage Page with her white box

Performance Artist Brings "The White Box" Project to WIU

December 6, 2010

MACOMB, IL - - Photographer and performance artist Susan Harbage Page will visit Western Illinois University to present her recent work, "The White Box – Changing Perceptions of Privilege," and to work with WIU students on an interactive performance and video project.

Harbage Page will be on the WIU-Macomb campus Thursday-Friday, Dec. 9-10. She will give a public talk about her project and other work at 6 p.m. Thursday (Dec. 9) in the University Union Sandburg Theatre. University and community members are welcome to attend the free talk.

"The White Box – Changing Perceptions of Privilege" is a performance art and video project intended to provoke conversation about race, she said. The project at Western will start with a performance by Harbage Page, who will be carrying a white box during her trip from North Carolina and while she visits WIU.

"The box becomes a constant reminder of my whiteness," Harbage Page said.

On Thursday (Dec. 9) a group of 20 Western Illinois students will work in pairs and alternately carry a box and videotape their partner in interactions with people that they encounter. There will be a variety of black, brown and tan boxes available to accommodate students by their skin tones, Harbage Page added.

The project culminates Friday (Dec. 10) when WIU students will join Harbage Page in creating a website where photographs and videos of "The White Box" project will be posted. Students interested in participating in the project should contact Art Chair Charles Wright at (309) 298-1549, or go to the art department office, located on the third floor of Garwood Hall, to sign up.

For more information about the Harbage Page visit, contact Jo-Ann Morgan at

Posted By: Jared Dye, University Relations
Phone: (309) 298-1993 * Fax: (309) 298-1606