The University of Iowa

January 28 WorldCanvass explores the counterculture of the 60s and 70s

January 7th, 2011

Host Joan Kjaer blends discussions of culture, history, literature, language, politics and art with live musical performances, all in an effort to illustrate and illuminate the complexities that make us distinct from one another while celebrating our common humanity. The live productions take place from 5-7 p.m. one Friday a month in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum on the campus of the University of Iowa and are free and open to the public.

Produced by International Programs at the University of Iowa, WorldCanvass® explores topics that are international in scope and central to our understanding of ourselves as part of the global landscape.

Join us at 5:00 p.m. on January 28, 2011, in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum when WorldCanvass guests explore the counterculture of the 60s and 70s.  The event is free and the public is encouraged to attend.

We’ll start by defining the term counterculture and looking at social history in the United States and Europe in the post WWII era, particularly during the 60s and 70s when many of the values and norms that defined the 50s were rejected and a youth culture challenged traditional views on everything from patriotism, the law and government to marriage, race, gender roles, sexuality and recreational drugs.

For a personal excursion into the counterculture of this period, we draw upon the life and work of 20th Century feminist artist and critic Lil Picard.  Picard was born in Germany in 1899 and worked as a cabaret actress, accessories designer and journalist in the avant-garde art scene of 1930s Berlin before leaving Germany for the U.S. in 1937.  For the next six decades she led a rich life working both as a journalist and as an artist in New York City, moving in the circle of Andy Warhol, Carolee Schneemann, Ad Reinhardt and their contemporaries.  The works in Picard’s estate, as well as personal letters, diaries, and photographs, were given to the UI in 1999 and they form the basis of the UI Museum of Art’s upcoming exhibit “Lil Picard and Counterculture New York.”  The collection and exhibit curators will give us a peek at the energy, experimentation and iconoclasm represented in the show.

Our guests will discuss the counterculture’s influence on the dominant culture, popular culture, film, music, and performance art and we’ll ask the larger question….How did the counterculture’s revolution in social mores, the lifting of taboos and the advocacy for freedom of expression during the 60s and 70s influence the decades that followed?

Guest participants for “WorldCanvass: The Counterculture of the 60s and 70s” are: Kathleen Edwards, Jon Winet, Art Borreca, Elizabeth Heineman, Sean O’Harrow, Sid Huttner, Dale Fisher, Andrew Ritchey and David Harvey.

WorldCanvass production partners are UITV, the Pentacrest Museums, KRUI and Information Technology Services.  UITV records WorldCanvass for later broadcast over Iowa cable television systems and for distribution on Iowa Public Radio and KRUI-FM at the University of Iowa. Live streaming is provided at the International Programs website and all programs are archived on the Public Radio Exchange (

Please join us for the next WorldCanvass on January 28 at 5:00 p.m. in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber.