Yale University in New Haven, CT (USA) was the fifth venue for the mosaic installation Victorious Secret created by visual artist Angela Lorenz in 2012-2013. This set of three triptychs, encompassing nine panels in all, is based upon actual ancient mosaics from 300 AD still in their original location in Piazza Armerina, Sicily (Italy).
These mosaics of female athletes made out of buttons are dedicated to Title IX, a law created in the United States in 1972 to address inequality in women’s university sports programs and other discrimination. A variety of departments, staff members and campus groups lent support and energy to this exhibition and related events. The artist was particularly pleased that the Yale Women’s Tennis Team came as a team bonding activity to the lecture and subsequent event, at which the public printed a keepsake of the lecture and exhibition on an antique Albion press in Sterling Library.
For the first time, the mosaics were placed in two separate locations on one university campus, the Robert B. Haas Family Library and Sterling Memorial Library, to maximize the number of viewers from March 15 – June 30, 2015. In addition to written information displayed next to the mosaics, the video of Victorious Secret was continuously run on monitors adjacent to the exhibit, allowing students to unlock the meaning of the piece and its iconography of athletic equipment and prizes.
Lorenz gave a talk on the mosaics on March in Sterling Memorial Library Lecture Hall on March 25, 2015. The lecture was followed by a special event to commemorate the talk and the exhibition: the general public was invited to print a keepsake on an antique Albion hand-press, part of the sponsorship of the Bibliographical Press. The artist was also invited by Yale Women’s Forum for an informal discussion at Yale Center for Women.
The artist is grateful for the support of many departments, employees and student organizations that aided in the installation, promotion and funding of the exhibition and related events, especially Jae Rossman, Acting Director of the Robert B. Haas Family Library, the Bibliographical Press, and the Yale Women’s Center.
Photos of and links to Victorious Secret events, activities and press: