The University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA (USA) was the seventh 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.
At the University of Pennsylvania all three mosaic triptychs were hung in the Education Commons, an innovative space for studying and resting carved out of the eaves of the Franklin Field football stadium.
Lorenz gave an informal talk on the mosaics for students and staff in the exhibition space on October 20, 2015.
On October 21 the artist gave a formal public lecture in the Kislak Center Pavilion cosponsored by Penn Humanities Forum. Following the lecture, the public was invited to the adjacent historical Henry Charles Lea Library room, where Lorenz’s artist’s books from Penn’s permanent collection were on display during a Q&A with the general public.
On October 23 the artist lectured again in the Education Commons for the academic seminar Italian Through Art, established by the Center for Italian Studies, University of Pennsylvania. This is a series of accredited pedagogical seminars taught in Italian which share innovative teaching methods and ideas for curriculum development for Italian language programs U.S. schools.
The artist is grateful for the support of many departments and employees that aided in the installation, promotion and funding of the exhibition and related events, especially the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts: Will Noel, Lynne Farrington and Andrea Gottschalk. Thank you to H. Carton Rogers of Penn Libraries and Jim English, Heather Love and Jennifer Conway of the Penn Humanities Forum. Gratitude is also due to Eric Janec, Anu Vedantham and Kim Eke of the Education Commons for hosting the exhibition in this unique space devoted to athlete-scholars, and to Brooke Sietinsons for photographing events there. Grazie mille to Marina Della Putta Johnston, Undergraduate Chair, Italian Studies and Assistant Director, Center for Italian Studies for incorporating Victorious Secret into the Italian Pedagogical Seminar.
Photos of and links to Victorious Secret events, activities and press: