March 9: Public Practice Event with Steve Lambert

Arts Activism: The Reality Is That You Haven’t Made New Work in 7 Years

In collaboration with RISD faculty member Marisa Mazria Katz (Digital + Media), Center for Complexity welcomes Steve Lambert for a lecture and conversation about arts activism titled The Reality Is That You Haven’t Made New Work in 7 Years.

Steve Lambert is an artist, co-director and co-founder of the Center for Artistic Activism (C4AA). Over the past ten years Lambert has focused on working with sex workers on campaigns for human rights, fighting for safe consumption spaces with people who use drugs like heroin and methamphetamine, working with groups battling pharmaceutical companies over pricing for fair and affordable access to treatments, tests, and vaccines worldwide, elections and voting rights, and fighting corruption in the Western Balkans, West Africa, Uzbekistan, and the United States.

For the Center for Complexity, he will discuss his practice, his C4AA work as well as how the power of artists is underestimated and undermined by others, and themselves – and how they can change that. There will be plenty of pictures and some jokes.


Date: Thursday, 9 March 2023

Time: 6:30 pm EST

Location: Tap Room | 4th Floor, Memorial Hall, 226 Benefit Street, Providence, RI


Trained in the arts, he is known for large scale, public projects that engage new audiences on difficult topics. His work has been shown both nationally and internationally, from art galleries to Times Square to protest marches, featured in four documentary films, and over two dozen books, and collected by several museums. Lambert has presented at the United Nations four times and his research is included in a United Nations report on the impact of advertising on cultural rights. Research collected from one of his projects formed the basis of a book on popular understandings of capitalism published by Routledge.

At the Center for Artistic Activism, he has worked alongside thousands of artists and activists, in 20 countries, on 5 continents helping them use creative means to effect power. Last year, Stephen Duncombe and Lambert published The Art of Activism: Your All-Purpose Guide to Making the Impossible Possible with O/R books, which combines extensive practical knowledge with theoretical insights from fields as far-ranging as cultural studies and cognitive science. He is also an Associate Professor at SUNY Purchase, has advanced degrees from a reputable art school and a respected state university, and dropped out of high school in 1993.


This event is free and open to the public. Food and beverages will be served. This session will be recorded.