ArtRage: The Norton Putter Gallery

505 Hawley Avenue Syracuse, NY

ArtRage Events

Frida Berrigan at ArtRage

October 2, 20164:00 pmto6:00 pm


Photograph © Sean D. Elliot
“Can you be fully committed to changing the world
and change diapers at the same time?
Can you be a nonviolent revolutionary
and a present, loving role model for your children?”

As part of our speaker series during our Americans Who Tell The Truth exhibition, Frida Berrigan, daughter of Phillip Berrigan, speaks at ArtRage about her dad and new book It Runs in the Family: On Being Raised by Radicals and Growing into Rebellious Motherhood.


Disruption: Climate. Change.

October 5, 20166:30 pmto8:30 pm

Presented as part of The Gifford Foundation “What If…” Film Series
In partnership with the Sierra Club Iroquois Group &
the Beyond Coal Campaign


The Most Dangerous Threat We’ve Ever Faced
Meets a Movement Whose Time Has Come

FREE Community Screening

Directed by Kelly Nyks & Jared P. Scott (2014)
When it comes to climate change, why do we do so little when we know so much? Through a relentless investigation to find the answer, DISRUPTION takes an unflinching look at the devastating consequences of our inaction.The exploration lays bare the terrifying science, the shattered political process, the unrelenting industry special interests and the civic stasis that have brought us to this social, moral and ecological crossroads. The film also takes us behind-the-scenes of the efforts to organize the largest climate rally in the history of the planet during the UN world climate summit. The film enlarges the issue beyond climate impacts and makes a compelling call for bold action that is strong enough to tip the balance to build a clean energy future.


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Mara Sapon-Shevin at ArtRage

October 6, 20167:00 pmto9:00 pm


Mara Sapon-Shevin – Professor of Inclusive Education,
Peace Activist, Writer, Singer, Dancer, Quilter: b. 1951
“The lessons we teach our students – whether overtly and intentionally
or mindlessly
and inadvertently — are what will shape the world…
Our goal cannot be to mirror the injustice and inequities
of the broader society (and the world) but rather to
provide students with the skills, attitudes, and confidence
they need in order to actively transform the world.”

As part of the continuing speaker series for the ArtRage exhibition of Robert Shetterly’s Americans Who Tell The Truth portraits, we will host a talk by Mara Sapon-Shevin titled, What do you say? Challenging people of all ages to confront oppression. Many of us hear comments and remarks that strike us as racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. but struggle to find the words to confront such behavior. Join us for a lively exploration of the challenges of responding to oppressive language and behavior.

Mara is a professor of education at Syracuse University. She teaches, writes, and lectures all over the world on the value of inclusive education, not just as a way to help students learn, but as a tool for building strong communities and promoting social justice.

What makes Sapon-Shevin’s work particularly valuable is that it travels beyond the K-12 classroom and into the world. Inclusive education is not just about making education a better experience for students; it is about making those students peaceful, kind citizens of the world. “I have a deep commitment to a vision of the world as a cooperative, peaceful and just place. I reject violence and war as solutions and I believe that we cannot have peace until we also have justice. My work with adults — teaching them to stand up to oppression — is just like my work with young people around issues of bullying. It’s all part of the same commitment — to a world in which people can live together in loving community, working together to make the world better.”

Free to the Public

Read more about Mara Sapon-Shevin at Americans Who Tell the Truth.


Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

October 8, 20168:00 pmto10:00 pm


Directed by Frank Capra.
Featuring James Stewart, Jean Arthur & Claude Rains.

Change begins when naive young Jefferson Smith is appointed to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate. Stunned by shabby schemes unearthed at every turn. Mr. Smith mounts  a revolution against his state’s corrupt political machine.  A classic , still distressingly  relevant, film.
“remains one of the  quintessential films on American politics to this very day.”  —
“considered by many to be one of the greatest achievements in film.”  —Filmsite reviews

$5 Suggested Donation


Celebrating Fannie Lou Hamer at ArtRage

October 16, 20164:00 pmto6:00 pm


Fannie Lou Hamer
Sharecropper, Civil Rights Activist: 1917 – 1977
“Sometimes it seem like to tell the truth today is to run the risk of being killed.
But if I fall, I’ll fall five feet four inches forward in the fight for freedom.
I’m not backing off.”

ArtRage is proud to host, I’m Sick and Tired, of Being Sick and Tired ~  a One Woman Show created & performed by Vanessa Johnson as a tribute to Fannie Lou Hamer. The show is based on testimonies and interviews of Ms. Hamer, primary documents from various U.S. archives, and the voices of other Civil Rights Activists who knew her. It includes spoken word, songs, audience participation and monologues.

Ms. Hamer was the youngest of 20 children and was 6 years old when she started working cotton fields in Mississippi. She began working with Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1962 and was a founding member and Vice President of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party and was called the “spirit of the Civil Rights Movement.”

Vanessa dancing

Ms. Vanessa Johnson is a Griot, a writer, a playwright, an actor, a fiber artist, a museum consultant, a community activist, a historian, and an educator. She will be accompanied during this performance by Bernie Willford.

Free to the Public

EVOLUTION Cabaret at ArtRage!

October 21, 2016 8:00 pmtoOctober 22, 2016 8:00 pm


ArtRage Gallery hosts a fall cabaret titled EVOLUTION. SAVE THE DATE!
It’s playing at ArtRage for TWO SHOWS ONLY – October 21 & 22 at 8pm
Tickets are $20 at the door.

Doors open at 7:30 with a wine bar.

“The Redhouse ‘The Color Purple’ is a communal celebration
of triumph through love.” 
—- Len Fonte,, 2014

The Redhouse 2014 production of The Color Purple introduced Syracuse audiences to Briana Maia (as Nettie). Since then, she’s returned from NYC to Syracuse for numerous Redhouse productions:  DreamgirlsRagtime and as Gary Coleman in Avenue QBriana has a BFA from the University of Connecticut.

EVOLUTION takes you on a musical journey into the lives of women, through the voice Briana, who is accompanied by the magical keyboard skills of local musician and music director, Jeff Unaitis.

Jeff Head Shot
Jeff Unaitis

Jeff Unaitis is Executive Director of the Onondaga County Bar Association. Prior to that, he was spokesman for Time Warner Cable in Central New York for nearly 20 years. He is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and is currently a member of the ArtRage Board of Directors. Jeff has been playing piano since the age of 5, and keeps his musical chops fresh by performing occasionally with local community theatre groups and for worthwhile community fund-raising events!

Night of the Hunter (1955)

October 29, 20168:00 pmto10:00 pm

Night of the hunter

Directed by Charles Laughton.
Featuring Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters & Lillian Gish

Halloween is around the corner, so brace yourself for “one of the most haunted and dreamlike of all American films (Time Out). The only film ever directed by legendary actor Charles Laughton, this haunting good-and-evil tale pits a pious old lady and two kids against a child-hating psychopathic phony preacher on the hunt for stolen loot. Beautifully shot in black-and-white German Expressionist style and sparked by memorable performances.

$5 Suggested Donation

Celebrating Bayard Rustin at ArtRage

November 1, 20167:00 pmto9:00 pm

Bayard Rustin-web

Bayard Rustin (1912-1987) American leader in social movements for
civil rights, socialism, nonviolence, and gay rights.
“First, what is the dynamic idea of our time? It is the quest for human dignity
expressed in many ways—self-determination, freedom from bigotry,
and equality of opportunity. If we want human dignity above all else,
we cannot get it while we are on our knees,
we cannot get it if we are running away,
we cannot get it if we are indifferent and unconcerned.”

During the ArtRage exhibition of FINDING YOUR POWER, we are celebrating some of those Americans Who Tell the Truth with events highlighting their accomplishments. We will screen the 90 minute documentary, BROTHER OUTSIDER and Professor Paula C. Johnson will introduce the film and facilitate a discussion afterwards.


A master strategist and tireless activist, Bayard Rustin is best remembered as the organizer of the 1963 March on Washington, one of the largest nonviolent protests ever held in the United States. He brought Gandhi’s protest techniques to the American civil rights movement, and helped mold Martin Luther King, Jr. into an international symbol of peace and nonviolence.

Despite these achievements, Rustin was silenced, threatened, arrested, beaten, imprisoned and fired from important leadership positions, largely because he was an openly gay man in a fiercely homophobic era. Five years in the making and the winner of numerous awards, BROTHER OUTSIDER presents a feature-length documentary portrait, focusing on Rustin’s activism for peace, racial equality, economic justice and human rights. Read more

Paula Johnson

Paul C. Johnson is professor of law at Syracuse University College of Law. Professor Johnson and Professor Janis McDonald co-direct the Cold Case Justice Initiative (CCJI) at Syracuse University College of Law, which investigates racially-motivated murders committed during the civil rights era.  She also was co-director of the Sierra Leone UN War Crimes Tribunal Project, within the Center for Global Law & Practice, with Professors Donna Arzt and Lucille Rignanese. She was the founding director of the Law in Zimbabwe Summer Internship Program. In 2003, she received the Unsung Heroine Award from the Syracuse University Martin Luther King, Jr. Awards Committee, and the Woman of the Year Award from the Syracuse University African American Male Congress. Read her full bio


Free to the Public

Can You Dig This

November 3, 20166:30 pmto8:30 pm

Presented as part of The Gifford Foundation “What If…” Film Series
In partnership with Syracuse Grows

dig this

“When you put beauty in a place that has none, that’s a game changer.”

— Ron Finley, the “Gangster Gardener”

Free Community Screening

Directed by Delila Vallot (2015)

South Los Angeles. What comes to mind is gangs, drugs, liquor stores, abandoned buildings and vacant lots. The last thing that you would expect to find is a beautiful garden sprouting up through the concrete, coloring the urban landscape. As part of an urban gardening movement taking root in South LA, people are planting to transform their neighborhoods and are changing their own lives in the process. Calling for people to put down their guns and pick up their shovels, these “gangster gardeners” are creating an oasis in the middle of one of the most notoriously dangerous places in America.

“CAN YOU DIG THIS” follows the inspirational journeys of four unlikely gardeners, discovering what happens when they put their hands in the soil. This is not a story of science and economics. This is a story of the human spirit, inspiring people everywhere to pick up their shovels and “plant some shit.”


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Oren Lyons at ArtRage

November 12, 20167:00 pmto9:00 pm


Native-American Faithkeeper, Human Rights Advocate, Environmental Activist
“The law says if you poison the water, you’ll die.
The law says that if you poison the air, you’ll suffer.
The law says if you degrade where you live, you’ll suffer…
If you don’t learn that, you can only suffer.
There’s no discussion with this law.” -Oren Lyons

As a closing event for the ArtRage exhibition of Robert Shetterly’s Americans Who Tell The Truth portraits, we will proudly host a presentation by Oren Lyons.

Oren Lyons is a member of the Onondaga and Seneca nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. As an activist for indigenous and environmental justice, Oren works with communities across the globe. As a Faithkeeper, he upholds the history and traditions of the Turtle Clan of the Onondaga and Seneca. Oren often addresses modern-day conflicts by sharing traditional views on the law of nature. When he says “You can’t negotiate with a beetle”*, he implies that nature will respond to climate change whether or not humans do.

Oren’s dedication to the cause of Native and environmental rights has garnered him many accolades, including an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from his alma mater, Syracuse University. Awards include the Rosa Parks Institute for Human Rights Elder and Wiser Award, the Earth Day International Award of the United Nations, the National Audubon Society, and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Lyons serves on the board of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development and is board chairman of Honoring Contributions in the Governance of American Indian Nations. He is also remembered for his time as a lacrosse player and is Honorary Chairman of the Iroquois Nationals. In 1989 he was named Man of the Year in Lacrosse by the NCAA. His legendary performance as goalkeeper for Syracuse University, with Jim Brown on the undefeated 1957 national champion team, led to the induction of Oren R. Lyons, Jr. into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame. He was most recently invited to speak at the funeral of Muhammad Ali.

Free to the Public

Read more at Americans Who Tell The Truth ~ Oren Lyons