Founded in 1985 on Los Angeles’ Skid Row by performance artist, director and activist John Malpede, Los Angeles Poverty Department is made up of homeless and formerly homeless people who create live performances about issues they face living in poverty and on the street. Engaging a marginalized community in powerful works of self-representation, LAPD has earned a reputation as a daring and original producer of what is now known as socially engaged art. LAPD recently opened the Skid Row History Museum and Archive, a site for exhibitions, installations, workshops, performances, public conversations, community meetings, and screenings that seek to change the narrative about people living in poverty; it also houses an archive documenting three decades of activity by Skid Row artists, activists and policy makers.
“It is an honor to be part of The Warhol Foundation’s mission to support the visual arts coupled with its commitment to specifically support the voices of women, POC, Native Americans, and LGBTQ. It is simply thrilling to be part of an organization where we get to see these values writ large and implement real change in real life ways in the visual arts community that still so needs to move forward in terms of social justice, equality, and diversity. We put our money where our mouth is. How many institutions actually do that?”
Deborah Kass, Artist