Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw’s installation, Geo’d, is a collaborative, large-scale mosaic currently on view outside Townwood Community Center. So many of Houston’s historic neighborhoods are undergoing a mind blowing evolution – polarized by perceptions of inheritance-VS-seizure. The embrace of a community’s cultural gifts is what binds the roots of its people in celebration and motivation, rather than paralyzing dread.
Geo’d is a celebration of individual and collective vitality. It is a whimsical interpretation of those unassuming rocks that delight the viewer with complex cores of color bands and crystal lined cavities. The Geo’d core is a glass, kaleidoscopic offering of “the other” and the propagation of identities, and thus, ideas. The title is employed here as both a condition and self- possessed action: claiming, or even rejecting conventional space and legacy. This mosaic is offered with hope that it becomes a souvenir of the fellowship forged in its making, and an ever- evolving centerpiece for a community that will consume and interpret on its own terms.
On the Texas Commission for the Arts Artist in Education Roster, Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw has enjoyed extended residencies at The Community Artists’ Collective and the Austin Children’s Museum. She was the first artist in residence and community liaison in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston Education Department and, as Project Manager, her focus was community engagement with the Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens. Through the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Foundation, she composed, promoted and facilitated programs and festivals to increase public awareness of the communities’ artists and crafts persons living in their midst and within themselves.
To augment the cancer prevention programs at UTMD Anderson Cancer Center, her Bunraku Puppeteer Troupe employed performing arts as a vehicle to educate children about the dangers of tobacco exposure. As Cultured Pearls Creative, Marsha is a certified enrichment instructor for many school districts with the Harris County Department of Education, and she is a member of Young Audiences of Houston, facilitating successful school residencies from Harris to Matagorda County. Her programs are an encyclopedic survey of world art that is aligned with TEKS objectives and flexible to support multiple disciplines. She is certified in the International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC) and International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme for visual art (IB). She composed the first IB high school fine art curriculum for St. Stephen’s Episcopal School, Houston, and has served as ceramics instructor at The Forum at Memorial Woods senior community since 2014.
Supported by The Periwinkle Foundation, Dorsey-Outlaw was Texas Children’s Cancer Center’s Making a Mark artist for 2006 and 2010 and adorned the hospital’s mobile, end-of-treatment bells. She amplifies her creative voice through mixed media public mosaics. With a broad range of collectors, her assemblages “celebrate and challenge ancestral motifs and motives.” Many exhibitions include A Hair Museum, Round 4 installation at Project Rowhouses, Call and Response and the pop up show, Cleo’s Simple Life at MFAH; Many SPARK Parks including Whidby, Walnut Bend, Tinsley, Wharton, Mahanay, Osborne, Piney Point and Lockhart elementary schools. Her original civic art installations include Vigango’s Stoop, the columns on Almeda Road; Redemption Song at Peggy Park; Raiment at Emancipation Park, Know All Men by These Presents at Judson Robinson, Sr. Park, and Blood Relations, on the Heights True North Art Path.