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CAP UCLA & Constance Hockaday
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Artists-In-Presidents: Fireside Chats for 2020


July 1, 2020 - November 1, 2020

Artists-In-Presidents: Fireside Chats for 2020 is an art project inspired by Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Depression-era Fireside Chats. Artists, writers, performers and musicians from a wide range of cultural realities have been invited to assume an authority over our collective future, to define what we could become together as a nation. Each artist will create, write and record a “State of the Union Redress” that describes their vision and will have the option to be paired with retired presidential speech writers.

Beginning in July 2020 up to the 2020 election in November, each 2-7 minute Fireside Chat will be shared on the CAP UCLA website and via social media. Pending the pandemic, the vision is for the project to evolve by bringing people together for live readings at Royce Hall and later aboard FDR’s retired presidential yacht in the San Francisco Bay.

The project seeks to recast the office of the president as a multivocal entourage. The voices of legendary musicians, writers, performers and emerging artists will describe where we, as an American public, can put our faith moving forward. Conjuring FDR is not an attempt to look to the past and follow an example set by his presidency, but rather a summoning of history to activate today’s own future leaders.