Elizabeth Underwood

Restoration Residencies Artistic
Type of work
Multimedia Visual Art

Elizabeth Underwood is a visual artist, activist, writer and long-term resident of New Orleans. In pursuit of “the art of relationships” she focuses on site-specific installation and performance as well as formal work in photography, collage, and drawing. Her poetry, personal memoir and essays have been widely published. She spearheaded AORTA Projects in 2006 (formerly ARTinACTION), as a vehicle to advocate for and collaborate with struggling post-disaster communities. Through intimate engagement, AORTA aimed to activate the creative process’ capacity to connect people and initiate social change. AORTA has produced 37 sites and Underwood has taught workshops, published and lectured nation-wide on her experiences.

“With my Restoration Residency at A Studio in the Woods I have very literally been given a lifeline. Not only do I experience this gift as a great validation of my creative work and subsequent risky choices but as literal fuel for ARTinACTION. On every level, this residency provides the Katrina survivor with the specific tools we need for healing – peace, respect, physical and spiritual nourishment, financial support, a safe place to reflect on one’s wounds, and the chance to experience nature as a wise teacher. By not clearing away the destruction to the landscape wrought by Katrina, A Studio in the Woods offers the visitor a very clear picture of the natural order of things. The inherent message is how to not just survive but thrive while enduring deep wounds. I am being honest when I state that my time here is saving my life – I am inspired, comforted, and renewed beyond expectation.” – Elizabeth Underwood