The 7th annual Morrison Lecture Series will be held November 2, 2022, at 6:00 p.m. in Reed Auditorium, located in the Trustee Science Center on the Drury University campus. It will feature artist and activist Lacy Hale. Admission is free and open to the public.
Lacy Hale is an artist whose work is actively grounded in her community. Her work celebrates the rich culture of her Appalachian heritage while defying the negative stereotypes that are often imposed upon that region. Hale was born in Whitesburg, Kentucky, and realized that she wanted to be an artist at a very young age. At 18, she was accepted at the Pratt Institute of Art in Brooklyn, New York, and the people of her hometown rallied together to raise enough money to help her pay tuition for her first year. At 20, she returned to southeastern Kentucky to pursue her career as a professional artist.
In 2017, she learned that a neo-Nazi group was planning a recruiting rally in nearby Pikeville, Kentucky. In response, Hale created the “No Hate in My Holler” design, and that slogan, with its accompanying artwork, was defiantly placed on a billboard in Pikesville. What began as a local “art-as-response” piece against hatred gained currency not just in the area, but in greater Appalachia and beyond.
Hale has exhibited widely throughout Kentucky and New York City, and was included in a traveling Smithsonian exhibit in 2012. In 2018 Hale received the Eastern Kentucky Artist Impact Award. She was a 2017 Special Grant recipient from Great Meadows Foundation, a 2018 nominee for the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painting Award, a 2016 Tanne Foundation Award recipient, a 2015 Nominee for the Joan Mitchell Foundation Emerging Artist Award, and a 2015 and 2020 recipient of the Kentucky Foundation for Women’s Artist Enrichment Grant. She was awarded Appalachian Artist of the Year in 2022 and 2023. Her murals can be found all over the state of Kentucky and in Virginia.
Hale is co-founder of EpiCentre Arts, a 2016 Rauschenberg Foundation Seed Grant recipient, based in Whitesburg, Kentucky. She also served for two years on the Kentucky Arts Council.