Performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña gets ‘Unplugged’ tonight

Gómez-Peña Unplugged

Theater B, Theater Building — Mon., Mar. 28 at 7:30 p.m.

Guillermo Gómez-Peña -- photo courtesy of the artist
Guillermo Gómez-Peña — photo courtesy of the artist

Guillermo Gómez-Peña, aka “El Mad Mex,” comes to Iowa City tonight with a spoken word performance, ‘Unplugged,’ at Theater B in the University of Iowa Theater Building at 7:30 p.m.

In the performance, “El Border Brujo” (another alias) will present “spoken word poetry, activist theory, radical storytelling and language experimentation” that addresses the art world, academia, new technologies, war and violence in the U.S., organized crime in Mexico and gender and race politics.

This week he is visiting Iowa City as one of the Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professors. With collaborator Felicia Rice, he will present on their book project, Doc/Undoc: Documentado/Undocumented Ars Shamanica Performatica, on Wednesday at the UI Main Library in the Special Collections Reading Room at 5 p.m.

In 1991, Gómez-Peña became the first Chicano to receive a MacArthur “Genius Grant.” In 1994, he founded the multidisciplinary arts organization, La Pocha Nostra, and currently serves as its artistic director.

Gómez-Peña will also present on Thursday night at Art Building West, Room 240 at 7:30 p.m.

This week’s visit by Rice and Gómez-Peña is sponsored by the English and Theater Departments and co-sponsored by the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies and the UI Center for the Book.

Beam visiting professorships are offered each year at the University of Iowa to outstanding scholars from around the world.