Past Talks & More | Artist Talks

Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor in conversation

Ear Hustle and the Power of Listening

Moderated by Ohio State's Tiyi M. Morris and Mary Thomas


Join us for a behind-the-scenes look at how the prison-based podcast Ear Hustle came to be with cofounders Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor.

Woods and Poor will give a brief overview of the podcast from conception to launch and talk about the importance of asking questions and compassionate listening. The podcast, which was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in audio recording, is the first podcast created and produced in prison.

The conversation will be followed by a moderated Q&A with Ohio State faculty Tiyi Morris (associate professor of African American and African Studies) and Mary Thomas (associate professor in the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies).

Diversities in Practice
Diversities in Practice is a collaboration with Ohio State’s Wexner Center for the Arts, Department of Art, and Living Culture Initiative. This series includes talks and moderated discussions featuring a range of artists, thinkers, and practitioners engaged in compelling and critical work, centering projects ​that examine, shape, and push both material and ideological boundaries. This season we are happy to present Jonathan Berger, Torkwase Dyson, Cauleen Smith, Carolyn Lazard, Constantina Zavitsanos, and other artists who ​offer new insights and challenge our assumptions on issues of accessibility discrimination, race-based displacement, capitalism, labor, and systems of authority, and authenticity. These presentations will be available online throughout 2020–21. ​Also available online are talks from 2020 with Christine Sun Kim, Stephanie Syjuco, Tomashi Jackson, Earlonne Woods, and Nigel Poor. Check for updates and details.

On the left is Earlonne Woods in a red and blue jacket, on the right Nigel Poor in a blue shirt

Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor, photo: Eddie Herena 

On the left is Earlonne Woods in a white hat and blue shirt, on the right is Night Poor in a purple shirt wearing headphones

Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor, photo: Eddie Herena 

About the speakers

Nigel Poor chevron-down chevron-up

Nigel Poor is a visual artist whose work explores the various ways people make a mark and leave behind evidence of their existence. Her work has been shown at San Jose Museum of Art; Institute of Contemporary Art, San Jose; Friends of Photography; SF Camerawork; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art; Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego; and the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. Her work is in the collections of the SFMOMA, the M.H. deYoung Museum, San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, and Corcoran Gallery of Art. Poor received her BA from Bennington College and her MFA from Massachusetts College of Art and is a professor of photography at CSU Sacramento. In 2011, Poor got involved with San Quentin State Prison as a volunteer teacher for the Prison University Project. In 2013 she started working with a group of incarcerated men producing audio stories and in 2015 she cocreated the prison-based podcast Ear Hustle.

Earlonne Woods chevron-down chevron-up

Earlonne Woods is the cocreator, coproducer, and cohost of the Pulitzer-nominated podcast Ear Hustle. On his release from San Quentin State Prison, Woods was hired full time to continue the work started inside but also adding reentry stories. He is also involved in the Repeal California’s Three Strike Coalition, which aims to end California’s draconian three strikes law.

Tiyi M. Morris chevron-down chevron-up

Tiyi M. Morris is Associate Professor of African American and African Studies at The Ohio State University at Newark and the cofounder and codirector of the Ohio Prison Education Exchange Project. She is a civil rights historian who studies Black women’s social and political activism. Teaching in African American and African Studies, a discipline that emerged from social justice movements, her curricula underscore the need to create a more just and equitable society. Dr. Morris believes her role as an educator is to help dismantle systems of oppression by liberating the minds of students and empowering them to challenge the oppressions they face and/or perpetuate. She began teaching at Franklin Medical Center in 2019 to support the discipline’s mission to connect the community to the campus and actualize a philosophy of education as the practice of freedom. She views her teaching in correctional institutions as a way to connect theory and practice and to engage in the community work that makes our intellectual endeavors relevant to the larger Black community and society as a whole.

Mary Thomas chevron-down chevron-up

Mary Thomas is an associate professor in the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, and the cofounder and codirector of the Ohio Prison Education Exchange Project. She also serves as a director for the Global Arts and Humanities Discovery Theme project Livable Futures. Trained as a feminist geographer, her research examines how youth in the US come to understand themselves and their identities in and through institutional spaces like schools and detention facilities. Her published work shows that while youth must expend vast energy negotiating adultist institutional structures that demand behavioral conformity, they alone shoulder the repercussions when they fail to meet expectations that are grounded in stereotypes, norms, and demands for idealized bodies. In collaboration with Dr. Tiyi Morris, she is working to expand Ohio State’s commitment to prison-based education. She has spent time as a volunteer at juvenile detention facilities in central Ohio with incarcerated girls and as a higher education volunteer at the Marion Correctional Institution through the nonprofit organization, Healing Broken Circles.

Cosponsored by the Wexner Center for the Arts and Ohio State's Department of Art's Visiting Artist Program and Global Arts + Humanities Discovery Theme with support from Healing Broken Circles and the Ohio Prison Arts Connection.

American Electric Power Foundation
Greater Columbus Arts Council
L Brands Foundation
The Columbus Foundation
Ohio Arts Council
Institute of Museum and Library Services
Huntington Bank
Nationwide Foundation

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams
Kaufman Development
Cardinal Health Foundation


Past Talks & More

Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor in conversation