Identifying Artist Representation in a Public Art Collection

Recorded On: 03/02/2021


About this Webinar

One reason public art matters is that it can create a sense of belonging by being reflective of all those who make up a community. Who creates the artworks can be one way to ensure a civic collection is reflective of the community in which it lives. Identifying the demographic makeup of the artists in the collection is the first step to understanding how reflective a public art collection is of the community it serves.
In 2020, the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs (MOCA) created a demographic review of Houston's 677-piece public art collection in a concerted effort to work toward and promote the City’s vision and goals stated in its Arts and Cultural Plan —to “foster an environment in which art and culture flourish for the sharing and benefit of all residents and visitors.” As Houston is the single most ethnically diverse major metropolitan area in the country, MOCA assessed the Civic Art collection to determine how closely Houston’s art collection represents the diverse populace of the city. The review presented statistics on the genders, races, and ethnicities represented by the 677 artworks in the Civic Art Collection, with a particular focus on female artists of color. Additionally, the review estimated the City’s financial investment in acquisition costs for new artworks over the lifetime of its collecting activity. This webinar will explore the in’s and out’s of how Houston reviewed their collection and dive into some of their lessons learned during this program.

During this webinar, participants will:

  • Learn about the importance of a demographic review of a public art collection and how it can help address a city’s DEI obligations
  • Hear from experienced arts administrators on how they developed the review process and what it means for their public art program 
  • Learn the basics of implementing a demographic review of a public art collection

Monique Mogilka

Community Liaison

Houston Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs

My name is Monique Mogilka, and I'm from Edmond, Oklahoma. I have a BA in sociology and a BA/MA in art history. I am particularly interested in the intersections between sociology and art, and my thesis focused on Minimalism and the emergence of artist foundations. I have experience in public service as well as writing about and supporting visual art. I have interned at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art in Norman, OK and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. In 2019, I was a statistical research specialist at the OK State Bureau of Investigation, where I analyzed crime report data. In my position at the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs in Houston, I use my experience with public service, curating, and data analysis to serve the needs of our creative community and civic art collection.

Theresa Escobedo

Civic Art Program Manager

Houston Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs

Theresa Escobedo is an arts administrator, curator, and multi-disciplinary artist working in Houston, Texas. She manages Civic Art Program for the City of Houston through the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs and is a current Artist in Residence at the Zocalo Artist Residency. 

In her previous work, she has curated exhibitions and coordinated and executed public programs and projects designed to create community experiences and to give artists the opportunity to impact neighborhoods through creative place-making and social inquiry. Theresa studied at the University of Houston and received a Bachelor of Architecture and a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design with focus on urban planning and generative design processes. 

Instagram: @houstonmoca

Twitter: @houston_moca

Website: ;


Identifying Artist Representation in a Public Art Collection
Live event: 03/02/2021 at 3:00 PM (EST) You must register to access.
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