Conflict Engagement and Teaching

“The mixture of Dorit’s experience as a mediator and artist brought the perfect tempo and grace to our conversation on developing curricula and programs for students at UC. I am delighted with how well things went, and that we were able to involve so many people from around the University.”
Kim Paice, Ph.D. Graduate Art History, University of Cincinnati/College of DAAP

“I am now so mindful of bias. Of course it’s particularly easy to spot in everybody else! The perspective you taught allows me to appreciate the richness of different points of view.”
Cindy Brokaw, UCSB Certificate program in Mediation and Negotiation

“Dorit Cypis has forged a path that consistently veers away from the idea of art-making based in a commodity culture. Her work has examined how individuals are seen within society and how we act as individuals within a community, especially relevant as so many of our students are grappling with the question of how to make art while responding to what is happening so quickly around us. Dorit makes a powerful argument for the importance of the artist within the body politic.”
Tom Knechtel, Chair, Fine Art, Art Center College of Art and Design

“As a communications consultant, Dorit has been a tremendous resource in helping us refine the program’s mission, smoothly execute its goals, and improve the quality and results of our students’ experiences. As both an experienced mediator and accomplished artist, Dorit brings a holistic approach to our program that helps students see the connections between their academic studies, their professional careers, and their social and interpersonal experiences.”
Lou Pepe, Film Producer, Director, Temple University Media Studies – Los Angeles



“Through her program Kulture Klub Collaborative, Dorit became a mentor to countless Minneapolis youth-at-risk, exposing them to visual art, theater, film, and performance, which transformed and in some cases even saved their lives. I have never met another artist who is such an astute mentor and so actively engaged with community.”
Karen Moss, Art Historian, Curator, Professor, University of Southern California

“What I find most exciting about Dorit’s practice, separating her from most other artists, is her outward investigation of the self on an individual, group and community level, a strategy that informs her art, mediation practice and community building projects. Each of these practices uniquely interweave, reflect and inform each other. Her artwork extends beyond the traditional site of the gallery and moves to engage audiences across multiple platforms.”
Lorraine Molina, Director, LM Projects

“Dorit’s work is grounded in collaboration and working towards justice. There is a sense throughout her work of wanting to reflect on and examine specific incidents where histories are written. She looks at how visual documentation is canonized through subtle or not so subtle changes and omissions. This work is aesthetically rich and conceptually even richer. Through art, Dorit has managed to create a path toward justice and democracy.”
Amitis Motevalli, Artist and Director of William Grant Still Arts Center

“Ms. Cypis’s significance as an influential art-maker and arts advocate in Los Angeles since the mid-1970s cannot be understated. She has been an active and generous participant at the center of the most interesting developments in arts discourse and practice.”
Kristina Newhouse, University Art Museum California State University, Long Beach

While [her] work engages with cultural difference, it nonetheless short-circuits the reassuring ecumenism of multiculturalism by insisting on the difficulty of mutual recognition. In a truly astute allegory of contemporary media (and politics), Cypis demonstrates that the population of images may be an index of civic blockage rather than of social connection. Sightlines dramatizes the incapacitation of public identification that results from the failure of mutual recognition. Without acknowledging one another, how can we possibly build communities?”
David Joselit, Public Image Ltd., Artforum, September 2006



“Dorit approaches mediation as a Kaprow-esque experience- or perhaps as a Derridian scholar. Our sessions explored not only the issues tangling our groups but the somatic and linguistic messes that held us back. This somatic understanding of conflict is present in her visual art, in the engagements and guidance she gives to her peers, and present in her social practices. She comes forward not as someone set to ‘make change happen’ but as someone ready to deeply explore the stasis that ties us to hurting moments.”
Journal of Art and Protest, Marc Herbst, Robby Herbst, Christina Ulke

“Thank you for mediating and navigating this process so skillfully and compassionately. It is important to acknowledge that we each arrived at a new plateau of understanding and maturity of being artists. I am sure this will be applied in future collaborations.”
Marcus Maria Jung

“I will always be grateful to you for your clear-sighted, even-handed assistance at a crucial juncture in my life.”
Jenna Didier, Materials and Applications, Los Angeles

“Dorit brings wit, psychological insight and an artist’s imagination in service of enlarging the discussion and creating trust for participants to bridge their differences.”
Louise Steinman, Cultural Programs Director, Library Foundation of Los Angeles

“Dorit Cypis is a creative and skillful mediator. She has the unique ability to deftly marry disparate strains of thought and to knit together broken threads in the way of an artist, a poet, or a philosopher. Her intellect inspires mediators to forge truly unique solutions to intractable conflict.
Jan Frankel Schau, Esq. Mediator, ADR Services

“Dorit Cypis reveals subtly and brilliantly that what divides us also unites us. As an artist as well as a natural teacher, she is able to present objectives better than perhaps 95% of the teachers I have met and observed. She is insightful, consistently thinking outside the assumptions and language people commonly use in conflict. Talk to her; you will not be disappointed.”
Kenneth Cloke, Center for Dispute Resolution; Founder/Mediators Beyond Borders

“You don’t learn this in conventional mediation trainings: the ability to use all your senses to learn all you can about the people and the situation with whom you are working.”
Jeff Kichaven, JAMS, Southern California Mediation Association/President 2005

“Dorit Cypis brings an artist’s sensibility to conflict resolution — the storyteller’s understanding that conflict is an opportunity for character development, a photographer’s recognition that resolution may require a new lens.”
Dr. Roberta Morris, Mediation and Peace Education

“Dorit’s unbiased guidance provided a safe place to find our own way to genuine conversation and honest resolution. Her uniqueness as mediator is her understanding of what it means to be an artist, a collaborator, and a community member, offering a realistic and empathetic recognition of the subtle differences amongst these roles.”
Annie Shaw, Artist, Independent Curator

“Dorit uses deep insight and understanding to see connections and opportunities in challenging situations and conversations, making use of humor in ways that allow all parties to reframe their stories towards healing and happiness.”
Reverend Myo-O, Marilyn Habermas-Scher, Chaplin