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Inspiration from Abroad


(Sept. 11, 2013) For Armstrong senior and B.F.A. candidate Olivia Stusak, the opportunity to participate in a summer study abroad trip to Argentina was, quite literally, life changing.

“Meeting and working with the native artisans is an experience I will never forget,” she said. “These people have nothing, but yet they will give you everything they have, invite you into their home and treat you like family.”

Stusak is one of several talented Armstrong students who has exhibited original art in “Un Tejido De Nuestras Culturas: Art and Community in Argentina,” a gallery exhibit featuring work by Armstrong students and faculty, Georgia College students and faculty, and Argentinean host artists. The exhibit opens is on view at the Armstrong Fine Arts Gallery weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through September 26.

Designed to celebrate the global language of visual art, the Department of Art, Music & Theatre organized “Un Tejido De Nuestras Culturas: Art and Community in Argentina” as a tribute to the university’s sixth collaborative summer study abroad experience in Argentina.

In the summer of 2013, Armstrong students had the opportunity to travel to 12 different locations around the world. Students studied art in Argentina, politics in the Czech Republic, chemistry in Germany, and health care in Italy. Study abroad offers the opportunity to learn about other cultures and to connect with global culture.

“Un Tejido De Nuestras Culturas: Art and Community in Argentina” is the fourth exhibit based on Armstrong’s Art in Argentina study abroad program. Through the exhibit, students are able to bring their knowledge and experiences to the Armstrong campus and to the broader Savannah community.

“The exhibit chronicles a journey of discovery by a group of students as they experienced the beauty and generosity of the communities of Northwest Argentina,” explained art professor Rachel Green. “This cultural exchange is based on mutual respect as students visit indigenous artisan communities sharing their talents while learning from traditional artisans.”

After participating in the program in June 2013, Armstrong students had the opportunity to develop their artwork throughout the summer, expressing their own unique perspectives. The result is an exhibit rich in variety, including photography, paintings, sculpture, and mixed media work.

Professor Green, who partnered with Georgia College art professor Valerie Aranda to organize the study abroad program in Argentina, enjoys being part of a collaborative creative relationship that allows students “to build communities and use the visual arts as a pathway for exchanging ideas and developing understanding.”

“Un Tejido De Nuestras Culturas: Art and Community in Argentina” also reflects Armstrong’s ongoing commitment to cultivating global experiences through study abroad.

“Study abroad programs offer so much more than just learning about the academic subjects students are studying while in the other country,” said Jim Anderson, Armstrong’s Director of International Education. “One of the primary goals of study abroad programs is for students and faculty to become more aware of the world and to understand that various cultures can differ greatly from how we do things here.”

RELATED EVENTS:
Friday, September 20 at 5:30 p.m.
Gallery Reception
Featuring artists discussing the inspiration for their work and their experiences during a summer study abroad program in Argentina. Free and open to the public.

Monday, September 23 at noon
Artist Talk
A discussion of the Argentinean indigenous community of General Enrique Mosconi, located near Salta, Argentina. A gallery reception will follow the talk. Presented as part of Armstrong’s Latino Heritage Week celebration, in conjunction with Hispanic Outreach and Leadership at Armstrong (HOLA) and the Department of Art, Music & Theatre. Free and open to the public.