“They learn first hand how other cultures use materials they harvest from the environment as media for their creations.”
Longitudes and Latitudes: Stories from Abroad
Study abroad opens up many opportunities for students. At Armstrong, some students also take what they learned during trips abroad and transformed those discoveries into art, lending to a fall exhibit in the Fine Arts Gallery now three years in the running.
The most recent exhibit in fall 2010 showcased work by five students and faculty members Rachel Green and Angela Ryczkowski-Horne in the Department of Art, Music & Theatre. The exhibit included painting, digital photography, black and white photography, ceramics, jewelry and crafts—a handmade book using mixed media.
Jessica Anderson, a senior majoring in fine arts, created ceramic vases, sterling silver jewelry, sconces made of cactus and wood, and wall pieces utilizing hand-dyed llama wool for the most recent exhibit. Anderson, who works in various media, drew inspiration from the Inca and Calchaqui cultures in northern Argentina.
According to Rachel Green, professor of art, students acquire different perspectives during travel abroad that later find their way into their art.
“They learn first hand how other cultures use materials they harvest from the environment as media for their creations,” she said.
Students also learn that different cultures interpret images and art differently, according to Green. Many students also make discoveries about themselves, even when returning to places that they know.
Marina Marinova took a personal trip to her home country of Bulgaria in the summer of 2010. The result from the trip was a collection of digital photography—images of small, abandoned houses outside Sofia, the capital.
“When you go home after being away for a long time, you notice everything from a different perspective. You see things being more beautiful.”
Her collection of color photographs captures her sentiment—images of the exteriors of dilapidated small houses that look somehow attractive.
The exhibit also included artwork by artisans from the Chané, Wichi and other indigenous communities in Argentina. The students and faculty traveling discover that artisans in remote parts of the world things to teach all of us.
“A type of cactus in Argentina turns to wood that is utilized by the local artisans,” said Green.
Additional students who contributed to the fall exhibit included, Stephanie Van Geel, Laurie Brooks Hernandez and Michaele Maddox.
View some of the art from the fall 2010 exhibit in the slideshow below.