On the first floor of the FIU Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum was an exhibit dedicated to the celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. This is the third year that the exhibit has been held at the Frost by more than a dozen Art + Art History students, under the direction of Visiting Faculty Gretchen Scharnagl. The exhibit started the week of Martin Luther King, Jr. day, and was on display until the end of January.
The MLK exhibit featured work by students that involve a wide range of media, including collage, video, print, paint, newspaper, and even skittles and tea stains. Through their individual works, students communicated and reacted to the overarching theme of hardship of the Civil Rights Movement that King so influenced. “It is important to have this art exhibit in celebration of Martin Luther King because it is not a portrait of a single man,” said Scharnagl during the exhibition’s run. “It is a translation of those personal freedoms and various struggles and consequential atrocities that surround his pursuit of basic civil rights for all people.” Scharnagl believes that letting students highlight such an important subject matter also benefits them as exhibiting artists in training. “The students are given immense freedom but also have the burden of public display. The research, reflection and resulting growth in the student-artists themselves [produce] the most important first change created by such an exhibit.”
The Art + Art History Department students that participated in the Martin Luther King, Jr. exhibit at the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum are:
Martin Kalu Ukpai
The images in this article are provided courtesy of FIU Multicultural Programs and Services.