Art exhibit commemorates desegregation anniversary

Art+exhibit+commemorates+desegregation+anniversary

Margaret Wilbourne

Through the Doors, a campuswide commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the desegregation of The University of Alabama, is being represented visually at the Paul R. Jones Gallery in Tuscaloosa.

The art exhibit, entitled “Migration/s,” was the brainchild of the University’s College of Arts and Sciences and the Black Faculty Association of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“The mission of the Jones Collection is to promote education through art and the theme of ‘migration,’ because it is so historically rich and broad in scope,” Lucy Curzon, the director of education and outreach for the Jones Collection of African American Art, said. “[This art exhibit] seemed an optimal way to span the many different interests of departments and communities across the college.”

The interests “Migration/s” hopes to pique are essential to grasping the past, living in the present and shaping the future, Jessica Dallow, the guest curator for the show and an art professor at UAB, said.

“[Migration] is central in understanding the historical and contemporary formation of identities, politics, ethnicity, race, culture – issues and institutions in which we all have a personal investment,” Dallow said. “And, certainly, it can help us think through present clashes and debates over immigration and community.”

The exhibit is home to 35 pieces of art ranging in medium from painting, print, photography and mixed media. The works were chosen specifically to both fit and emulate the migration theme.

The theme of the show itself, migration, was treated as having narrative aspects, as reflected by the layout of the exhibit.

“The exhibit is organized into four sections: the migration impulse; the migrant experience; political movements, protest, and practices of resistance; and the migrant artist,” Dallow said. “Overall, these sections together suggest a kind of migration narrative.”

The name of the show – which uses a slash to separate singular tales from plural ones – was also conceptualized with the intent of suggesting a story of migration.

“The title as such mirrors the collective narrative/individual stories structure of the exhibit,” Dallow said.

“Migration/s” will be featured at the Paul R. Jones Gallery through April 17. The gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Wednesday and Friday.

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