Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
Angelique Calladonato, Staff Writer
le petite morte,” a participatory project to be installed at Cedar Crest College in
the Center for Visual research (Lachaise Gallery). There will be an artist talk and reception hosted in the Harmon Hall of Peace on April 2, 2013 from 5:00 p.m. -7:00 pm. where light refreshments will be served. There visitors will have an opportunity to not only view the work, but also participate in an artist talk where guests are invited to ask Parsons questions about her most recent work.
Cedar Crest College’s Art Department continues to not only enrich the lives of students and staff of the college community, but also challenge the viewer. This can be seen in the department’s most recent choice of artist to be displayed in the Center for Visual Research. Artist Tara Parsons challenges the viewer with her representative installations that address death in an almost unorthodox manner. Parsons has been known to represent those that have died in public situations, such as those that have died from terrorist acts, with the names of the deceased applied to different shapes or types of balloons or photographs from specific tragedies.
In her most current work being displayed at Cedar Crest, Parsons will be installing
a participatory project that will chronicle “the shooting deaths in the United States since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Conn. on Dec. 14, 2012,” as described on the postcard sent to the Allentown art community as well as posted throughout the college campus.
Twenty eight people were killed the day of the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting, including twenty students between 6 and 7 years old, six adults killed at the school and the shooter Adam Lanza and his mother. The artist has been compiling a list of individuals that have died from guns since this infamous shooting, and will have the most up-to-date list of names of those that have died. The names of all of these people will be featured in the installation.
Since the shooting, gun control has been at the forefront of conversation among politicians. Lanza was armed with three different guns, a semi-automatic AR-15 assult rifle made by Bushmaster and pistols made by Glock and Sig Sauer, when he entered the elementary school. Lanza’s shooting is considered the second deadliest school shooting in American history after the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007.
Since the shooting, Cedar Crest students have been receptive to remembering the victims.
“I love the concept. And it’s a truly powerful piece especially while we blew up the balloons and seeing the names and dates inside it. [It] hits you how short life is and to cherish every bit of your own. The project originated after the Sandy Hook, which is in itself such a sad story about all the little lives lost,” said Hannah Berstein, senior art therapy major who helped blow up balloons for the gallery.
“I think it’s an amazing idea. It’s made in response for the shootings of children. The artist talk should be a very powerful performance,” said Caitlyn Nelson, senior art major.
The guests of the artist talk will have the rare opportunity to touch the work in a very unique way, by popping the balloons that Parsons will have installed. This will create an almost gunshot sound that will create an audible record of the shootings. This artist talk and reception are an experience at Cedar Crest College is one that should be missed.
Quotes retrieved by Bryanne Hornung.