New Core program exhibit portrays student expressions of identity and self

A unique student exhibit is coming to the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art — one that blends the academic and the artistic.

The Core Self” is a new, multimedia experience that celebrates the diverse voices and identities of Oglethorpe students. Each piece explores themes of the Core curriculum, the uniquely-Oglethorpe academic program that challenges students to consider our society, its history and their place in all of it.

“‘The Core Self’ provides students opportunities to share their ‘selves’ in expressive formats that they are not always able to share with the OU community,” say the Core program’s directors. “In so doing, they induce self-reflection and interaction about what is important to who we are, in a format that might inspire fresh forms of expressiveness from members of the community.”

A mixed-media student artwork

Anonymous OU Student, “Between you and me, this my second time here (Campbellton Time Traveler Year 2078),” Mixed media, Submission. Selected as lead image for The Core Self Exhibition, Oglethorpe University, Spring 2024.

Featuring 12 physical works and a host of digital works, “The Core Self” is a multi-dimensional expression of identity. Awards will be given to participating students in the categories of “Best of Show,” “Audience Choice,” and “Outstanding Core Exemplar.”

“Part of the goal of the Core program is to help students translate inquiry on topics of self, community, and history to enhance their lives and communities at and beyond OU,” says Core co-director Dr. Judith Levy. “This cross-campus collaboration allows students to translate their Core experience to their personal lives, showcase their diverse artistic skills, and highlight that we can experience Core topics in multimodal ways.”

The Core curriculum at Oglethorpe University stands out within the realm of liberal arts education, offering a distinctive four-year sequence of fundamental courses that foster dialogue among students on themes such as identity, community, history, myth, memory, global citizenship and engagement. The program enriches students’ capacity for introspection, analytical reasoning, and proficient communication.

“The Core Self” debuts at the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art on March 14. The exhibit will be on view in tandem with three other exhibitions: “Contrapunto: Works by a Latin American Artist Collective,” “OUMA Collects 2024: Highlights from the Collection” and another student-focused exhibit, “Oglethorpe’s Own,” featuring Communication Studies and Studio Art major Ilissa McGowin ’25.

All student work in “The Core Self” will be kept anonymous until the jury process is done. Select participants will have their work displayed in the university’s Intercultural Center at the exhibit’s August 11 conclusion.

Work above: Anonymous OU Student, Self Portrait, “Life Cycle of the Salmon.” 

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