Photo by: Library of Congress Photo Library
By: Cathryn Cavazos
During the week of Homecoming, the students of Sterling are rushing around campus planning floats, learning cheers, brainstorming ideas, and getting ready for Saturday. However, there’s an event on campus that Assistant Professor of Art and Design, Daniel Swartz, hopes people will learn from and enjoy.
“Dust to Dust: A photographic retrospective of the Dust Bowl” is set to open on Thursday, Oct. 5, with the opening reception from 5-7 p.m. It features photographs and information surrounding the Dust Bowl of the 1930’s. This specific theme was picked because of “the relevance of the imagery to the local area and the availability of resources,” according to Swartz. The Library of Congress from the Farm Security Administration and the Office of War Information were strong contributors to the project.
According to the Sterling College website, there were several other hands involved in the project as well, “including Sterling College professors Sia Joung, Daniel Julich, Jonathan Conard, Tom Bronleewe, and students Mayda Stallbaumer and Olivia Dunning. Amy Gard, librarian at Sterling Free Public Library, also provided resources.”
“Storytelling is the key to understanding and engaging in history, and photography can be one of the strongest forms of that craft. We are fortunate to have access to such a vast library of images produced,” Swartz said.
Swartz hopes that people take away an appreciation for “the struggle of those came before us…[and] our current era of relative prosperity and plenty.” He also thinks that it’s a relevant topic for Sterling College, as “the topic/theme deals directly with a history that Sterling and the local area went through.”
“Exhibits like this provide a good venue to bring multiple disciplines together, namely art and history/government, which is good for cultivating liberal-arts diverse thinking/relationships and providing opportunities for students and community to have a free local cultural event,” Swartz said.
The exhibition will run through Nov. 3 with weekday viewing hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Special Homecoming viewing hours will be 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 6 and Saturday, Oct. 7. Swartz hopes that people will come grab free cookies and punch during the reception on Thursday evening, or come by any other time and enjoy the exhibit.