Black artists on display at the MakerSpace

Lindsay Kaul, Contributing Writer

Various organizations have been working hard to promote diversity and inclusivity on the University’s campus with a series of Black History Month events. One such event was the Black History Month Artist Showcase from Feb. 19-21, hosted by the Seventh Street Studio & MakerSpace in collaboration with the Black Student Union.

The event showcased black artists such as Alma Woodsey Thomas, Lois Mailou Jones, Zelda Wynn Valdes, Kerry James Marshall, Gordon Parks, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Edmonia Lewis and Augusta Savage.

“Seventh Street Studio & MakerSpace wanted to host a special weekend of events in honor of Black History Month….Given the inability to program indoors or large-scale events, we wanted to provide students an opportunity to enjoy artwork in a safe and socially distanced environment,” Assistant Director of Campus Activities & Programs Sabrina Shankar said.

Allure Cooper ’23, a MakerSpace student employee and event planner, drew inspiration from her own research on Black artists and designers who have shaped the industry. “I had to do my own research to find the artists, and I picked them based on the stories that spoke to me. I also wanted a variety of art mediums so we could have sculptors, designers, photographers, etc.,” Cooper said.

The artist showcase allowed students to walk around tables to learn about the various artists and their corresponding biographies at their leisure. In addition to the tables featuring the artists’ pieces, students could also pick a page from a coloring book to draw on their own. Each page featured a unique design created by commissioned artists. “As for the coloring book, it’s part of a care package plan by the Bucknell Concerned Student Coalition. Different artists of color were commissioned to create line work to make up the coloring pages,” Cooper said.

“I loved seeing all of the amazing art and learning about black artists. It was a great COVID-19 safe event,” attendee Sam Endlich ’23 said.

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