Gallery showcases public figures and national struggles

The University Art Gallery (UAG) hosted an exhibit featuring illustrations by Lance Jackson and sculptures by Rob Neilson.

Nielson and Jackson both spoke about their work on Thursday, Sept. 5, with a reception at 3 p.m. in the UAG afterward.

Nielson used milk paint and compressed board to create sculptures in the likeness of people.

He chose to work with materials like compressed board because they were easily accessible while he was living in Detroit.

He then created abstract sculptures that leave interpretation up to the viewer.

Jackson’s illustrations in digitalized graphite show people who were the subject of tweets by President Donald Trump.

These illustrations were then placed beside excerpts of tweets containing negative messages about them.

“I’m just trying to document what 2016 to 2018 was,” Jackson said.

To Jackson, this time period brought a lot of name-calling from the President to many people, including some individuals featured in his exhibit.

“Trump was sort of dissing all these people. I wanted to document or articulate the people’s response, like the Parkland shootings … and more of the cultural responses,” he said.

His illustrations depicted people involved in the Black Lives Matter movement protesting and Puerto Ricans without water, among other events that occurred in the last few years.

Mike Mosher, a professor of art and multimedia, extended the invitation to Jackson and Neilson to showcase their work at SVSU because of his longstanding friendship with Jackson.

“I became aware of Lance Jackson’s work in the mid ‘80s,” Mosher said. “He worked for many years in newspapers, so I was a fan of his work in the San Francisco Examiner at the time.”

Mosher met Jackson when he visited the on campus museum.

“When he was in Michigan … he visited the gallery here and I said he should definitely have a show here.”

Jackson hopes that people took away from the exhibit the necessity to vote and stay involved in both national and international ongoings.

“This series hopefully is going to be a reminder of some messages,” he said. “We get so encased in our lives that we sort of dismiss it.” Jackson said he may continue his political series depending on what happens in the future.

Melissa Vennix
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