• CLK High School Artwork on Display at Keweenaw National Historical Park

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    September 20, 2019
    Release date:    Immediately
    Contact(s):       Wyndeth Davis, Park Superintendent
    Phone:             906-483-3020
    Date:                September 20, 2019
    Release code:    9.A.1 (6410)
    CLK High School Artwork on Display at Keweenaw National Historical Park
    Learning about local history through art is a theme that CLK High School art teacher Susan Rosemurgy explores with her class each fall. This year, students were asked to create a painting that would focus on an issue, topic, or concern and explore symbolism and social realism in their compositions. This creative challenge fits perfectly with the National Endowment for the Humanities traveling exhibit, Jacob Riis: How the Other Half Lives, which is on display at the National Park Service Visitor Center. The art project, reinforces student understanding of how social change happens and how visual art often plays a significant role.
    Students studied the work of Ben Shahn, specifically his painting titled, Miner’s Wives, and how Shahn used simple lines and vivid color to convey the tragic story of a mining accident that could have been avoided. His work caught the public’s attention with its visual immediacy and helped to bring about change in mine safety and helped begin the Social Realism movement in Art.
    In understanding more about Shahn’s work, local high school students synthesized his work with Riis’ photos after visiting the Jacob Riis traveling exhibition. The students then created their own visual stories which are layered with meaning, and reflect their thoughts, ideas, and feelings about a variety of issues and topics. Their work invites viewers to think about events happening today and in history that have made a difference in their own lives.
    Student artwork will be on exhibit through the end of October at the Calumet Visitor Center, with new student artwork going on display every two weeks. The CLK High School Art Exhibit opens on Saturday, September 21, 2019.
    While visiting the CLK High School artwork, don’t forget to visit the Jacob Riis:  How the Other Half Lives exhibition on the third floor. This limited time exhibit is generating a lot of community interest with repeat visits and area schools and university classes using the exhibition as a focus for classroom discussions, curriculum, and projects. Stop by and have a look before the exhibit ends on October 19, 2019. Currently, this is the only Michigan stop for this nationally touring exhibition.
    For more information about Keweenaw National Historical Park and other park events and programs, contact park headquarters at 906-337-3168, or check the park webpage at www.nps.gov/kewe.