Artistic reflections on studying abroad
Written by William Foreman
Studying abroad can be a life-changing experience. It can also be a huge source of creative inspiration. This is obvious in an exhibit this week at the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design. The show, which runs through Nov. 15, celebrates International Education Week. More than 50 students submitted pieces influenced or inspired by an international or intercultural experience during the past academic year.
For more information: http://art-design.umich.edu/exhibitions/
Below are samples from the video submissions to the exhibition. More work is here.
“An animation I did while studying abroad in Italy. I collected interviews from other Americans who were studying in Italy, Australia and France and created caricatures of my interviewees in order to present a satirical view of the way Americans see themselves in the context of another culture. The photographs highlight the ‘tourist’ aspect of the characters and provide a setting for the interviews.”
“This animation was created while I was studying in Paris. I was inspired by the Impressionist paintings at the Musée d’Orsay and wanted to create a moving painting. I wanted to see the people and settings of these paintings together in the same context of a train ride. Just like Impressionism, early film history has origins in Paris. I was also looking at Georges Melies and the Lumiere Brothers, the latter created one of the first films “L’Arrivée d’un train en gare de La Ciotat,” which also focused on the subject of a train.”
“I recently went to Iceland for a month. During the first two weeks of my journey, I volunteered on an organic farm in the East of Iceland. In addition to getting experience working on an organic farm, I wanted to spend some time with the native Icelanders before exploring the rest of the island. After work, I would walk around the valley with my camera in shoot video in midnight sun.
After my time on the farm, I flew back to the capital, picked up my car rental and started my tour of the island. From talking with people on the farm, I had
collected a list of places I wanted to visit. I ended up taking adventurous detours that would lead me to a dead whale and half sunken ship in black sand beaches. This piece is a glimpse into my journey that I will always regard as vague dream. I say this due to the transcendent feelings I experienced while camping alone in such a surreal space.”