FJKluth Art Gallery Showcases Its ‘Pride in Kent’
The gallery was asked by Main Street Kent to create an exhibition in celebration of LGBTQ+ pride. John Aylward, gallery manager, put out a call out for LGBTQ+ themed art or art created by LBGTQ+ artists and allies.
“There is a higher focus on the Kent State community, but we did get some submissions from people throughout the greater Northeast Ohio area,” Aylward said. “Which was a nice approach just to see how much of a variety, in terms of artists.”
Artists who submitted their work ranged from high school and college-age students to artists who are well into adulthood.
The art displayed themes of love, sexuality and equality through an array of mediums, including paint, resin and Lego bricks.
The Lego brick pieces, “Equality: Work in Progress” and “Create” were submitted by wife and husband duo, Abbie and E.J. Bocan.
“I think the utilization of Legos really stood out because it captures people's attention in different age ranges,” said Aylward. “Many of us played with Legos as kids but then they would see more of the context behind them.” Pointing to the Lego brick artwork, he continued, "'Create,' with the colors obviously representing the rainbow, the universal symbol for the LGBTQ+ community.”
Aylward said the exhibit is meant to provide a place for the artists to have their work seen and appreciated. A main focus was to amplify their voices and strengthen the presence of the LGBTQ+ community in Kent.
“The artists are from groups that generally do not have the ability to have a voice but now have much more of an ability to speak out,” said Aylward.
The exhibition will be on display until Oct. 22.
The Kent State LGBTQ+ Center will receive 30% of the profits from sales of the art work. The center supports an inclusive environment on all Kent campuses, advocates for all individuals and community groups based on sexual and gender identity, and promotes physical, mental and academic wellness.
To learn more about the exhibit, visit fjkluthartgallery.com.
To find out more about the Kent State LGBTQ+ Center, visit www.kent.edu/lgbtq.