By Laura Hayes, Contributor
The lights of downtown Greenville, a fast moving cyclist along the lush Swamp Rabbit Trail, the rushing waters of the Reedy River — sometimes we are so caught up in everyday life that we forget to notice everything that gives Greenville its wholesome welcoming image. The Undergraduate Evening Studies (UES) Digital Photography class, taught by adjunct instructor Bryan Hiott, sought to revitalize the way we see Greenville through the exhibit “Personal Narratives of Home: Finding Meaning in Greenville.”
The exhibit, located in the Herring Center for Continuing Education’s Baiden Gallery, debuted Fri., Oct. 23 as part of the start of Furman’s Homecoming Weekend. The Baiden Gallery was decorated with the works of art of UES students, faculty and alumni that captured the simplistic beauty and character of Greenville and its inhabitants. The works of art from the 12 exhibiting students ranged from photos depicting Greenville’s natural side, such as photo of a whirlwind of trees titled “Trees around me,” to a photo of the raging Reedy River and photos of Tent City’s residents.
“We wanted to have a rotating space to feature Furman’s and Greenville’s community” explained Beth Crews, Director of UES. “When we did a similar showcase last year, we had a good response to it and decided to continue organizing the exhibit.”
Crews also emphasized the importance of the event’s coordination with homecoming weekend at Furman.
“Debuting the exhibit over the homecoming weekend allows us to re-engage the Undergraduate Evening Students in homecoming,” Crews said.
Students employed a variety of photography techniques. Proudly standing in front his work with a camera in hand, student Joe Hiltabidel talks about his photos, “Miniature Greenville” and “Swamp Rabbit.”
“I wanted to try tilt-shift and motion blur,” Hiltabidel said. “I work with computers in IT and I was interested in using photography and technology to create a form of art.”
“Miniature Greenville” was taken from a balcony in downtown Greenville and uses the technique tilt-shift to narrow the focus of the picture to the street and cars passing by the building while giving it a miniature feel. His photo “Swamp Rabbit” shows a cyclist on the trail and uses motion blur to emphasize the speed and endurance of the cyclist.
Through the “Personal Narratives of Home: Finding Meaning in Greenville” exhibit, students, alumni, faculty, friends and family members were able to not only show support for the new artists, but also helping to bring attention to the sense of community fostered by Greenville’s many natural and man-made attributes. The exhibition will be open to the public through Dec. 7 in the Herring Center’s Baiden Gallery.