Senior Art Majors Participate in Human Rights Exhibit at SUNY Orange

Jenna Rowen-Delson, Contributing Writer

On Sunday, January 27, Monroe-Woodbury senior art majors had artwork displayed at SUNY Orange in Middletown. This exhibit was a part of Orange County Human Rights Commission, An Artist’s Response to Human Rights. 

This included artwork from juniors and seniors in high schools all over Orange County. The pieces the students made were based on the 30 articles of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Created in 1948, the document was written in response to human behavior during World War II.

Students chose their own articles from the document and portrayed it through art. Some articles include humans’ rights to live and the right to vote. The project took the artists about three weeks to finish. 

Most students submitted visual artwork, but others created poems or literature.

“All the senior art majors were assigned a human rights project and we had to select one of the articles of our choice and try to portray that however we wanted and the art word was displayed at the exhibit. So we were assigned the topic and everyone’s work was presented there,” said senior, Maria Spagna. 

“My article was number 26 and it basically stated that everyone has the right to receive free education,” said Spagna.

“In college I plan on studying elementary education and I always felt that education is the most important thing that you could receive,” said Spagna. “I wanted to portray the growth of a child’s learning with the growth of a butterfly to symbolize that because it is important to me and teaching is what makes me me.”

Certificates to the seniors were awarded on December 8 and the art was also displayed later in December at SUNY Orange in Newburgh. The event was held at the Orange Hall Gallery in the SUNY Orange Middletown Campus.

Art was created to reflect specific articles of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and attached to each piece was a paper explaining the art’s relation to its article. Photo by Nolan Semprivivo