KSU students create ‘Unearthed’ art gallery in Union for Green Week

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As part of Kansas State’s Green Week, artists presented “Unearthed: Art of and From the Earth” in the William T. Kemper Art Gallery on the first floor of the Student Union.

Amber Berg, third-year student in regional and community planning, helped organize the event by collecting pieces from local artists and students to exhibit in the gallery.

“What I like about the pieces in the show is just that there’s a variety of subjects and a variety of materials,” Berg said. “But they are all sort of relate to the environment and different ecosystems.”

The exhibit is meant to present environmental action topics in non-traditional forms. Several of the art pieces take form in different types of media from paintings of oil spills to sculptures of animal rights issues, which highlight environmental activism.

Bryanna Cook, junior in agricultural communication and journalism, visited the gallery and said the exhibit impacted her ideas on social awareness as it relates to environmental issues.

“One of the pieces was a goldfish in a plastic bottle, and the goldfish doesn’t belong there, just like our trash doesn’t belong on the sides of highways or in streams,” Cook said. “Each piece was very unique in a different way, and I think the artists were very passionate about what they drew because it hits home for them. It was just really cool to see what the artists could do and how the art reflected back on the environment.”

Berg said the inception of the “Unearthed” art gallery began when she attended a conference about environmental issues and visited a gallery that showed animal rights problems.

“Part of the idea for this exhibit came from an artist from South Carolina who had some artwork related to animal rights,” Berg said. “And actually one of the pieces from her is in the exhibit.”

Berg said she wanted to show that many of the pieces in the gallery have ugly subjects but could be displayed using beautiful artwork.

“Artwork can take many different forms; it can be just about the environment that we occupy, it can be for advocacy, and it can be made out of whatever we want it to be, and that anyone can do artwork,” Berg said. “The artwork just kind of shows that everyone has a little bit to contribute to environmentalism and caring for our earth.”

The “Unearthed: Art of and From the Earth” exhibit will be on display in the K-State Union until next Friday, May 4. The exhibit is part of K-State Green Week, which has events today including tree planting at the southeast corner of Seaton Hall and a lecture on environmental education.

Students for Environmental Action, the Office of Sustainability and Housing and Dining Services are sponsoring Green Week, which includes several other events such as Clean Up MHK, Sustainability Carnival and lectures on environmental action.

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News and Science Writer for the Collegian. Senior in Food Science with a Minor in Mass Communications from Topeka, Kansas. Graphic and Video Design. I cook … a lot.