September 25th marked the David Owsley’s first Final Friday event of the year. At 6:00, students, professors, and members of the community began to gather in the Sculpture Court, socializing with one another while enjoying beverages and finger foods provided by the Ball State Catering service. Along with socializing, attendees were able to experience two activities. Michael Brockley and Jeffrey Owen Pearson held a “Poems While You Wait,” booth, where anyone could give them a topic and they would procure a poem on the spot. Amelia Rule was also creating India ink portraits of guests. At 6:15, visitors began making their way into the Brown Study Room, where Hannah Barnes, professor of painting in the Fine Arts
College, was doing an elaborate demonstration on the different techniques one can use with watercolors. Those viewing were especially amazed by her demonstration of using watercolors
and gesso. Visitors were encouraged to then take these new techniques upstairs to the new watercolor exhibition, and test them out in the Maker’s Station. Seeing the demonstrations and being able to apply their new knowledge was a hit!
Following the opening activities, the PechaKucha talks began at 7:00. We heard from numerous speakers on different topics. The talk was hosted by PechaKucha representatives Braydee Euliss and Traci Lutton. The theme for the night was “Impact.” The speakers spoke about the impact that is happening in their communities; whether it is through them or the artist witnessing acts that lead to a tremendous impact.
Our first speaker was Michelle Duran, our new Art History professor on campus. She spoke about her work organizing the Birmingham Day of the Dead festival. The festival used to be very small, bringing a few hundred members of the community together. Since her involvement, the event has expanded immensely, and in 2014 they had over 10,000 people attend the festival. She concluded her talk by stating how she would like to bring this festival to the Muncie Community, and how it would enrich the culture here.
Other speakers talked about topics, including racial reconciliation by Jason Donati, citizen-led community economic development by Keith Taylor, the connection between metal cast sculptureand gardening (Aaron Nicholson), teaching culinary arts at Ivy Tech Community College (Heather Pier), and how to engage the community through the creative process by bringing people together to create art (John Morris). These talks provided a broad range of topics for guests, keeping interests peaked, and inspiring others to go out and impact the community.