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'Cultural Perceptions' photography exhibit to open April 15

RELEASED: April 12, 2010

image for Cultural PerceptionsEAU CLAIRE — An opening reception for the international photography exhibit "Cultural Perceptions" will begin at 11:30 a.m. April 15 in the Haas Fine Arts Center at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. The reception and display, in the first-floor hallways of the visual art area, is free and open to the public and will be available for viewing through May 1.

The exhibit is the result of a faculty-student research collaboration in a global setting. Students from UW-Eau Claire and Latvia worked together to share and interpret visual culture between America and Latvia. In culmination of the project, a series of photographs will be displayed at UW-Eau Claire and at the Latvian Culture College and Museum of Foreign Art in Riga, Latvia. Live feed video will connect students from both parts of the world as they simultaneously present the same artworks.

"This has been an excellent opportunity for art and design students to gain international perspectives by reaching beyond our classroom to exchange creative knowledge with peers across the globe," said Jyl Kelley, assistant professor of photography. "The experience is unique in that it is international but also because we have photographers creating and translating music visually. Together we have all learned a great deal from one another."

The event is sponsored by the Baltic Student Organization and a UW-Eau Claire faculty/student collaborative grant. Senior Liene Indrane, a Latvian social work major, is part of the student group. Indrane said the project reminded her of the uniqueness of her homeland.

"It is a wonderful feeling that we could share our culture, songs, history, food and films in the context of this project. There is a special atmosphere that surrounds this project because everyone is so enthusiastic about it and so creative. I am especially excited about the exhibition because of the videoconference with Latvian artists."

Advanced photography students participating in the project are senior Megan Ekenstedt, Chippewa Falls; senior Lydia Gantert, Wausau; junior Andrew Immerman, Eau Claire; senior Rachel Konsella, Eau Claire; junior Milana Lazic, Serbia; senior Kailey Mezera, Anoka, Minn.; senior Kimberly Roffers, Ashland; and senior Glenn Terpstra, Bloomington, Minn. Students participating from the Latvia Culture College in Riga, Latvia, are Aivars Ivbulis, Ieva Štrāle, Madara Eglīte, Dāvis Valbaks, Sandra Āriņa, Sandra Kaņepe, Jānis Vīksna and Rūdolfs Rancāns.

For more information about the project, contact Jyl Kelley at kelleyja@uwec.edu or 715-836-4622 or visit the project's blog.

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RD/DW

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