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This content was published: July 16, 2020. Phone numbers, email addresses, and other information may have changed.

Wellspring: Humanities and Arts During Covid-19, Issue 7

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A people also perish when they fail to keep alive the values that make them human, the wellsprings of their sanity.”  —Ben Okri harts

As we approach the end of a difficult term, we share news about wonderful end-of-term student arts and letters celebrations; an interview with PCC Writer-in-Residence, Justin Rigamonti; two important studies related to the state of the humanities at two- and four-year colleges; and moving artistic responses to the death of George Floyd.

PCC’s Humanities and Arts Highlights:

  • Sylvania Campus’ signature arts event, Sylvania Creates, takes place each spring and has been moved online this Thursday, June 4th from 12-3pm. This year, it features two main events: a literary journal launch and a student art exhibit.
    • Alchemy LaunchFor the last 45 years, the students of Sylvania campus have created a publication of art and writing for the benefit of our PCC community and beyond. By writing and reading and viewing they learn first hand the various powers art wields: to refresh, to discombobulate, to renew, to agitate, to shine a light, to define the dark, to expand horizons, to close distances. This year’s Alchemy team was given an additional challenge on top of the perennial task: though pandemic’d apart, they came together with determination and grace to make you a killer magazine. Come hear from storytellers, poets, and artists who have contributed to this year’s publication. There’s no shame in just dropping by for a bit to leave a comment in the chat. We hope to see you on Zoom this Thursday, June 4th, Noon to 1:30. In the meantime, please enjoy this promotional video.”
    • Student Art ExhibitionAs part of Sylvania Creates this year, the North View Gallery invites you to our 2020 Virtual Student Art Exhibition. From the Gallery: “Since we can not be physically together in the gallery to enjoy the outstanding work everyone made this past school year, we will aspire to close the distance between us with a virtual exhibition displaying and honoring the hard work of PCC art students. The exhibition will open today on the PCC North View Gallery website  and on Instagram @pccnorthview and it will remain open throughout summer term. This is our first ever virtual exhibition featuring art made by students studying in PCC Sylvania Art classes between Spring 2019 and Spring 2020. The Awards Ceremony and a discussion with our juror, David Schell, will take placvia Zoom on Thursday, June 4 at 1:30 pm.
  • Pointed Circle Issue 36 Reading, Monday, June 8th, 7 pm. 
    • Starting at 7 pm on June 8th, the Editorial Team of Cascade Campus’ literary magazine, Pointed Circle, is excited to give you access to this year’s issue (via pdf or e-book); come check it out with us and listen as contributors read their work!
  • Late last summer, President Mark Mitsui established both a PCC Artist-in-Residency and a PCC Writer-in-Residency for this academic year so as to bring creative perspectives to the Strategic Planning and reorganization PCC is currently undertaking. Last week we shared an interview with our Artist-in-Residence, Sandy Sampson, Cascade Art faculty. This week, we are happy to share an interview with Justin Rigamonti, PCC’s Writer-In-Residence for this academic year.
  • PCC Virtual Open Mic Tonight, June 2nd, 7 pm. From Cascade Campus Creative Writing Students: ”
    • Join us for the final virtual open mic of the term! Anyone is welcome to come and read their own writing, of any genre. Join at 7pm to access the google doc to sign up, and then the reading will start shortly thereafter. The last one was honest-to-god rejuvenating, and so so sweet.
  • This week, Two Deep Breaths, the bi-weekly poetry posting curated by our PCC Writer-in-Residence, features “Bruised” by EAC Chair and Biology faculty, Josephine Pino,  and “not and elegy for Mike Brown” by Danez Smith, a nationally celebrated black, queer poet from Minneapolis. 

The Humanities and Arts Across the State and Nation

  • All Classical Portland has created a platform for local arts and humanities leaders to share their challenges and innovations in the face of Covid-19. From the website: “Through this series, we are documenting this unprecedented time, and learning how we as a community, can help.” Explore this fascinating and informative series of interviews, videos, and letters related to local arts organizations.
    • The role of the humanities and the arts continues to evolve in the face of sweeping global changes. Two reports have been recently published about the state of the humanities in two- and four-year-colleges across the nation. 
    • The Community Colleges Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University, recently published this report titled, Exploring the State of the Humanities in Community Colleges,” that explores challenges related to the humanities at community colleges and discusses initiatives intended to address those challenges.
    • The American Academy of Arts and Sciences recently published this comprehensive report that looks at the humanities in colleges, in the workplace and in public life.  Inside Higher Ed published this article that summarizes the complicated findings of the report.
  • Finally, in response to the death of George Floyd in Minnesota, a group of artists created a mural where he was killed, so as “to do something peaceful to give back to the community and give people a place to mourn and pay tribute to Floyd.” Twelve-year-old Gospel artist, Keedron Bryant, posted this moving video. Read as artists from Minneapolis and St. Paul speak about the history of racism that led up to George Floyd’s killing by police and the protests that have followed