What makes Jesuit’s hallways different from most others? As they walk swiftly from class to class or rush to leave school, students rarely focus their energy on the various art-pieces that dot the walls. However, students, maybe even without noticing, will take a quick glance and, in times of apathy, will gaze at these paintings or sculptures, occasionally taking the time to appreciate the strong sense and love of artistic culture that Jesuit has. Instead of dull white walls, the works brought to us by the Jesuit Dallas Museum offer a more lively and fascinating atmosphere at this school, and it is important to recognize those behind the scenes that make it happen.
One of the largest events that the Jesuit Dallas Museum holds is the ArtQuest, which for the first time occurred at The Museum of Biblical Arts. An event featuring cocktails and music, the ArtQuest of 2017 did not disappoint in entertaining it’s guests, featuring Jesuit parents, faculty, and graduates, as well as artists and even some art enthusiasts.
According to Elizabeth Hunt Blanc, the Jesuit Dallas Museum Director, “the music featuring both Jesuit faculty and students was really fantastic and it uplifted the mood of the event so that I even received emails from guests thanking them, and it was an additional element which made it an really enjoyable night.”
The main feature and the purpose of the event was the silent auction that was held for three pieces of work created by Jesuit Senior David Seagram ’17, who was the recipient of this year’s Andrew Bark ’98 Memorial Scholarship. This annual award is given to a talented rising senior who has excelled in the visual arts, with the proceeds of the auctions assisting with his college tuition.
Mrs. Hunt-Blanc stresses “the importance of supporting the scholarship as it showcases the achievements of a student who goes to this school but will also help him as he continues his talents after high school,” and while the funds are an important aspect of the award, the scholarship really reveals Jesuit’s dedication to recognize and support the Art Museum which represents an important cultural element of this school, an element we are lucky to have and usually take for granted.
Along with this, Mrs. Hunt-Blanc expressed the excitement she held for the new piece of work that the Jesuit Dallas Museum would receive, a tradition of ArtQuest, and something that is very important for a non-profit organizations such as the Jesuit Dallas Museum, as the event acts as a fundraiser to not only support the Museum’s collections but to improve on it.
The art piece that the Museum staff were anxious to obtain was The American Dream #2 (the featured image), created by renowned artist Robert Indiana, who was a key member in the Pop Art Movement, which occurred in the 50’s and 60’s in the US. The defining aspect of this movement was its focus on everyday objects and popular culture, and thus his work definitely will diversify an already diverse array of artworks at Jesuit.
Robert Indiana states that he did this to inspire the boys, but to also support the Museum, acting out of his compassion to help the next generations of artists, and for the majority of Jesuit grads who will not be an artist, to provide them with a piece that will occupy even just a brief moment of their thought and time.
As another successful ArtQuest passes, it is important to recognize the work done by the Jesuit Dallas Museum and its staff, but also to other contributors such as Robert Indiana, who directly helped our community. The art in this school really represent our culture, and similar to the daily examen, the pieces around the school are some things that should be contemplated as some things that Jesuit is privileged to have.