Monday, March 29, 2010

From Swaziland to Monroe

An interesting multi-cultural, mixed media exhibit is opening at the Monroe Arts Center Frehner Gallery this Thursday.

"Message from Swaziland" was inspired by local artist Jennifer Rikkers' walk through parts of Africa when she participated in the 2008 Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation AIDS Walk Africa. Rikkers combined her photography with acrylic painting to create this exhibit highlighting the people of Swaziland who touched her so deeply during her walk through the country. Rikkers wanted to share the message of Swaziland's people, a people in a country that has been deeply affected by the HIV/AIDS crisis.

33% of the population of that country has the virus, and AIDS work there is critically important to that nation. Rikkers will be donating 33% of the proceeds from the sale of artwork in this exhibit to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation to help with their work.

This exhibit opens on Thursday, April 1 and runs through April 30. The opening reception is from 5 until 7 pm on Thursday, and the artist will giving a gallery talk at 5:30. This event is free, and families are welcome. We give kudos to the underwriters of this exhibit: The Swiss Colony, Monroe Publishing, Big Radio, Michael and Shelley Muranyi, Deb Thompson, Lee and Chris Knuteson, Barb Woodriff, and Pete Guenther.

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