Thursday, May 12, 2016

Event 3 - Leap Before You Look

A brief history and mission statement from Black
Mountain College. (taken at the Hammer Museum)
After listening to the poets from Black Mountain College talk at the Hammer Museum, I wanted to learn more about Black Mountain College's culture and impact from 1933 to 1957. The school was formed as an interdisciplinary liberal arts college giving most attention to the humanities and arts. The exhibit Leap Before You Look showcased many pieces of art and literature that captured the essence of Black Mountain College. Even the name of the exhibit captured the mindset of the driven students and faculty that worked at this revolutionary campus. Many scholars congregated at this newly forming college when the mission statement included no deans, administration, or comparable pay. These scholars joined Black Mountain College's campus without any safety net, and with no idea which direction the school would be taken in. With only a drive to learn and collaborate, Black Mountain College opened its doors to all races, genders, and scholarly backgrounds. Located in North Carolina during a time of heavy segregation and low social rights, this type of referendum turned heads.
Both students and faculty working on school
improvements. (taken at the Hammer Museum)

The school attracted many scholars in the humanities and arts, which happens to work out nicely for displaying historical pieces in a museum. The school's liberal arts education was a huge step in the right direction for accepting different types of students and scholarly fields into a collegiate environment. Many principles of the liberal arts education today stems heavily from this school, such as an equal emphasis on all subjects instead of a disproportionate emphasis on math and sciences. Following student passions was key to this educational philosophy, and it's a shame that we didn't take away more meaning from Black Mountain College's operation.

Paintings inspired by social and political issues
of the time. (taken at the Hammer Museum)

I also bought my sister some chocolate at the
gift shop as a thank you for tagging along.
(taken at the Hammer Museum)


Davidson, Michael, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Duncan McNaughton, and Michael Palmer. "Poetry - The Kinetics." Black Mountain College's Literary Descendents. Hammer Museum, Westwood. 14 Apr. 2016. Reading.

"Black Mountain College." State Archives of North Carolina: Natural and Cultural Resources. State Archives North Carolina. Web. 18 Apr. 2016.

"Hammer Readings - Poetry: The Kinetics - Black Mountain College's Literary Descendants." The Hammer Museum. One Long House, 14 Apr. 2016. Web. 18 Apr. 2016.

Changeling. Dir. Merce Cunningham. Chor. Polly Motley. Hammer Museum, Westwood. 16 Apr. 2016. Performance.
Leap Before You Look. Curator: Helen Molesworth. Hammer Museum, Westwood. 16 Apr. 2016. Exhibit. 

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