Magazine On-line [summer 2013]
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HUnter Kissel art installation

HUnter Kissel art installationArt exhibit aims for the everyday things

Coca-Cola bottles from the 1950s, a 1960s high school band uniform, and vinyl records from the 1970s were among the items in a time-travel art installation that greeted audience members for Today Is History as they strolled down a hallway leading to the theater.

Junior Hunter Kissel was the visual artist for the project, and junior Zach McBride Bain-Selbo provided a sound track from the eras that ranged from the 1950s to the 1990s.

Unlike the deeply social, political, and philosophical issues explored in the “coming-of-age” theme of the play, the art installation took a more everyday approach in its exhibit of cultural artifacts.

“I didn’t want it to look like a chronicle of the big events of the times,” Kissel said. “I wanted it to be less about iconic culture and more about styles and domestic trends, focusing on memory, familiarity, accessibility, intimacy. I wanted people to remember things they had forgotten about, or had brushed aside. I hoped people would say something like, ‘My grandma used to wear that dress.’”

The flavor of the exhibits was about things that people took for granted in their era, but which now appear nostalgic. Purses, shoes, clocks, and telephones from all the decades were common, along with a 1950s toy sled, a 1990s computer, and a pair of 1960s crutches.

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