On the first floor of O'Neill, students can be found studying the booths, drinking massive amounts of caffeine and arguing about the correct way to draw phosophodiester bonds in the whiteboard room. Amidst all this chaos, it's no surprise that the Kaleidoscope International Journal gets lost by the many students that call the library their dorm away from dorm. But this "window into the photographer's experiences in a foreign country" provides just that to anyone that takes a moment to look up from their books.
The cork backdrop provides an earthy and unassuming mount for the more than 60 photographs on display. Each picture tells a candid story of the life the photographers experienced when they traveled to these beautiful and historical places. From France to Chile to Bangladesh to Vietnam, even the most unobservant student would register the vibrant colors and stories within each photo.
Each set of photographs comes from a different student that traveled to a different place, giving the viewer a unique one-stop-shop of some of the worlds undisturbed treasures. These photo diaries have something for everyone. They traverse the corners of the world, whether its food from Sudan, sunsets in Jamaica or penguins in Chile. Smiling and hardworking men and women from each of these countries open a window to their every day world that is absolutely fascinating, especially to a student that has never left this coastline, let alone the US, before.
The picture that captured my attention first was entitled "H'mong women" from the northern Vietnamese town of Sapa. The story these women tell just though their daily actions paints a picture of the kind of hard work that seems foreign to most westerners. Working in rice field, trading for fabric and making your own clothes are things most college students don't experience. The faces of those women are weathered but strong, stern but gentle and allow the viewer to understand just a little bit about who they are.
Coming to the library is not normally the place to look for artwork. But BC has consistently used the frequented area to highlight beautiful pictures such as the exhibit AMIDST in Bapst. This particular display is especially relevant to BC students as many try to figure out where they want to travel abroad for academic and personal reasons. Take a moment out of your hectic schedule to understand what each of these amazing countries has to offer. These pictures will prove their worth to be more than a thousand words if you open your eyes to what they have to offer. They may even end up being your window to the future of what traveling has in store for you.