Coburn Art Gallery Exhibit: Hush ll

Aliyah Sheppard, Multimedia Editor

The current exhibit at the Coburn art gallery is Hush ll, a ceramic sculpture exhibit created by Ashland alum Kimberly Chapman. Her artwork covers the issues faced by women, children and refugees. Chapman is showcasing many of her pieces including Bridled women, Elsie’s Arsonal, Ghost Ships and Stargazers.

“My work centers on what women endure, and what they’ve endured through the ages and what they continue to endure. So my goal is to shed light on dark topics,” Chapman said.

Bridled women shows how women were tortured by men who thought they were unruly or gossipy in the middle age. “The bridles [metal cages that went around a woman’s mouth] actually locked around their heads and had tongue depressors,” Chapman said. “When [women] tried to talk, eat or drink, the bridles would cut or puncture the tongue. The wearer of the bridle would also be let out into common areas where her neighbors would throw garbage and hurl insults at her.”

Chapman wanted to shed light on the MeToo movement, a movement created to raise awareness and demand justice for sexual harassment and abuse, and wanted to show that silencing women has been around for centuries. She says that the bridled women are a “MeToo precursor”.

Elsie’s Arsonal is the only piece of art that holds a story behind. Chapman’s grandmother suffered through an abusive marriage with an alcoholic, and she displays sculptures of the tools to represent the abuse. ‘Gilbert would come home at night in an alcoholic rage and be verbally abusive.” Chapman said. “She would use household tools to keep her and the children safe.”

Ghost Ships and Stargazers really hit on the topic of the refugee crisis, and how women and young girls are treated during their travels to a different country. “A large grouping on the refugee crisis and what happens to girls and women in every step along the way,” said Chapman. “To when they arrive on new ground or if they arrive on new ground.”

There are many more sculptures at the Coburn Art Gallery on AU campus, all the sculptures have a deep meaning that can connect with the past and the current event. The hours for the art gallery Monday through Friday are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The weekend hours are 12 p.m. to 4 p.m Be sure to visit before Nov. 7th.

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