Middle Georgia State University art exhibit highlights diversity, inclusion

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COCHRAN, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – An art exhibit in Cochran is letting artists express themselves by helping others appreciate diversity and inclusion.

Terri Reckart — an academic advisor and diversity chairperson of the staff council — says, “not everybody is open and receptive to hearing words. Art is still a symbolic interaction.” 

Reckart says that a diversity of voices brings everyone together.

“Art is a powerful tool. It’s magical [and] it creates unity,” Reckart said. She asked students, staff, and the community to draw something to promote diversity and inclusion.

Dr. LaVette Burnette is one of the participating artists.

“[Terri Reckart] just said I want something big that represents inclusion,” Dr. Burnette said. “And so the first thing I thought of was me. Because I was the only black female in our department for a while.” 

A black woman, the gay-straight alliance, and a six-year-old showcased their work at the exhibit.

“Diversity is not necessarily the difference in color or a man or a woman or whatever,” Dr. Burnette said. “Diversity can be the difference of thought, it can be the difference in understanding. It can be the difference — but appreciating the difference and understanding that no matter how different we are, we’re all connected.” 

Reckart says the Diversity and Inclusion Art Exhibit displays our differences and helps make the connection.

“Instead of somebody quoting words and saying you can’t say that or your grammar is wrong or we don’t say it that way — it’s art. It’s beautiful,” Reckart said.

Dr. Burnette added, “there still needs to be spaces where you can show diversity shades and faces of blackness, shades of country life, shades of your urban life. All those things need to be seen and this space gives that.”

Event information

If you can’t attend the exhibit in Cochran, attend it at the Macon Campus after Feb. 28th.