Rutgers – Our Beloved Community
We invited community artists to share with us how they have been inspired by our Beloved Rutgers community in the past year. Below are stories and reflections submitted, with the community selected favorites on top.
Top 3 Community Chosen Favorites
#1 - We R The People
Artist: Lynell James
No matter who we are, no matter where we stand, we are all interconnected and we all bleed scarlet.
#2 - A Place For Everyone
Artist: Malembe Dumont Copero
We should seek social justice to create a beloved community, putting diversity, belonging, and inclusion at the center. While there is still work to do, Rutgers has demonstrated to be a community where everyone regardless of race, ethnicity, place of origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, etc. has a place. The painting represents a person from our beloved community.
#3 - Watershed Moment
Artist: Jose A. Ebanks
In August of 2019, I was in a bad car accident which occurred 3 months after spine surgery from a previous accident in which I was a pedestrian. I was 6 months from completing my Doctor of Ministry from NBTS. I was in a dark place and very depressed. I had additional spine surgery which left me disabled. My wife and some encouraged me to return to painting again. A friend of mine Judy Soto told me about this contest. It has been a watershed moment these couple of years.
Additional Inspirational Entries
Essential Puzzle Pieces
Artist: Emily Ijalana
RU pulling together the puzzle pieces of recovery, with support of essential workers.
Artist: Earnest WigginsI was inspired to paint this piece because of the support that I felt from the entire Rutgers University community over the past year. In my painting, each of the campus mascots surround the Rutgers University R. There are three campuses, but in the end we “R UKNIGHITED.”
Rutgers For The World
Artist: Craigwood Phillips
My piece has the image of an indigenous person with headdress imposed on the Rutgers “R”. Some would think that this person would have little to offer academically, and their efforts would be met with failure. However, this University, founded in 1766 has been a diverse place of learning since the beginning. From Kusakabe Taro to James Dickson Carr and the founding of New Jersey College for Women, Rutgers has invited all who wish to learn and achieve. So my indigenous person represents the world and with the “R” of Rutgers they become part of an institution and stand out.
Artist: Kathy Dowden
I was never a basketball fan, but one game at the RAC in 2019 changed all that. I was hooked and now never miss a game. I was so proud of this year’s team breaking the 31 NCAA tournament drought. I can’t wait to once again sit in the Trapezoid of Terror for the 2021-22 season.
What Did Fred See
Artist: Geralyn Colvil
With his roots firmly planted in Lenape soil, standing across from Will’s Way, providing shelter and shade for countless generations, what did Fred see?
We thank all the artists for sharing their stories and artwork, and the Rutgers community for voting for their favorite.
Each piece is now on display in our lobby. We encourage you to stop in to view each piece personally.