UNF opens the Pre[serve] Art Exhibit

Heydi Ortiz, Police Reporter

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The opening of the Pre[serve] art gallery was filled with people wanting to get a glimpse of the art created by student artists and inspired by a place close to home. The Sawmill Slough Preserve is a 382- acre nature preserve that has been the focal point of the university since it was founded in 1972. The university’s first club was the Sawmill Slough Conservation Club which contributed to projects that impacted the preserve. In 2006, President John A. Delaney officially designated the those 382- acres of campus the Sawmill Slough Preserve.

The students of UNF, since then, have played an important role in conserving the preserve and now plan to bring more awareness through the Pre[serve] art exhibition juried by UNF students and alumni.

After a food reception guests were welcomed into the gallery where the walls were filled with images of native flora and fauna and photographs that spoke to the human activities which pose as threats to the environment.

photo taken by Heydi Ortiz

“I think that it’s a really good idea to bring out the artists at UNF. Especially the subject being about a reserve which is very important for UNF,” said Biology Major Chris Williams, “I think this exhibit is about showing the beauty of nature that we live in and we can express all of this beauty through artwork.”

Photography student Jojo Corsi was just one of the students whose photos of an intricate spider web and plant life were displayed at the exhibit.

“I used a zoom lens so it was kind of far away. Using the zoom lens on a tripod created no camera shake and allowed me to get really detailed photos of the lily pads,” said Corsi about the techniques used in her photographs.“I wanted something different from what my peers would photograph. The way that the Lily pads look with the stems underneath the water. It was a really still day so I got really lucky and the web was just so intricate so it really inspired me.”

The program encourages artists to find their inspiration in the nature that surrounds them and highlights the importance of conservation within the UNF community and beyond.

“It’s important that we’re aware of our surroundings and preserving nature because if we didn’t, there would be trash everywhere and it wouldn’t look as beautiful and as natural as it normally would,” said Corsi about the conservation of our environment.

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