Student group creates clay bones to raise awareness of genocide

Edward Cox, Reporter

Students from Arts in the Community model clay skulls, rib bones and collar bones as part of the One Million Bones project, a nationwide program designed to raise awareness about modern-day genocide.

Each bone created represents a life lost to genocide and raises a dollar for CARE, an international humanitarian organization.

“I think it is a great idea because it is simple for people to get involved in,” said Weinberg junior Lauren Izaak, a member of Arts in the Community.

Students have been gathering in ARTica Studios in Norris University Center at 8:30 p.m. every Thursday to work on the project. ARTica has also helped advertise the One Million Bones project.

“It was really nice to think that all we had to do was sculpt bones to help provide relief for genocide,” said Weinberg junior Michael Morgan, founder of Arts in the Community.

Arts in the Community brought the project to NU by collaborating with students in the same group at New York University.

Morgan founded Arts in the Community at NYU as a freshman and started the group again last Winter Quarter after transferring to NU. The organization provides students with opportunities to creatively express themselves, give back to the community and explore the arts, Morgan said.

In addition to collaborating with the branch at NYU for the One Million Bones project, the group has hosted art sessions every Thursday at ARTica, a field trip to the Art Institute of Chicago last year and a presentation on globalization.

“One of the things that makes NU great is community and this hearkens back to it,” said Communication senior Scott Wolitzer, who is publicizing the club through F&F Marketing, another NU student group.  “At NU, people are studying and stressing out. You need to relax and that’s what we have.”

The group is not yet recognized by Associated Student Government and has been supporting itself partly through grant applications to NAMTA, an international art materials association. Arts in the Community is growing, Morgan said, with about 180 people on its listserv compared to the 500 at NYU.

“Right now, we are working to stabilize the NYU and NU branch,” Morgan said. “We independently share arts and ideas in our groups.”

Morgan said he plans to expand the club in the winter quarter to ASG-recognized B-status, which would make eligible to receive funds from the student government.

Arts in the Community has also pursued efforts within the Evanston community. The group applied for a grant to support Art for a Heart, a project through which students donate projects done on canvas to local hospitals.

Morgan said that as the group expands, he hopes that it will host more trips to Chicago museums, such as the Art Institute of Chicago, and overcome transportation difficulties.

“You go there and have fun while you help people around the world,” Izaak said.