Art exhibit focuses on remembering, forgetting family’s past

The Marquette arts scene was highlighted tonight for the Marquette Arts and Culture Center’s First Thursday series.

There was a reception for two new art exhibits, and a concert featuring the Bad Luck Lullabies.  One of the exhibits, called Re: Collections, is based on a family narrative by a Northern Michigan University professor, who’s grandmother died of Alzheimer’s disease and her grandfather was an alcoholic.

“My grandma died, I was seventeen, and I was given all of her family archives so photographs and letters, and in these archives was a pile of letters that they had written back and forth between each other during their engagement,” Re: Collections artist Christine Lenzen said.  “It gave me this new vision of my grandpa that he wasn’t just this terrible alcoholic, he was a dreamer and he was a victim of his disease.”

That got her wondering how to memorialize someone who was both a victim and perpetrator, so Lenzen’s exhibit deals with remembering and forgetting.

“(One piece) is called ‘Family Portrait’, and there are six bottles representing different members of the family, and the wine drips on those photographs underneath them, to sort of intentionally desecrate those images and desecrate that memory or destroy that memory, that idea of wanting to forget.”

Re: Collections will be on display for the month of June in the MAAC.