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The Scarlet & Black

Students Speak: What art has moved you recently?


Writer Ohana Sarvotham and photographer Isabel Torrence talked to students around campus about what art has moved them recently. From poetry to paintings to television shows, read on to hear about what Grinnellians are vibing with these days.  

Meghna Adhikari `24

There’s this poem called “The Wedding” by Moniza Alvi. It’s like about identity and how you can feel detached from your own national identity. It meant a lot to me when I read it a while ago, but now that I’m here [in Grinnell] it was just like, something really cool.

Cat Dang Ton `22

I guess the show “Orange is the New Black. In my first week here I think I watched seven seasons in a week. I really like its portrayal of sapphic relationships and people. Especially in the final season, bringing in ICE and drawing the connection between the carceral system and the immigration system. Like it is an obvious connection, but seeing it portrayed in an artistic way in mainstream media was a huge thing for me. It resonated with me in so many ways.

John Moreno Vasquez `22

My grandmother’s garden, because it basically shows me how much she still works, how much she still cares about the things she likes. It reminds me of the, like, fire in her, you know?

Sam Eagen `22

I would say “Night Hawks.” It’s a painting from the 20th century by Edward Hopper. It’s a picture of a diner, late at night, with a couple of people inside, and it just has this, like, overwhelming sense of isolation and barrenness despite being in, like, the middle of the city. It just has a really cool emotional effect on me.

Elia Dewey `23

Photo contributed by Elia Dewey.

A piece of art that has really moved me is actually a painting my mom did of, like, a bluebird and a sunset landscape. It’s hanging up in my room at home and it always reminds me of her. This summer I’m getting a tattoo of it on my back.

Josie Bleess `25

I really like Mary Oliver’s poetry. It’s really nature-based and stuff. And I feel like she’s honest and authentic. Especially in like, the Midwest, the imagery is kind of similar. I feel like I’m in the poem, so it’s really fun to sit outside and read. A lot of her poetry is just really real.

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