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2021
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The exhibition will be on display through March 21 in celebration of Women’s History Month. (Submitted photo)

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“Looking Back, Looking Here, Looking Forward,” an art installation created by McKinney Middle School students, will be the headlining exhibition at The Orphanage gallery in Dayton on Friday, March 5, 4–9 p.m.

For the installation, students in Kevin Lydy’s eighth grade United States history class created magazine covers representing a historical time period, “looking back;” a contemporary example of a magazine cover, “looking here;” and a hypothetical cover based on what they felt  magazine covers should look like in the future, “looking forward.” The artwork serves as the culminating project for the unit on the experience of  women in their struggle for equality in United States history. Artwork contains references to colonial women, the Cult of True Womanhood, the Gibson Girl, flappers, Rosie the Riveter, the Equal Rights Amendment and many other topics from women’s history.

According to a press release: “Most women’s magazines — whether they be beauty, health, fashion, etc. — contain an image of a woman. However, the focus of students’ covers is not the person, but the image. Thus, students chose a wide array of methods of distorting the images in such a way that the “person” disappears — e.g., silhouettes, blurred images/filters, pixelated images. The power of the distorted images lies in the fact that they remove all the distractions of smiles, colors and details, leaving only a profile that, conversely, makes it stronger.”

The exhibition will be on display through March 21 in celebration of Women’s History Month.

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