Visitors to the Presbyterian Historical Society in Philadelphia will notice a few changes — beginning with the outdoor space currently available to the public. A six-installation exhibit has officially opened, titled “Building Knowledge and Breaking Barriers.”
The exhibit is a culmination of two years of research projects by students at Community College of Philadelphia and addresses such topics as the Black church, LGBTQIA+ inclusion and representative public art in Philadelphia, as well as white Christian attitudes toward Asian communities.
The exhibit includes two outdoor installations in the front courtyard as well as several indoor displays that will be available to the public once pandemic conditions have improved. However, those interested can now access interactive digital exhibits. An exhibit video tour is also available.
“The students have done an amazing job taking materials from the PHS collections and using them to address historical topics that are very resonant today,” said Nancy J. Taylor, executive director of the Presbyterian Historical Society. “The diversity of topics and styles of presentation are both engaging and thought-provoking.”
Taylor says the students were heavily influenced by the pandemic and the nationwide protests for racial justice. The exhibit showcases their interpretation of local and international history in a “truly reflective manner.”
“We have learned a lot through this collaboration with Community College of Philadelphia students and are pleased to help bring their insights to a wider audience,” added Taylor.
The outdoor installations are available for viewing Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The indoor installation access will be announced as pandemic restrictions are updated in Philadelphia.
The primary resources and teaching guides and student scholarship, as well as professor and intern insights from the project, are also available by visiting the project website: bkbbphilly.org. Contact project leaders to learn more here.
Building Knowledge and Breaking Barriers has been supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.