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Seeing the world as teenagers see it

    29 May 2023 Monday

    Want to see the world through the eyes of a teenager? ArtCentric makes it happen with a photo exhibit displaying images captured by local teens.The main gallery of the Corvallis Arts Center is currently exhibiting "As We See It," a collection of photographic images by 22 people ranging in age from 13 to 19. A call went out to teens, asking them to portray and record their idea of community through the lens of a camera.

    What they produced are images that depict a wide range of situations and emotions.

    Peace demonstrators rally in front of the Benton County Courthouse, a dad helps his young son learn to ride his bike, and the early-morning lights of a coffee shop welcome passersby. The teens captured the smiling faces of friends, feelings of joy and companionship, solitude and loneliness.

    At the opening reception Thursday, the artists shared with guests their definitions of community portrayed through their images.

    According to curator Hester Coucke, this is the first time the Corvallis Arts Center has produced a show geared toward teenagers. She hopes the show helps people like her — those who don't have children, nieces or nephews in that age group — understand how teens view the community.

    Adi Beged-Dov, a senior at Crescent Valley High School, submitted a photo titled "Triumph Over Technology." She and a friend had walked to the top of a hill north of Highland Dell Drive and found those words written at the base of the water tower.

    "It was ironic," Beged-Dov said, describing the lush vegetation that surrounds the water tower. "Whoever wrote it had the idea that nature and technology are fighting and wanted technology to lose."

    Nora Chovanec, also a senior at Crescent Valley, submitted four photos she took last summer in Uzhgorod, Corvallis' sister city. One is of a young boy playing on a swing at an orphanage.

    "Even though I couldn't speak the language, we connected," Chovanec said. "Though we are all so different, were all human and alike."

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