Talk of TROY: Professors create ‘A Joyous Exchange’ with new art exhibit

"Setting Eternity in Our Hearts," like all of the pieces in the exhibit, features both text and visual artwork.

The International Arts Center at the Troy Campus is featuring an exhibit called A Joyous Exchange: The Art of Collaboration.  The exhibit features images and texts by music professor Diane Orlofsky and art professor Jerry Johnson who had both recently experienced the death of their fathers.

In her artistic statement, Orlofsky recounts her father’s last moments.

“I saw him breathe his last, leaving us for the father’s care,” Orlofsky said. “I had hours before circled his bed with loved ones feeling the need to provide comfort for the living with prayers and songs.”

The works combine both images and text to reflect on the lives of departed loved ones and according to Johnson they can also offer hope and joy to those who remember them.

“It was sad because he’s departed like anybody that loses a family member, but it is also joyous to know that dad was so confident and at peace in where he was going,”Johnson said.

And Johnson says there is much to be learned from those who go before us like his father.

“He really knew how to live, but he really knew how to die. I mean not everybody gets a choice. It was full of such grace and full of such peace.”

A Joyous Exchange: The Art of Collaboration, with works by Diane Orlofsky and Jerry Johnson, will be on display at Troy University’s International Arts Center until July 29.