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Brent Gerlach

  • Monday, Jan 9, 2012
Brent Gerlach

Brent Gerlach and fellow GESWERK members

Hometown:
Dubuque, Iowa

Major:
English

Notable:
Driving force behind Windows of Worlds

English major Brent Gerlach's belief that social divisions have a paralyzing effect on society has inspired him to take action. Brent serves as a founding member of the student organization GESWERK, a group that looks to raise social consciousness through art. Gerlach and his peers work to create a social platform in which artists and the community can come together to focus their energies on positive community collaboration. This group has sponsored a range of events from charity concerts to a zombie bash, all with the aim of promoting community involvement and the arts.

In recent months, GESWERK has focused on producing Windows of Worlds, a city-wide art project aimed at broadening people's horizons as they see things through the perspective of others. Windows of Worlds begins with high schools across Madison building wooden picture frames. High school and college students then turn the frames into works of art in a fashion which reveals a "window" into their lives. Edgewood College will then display the frames across campus and allow community viewings of the display from September 12th through the 17th. During this time, students and community members can take pictures in someone else's frame of life and reflect on the different perspectives each frame portrays.

Brent says "people have an unconscious urge to feel like they are a part of something and art -the act of creating - gives people the opportunity to connect and be a part of something bigger." Through GESWERK, Brent Gerlach has given people a unique way to reflect on the lives of others and the power of what art can achieve through the collective efforts of many.

Read a Madison Magazine Blog post about Windows of Worlds

Learn more about GESWERK.