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Getting an inside look at outsider art

Getting an inside look at outsider art

Student Bryan Owens spent the fall 2015 semester working at Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, a Chicago nonprofit that takes a social justice approach to outsider art. (Photo: Natalie Battaglia)

Intern profile

Loyola student Bryan Owens spends a semester learning about the interaction of art and social justice

By Kristen Torres (BA '16)

Loyola student Bryan Owens, a double major in sociology and human services, interned during the fall 2015 semester at Intuit, a Chicago organization that promotes outsider artwork. We recently caught up with Bryan to learn more about his internship and how it furthered his future career goals.
 
Tell us a little bit about your internship.
I’m an intern at Intuit, a nonprofit that takes a social justice approach to the world of outsider art. We work with self-taught artists, people who grew up in the middle of nowhere, people in institutions, and individuals with mental disabilities. I help put on exhibits that showcase their artwork.

What projects have you been working on?
We have an exhibit going on right now by a World War II vet who has post-traumatic stress disorder and made collages that showcased his experiences during the war. It’s so great to get that out there and show people how art can express artists’ views and show their interpretation of larger issues.

What has been your favorite part of the internship?
I’d have to say the theme of art and knowing about who the artists were and why they made the specific artwork they did. It’s interesting getting to know what makes them who they are and getting that out to people, instead of just saying “here’s some random artwork.”

How do you think this internship will affect your career?
I feel like there’s a boundary between academia and art, which is why I’m choosing to double major in human services and sociology. I’m ever changing, and so are my career prospects. Human services is so interdisciplinary, you get such a broad spectrum of possible career choices. I have no idea where I’ll be in the future, but I definitely want it to be somewhere where I can mesh art with another discipline.