Whittier College News Release
Office of Public Relations
13406 Philadelphia St.
P.O. Box 634
Whittier, CA 90608-0634
Judy Browning at (562) 907-4216
Feb. 6, 2004
Human Rights Heroes
Celebrated at Whittier College
“Light Among Shadows,” a
collection of works by contemporary artists and writers with historical photographs and
documents celebrating new heroes of the human rights movement throughout North
and South America, will be on display in the Ruth B. Shannon Center for the
Performing Arts at Whittier College from Feb. 9 through March 12.
Tracing the events leading
up to the military overthrow of the Salvador Allende government in Chile in
1973, the exhibit honors Orlando Letelier and Ronnie Moffit, assassinated in a
1976 car-bombing in Washington, D.C. for their human rights activism against
Chile’s military regime, as well as other human rights heroes.
Artist, poet and human
rights activist Francisco Letelier, curator of the exhibit and son of Orlando,
will be at the opening reception beginning 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 11, in the
Shannon Center. Argentine poet Alicia Partnoy, a survivor of the military
regime, and guitarist Kevin Cooper will also perform during the reception.
Francisco Letelier will
also direct a mural project on the college campus during the show. He has
created murals and other public works at sites throughout the Americas and
Europe including the Los Angeles Metro, Northern Ireland and Nicaragua.
students from several different disciplines will be involved in the mural
project, which will be done in front of Wardman Gym, the college’s art center.
A closing performance is
scheduled for the Club on campus, Thursday, March 11, from 7-10 p.m.
Participants include Francisco Letelier, Chilean singer Jacqueline Fuentes, and
poet/singer Joselyn Wilkinson.
Shadows” blends historical photographs and documents with works by contemporary
writers and visual artists, according to Francisco Letelier. “The project
reflects a reemerging sensibility, which sets artists as key figures in the
imagining of our world,” he said, “with contributions from people
who have consistently crossed the borders between art and the shaping of social
E. Ethelbert Miller, the
prize winning African-American poet from Washington D.C., Chilean author Ariel
Dorfmann, Uruguayan artist Naul Ojeda , photojournalist Marcelo Montecino and
filmmaker and writer Saul Landau have contributed to the exhibit. Political and
cultural figures such as Tom Hayden and musician Jackson Browne, as well as Anne
Marie O'Connor from the Los Angeles Times and noted human rights activist
and scholar Charlie Clements also have added to the materials included in “Light
Chilean diplomat Orlando
Letelier and 25-year-old American Ronnie Karpen Moffitt were colleagues at the
Institute for Policy Studies, where Letelier had become one of the most
outspoken critics of Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. After their deaths, an
FBI investigation traced the crime to the highest levels of Pinochet’s regime.
For the past 26 years, the Institute for Policy Studies has hosted an annual
human rights award in the names of Letelier and Moffitt. Each year a domestic
award is made within the United States; another is presented in some other part
of the American continents.
Project sponsors include
the Institute for Policy Studies and Foundation Amistad.
On campus support has been
provided by the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, the President’s
office, Academic Affairs, Student Activities, the Cultural Center, the
political science, global studies and comparative cultures departments, Garrett
House, Hartley House and the Shannon Center. More information is available by contacting
O’Connor-Gomez at (562) 907-4280.
Located 18 miles east of Los Angeles, Whittier
College is an independent, four-year college offering traditional liberal arts
majors and strong pre-professional programs taught in the context of the liberal
arts. Whittier Law School, which is accredited by the American Bar Association
and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools, is located on a
separate campus in Costa Mesa