The “True Life: My Experience With Domestic Violence” Art Exhibit displayed in the Student Center on Monday and Tuesday earlier this week. Domestic violence survivors, survivor’s families, and assailants created the works of art displayed.
Survivors are those whom have endured assailant’s behavior. Survivors are of all ages, young children to aged adults. Assailants can attack someone either physically or verbally.
An aura much like one of a post-war scene hung over the art work like a dark cloud. One exhibit even had red cutouts of human bodies to represent lives lost, each had it’s own story taped to it. One side of the room was dark and illustrated the darkest parts of domestic violence. As you walked to the other side of the room, it lit up brighter. The brightness displayed help to survivors and assailants.
Artwork throughout the room conveyed what signs to look out for when dealing with domestic violence, such as intimidation by abusing pets, isolation and economic abuse. Assailants also may use barriers to prevent one from leaving.
Use of sound enhanced this exhibit’s meaning. A bell dinged every nine to twelve seconds to demonstrate a woman is battered in the United States every nine to twelve seconds. Every ninety seconds the room was filled with the sound of a gong. This sound indicated a woman is raped every minute and a half. Every day in America, and average of 4-6 women are killed by their intimate partners.
Startling statistics were placed upon a remake dorm room to represent the amount of sexual assault and/or domestic violence involving college students. One third of college students admitted to physically assaulting a dating partner. Thirty five percent of college students have experienced attempted rapes on a date. Threatened rapes on college student dates have occurred twenty two percent of the time. Twelve percent of completed rapes were on a date that involved a college student.
There is no excuse for abuse. Safe House provides an opportunity for 24-hour free and confidential services for those affected by domestic violence or sexual assault at (734) 995-5444. Visit www.safehousecenter.org for other available resources.