University’s Garden Commons aims to educate and address food inequality Monday, Apr 26 2021 

By Tate Luckey–

Greenhouse plants, located near the Urban and Public Affairs Building

Located near Strickler Hall and the Speed Art Museum parking garage, you can find large wooden boxes containing sage, oregano, chives, cilantro, dill, and mint. Spinach, kale, collard greens, and swiss chard are supposed to be ready to harvest later this spring at a greenhouse located near the Urban and Public Affairs building (possibly some leeks, onions, garlic, and green onions, too- depending on how the starts do).

What I’m referring to is the Garden Commons, an area of U of L focused on food justice. “We want to ensure that everyone in our community, regardless of their association with U of L (or lack thereof), has access to an abundance of fresh, healthy, locally grown food,” Garden Commons intern Grace Engleman told me. She and Olivia Delano are the 2021 Garden Interns, maintaining the gardens by planting seeds/starts, preparing the raised beds, and (most importantly) running monthly workshops and weekly workdays.

“We want to ensure that everyone in our community, regardless of their association with UofL (or lack thereof), has access to an abundance of fresh, healthy, locally grown food,” Delano explained. Food apartheid is a big issue across Louisville, due to the income inequality and lack of options between neighborhoods like St. Matthews (predominantly white) and Russell (predominantly black). “Not only are there significantly fewer grocery stores (in lower-income communities), but the ones in these neighborhoods are considerably less well-stocked, with far fewer options in the produce sections and lower-quality produce,” she explained.

Prepping beds after winter

The Garden Commons aims to be another option for anyone throughout the area who struggles to get organic variety in their diet.

They pointed out Shauntrice Martin’s Bok Choy Project for Root Cause Research Center to demonstrate the ubiquity of food apartheid in Louisville, comparing produce sections in Krogers throughout the city and analyzing these discrepancies in relation to these neighborhoods racial demographics.

Rainbarrel making workshop, April 9th, 2021

“I think we had more squirrels eating our tomatoes than people! I want to emphasize that ANYONE—students, faculty, and people with no affiliation with UofL whatsoever—is welcome to come to the Garden Commons to harvest fresh herbs, vegetables, and fruit,” Engleman said.

The pandemic hasn’t held them back either- while they no longer share any prepared food, their regular programming hasn’t stopped. They’ve had workshops that include maple tapping (back in January) and most recently rain barrel making (April). Their next workshop is June 4th at noon, which is serviceberry foraging. later this summer attendees will be able to harvest local produce including raspberries, melons, tomatoes, and peppers.

If you’d like to find out more, you can visit their Instagram and Facebook.

// Photos courtesy U of L Garden Commons Facebook // 

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Black veterans group partner with U of L alumni to respect deceased veterans Wednesday, Mar 24 2021 

By Tate Luckey —

Located along 40th Street and Hale Avenue, Greenwood Cemetery is where hundreds of Black military veterans are buried, but it is one of the many historic African American cemeteries across the nation that have been neglected. In an effort to both give back to the community and honor the veterans, Nakia Strickland and Lance West, as well as the National Association for Black Veterans (NABVETS), Region VI spearheaded the “Eagles to Rest Project” which is focused on restoring the Greenwood Cemetery.

The project teamed up with the University of Louisville’s Alumni Center, the Office of Community Engagement along with the Cultural Center in an effort to promote the project and get more students and alumni involved with the project.

It became clear by visiting the cemetery how much restoration was needed. Headstones were tilted and dirty, trash lined outer walls; not at all respectful for the sacrifices the veterans had made.

“The goal of the project is to provide the veterans with dignity, care and respect in death that they had been denied in life,” Strickland said. Taking place every Saturday morning from February through March, as well as one weekend in late April, volunteers can register and help clean. 

The pandemic, fortunately, hasn’t put a damper on turnout.

“It’s been greater than we could have ever expected. We were unsure of what to expect regarding attendees but, our expectations were surpassed by everyone who showed up to volunteer,” West said. Volunteers wear facemasks and are spread out amongst the grounds. Any who come are encouraged to bring their own supplies, too.

Shedrick Jones Sr., who is the Region VI commander of the NABVETS, brought the project to Louisville.

“The spiritual part of it and the respect that goes with a cemetery, all of that has to be taught,” he said in an interview with WLKY. According to Strickland and West, there is still more work to do in the 19-acre cemetery, including clearing out branches and removing debris from headstones.

The last weekends to join and help are March 27 and April 24 from 8:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m. at Greenwood Cemetery.

If you’d like to register, you can do so here. If you’d like to learn more about NABVETS, you can click here.

Photos by Anthony Riley // The Louisville Cardinal

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”Fashioning Art from Paper”: A peek at Isabelle de Borchgrave’s Speed Art Museum exhibit Wednesday, Mar 17 2021 

By Grace Welsh

From now until Aug. 22, the Speed Art Museum will host the world-renowned work of Isabelle de Borchgrave. The Belgian artist’s work consists of life-size paper costumes representing five centuries of fashion history. The exhibit, like all exhibits at the Speed Art Museum, is free to all current University of Louisville students.

Born in Belgium in 1946, Borchgrave seemed to come into the world with a passion for art. She famously said once that, “The same day that I could walk for the first time, I picked up a piece of paper, started to draw, and I have not been able to quit since then.”

She was classically trained at Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels and opened her own studio by the time she was 18.

Borchgrave filled her life with pretty and inspirational things. Opening a store in 1975, called La Tour de Bebelle, she sold dresses, paintings and home décor.

Over the years, she took a liking to the craft of paper maché and was struck by inspiration after visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in 1994. Combining her wisdom and expertise with that of Rita Brown, Borchgrave assembled her first series, “Papiers à la Mode,” which caught the eye of curators of prestigious institutions around the world.

Borchgrave’s superpower is more than just fashioning the outfits themselves. The artist utilizes an elusive trick of the eye called “trompe l’oeil,” which tricks the museum-goer into thinking they are looking at real fabrics, carefully assembled into extravagant outfits by the artist, but they are really an intricate take on paper maché.

The exhibit, titled, “Fashioning Art From Paper,” is divided into five major collections.

 

“Papiers à la Mode”

This is the largest and earliest showcase of centuries of fashion across cultures. From royal English and French gowns to traditional Victorian wear to chic streetwear, the exhibit takes the viewer from the Renaissance to the early 1900s with the magic of color, patterns, texture and beauty.

“Splendor of the Medici” and “The World of Mariano Fortuny”

Immersing visitors into the streets of Italy, this piece tells the story of the Italian Renaissance with inspiration from portraits of the Medici family and artist Mariano Fortuny. Borchgrave’s pieces reveal her unique interpretation of their art and colors and guide the viewer to experience the atmosphere of her work in the way she intended.

“Les Ballets Russes”

This most recent addition to the exhibit showcases costumes, outfits and drawings of twentieth-century Russian dancers that Borchgrave feels revolutionized modern art upon their entrance into the 1908 Paris art scene. Borchgrave breathes life into their stories and through her careful use of color and texture, allows them to live again and be seen by twenty-first century observers.

“Kaftans”

Inspired by her trip to Istanbul, this section of her exhibit showcases an appreciation for central Asian textiles.

Having a life-long fascination with the Silk Road, an ancient transcontinental trade route that connected Eastern Asia to Europe, Borchgrave worked in collaboration with artist Saeed Sadraee to highlight this ethnically and culturally diverse region that was a center for artisanal textile production. The textiles she selected, or “Kaftans,” illustrate the relationship between the nomadic people of Central Asia’s natural and cultural world.

 

The Speed Art Museum is free for U of L students and faculty and will be showcasing this impressive exhibit until August 22, 2021. For information on how you can reserve tickets, click here.

Photos by Anthony Riley // The Louisville Cardinal

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Features editor reviews visiting campus food trucks Monday, Mar 1 2021 

By Tate Luckey — 

In an effort to provide more on-campus food variety, last week the University of Louisville’s Dining services brought three food trucks to campus.

A variety of food choices were provided for students who purchased a ticket worth 10 flex points. From what U of L Dining has suggested, this event was also done in part to support local businesses hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Celtic Pig – 

Born through a passion for smoked meat and pride for Celtic ancestry, the Celtic Pig serves up everything from fish and chips and pulled pork to scotch eggs and haggis. Easily spotted by its Blarney Green and kilted truck, owner Sam Bracken desired to sell authentic, home-cooked meals to his customers.

One of the favorites among those who went was the pulled pork grilled cheese. Topped with Irish cheddar and served on Texas toast, freshman Cassidy Witt actually went back to buy another for her roommate.

“I don’t why I’m acting like I’m not going to eat half too. It’s really good,” she said.

Get it on a Bun at Booty’s –

First starting as a hot dog stand in 1996, Get it on a Bun at Booty’s is native to New Albany. Providing a variety of diner-style foods (jerk chicken, or “Booty Burgers,” anyone?), they were only present during the 10:30 a.m – 2:30 p.m. time slots. That doesn’t mean they didn’t have great food, though.

The Pulled pork sandwich they had was a fantastic choice for those looking to tear into a good piece of meat. It was juicy, well seasoned, and had just the right amount of “pull” to make it worth a ticket.

Nathan’s Taqueria 

Beatriz Mata and Carlos Gomez decided to bring their food trucks to give Louisville a taste of Mexico. Their options were 3 street tacos, nachos and a burrito. Each had an option of pork or chicken. Out of all the trucks present, this one was the busiest in the mornings.

The most popular food item from what I saw was the nachos. “The pork to me was what made it. It was pretty good. They put lots of tomatoes,” freshman Alex Reynolds described.

Photos by Tate Luckey and Anthony Riley // The Louisville Cardinal

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Speed Art Museum features new exhibits for Spring 2021 Thursday, Feb 4 2021 

By Maria Dinh —

The Speed Art Museum is now open during its regular hours. Visitors must wear a face mask and practice social distancing. As always, University of Louisville students can go in for free by showing their cardinal card. Here’s what’s coming up at the Speed in these next couple of months:

Featured Exhibits

The Speed Art Museum said goodbye to the Andy Warhol: Revelation exhibit last November to make way for their next featured exhibit: Collecting – A Love Story: Glass from the Adele and Leonard Leight Collection. Coming February 6th, 2021, Leight’s art collection will contain many contemporary glasswork pieces that the couple had collected during their marriage.

From February 19 – August 22, a fashion exhibit inspired by early works of 18th and 19th-century art will be coming to the Speed, titled “Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper.” Look closely to observe the intricacies and details of the painted paper dresses.

“I am really enthralled by the artist’s use of color, so I’ve found myself drawn to the Mariano Fortuny dresses she has recreated – there are beautiful, unusual color combinations that are so inspiring,” Erika Holquist-Wall, curator of European & American Painting & Sculpture, said about the exhibit.

“I think visitors are going to leave this exhibition inspired by possibility – whether that is the inspiration to create their own artwork, play with paper, or just take a closer look at the artwork in the rest of the museum and appreciate the effort and creativity it requires to make something.”

Speed Online

Visitors can still have a quick “scroll” around the Speed from home with Museum from Home on their website for free. For the inner child that misses going downstairs at the Speed to play at the Art Sparks room, the website has downloadable .pdfs of coloring pages, crafts, and games to play at home.

Freshman Eleanor Ferguson has already visited the museum in person. She talked about how visitors are socially distant from others when viewing the art; “I’d say the majority of it [the museum] was safe, but there were a couple of rooms with too many people for me to be comfortable in, so I dragged my date out till they left. Everyone wore masks though.”

After Hours at the Speed

In a COVID-19 free world, the Speed would host a monthly event on the third Friday with performers, food and drinks and family fun. After Hours at the Speed will continue being held virtually every third Friday of the month until further notice. Check out their Facebook page to see who will perform and watch on their Facebook Live.

Photo Courtesy // Speed Art Museum 

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“Cardboard Nation” stands in for Cards to cheer during U of L games Monday, Feb 1 2021 

By Tate Luckey —

When COVID-19 hit the sports world, officials scrambled to find a solution to allowing fans at games. The NBA first proposed the idea of having “virtual fans.” Fans could pay to have a “seat” during the game and show up on the big screen, watching live. The NFL, and by extension the NCAA, now feature fan cutouts, alongside limited capacity. The University of Louisville calls their section of cutouts “CardBoard Nation.” 

“The main goal with Cardboard Nation was to create the closest thing to a packed arena for our men’s and women’s programs so they still feel that love and support and give our fans the chance to still feel like they were a part of this season and to. Everything we do is for the fans and our athletes,” Austin Hertzler, assistant director of marketing for U of L Athletics, said.

The 2020 football season featured limited capacity, as well as pumped in crowd noise. It was safer in this scenario due to the fact the arena is outdoors. Katie Berry, director of marketing for athletics, said that they wanted to focus on on things they could control. The challenge with basketball games though, is that the courts are all indoors.

The solution came in the form of allowing anyone to pay 60 dollars and submit a picture of themselves to have a cardboard cutout in the stands for the whole season.

Any appropriate image is allowed, ranging from your pet who watches alongside you to those who want to keep their decade long attendance streak alive, to those who are miles away. “In true Louisville fashion, we even have a racehorse featured in one of the cutouts!” Berry said. 

It’s unclear if having said cutouts helps maintain the ever-important “home-court advantage,” but the lack of fans definitely makes players and Card Nation more appreciative of their dedication. While many of the staff are hoping that the 2021-2022 sports season will allow more of a full capacity, it is likely that the ’21 baseball season will feature some members of CardBoard Nation as well.  

“We’re hopeful members of Cardboard Nation can (eventually) be replaced with members of Card Nation,” Berry said. 

Fans can view their cutouts in a Facebook Album on the GoCards Facebook page.  But “If you’re watching one of our games on TV there’s a chance you’ll see it that way too,” Hertzler. The photos are updated as the season progresses. If you request it in your order, you can even have your cutout sent to you once the season is over.

File Graphic // GoCards Facebook

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raiseRED to host virtual dance marathon in February Thursday, Jan 21 2021 

By Grace Welsh —

The University of Louisville’s largest student-led philanthropic event is looking a little different this year. For the first time ever, raiseRED will be held completely virtually in order to remain within COVID-19 guidelines.

Traditionally an 18-hour dance marathon, the event will be broken up over six days throughout the week of Feb. 15. Each day’s event will consist of guest speakers and interactive events like trivia and games. The week concludes on Saturday, Feb. 20, when a closing ceremony will be held, during which, the organization will reveal of the amount of money raised.

Last year, raiseRED was able to raise over $690,000 to benefit pediatric cancer research.

raiseRED has touched the hearts of many in the last five years, raising over 3 million dollars for Norton’s Cancer Institute and U of L’s School of Medicine’s Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology. raiseRED also initiates mentorship programs between students and children, which allows students to make more of a direct and long-lasting impact on the families. According to the raiseRED website, the money goes directly towards funding those departments and the families in need.

“raiseRED, in my opinion, is the single most important organization tied to U of L,” said Team Leader Manu Nair. Nair is one of the hundreds of U of L students who have been working for the past year to ensure successful fundraising this year.

“Unless you have personally gone through this struggle, people don’t know how hard it can be to watch your child battle cancer,” Nair said. “We are fighting for them as they already have an immense battle to fight themselves.”

Ashley Correl, is a freshman who is participating in the event for the first time. “I can already feel that everyone is so excited to get involved. It inspires so many others to join in on raising money,” she said.

raiseRED participants can still join on behalf of an organization (such as athletics, the Indian Student Association, Porter Scholars, ELSB, Greek life) or they can join on an individual basis.

Students who raise $200 by Feb. 15 will be paired with a team of other dancers and given the opportunity to participate in interactive events. Fundraising requires a bit of creativity, with many members doing things like social media games and clothing/bake sales.

While being virtual may hinder some interpersonal connections, raiseRED is about helping those in need, Ruby Young, raiseRed’s student outreach coordinator, said.

“I think this year more than ever, people will realize how much help these kids and their families need. COVID-19 impacted them in ways we could never imagine.”

For more information on how you can make a difference, visit the raiseRED Facebook page or their Instagram.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal

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SGA’s #RealCards campaign highlights student concerns Saturday, Nov 21 2020 

By Tate Luckey —

As the first semester during the COVID-19 pandemic winds down, many may be wondering how the students themselves are feeling. The University of Louisville’s Student Government Association put together an online submission forum they dubbed “#RealCards” to ask U of L students how they were doing this semester.

SGA took inspiration from Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab, a professor of sociology and medicine at Temple University, who started the #RealCollege campaign, helping refocus higher education on what matters most.

Students have been communicating these struggles with SGA, which has worked to “bridge the gap,” as Sabrina Collins, SGA president, puts it, between students and faculty.

“We wanted to provide an anonymous forum for people to connect with us on what this semester has been like for them. I spoke at length with Interim Dean Owen about this issue and how we can bridge the gap between students and faculty,” Collins said.

The number of anonymous responses surprised Collins. The responses all detail similar, serious problems students on campus are facing.

“It seems like the #RealCards campaign is reminding students that they are not alone in their struggle,” she said.

One major issue students faced this semester was that the workload given was just unreasonable, especially during a global pandemic.

Noah Vanrude, a sophomore music and new media major, said that “My main issue is just not having much time for a break, and some professors have not decreased their workload. Classes I’ve normally been doing great in I’m not doing well in.”

A junior from the College of Education and Human Development painted a more broad picture, saying that “being a college student trying to navigate college during a pandemic, civil rights movement, and global crisis is very, very draining.

For some students, communication via emails and Zoom meetings can only go so far.

“I wish my professors knew that I can only put in as much effort as they do for online classes,” freshman English major Cassidy Witt explained. “If they don’t care to have synchronous classes, and organized due dates, then I’m not going to feel attached to their class or feel the need to prioritize it.”

And with so many students on campus, many are also concerned with a lack of safety and accountability.

I wish that my professors knew how reckless students are outside of the classroom with the virus. I feel uncomfortable with my lab partner because I see pictures of where they were over the weekend. I’m doing my part to be smart with COVID, but I’m afraid I’m going to be the person to bring it home through school,” a junior from the College of Nursing responded.

I know I can be responsible for myself and know that I’m staying safe, but I don’t know if my peers are doing the same and being safe and socially responsible. I’ve seen them being irresponsible so that is hard,” another junior from the College of Arts and Sciences said.

SGA plans to connect with the university administration, including school deans, the faculty senate, and the Student Wellbeing Committee, with a report detailing the common themes in the results and how those might inform policy change for spring.

If you’d like to submit an anonymous response to SGA’s survey, you can do so here

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Louisville hosts Out of the Darkness Walk for suicide awareness Wednesday, Nov 11 2020 

By Alex Tompkins — 

The Louisville Out of the Darkness Walk (sponsored in part by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention) is an annual event that takes place in November at Waterfront Park on the North Great Lawn. Before COVID-19 restrictions were in place, members of the community would gather to walk Waterfront Park in remembrance of those whose lives were lost due to suicide.

The walk originated in 2002 as a memorial walk for a local man who took his life. The event includes live music, memorials of lost loved ones, and rows of shoes that belonged to those who passed. This year, the walk started on Nov. 6 and ended Nov. 8.

What made this event so important was the persistence to continue the annual walk despite the conditions of our world. There were plenty of ways to be involved this year.

There was a memory wall adorned with pictures, photo stops along the route of the walk, and a scavenger hunt where participants were entered to win a prize. At the end of the walk, participants could sign their names on a large board surrounding the word “hope.”

One of the most heartfelt parts of the event was the honor beads ceremony, which took place virtually this year.

Each different-colored set of beads represents someone’s reason for walking and attending the event. Most of the founders, chairs, and volunteers have some reason for being involved in the walk. During the bead ceremony, each speaker was able to share their story and talk about the color representation of the beads. Participants wore their beads while walking the route to share their own stories and connect with others attending the walk.

In the midst of the uncertainty and darkness in the world, it is crucial to push helpful resources and hope to those in the community. The walk highlighted the importance of mental health and checking in on others no matter if they seem fine or not. The reassurance, community, and feeling of hope the annual walk provided is something profound that everyone should take their time to be a part of.

Megan Cole, Kentucky AFSP area director, shared ways to create a culture that is compassionate about mental health during this year’s opening ceremony.

“If you know someone who is struggling, just listen to them,” Cole said. “Give them a chance to share their story without offering any advice or passing any judgment. Know that everyone experiences mental health differently, and that is ok.”

If you or someone you know is struggling, the suicide prevention lifeline is available 24 hours a day at 1-800-273-8255.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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2020 Homecoming King and Queen talk about being crowned Monday, Nov 9 2020 

By Aaliyah Bryant —

Last week at the University of Louisville was Homecoming week, which kicked off on Oct. 19 with events lasting all week long. Throughout the week, U of L students voted for their Homecoming King and Queen online and on Oct. 26, during the homecoming game against Florida State, Chidum Okeke and Kayla Payne were chosen as Homecoming royalty.

Okeke is a Senior public health major with a minor in biology on a pre-med track. He was nominated by the Society of Porter Scholars and said that winning was truly humbling.

“To me, the award is presented to those who embody the traditions, positive attributes and Cardinal values held by our university,” he said. “To be presented with an award of that magnitude, while being cognizant of how small our homecoming alumni pool is, was a truly remarkable experience.”

U of L’s newest queen, Kayla Payne, is a Senior political science major with minors in social change and public health. She was nominated by the Student Government Association, for which she’s been involved since her freshman year.

Payne has served as an Arts and Science Senator, the Student Body Executive Vice President, and currently, the Director of Government Relations. She also volunteers with Nativity Academy’s after school programs and serves on their Associate Board of Directors.

“I love finding new ways to serve the Louisville community and empowering people to participate in things such as elections or filling out their census,” she said. “I’m grateful that my peers have honored me with Homecoming Queen and I hope it’s to recognize my commitment to making U of L the safest, inclusive, equitable place it can be for students that look like me.”

Photo // Society of Porter Scholars 

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