Daily Ethics Mosaic: A Community Artwork

The Mudd Center's Daily Ethics Mosaic is a community artwork generated by W&L students, staff, and faculty in a series of workshops during the Fall Term of 2021. This project is a collaborative venture of the Mudd Center and the Staniar Gallery. Workshops were led by Jonathan Lee, a Richmond artist whose socially engaged art practice has guided innovative and inspiring community projects such as Who is Downtown and Curriculum Lab. Participants were invited to complete a workbook prompting introspection about important personal values and how they could be actualized in daily life. During the workshops, they visually represented these themes on an 8-inch paper square that was photographed. Since living an ethical life is both an individual and collective enterprise, workshop participants then deconstructed and merged their individual pieces with others to craft a mosaic reflecting a shared vision and aesthetic. The large-scale community artwork, installed in the Wilson Hall atrium, consists of group mosaics as well as individual work. Images of all components of the mosaic are provided below.

The mosaic-making process capitalizes on this liminal moment that requires us to work together in recrafting our lives following months of pandemic-related disruption. The process has helped our community think about and discuss intentions and practices that comprise a meaningful life.