Former MC professor displays photographic essay in Clayton Center for the Arts

Young holds his picture, “Mario from Cuba”, a photograph with special meaning for the artist. Photo Courtesy of Alexandria Rodriguez
Young holds his picture, “Mario from Cuba”, a photograph with special meaning for the artist.
Photo Courtesy of Alexandria Rodriguez

On Thursday, Oct. 24, the Maryville College community gathered for the gallery reception of David P. Young’s exhibition, “Photographic Essay of Global Faces.” The Blackberry Farm Gallery harbored 42 pictures from Young’s travels through more than 60 photographed countries and peoples spanning from 1981 to 2013.

Young, a former chemistry professor at Maryville College from 1963 to 1976, took the photos while on staff for the International Mission of Presbyterian Church (USA) and at another time as a staff photographer for the PC(USA)’s Office of Communications.

Photos were taken in a variety of countries, including Cuba, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras, Haiti, Argentina, Brazil, India, Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Kenya, Mozambique, Malawi, Cambodia, Myanmar and China.

Young’s book, “Photo Conversations: Photographs that Look Back” was also on display with his work, providing insight to his experience while creating the photos.

“Most often when we see a photo we look at it and move on,” Young said. “But some photos invite conversations.”

Young said he had a particularly touching experience and conversation with a man in the streets of Cuba.
“Mario from Cuba was a very meaningful photo,” Young said. “When he saw me pointing my camera, he, in turn, pointed his finger at me and asked me if I was American. Excited with my answer, he made me a cigar and made himself a friend to me. I hope to go back to Cuba. Hopefully, I can see Mario again.”

Young openly expressed his love of the traveling to students and encouraged them to learn about international photography.

“It was a wonderful privilege to have met these people with my camera. Like for many photos, the people in these still live in my memory,” Young said. “I wish for students to be able to have an experience as diverse as mine, too.”

All 42 of Young’s photos on display are available for purchase with proceeds to benefit the international scholarships at the College. The cost per photo is $30 for the general public and $15 for students.

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