A photograph by Lily Davis will be on display in the museum’s 14th annual Juried Exhibition, Dreamscapes, from Sept. 28 to March 1, 2020.
An aspiring writer, Davis was surprised to have been selected for the MOPA show.
“My work inside an exhibition is something I never imagined,” said Davis, adding she’s always loved photography “but never thought I was good enough. Truth be told, my idea was at the last minute … I have always dreamed of winning a writing contest, but never dreamed of being part of a photography exhibition. It feels almost unreal to be a part of something bigger than yourself.”
“The youth exhibition is an annual program for 100 young people in San Diego and Tijuana to show their work in a theme collection with a powerful perspective,” said Joaquin Ortiz, MOPA’s director of innovation.
Of Davis’ work, Ortiz said: “Lily’s piece really stands out. She’s very creative in her approach using water, which is very introspective, self-reflective photography, offering something of her inner world, and how she thinks about the world.”
Davis’ introduction to MOPA was through her sophomore year multimedia teacher.
“He gave us a challenge, that if someone from our class was able to get our photo inside the exhibition, he would take us on a field trip in our junior year,” she said, adding being chosen felt really special after she learned that “only 100 photos were chosen out of almost 900.”
She credits her teacher for her success, but admitted she had a little bit to do with it too.
“My teacher taught me more on how to use a camera,” Davis said. “So I taught myself more what photography means to me, because it means something different to everyone.”
Ortiz said student work in the exhibition will be hung in a museum display along with touch screen monitors displaying nine videos on student submittals. “Also we’ll be having some really new LED light-up displays featuring student artwork, offering a chance for photo ops for our visitors to take interesting photos based on the work of the students in the show,” he said. “We like to have interactive elements to our exhibits.”
Ortiz said a six-person panel, including himself, as well as a community leader, a professor and a neuroscientist, selected among the 875 digital submissions received for this year’s student show.
“Every year we have a theme for the exhibition, and this year we chose the theme of dreams because there are so many ways of interpreting that,” Ortiz said. “It’s a very open-ended idea that allows students to be very creative.”
Student photos in the exhibit will be accompanied by a statement from the artist that offers “a peak into what the student was thinking when they made the work,” Ortiz said.