We have all encountered the standard demographic survey with its instructions to "Check one: African American, Hispanic, White," and so on. But for those who do not fall neatly into any of these categories, there is only the least inclusive, most alienating category--"Other." To spotlight and celebrate the ever-growing diversity of the American family, photographer Gigi Kaeser and writer Peggy Gillespie of Amherst, Massachusetts, have created an ambitious, award-winning photograph-text exhibition, Of Many Colors: Portraits of Multiracial Families.
This touring exhibition, created by the award-winning Family Diversity Projects of Amherst, will run at the Student Art Gallery in Blanchard Campus Center from March 2 through March 13.
Of Many Colors has visited universities, public schools (K-12), houses of worship, community centers, galleries, museums, and conferences since 1994. Of Many Colors tells the stories of 20 families who have bridged the racial divide through interracial relationships or adoption. In a world where race is considered by many to be a formidable barrier between people, the families in this exhibition are celebrated as twentieth-century pioneers willing to risk disapproval and misunderstanding to find richness and value in diversity. These families have much to say about the most intimate form of integration: family love.
Of Many Colorsis designed to be used by educators, diversity groups, human resources professionals, parents, students, religious leaders, librarians, and all people interested in bringing issues of diversity to their community.
The book, Of Many Colors, has also been published by the University of Massachusetts Press with a forward by Teaching Tolerancemagazine editor Glenda Valentine. The book is available in paperback and hardbound editions and includes complete text and photographs of more than 20 families, along with a comprehensive diversity resource guide.