The first floor of Penfield Library now hosts the "Hidden Women" art exhibit featuring student work.

Completed as a themed project by students in advanced illustration and graphic design classes, the portraits were inspired by the film and book “Hidden Figures.” Illustrators and designers were challenged to create portraits that celebrate and commemorate the contributions of Black women to American society. All the women featured in this exhibition worked to better the world around them, and many are only now starting to get the recognition they deserve.

One of the main characteristics of portraits in the exhibition is that they are meant to be more than just pictures of an individual’s appearance. These portraits are intended to commemorate their subjects and to capture each women’s personality as it connected to the work they were passionate about. Each poster was meant to show respect, celebrating each person’s life by acknowledging their contribution to society.

Environmental in nature, these portraits offer visual references that refer to the heart of their work. Illustrators could create portraits that feel candid or staged, but the picture needed to tell the story of these hidden women, many of whom were left out of the public narrative connected to their fields.

Participating illustrators and designers:

  • Brianna Beedy — Portrait of Dr. Mae Jemison
  • Alexander Case — Portrait of Octavia Estelle Butler
  • Alexis Cleveland — Portrait of Daisy Bates
  • Nicholas Cusack — Portrait of Mary Jackson
  • Kaileah Decker — Portrait of Katherine G. Johnson
  • Darian Deeley — Portrait of Josephine Baker
  • Cindy Dong — Portrait of Leontyne Price
  • Evelyn Frederickson — Portrait of Toni Morrison
  • Bethany Garcia — Portrait of Augusta Savage
  • Peter Gray — Portrait of Bessie Coleman
  • Lauren Jones — Portrait of Dorothy Vaughan
  • Murron Keating-Porcella — Portrait of Maya Angelou
  • Jacob Roden — Portrait of Patricia Bath
  • Jose Gomez — Portrait of Lisa Gelobter
  • Naija Sheppard — Portrait of Shirley Chisholm

-- Submitted by Penfield Library