"a series of small gestures" #8 at the Smart Museum of Art: "Kind eyes" by Susan Feldt

Mar 2, 2021

The Smart Museum of Art
proudly presents 

a series of small gestures

A University of Chicago student engagement program designed and managed by Aaron Wilder

"gesture" #8, March 2, 2021:

Kind eyes
by Susan Feldt, Pritzker School of Medicine MD Candidate, Class of 2022


a series of small gestures, a student engagement program inspired by the Smart Museum of Art's exhibition Take Care and sponsored by the Feitler Center for Academic Inquiry is now in its 8th week. For each of the ten weeks of the University of Chicago's Winter Quarter 2021, we will be featuring a short video meditating on the theme of care by a University of Chicago student on both the Smart Museum’s Instagram and website.

Week eight of a series of small gestures features a video by Pritzker School of Medicine MD candidate Susan Feldt, class of 2022, Kind eyes: “Taking care of patients looks different now. But as students who just started clinical work, pandemic healthcare is all we know. Before we enter a patient’s room, we put on our PPE and try to put down the weight of the work and the world. We do this because we are there to take care of them. But any relationship, even a provider-patient relationship, is in its nature reciprocal, a connection between two people. We can’t leave ourselves outside of the room, and through our PPE, they can still see us. Whether conscious or not, sometimes a patient says something that lifts a bit of that weight off. And that makes the next day easier. These are some of those stories.”

About a series of small gestures:

Inspired by the Smart Museum of Art’s exhibition Take Care, the Feitler Center for Academic Inquiry invited University of Chicago students to submit proposals for short videos reflecting on the questions of how we care for ourselves and each other.

Through each of the ten weeks of Winter Quarter 2021, a student’s video reflecting on the theme of care will be “released” on the Smart Museum’s Instagram account. Over the course of the quarter, each of these ten “small gestures” of care will be accumulated on the Smart Museum of Art's website with information about the student and a short description of their project.

Student proposals were reviewed by a panel of jurors comprising the following Smart Museum staff: 

  • Nicole Bond, Lead Museum Educator who has created and led educational programs for a variety of audiences with many exhibitions at the Smart Museum, including Take Care;
  • Jennifer Carty, Associate Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art, who co-curated the exhibition Take Care;
  • Berit Ness, Assistant Curator of Academic Initiatives, who co-curated the exhibition Take Care;
  • Erik Peterson, Manager of Family Programs & Student Engagement, who works with University of Chicago students through many co-curricular programs including the Smart Museum’s Student Advisory Committee;
  • and Aaron Wilder, Academic Engagement Coordinator, who works with University of Chicago students through the various internship programs at the Smart Museum as well as through academic programs sponsored by the Feitler Center for Academic Inquiry, such as a series of small gestures.

In addition to the jurors above, this project is heavily indebted to critical contributions made by:

  • Aneesah Ettress, Curatorial & Academic Engagement Intern;
  • Issa Lampe, Deputy Director for Academic & Curatorial Affairs and Director of the Feitler Center for Academic Inquiry;
  • C.J. Lind, Associate Director of Communications;
  • and Yue “Cherry” Ying, Academic Engagement Undergraduate Research Associate.

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