"I believe that it is important to support and promote aesthetic appreciation and creative expression. I also believe that a College Union should be a place where students can display their artworks. There are actually many student pieces on display in the College Union. The "Banana Man," as it has affectionately become known as, is a piece that pops." - Chip Matthews
Below is the artist statement of Gen Sato, a 2008 graduate, who titled his piece, "Things We Take With Us."
"A large portion of our personalities consists of a collection of idiosyncrasies; many of which are derived from childhood. One may assume that these individual quirks are relatively insignificant but a closer analysis proves they are in fact quite meaningful. Our mannerisms, habits, and obsessions make us who we are and have the ability to link the past to the present. The sculpture in this exhibit was inspired by my father, Haruo Sato. Growing up in Japan, my dad developed a passion for bananas. He loved the fruit but because they had to be imported to the island, they were quite expensive and considered a delicacy. When asked by his parents what he wanted for this seventh birthday he replied, "Unlimited bananas." They proceeded to throw him a banana inspired celebration with banana milkshakes, pancakes, etc. He has carried this love into adulthood, convinced that any minor ailment can be cured by a bite of the delicious fruit. Though this obsession may seem silly, it is a huge part of who he is. It exists as a link between his childhood in Japan and his adult life here in America. The things we take with us are more important than one may think. They reveal a great deal about where we've come from and who we are today.
Special thanks to the Sato family, Lydia Sherrie, Mike Chimenti, and Dan Dezarn, without whom this show would not be possible."