Cancer research internship leads to photography exhibition in Borland

February 20, 2012

"The Gilded and the Faded," an exhibition featuring photographs by Luke Brezovec, a sophomore at Penn State majoring in integrative arts and biochemistry, will run Feb. 20 to March 2, in the Borland Gallery, Room 125, on the University Park campus. Gallery hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday. There will a free public reception in the gallery from 3 to 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 24.

While participating in a summer 2011 cancer research internship in Germany, Brezovec took thousands of photographs through an independent study with Katarin Parizek, assistant professor of art at Penn State. “Luke started out as one of my students in Photo 200, Introduction to Photography,” Parizek said. She saw a rare and dynamic thirst for knowledge. “Luke is an example of a typical gifted integrative arts student, majoring in biochemistry, molecular biology, neuroscience and photography. There is a lot of meaning behind each of his images.”

Parizek challenged Brezovec to explore multiple ways to see meaning beyond the standard tourist pictures, and he discovered abandoned spaces. “I focused on photographing abandoned and ruined buildings,” Brezovec said, “including an orphanage in Belgium, a Nazi military base overtaken by the Russians outside Potsdam, the Berlin Wall, a soap factory in the heart of Berlin, and a tuberculosis hospital that treated Hitler in Belitz, Germany.”

A native of State College, Pa., Brezovec discovered his talent for photography in high school. He received the Clare Fund Visual Arts Scholarship in 2010. While research in biochemistry is his major focus, Brezovec acknowledges the benefits of studying photography. “Besides sharpening my creativity, photography broadens my perspective and instills me with maturity and awareness of my community and my world.”

Brezovec has future exhibitions scheduled in the Student Health Center, March 17 to May 7, and the Vice President’s Office in Old Main, May 2-Sept. 9.

  • Luke Brezovec

    IMAGE: Penn State

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Last Updated February 22, 2012