Senior Spotlight highlights youth and elders in the communities of Lyons (pop. 851) and Decatur (pop. 481), Nebraska.
This is an ongoing project at Lyons-Decatur Northeast School in Lyons, NE.
Each year, senior students connect with local senior citizens to learn about each others lives. Senior students interview and create a portrait of a senior citizen. From their conversations, students write narratives about the lives of the senior citizens they’ve spent time with.
Students fundraise to purchase large scale professional prints of the portraits and narratives they create. Through a collaboration with local building owners, students install these works along street-facing storefront windows of Main Street Lyons. A public outdoor reception is had each year to view these works and share conversations between youth and senior citizens.
Each winter, these works are also displayed at the Decatur Sears Center, a community center and art gallery in Decatur, NE. A similar public reception is shared there as well.
This digital archive is part of a project to preserve the stories and portraits created over time.
Senior Spotlight is currently facilitated by LDNE government teacher and principal Weston Swanson along with Lyons artist Jamie Horter. The project was co-created by Jamie Horter and former teacher and school principal Derek Lahm.
This website, along with a book publication of the same works, is made possible thanks to generous support from:
Mid-America Arts Alliance
National Endowment for the Arts