CHARLOTTE, N.C. – An exhibition with postcards to the winner of the 2020 presidential election is on display at the UNC Charlotte Center City.
Sheryl Oring, an artist, is behind the "I Wish to Say Project". As part of it, Oring travels around the country hosting events during which she asks people to dictate a postcard to the next president.
She started the project in 2004 with the goal of understanding the views of ordinary people.
The professor and chair of the James Pearson Duffy Department of Art and Art History at Wayne State University in Detroit uses a manual typewriter for the postcards.
“The typewriter draws people in and it brings people from my desk, in a different way than if it were a microphone or a computer,” Oring says.
In early March, Oring visited the UNC Charlotte campus on two days asking students to send a message to the winner of the 2020 presidential election. UNC Charlotte’s College of Arts and Architecture hosted Oring.
“It was important to me to engage young people, to engage students,” Oring says.
Both students and staff participated. Many of the postcards focused on issues important to voters, including affordable healthcare, housing for the homeless, and support for students.
“Food stamps for students. That’s a hard one to read. It makes you really aware some of on the edge some of the students are living,” Oring says.
Nearly 40 postcards for President Donald Trump or Democratic National Nominee Joe Biden are part of the "No Redactions Exhibition" at the Projective Eye Gallery in the Dubois Center at UNC Charlotte Center City. Some of the messages were also displayed on digital billboards in and around Uptown Charlotte.
“Maybe seeing all these messages from people in different places might cause someone to be reflective and just think about what matters to them and maybe act on it in some way,” Oring says.
In addition, he hopes students can also understand their importance.
“I hope students feel their voice matters. That’s one of the reasons I keep doing this,” Oring says.
The original postcards from UNC Charlotte students and staff will be mailed to the White House after the presidential inauguration.
The exhibition also includes messages sent to President Trump in the past. It will be on display at least through January 8.