Expressing Truth Through Art
On the very last day for submissions to PCCC’s 9th Annual Juried Students Art Exhibit this spring, Ibn Carter decided to enter his digital work, “Can’t Get thRu.”
A few weeks later, his piece was judged “Best in Show” out of more than 50 works in the exhibition. “That was the first art show I ever entered, and I am very grateful,” says Ibn, who won the top prize of one hundred dollars.
Ibn graduates with an Associate in Applied Science Degree in Graphic Design as well as a Career Certificate in Video Production.
Passionate about art since childhood, Ibn he says he is fascinated by the practice of finding a visual way to express a concept, and he believes in the power of art to address issues of social justice and equality.
“It’s important to me to be true to myself, and to use art to express truth,” says Ibn, but he also believes that people need to express truth to each other and to listen respectfully to one another.
“My parents always told me that you can never be too smart,” he says, meaning that we can always learn from others and should be open to doing so.
The Paterson resident was a high achieving student throughout his school years. When he graduated from International High School, Ibn received a Presidential Scholarship to attend Bloomfield College, but turned it down because he had no means of transportation to that school.
His mother had attended PCCC in the past to study radiography and suggested that Ibn apply to the College, which was close to home.
“When my parents give advice, they always say “We will never do anything to hurt you,” says Ibn, so he took the advice of his mom and is glad he did.
“I’ve had a wonderful experience at PCCC,’ says Ibn. “The people here are very open and the professors and advisors are very interactive.”
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Ibn had a mostly virtual college experience, but found his studies stimulating and enlightening.
“I really liked my western civilization class and learning about the development of societies and cultures,” says Ibn. Another favorite course was Art History where he appreciated the “thought provoking discussions and debates.”
Attracted to the Expressionist period, Ibn favors the art of German painter Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, whose work, he says, “shows life in the city as distorted.”
A multi-talented artist, Ibn enjoys music technology and rapping and is also an entrepreneur, creating uniquely dyed tank tops that he sells on Instagram. “I love that art is so wide,” he says.
In his final semester at PCCC, Ibn worked with the Marketing and Communications department to voice a commercial for the College and also auditioned successfully for a play.
“That wasn’t my first time acting,” says Ibn. He was often cast in elementary school productions and even played Martin Luther King in pre-school. “My mother talks about that all the time,” he says, laughing.
For now, though, Ibn plans to transfer to Berkeley College to continue his education in graphic design. “I have to focus first on a graphic design career to be true to myself and my art. Then I’ll see what the future holds.”