Oh! The Places You'll Go - UMMA Senior Send Off

UMMA Staff Send-off UMICH Seniors With Selections From The Museum's Collection

Line A-C

Bucky Schwartz, "Line A-C", 1971, mixed media, wool on canvas, Gift in honor of Dr. E. Bryce and Harriet Alpern, by their children, 2012/1.220

They say, after you've earned your degree,
"The path of life is clear, you'll see!"
But experience isn't a straight line from A to B,
Rather, it is a winding trajectory,
Learn from the detours and soon you'll agree,
Life is a wonderful journey from A to C.

- Jennifer Friess
Assistant Curator of Photography

They'll tell you that life is a path you must plan out
And follow deliberately to point B from point A.
But there might be complications along the way.
And plenty of time to play.
When you arrive you might see,
You've really gone from point A to Point C.

- David Choberka
Curator for University Learning and Programs

White Front

Josef Albers, "White Front", 1958, oil on masonite, museum purchase, 1958/2.72

Can you hear opportunity knock? Now is the time to break out of your box! Set out to do more. You're free to explore!

- Angela Stranyak
Freelance Graphic Designer


Jean-Michel Basquiat, "Mother©", 1981, crayon on paper, Gift of Arthur Cohen in honor of Ben and Yetta Cohen, 1985/2.19

From some you will hear that life is a ladder,
And the climb to the top is the singular matter.

But I say, think of life like a web you can weave,
Moving in all directions, some you can't even conceive.

By giving yourself the freedom to try,
you know you'll live greatly, the odds you'll defy.

- Jim Leija
Deputy Director for Public Experience and Learning

Ganesha, seated on a double lotus throne

Unknown (Indonesian), "Ganesha, seated on a double lotus throne", ca. 11th Century, andesite (volcanic stone), museum purchase, 1957/2.56

The obstacles you will meet
Treat them like friends you’d like to greet

There is something to learn
in every twist and turn

Remember! The nature of things will change
What seems a failure is yours to rearrange

Begin again and start anew
Be true to yourself whatever you do!

- Lisa Borgsdorf
Manager of Public Programs

Mud Cracks

Brett Weston, "Mud Cracks", 1977, gelatin silver print on paper, gift of two friends of the museum, 1993/2.54

You have such good intentions - to patch the broken, to mend the hole
Keep these idealistic visions - to heal the sick, to find your role

Your years of study and of training
Have prepared you for the draining tasks ahead

But also remember, we’re not perfect porcelain vases.
We’re well-intentioned human faces
Who will try our best and sometimes fall.
With a nod to Leonard Cohen, please recall:

“Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything.

That’s how the light gets in.”

- Grace VanderVliet
Curator for Museum Teaching and Learning


Jirí Kubovy, "Untitled", 20th Century, Paper and aluminum foil collage, gift of the artist, 1990/2.6

Looking over the edge out into the abyss you may ask yourself "How?" or "Why?"
I am here to offer you reassurance, my friend, it is now time to fly.

Life will throw punches, voices will say "I can't. You can't. It's hard, too hard."
Pay them no attention, follow your dreams, forget what you hear.
Do not make decisions based on fear.

You are in charge of your destiny, of your happiness and success. Not money, not others, not material things.
You've worked long and hard for this moment now take the leap and spread your wings.

- Briannon Cierpilowski
Education Program Coordinator, Student Engagement

Standing Figure

Alberto Giacometti, "Standing Figure", 1957, bronze, museum purchase, 1958/1.137

You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And you are the one who’ll decide where to go.

- Justin Reash
Associate Director of Development, Major Gifts