The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

UI alum’s exhibit ‘Innerconnectivity I’ displays PTSD visibility

This exploratory exhibition at Public Space One Close House runs until Nov. 4.
University+of+Iowa+BFA+student+Kenzi+Rayelles+solo+exhibition+Interconnectivity+is+seen+at+Public+Space+One+in+Iowa+City+on+Oct.+18%2C+2023.+The+exhibition+is+a+series+of+expansive+installations+featuring+large+abstract+sculptures+and+will+run+from+Oct.+13+to+Nov.+4.
Lua Rasga
University of Iowa BFA student Kenzi Rayelle’s solo exhibition “Interconnectivity” is seen at Public Space One in Iowa City on Oct. 18, 2023. The exhibition is a series of expansive installations featuring large abstract sculptures and will run from Oct. 13 to Nov. 4.

Kenzi Rayelle has always admired the grotesque. Her favorite movies growing up were “Nightmare Before Christmas” and “Beetlejuice.” Nothing about her spirit has changed.

“Innerconnectivity I,” her most recent exhibit, is open at Public Space One Close House in Iowa City until Nov. 4 and displays the feelings of familial trauma through sculpture. Rayelle said this exhibit helped her process what love really means.

“I didn’t know what unapologetic love meant. I didn’t know what it meant to unapologetically love myself,” Rayelle said. “I didn’t know what it meant to allow people in my life at all.”

The exhibit served as a nine-month process of healing for Rayelle’s inner child. She said this exhibit makes pain prettier, or more presentable. Lining the insides of the PS1 Close House are almost miles of sculpted organs presented in Baroque picture frames.

“Trauma is withheld in the body, and it was this natural transition to use my internal parts to show that hurt, that presence, and to show that narrative and that connection with my past selves,” Rayelle said.

Rayelle said developing the exhibit was a powerful and visceral experience for her. She said the sculptures are directly linked to a memory of trauma for Rayelle. This exhibit is deeply personal and aims to amplify post-traumatic stress disorder visibility, she said.

“I’m telling my story and these experiences that just don’t even sometimes do it justice or how intense these moments were truly,” Rayelle said. “I really hope that some of that healing energy comes across.”

Rayelle graduated from the University of Iowa in 2021 with a bachelor’s in fine arts in printmaking. She relocated to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she works as a marketing manager and designer at Milwaukee Sculpture, a contemporary arts nonprofit dedicated to making art accessible.

“I think it’s so crucial for everyone to be able to witness and experience other people’s emotions, shared viewpoints, and everything else in between,” Rayelle said.

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About the Contributors
Zhenya Loughney, Arts Reporter
(they/them/theirs)
Zhenya is a fourth year theatre design and journalism double major at UI. They are passionate about artistry and creativity. They are from Lebanon, KY.
Lua Rasga, Photojournalist
(she/her/hers)
Lua Rasga is a fourth-year student at the University of Iowa majoring in Cinematic Arts. She’s a photojournalist for The Daily Iowan. She comes from Sao Paulo, Brazil with previous experience in filmmaking.