If you've been in the Joseph F. Smith Building on BYU campus, you may be familiar with the beautiful spiral staircase that forms a focal point for the first few floors at the front of the building. What you may not know is that the beautiful photo gallery at the base of that staircase—called the Education in Zion gallery—hosts exhibits that are put on by the Kennedy Center and are made up of photos taken by BYU students on international study programs.
The Kennedy Center has planned and provided the photos for this exhibit for several years; previous themes included "Fernweh," a German word often translated as "Wanderlust." The theme for the exhibit for the 2022–2023 school year is "The Global Religious Experience," which is also the topic of the fall 2022 Kennedy Center lecture series.
The photos feature structures and worshippers from faith traditions across the world; all photos were taken by BYU students on international study programs in the last decade. This focus on student photography is what makes the gallery special, says Emma Squire, a photography major at BYU and the Kennedy Center's photographer: "What I like about highlighting student photos," she says, "is that they generally have more of a human connection in them than many stock photos do and therefore feel more personal."
The exhibit will open next month. It is located in the basement of the JFSB and can be viewed any time the building is open.
—Emily Nelson, 30 June 2022