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Exhibit

Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Portrait of Daniel Caminorreal in between loading groceries at Faith Family Church on Monday, April 6. His wife, Rosa Paez, and their 12-year-old son, Jason Delossantos, volunteered as a team. “It just feels really good giving back,” Jason said.

When the Museum of the Coastal Bend curator Heather Para began planning an exhibit featuring stories of Crossroads residents adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic, she didn’t anticipate still being in the middle of the pandemic when the show was set to open to the public.

Now, just days away from the start of the exhibit, which opens Thursday, community members are settling in to live with the coronavirus for the time being and have adjusted to an ongoing pandemic the world is faced with.

While the story is still being written, the temporary exhibit will feature documentation of how COVID-19 has affected our community through a collaboration with Victoria Advocate photographers, local photographer Bria Woods and artist Josh Vega.

“This is unprecedented; we’ve never had this before,” Para said. “This is a point in history that will not be forgotten. It’s new and unusual and clearly, we have to make note of it. And the best way to do it is to get everyone to tell their story and do the best we can in sharing it with everybody else.”

The show will include panels of still photographs and multimedia components as well as an interactive feature, with a mural created by Josh Vega of Free Art Victoria, where visitors can share their own personal stories.

A virtual reception will be available to watch on the museum’s YouTube channel at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, but people are encouraged to safely visit the temporary exhibit in person, which will be on display through the end of January.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Students find their seats during Calhoun High School’s graduation ceremony at Sandcrab Stadium on Friday, May 29. Students sat 6 feet apart during the ceremony.

“Everybody has a story and maybe those stories are a little similar,” Para said. “Maybe your neighbors are having the same difficulties or are wrestling with the same obstacles. There’s another opportunity to build more community that way.”

The exhibit touches on themes of how people are responding to the coronavirus pandemic not just physically, but also psychologically and spiritually.

The museum is also collaborating with the Victoria Regional History Center for the exhibit and will have small notecards with a link visitors can use to go online and share their own story.

“I want people in the community to see themselves reflected in this exhibit,” Para said about the goal of the exhibit.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Manuel F. Aguilar picks up desert roses for his wife on Saturday, May 9 at Devereux Gardens. "It's my mom's favorite," said his daughter, Maria Hudson.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Portrait of the Perez Family on their front porch. This image is part of a series titled “The Front Porch Project” started by Massachusetts-based photographer Cara Soulia. Local photographer Bria Woods took part in the project in Victoria.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Students of the University of Houston-Victoria stand for a portrait outside their dorm rooms. This image is part of a series titled “The Front Porch Project” started by Massachusetts-based photographer Cara Soulia. Local photographer Bria Woods took part in the project in Victoria.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Alex Dunlap, a registered nurse with Hospice of South Texas, puts on a face mask in front of a patient’s home on Friday, April 24. Dunlap keeps her personal protective equipment in the back of her car and puts it on outside before entering a patient’s home.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Customer Prax Flores, left, applies hand sanitizer before entering the H-E-B Plus! on North Navarro Street on Thursday, March 26.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Portrait of Chris Poncio, an employee of H-E-B, in front of the store on Rio Grande Street in Victoria.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

The Rev. Wade Powell, senior pastor at First United Methodist Church, adjusts the camera for Ryan Jenson, associate pastor, to record part of the church service on Tuesday, March 17 to post online. Many churches in Victoria decided to conduct services online to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Craig Olson pours a batch of hand sanitizer into 8-ounce bottles at Coastal Bend Distilling Company on Tuesday, March 31.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Servpro employee Derek Adams sprays the inside of Austin Street Baptist Church in Yoakum on Wednesday, May 6. Servpro has cleaned several churches and businesses using a specific chemical disinfecting agent that keeps surfaces clean for three months.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Korgen Ramirez stands on the tailgate of her brother’s truck and smiles as a parade of family and friends approaches her family’s home on Thursday, April 30 to celebrate her 8th birthday.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Portrait of the Sandoval Family on their porch. This image is part of a series titled “The Front Porch Project.” started by Massachusetts-based photographer Cara Soulia. Local photographer Bria Woods took part in the project in Victoria.

Exhibit Preview: Coronavirus at the Coastal Bend

Alexis Kincaid, left, and her brother Bayliss, color in a rainbow on a neighbor's driveway. At the end of March, Holly Kincaid decided to get out of the house with her two children to draw positive messages and symbols on their neighbors' driveways and sidewalks as part of the "chalk challenge." She felt it was a period to reflect on some important Bible verses during this unprecedented time.

Emree Weaver is the chief photographer at the Victoria Advocate. She can be reached at 361-580-6584 or eweaver@vicad.com.

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