Before I Die project

A visit to the Odgen Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans in May 2016 inspired Dr. Margarita Peraza-Rugeley to institute the Before I Die project on the Henderson State University campus. 

The installation was inspired by the book Before I Die by Candy Chang. The installation was held Oct. 31 through Nov. 1 to mark All Souls and All Saints Days.

Peraza-Rugeley used the installation as a class project for her Spanish I, Spanish III and Spanish Literature students.

“My interest in this project lies in the fact that I am concerned about the level of violence and aggression that permeates our contemporary society,” Peraza-Rugeley said. “So when I read about Chang’s effort to invite people to reflect on their lives and share their personal aspirations in public space, I was immediately convinced of its value to Henderson State and to Arkansas. I see it as an art installation that doubles as a social experiment that provides a place to share anonymously our natural concerns, as well as our hopes and love, in a written fashion and using the language that best suits us.”