Gene Rosa, center, with visiting school children at WSU Museum of Art.
 
More than 2,000 people in the past month have viewed the exhibition “Chris Jordan: Running the Numbers” at the WSU Museum of Art, and thousands more are expected.
 
An endowment established by faculty member Eugene Rosa funds the Buy-a-Busload-of-Kids Program, which has brought in several hundred students from area schools, with at least 1,000 more scheduled over the next month.
  
 
“The Museum of Art is incredibly fortunate and grateful to have a supporter like Eugene Rosa,” said Anna-Maria Shannon, associate director. “Because of his generosity and dedication to arts education, he has established the Luigi Gastaldo and Flora Brevette Rosa Endowment.”
 
 
“Many people find art, especially abstract or provocative art, intimidating,” Rosa said. This may even be more true of those who, by virtue of rural residence, have little or no exposure to the great museums clustered and distanced from them in urban areas.
 
“The best place to address this intimidation, the place to enliven the wonderment of great art, the place to plant the seeds of recognition that every great civilization has cherished the arts and science simultaneously is, I believe, in the minds of youngsters,” he said. “I am pleased to play a small part in the wonderful tradition of bringing youngsters to the WSU Museum of Art.”
 
 
The museum seeks additional funding, like that given by Rosa and by faculty members Pat and Elizabeth Siler, so as many schools as possible can participate.

“I think the Jordan exhibition is the kind of thing that really connects with students. The art itself is fascinating and interesting; that it enlightens difficult-to-grasp concepts is just a wonderful bonus,” said Paul Strum, superintendent of Pullman School District.