CSUSB’s Art Department hosted an open reception and scholarship fundraiser on Feb. 13 at 5 p.m. in the Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art (RAFFMA) honoring the life and work of alumnus Gabriel Luis Acosta.
On Sept. 14, 2013, Acosta died tragically at the age of 46 due to a sudden brain aneurysm.
The Gabriel Luis Acosta: Path of Life exhibit consists of 25 photographs from the past 15 years of Acosta’s work, as well as work done by friends and Acosta’s fellow photographers.
The featured exhibition was open from Feb. 8 through Feb. 20.
The show was held not only to honor Acosta’s life work but to also start an endowed scholarship to remember Gabriel and support future students who share Acosta’s talent and desire for photography.
The photos available for purchase include Acosta’s work as a photojournalist for the San Bernardino Sun and Riverside Magazine, as well as some of his more personal work while traveling the world to places such as the Amazon River and Mexico on missionary trips.
Acosta graduated from CSUSB in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in art.
According to The Press-Enterprise, Acosta was hired as a part-time photo lab technician at The San Bernardino Sun in 1991.
He became a full-time photographer a few years later and went on to become an award-winning photographer with the Inland chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and the California Newspaper Photographers Association.
Acosta’s mentor and former CSUSB art professor, Sant Khalsa said, “The photographs demonstrate Acosta’s outstanding photo-journalistic documentary style, which uses vibrant color and dynamic formal composition to create its visual impact.”
Khalsa continued, “When I got a call from the San Bernardino Sun asking if I could recommend someone for a lab technician job, Gabriel was the first one that came to mind.”
Photographs by Acosta were being sold for $150 a print, while photographs by friends of Acosta’s were sold for $100.
All profits will go support the CSUSB Art Department’s “Gabriel Luis Acosta Memorial Scholarship in Photography.”
Memorial T-shirts with his name and the image of a camera with wings can also be purchased at GLAPhoto.Spreadshirt.com.
Donation slips to support the scholarship fund could also be filled out in any amount.
Acosta’s memory will live on through his friends, family, and especially his photography.
On Sept. 13, the day before his death, Gabriel left this final tweet, “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11.”