Duane Bonifer  |  Published April 05, 2022

Showing the ‘AFTR MATH’ of Drunken Driving

Emily Henson’s art installation sends a powerful message about drunken driving’s consequences by combining a junked car, red Solo Cups and used alcohol beverage cans.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – For the final project in her art class, Monmouth College student Emily Henson ’23 created an installation that is both provocative and arresting in showing the aftermath of drunken driving.

Henson, a business major and art minor from Geneseo, Illinois, turned 230 cans and cups and a Pontiac Vibe from an area junkyard into a statement about the perils and consequences of drunken driving.

Henson installed the piece, AFTR MATH, on the College’s Campus Quadrangle on Tuesday morning. The work – which was part of an assignment for art professor Stacy Lotz’s “Sculpture: Multiples & Installations” class – will be on display for 48 hours.

The 230 alcohol cans and red Solo Cups – which are held together by fishing line – represent the number of U.S. kids who have been killed this year in drunken driving accidents.

“I was just going through things I could use one day, and I came upon wine corks,” said Henson. “Then I just started thinking about alcohol and I was like, ‘Oh, drunk driving – that’s a very serious matter.’ So I came up with this idea.”

Lotz said that when Henson discussed the idea of creating a piece that dealt with drunken driving with classmates, someone suggested that she “get a car.”

“I don’t even know who said it, but someone said, ‘You ought to get a car,’” said Lotz. “And then Emily’s eyes got really big, and she said, ‘I can get a car.’ The next thing you know, she’s getting a car and making all the contacts on campus to get it here.”

Henson’s boyfriend, Tylor Miller ’22 of Galesburg, Illinois, helped her acquire a junked car from an area junkyard.

“We got to damage it up a little bit for the project,” she said.

Henson added red Solo Cups and “dumpster dived” to collect used alcohol beverage cans. She strung together 115 red Solo Cups and 115 cans with fishing line, then attached them to the car’s steering wheel where they spilled over the driver’s seat and onto the ground.

“I came up with the idea of stringing them to the steering wheel to represent that those are the things that are controlling the driving rather than the person,” said Henson.

Lotz said that Henson’s final project is a “fabulous piece.”

And Henson said that creating the installation has been a good experience.

“I’m just thankful that I got the opportunity to do it. It’s really impactful, I think,” she said.

Emily Henson '23 of Geneseo, Illinois, makes adjustments to her installation AFTR MATH, which s...

Emily Henson ’23 of Geneseo, Illinois, makes adjustments to her installation “AFTR MATH,” which she created for her “Sculpture: Multiples & Installations” class.

Back to News & Events

Did you know?

  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College has an active Pipe & Drum Band. Each year on Scholar’s Day in April the bagpipers wake students up at 6:00 a.m. by playing in the residence halls!</p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/academics/music/pipe-band/" target="_blank">Pipe Band</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> 98% of Monmouth graduates were employed or enrolled in graduate school within six months of graduation.</p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/wackerle-center/career-services/" target="_blank">Career Preparation</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> We offer a certified Peace Corps Preparation program that gives Peace Corps bound graduates a leg up in the application process.</p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/academics/peace-corps-prep/" target="_blank">Peace Corps Prep</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p><strong>Monmouth College is the birthplace of the women’s fraternity movement. Pi Beta Phi, the first such collegiate women’s organization, was founded at Monmouth in 1867. It was followed three years later by Kappa Kappa Gamma. The two pioneering organizations today boast a total of 275 active chapters nationwide.</strong></p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/student-life/sororities-fraternities/" target="_blank">Sororities & Fraternities</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College covers the cost for all current students to get a U.S. passport. Unlock access to over 198 different countries! We’ll even help with the paperwork :)</p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/academics/study-abroad/" target="_blank">Study Abroad</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> 99% of Monmouth students received some type of scholarship or financial assistance.</p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/offices/student-financial-planning/types-of-aid/scholarships/" target="_blank">Scholarships</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College is proudly test optional. Applicants may choose whether or to submit SAT or ACT scores for admission and scholarship consideration. </p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/admission/apply/test-optional/" target="_blank">Test Optional</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College has an educational garden and 6.7 acre farm. Students grow and harvest fruits and vegetables to sell at the local farmer’s market. </p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_urls"><a href="https://monmouthcollege.edu/academics/only-at-monmouth/educational-garden-farm/" target="_blank">Garden & Farm</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> We’re no stranger to winning. Last year the Fighting Scots won Midwest Conference championships in Football, Women’s Soccer, Women’s Basketball and Men’s Track and Field. </p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_urls"><a href="https://monmouthscots.com/" target="_blank">Fighting Scots</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College offers several international trips each year during 2-week Scots Terms in January and May. Recently students have traveled to Botswana, Greece, Scotland, Japan, and more. </p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_urls"><a href="https://monmouthcollege.edu/offices/global-engagement/" target="_blank">Scots Term</a></li></ul></div></aside>
  • <aside class="factoid-item"><div class="factoid-item-text"><p> Monmouth College offers unique academic minors in Global Public Health and Global Food Security for students who want to use their education to address global challenges. </p></div><div class="factoid-item-links"><ul><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/academics/global-public-health/" target="_blank">Global Public Health</a></li><li class="lw_related_page"><a href="/academics/global-food-security/" target="_blank">Global Food Security</a></li></ul></div></aside>