A FASCINATING art exhibition challenges the negative connotations surrounding use of the word gay.

Entitled Gay, it runs until Tuesday at the Southend campus of South Essex College.

The artists involved are Level 3 fine art students.

One of these is Charlie Atkins, who explores how minimalism in the Sixties challenged ways of thinking about art. He uses the idea to approach the same concept about the word gay.

He said: “We want to show people there are lots of different meanings to the word. We want to take on prejudice by encouraging equality and diversity.

“A great example of this is shown in the work of one of the artists who has used plaster blocks.

“The way they were made was the same, but the way they dried meant they came out different. They have been hung from the ceiling and look great, with the light shining on them.”

Many methods and materials, including photography, sculpture, print, painting and video, have been used to create the “unique’’ pieces in the show, Course tutor Andrew Graves said: “The group has a strong sense of social justice. This exhibition is evidence of how it has challenged preconceptions, worked as a team and also individually taken a journey.”

The exhibition is open to the public in the first floor gallery at the S campus in Luker Road.

To get in, ask at the reception desk in the college.