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Artist and writer to host free lectures and workshops focusing on the intersection of art and ecology

Thursday, February 01, 2018

LAWRENCE— Renowned eco-artist, author, educator, curator and homesteader Linda Weintraub will host free public talks and workshops during her four-day visit to the University of Kansas next month. 

“Linda’s exhaustive ecological creative practice and research gleaned from hundreds of interviews and visits with artists from all over the world make her a leading expert in the eco-art genre,” said Matt Burke, associate professor of visual art and environmental studies. “Her research and work are more important now than ever, and we are incredibly lucky to have her on campus.”

Eco-art is so broad and diverse a topic, Weintraub has written books trying to define it. But in its most basic form, eco-art is an urgent call to action with regard to creativity and human relationship to the environment.  

Weintraub’s talks and workshops will reflect the message of her upcoming book, “What’s Next? Eco-Materialism and Contemporary Art,” which explores sensory engagements with the Earth.

“Art & Ecology”
March 6, 3-4 p.m.
Brousseau Learning Center, Spencer Art Museum
Weintraub discusses contemporary artists who attempt to reinvigorate contemporary lives with the pleasures and insights that emerge from intimate sensory exchanges with materials.

“Panoramas & Dioramas: Culture of Display in 19th Century Art & Science”
March 7, 4-5 p.m.
Natural History Museum, KU
Weintraub looks at how humans’ relationship to the natural world has changed over the past 100 years since the founding of the Natural History Museum.

“What’s Next? Contemporary Art, Ecology & Material Archetypes”
March 8, 4-5:30 p.m.  
The Commons, KU
What is the fate of Earth’s living systems? Weintraub will present the ecological implications of seven archetypes as they are expressed by contemporary artists. A reception will immediately follow in the Kansas Union Gallery.

Student Art Exhibition
March 9, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Earth, Energy & Environment Center, KU
Explore an interactive art experience that invites visitors to engage their senses with foraged materials by touching, observing and smelling. Free and open to the public.

Weintraub will conduct five workshops with art and environmental studies students at KU. They will create two exhibitions made of natural materials displayed on campus. “Welcome to My Woods” opens at the Student Union Gallery in the Kansas Memorial Union, March 8. “Art and Ecology” will be featured at the Beren Conference Center in the new Earth, Energy and Environment Center on March 9 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Weintraub is a curator, educator, artist and author of several popular books about contemporary art. She has earned her reputation by making the outposts of vanguard art accessible to broad audiences. She believes the current vanguard is propelled by environmental consciousness that is not only the defining characteristic of contemporary manufacturing, architecture, science, ethics, politics and philosophy, it is delineating contemporary art. Weintraub is also the director of Artnow Publications, an enterprise devoted to applying ecological parameters for the material production of books produced using environmentally responsible processes. She applies these environmental concerns to her personal life by managing a sustainable homestead in Rhinebeck, New York, where she practices permaculture. Weintraub received her Master of Fine Arts from Rutgers University.

Weintraub’s visit is part of the Department of Visual Art's Visiting Artist Series. The department hosts many artists throughout the year who provide valuable interaction with KU students as well as meaningful lectures on their creative practice.

Co-sponsors for Weintraub’s visit include the visual art department, KU Environmental Studies Program, The Commons, Natural History Museum, The Spencer Museum of Art, The Land Institute/Ecosphere Studies, The Center for Sustainability, KU School of the Arts, KU College, KU Department of Geology and the Earth, Energy & Environment Center.


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