OWU symposium to explore art, environment


Ohio Wesleyan University is hosting a free daylong environment and art symposium titled “Tempest: Poetry, Music and Art for a Regenerative Earth.”

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, in the Benes Rooms inside Ohio Wesleyan’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., Delaware. Attendees are invited to attend all or part of the symposium.

“We will dig into how the arts can engage us with closer listening, historical exploration into the roots of our environmental crisis, and offer us a mirror not only for looking backwards, but inward and toward a transformed future as well,” say Tempest organizers Laurie Anderson, OWU professor of Biological Sciences and Environment & Sustainability; Kristina Bogdanov, OWU professor of Fine Arts; and Terry Hermsen, Otterbein University professor emeritus of English.

The symposium schedule includes:

• 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. – “Mapping 500 Years of History,” in Benes Room A.

• 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. – “500 Years in Perspective – History, Poetry, Music,” an open panel discussion featuring Chilean poet Christian Formoso, musician Jim Bates of The Early Interval ensemble, and environmental historian (and former OWU faculty member) Ellen Arnold, in Benes Room B. Formoso will read from his masterpiece, “The Most Beautiful Cemetery in Chile,” and reflect on the legacy of the Strait of Magellan as it has shaped 500 years of history. Arnold will discuss early European visions of the love of nature, set against the exploitation of the planet in the 15th, 16th, and 17th centuries and beyond. And Bates will look at the music of that time through the same lens.

• 12:30-1:30 p.m. – Lunch and discussion, in Benes Room C. Lunch seating is limited, and pre-registration is required at www.owu.edu/tempest.

• 2-3 p.m. – “The Visual Arts and Social and Environmental Change” panel discussion featuring Camila Querin, a scholar of Brazilian political art, and Sarah Hahn, Ohio Wesleyan visiting artist, in Benes Room B. Querin will explore works engaging ecological destruction and contemporary pieces from indigenous artists. Hahn will discuss the sculpture she is creating for campus around themes of sustainability.

• 3:30-4:30 p.m. – “It Sounds Like Love,” listening to seeds, featuring French-American artist Cadine Navarro, in Benes Room A. Navarro will involve the audience with listening to the voices of prairie seeds, as well as her new exploration of “the voices of maize” in Mexico.

• 5-6 p.m. – Dinner and discussion, in Benes Room C. Dinner seating is limited, and pre-registration is required at www.owu.edu/tempest.

• 7-8 p.m. – Concert with The Early Interval ensemble, a performance of medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque music on period instruments (and a wind machine!), and a poetry reading by the Tempest Poets, a Central, Ohio-based group that writes about the environment, in Benes Room B.

Books by the presenters will be available for purchase after the performance.

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