Posts Tagged: Anna Davidson
How did the mayfly wind up on the flowering artichoke? Well, there's a body of water close by--our fish pond.
Speaking of fish--not the kind in our pond, though--the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program is hosting a LASER-UC Davis event on Thursday night, Dec. 4 and one of the speakers is Chris Dewees, retired marine fisheries specialist, who fuses art with science. His topic: "Passion for Fish: When East Meets West."
The LASER event, free and open to the public, is scheduled from 6:30 to 9 p.m. in the Room 3001 conference room of the Plant and Environmental Sciences (PES) Building, UC Davis campus. LASER is an acronym for Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous.
Dewees, a San Francisco native with a lifelong passion for fish, will speak from 8:10 to 8:35. His career has included commercial fishing and 35 years as the statewide marine fisheries specialist based at UC Davis.
When first exposed to the Japanese art of gyotaku, DeWees says he was "hooked." Gyotaku is the traditional method of Japanese fish printing, dating back to the mid-1800s.
His illustrated talk will offer insights into two-way communication between scientists and artists. "I will talk about how I can express my love of fisheries as a science-based career and as art."
"Combining my fisheries expertise with this art form gives me a very balanced life and a way to communicate my passion for fish to others," DeWees says. The art has led to shows and adventures around the world including the Smithsonian. Dewees received his bachelor of science degree from the University of Redlands in biology and speech; his master's degree from Humboldt State University in fisheries; and his doctorate at UC Davis in ecology.
Three other presentations will take place at LASER-UC Davis event. It's a good time to "bug out" of the house and attend.
The complete schedule:
6:30 to 7 p.m. Socializing and networking
7 to 7:25 p.m. Venkatesan Sundaresan, a plant sciences professor at UC Davis, will speak on “Mysteries of the Silent Kingdom: Sticking to One's Roots, Managing Hormones and Spreading Genes”
7:25 to 7:50 p.m. Robin Hill, art professor at UC Davis, will speak on “Idea Cultivation in the Studio.”
7:50 to 8:10 p.m. Break: Networking/socializing.
8:10 to 8:35 p.m. Chris Dewees, retired marine fisheries specialist at UC Davis, will speak on “Passion for Fish: When East Meets West."
8:35 to 9 p.m. Nanette Wylde, professor of art and art history at California State University, Chico, will speak on “Instigating Some Kind of Action: Interactive Projects Online and Off.”
The coordinator/moderator, Anna Davidson of the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program, received her Ph.D. earlier this year from UC Davis in plant sciences and is now seeking her master's degree in fine arts. She continues to study the biological world using both artistic and scientific approaches.
The UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program was founded by entomologist/artist Diane Ullman, professor of entomology at UC Davis and her colleague, self-described "rock artist" Donna Billick, now retired. Their legacy--and that of the students they taught--is the mosaic ceramic art all over campus and beyond.
Retired marine fisheries specialist Chris DeWees fuses art with science.
Yes, plants can communicate.
And that's exactly what ecologist Rick Karban, professor of entomology, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, will discuss at the LASER-UC Davis (Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous) event on Thursday night, Oct. 9 in Room 3001 of UC Davis Plant and Environmental Sciences Building.
Karban will speak on "Plant Communication" from 8:10 to 8:45. He is one of four speakers booked from 7 to 9 p.m. The event, free and open to the public, begins at 6:30 with socializing and networking. It is sponsored by the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program.
Karban drew international scientific and media attention with his research on “Kin Recognition Affects Plant Communication and Defense,” published in February 2013 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. He and four colleagues showed that kin have distinct advantages when it comes to plant communication, just as “the ability of many animals to recognize kin has allowed them to evolve diverse cooperative behaviors,” he told the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology in a news release.
“When sagebrush plants are damaged by their herbivores, they emit volatiles that cause their neighbors to adjust their defenses,” Karban said. "These adjustments reduce rates of damage and increase growth and survival of the neighbors.”
“Why would plants emit these volatiles which become public information?” he asked. “Our results indicate that the volatile cues are not completely public, that related individuals responded more effectively to the volatiles than did strangers. This bias makes it less likely that emitters will aid strangers and more likely that receivers will respond to relatives.”
Karban was featured in Michael Pollan's piece on “The Intelligent Plant: Scientists Debate a New Way of Understanding Plants,” published last December in The New Yorker.” He is also spotlighted on YouTube.
A member of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology since 1982, Karban received his bachelor's degree in environmental studies from Haverford (Pa.) College, and his doctorate in biology from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.
He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and has published more than 100 journal articles and two books.
Other speakers at the Oct. 9th event are:
7 to 7:25 p.m.: Tami Spector, a professor of organic chemistry at the University of San Francisco, whose topic is “The Molecular Elusive."
7:25 to 7:50: Katharine Hawthorne, a San Francisco-based dancer and choreographer, who will discuss “Analog Bodies”
8:40 to 9: Cody Ross, a postdoctoral cultural and statistical anthropologist working at the Santa Fe Institute and UC Davis, whose topic is “Art Is Offensive: Integrative Art and Social Justice.”
The event promises to be educational and informative, according to moderator/organizer Anna Davidson ot the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences, who recently received her doctorate. She studies fruit tree ecophysiology and is an instructor with the UC Davis Art Science Fusion Program.
Ecologist Rick Karban with sagebrush.
It's a program that, as the name indicates, fuses art and science. Science with art.
On that note, two noteworthy events sponsored by the program will take place next week.
But first, what's the program all about?
It's the brainchild of UC Davis entomologist/artist Diane Ullman and her close friend and colleague Donna Billick, a self-described "rock artist." Their visions and talents are absolutely amazing and have drawn national and international attention.
Ullman and Billick began teaching classes in the UC Davis Department of Entomology (now Entomology and Nematology) in the mid-1990s that led to the formation of the Art/Science Fusion Program. They founded the program and now serve as co-directors. Today it includes design faculty, science faculty, museum educators, professional artists and UC Davis students.
“Participants see and feel art and science, hold it in their hands, hearts and memories—in ceramics, painting, photographs, music, and textiles,” said Ullman, professor of entomology, former chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology, and former associate dean for Undergraduate Academic Programs, UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
Basically, it's an innovative teaching program that "crosses college boundaries and uses experiental learning to enhance scientific literary for students from all disciplines." The program promotes environmental literacy with three undergraduate courses, a robust community outreach program, and sponsorship of the Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous (LASERs).
One of the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program's most visible and “wow!” projects is the 2,500 pound mosaic art, Nature's Gallery in the Storer Garden, UC Davis Arboretum. It showcases the interaction--and the beauty--of insects and plants. It was initially displayed at the U.S. Botanical Garden in Washington D.C. and at the California State Fair.
Another project that draws much attention and acclaim is the Ent 1 art in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven, a half-acre bee garden on Bee Biology Road, west of the central campus.
Billick created “Miss Bee Haven,” a six-foot-long honey bee sculpture that anchors the garden. "I like to play with words,” said Billick. She also created the colorful Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility's mosaic ceramic sign that features DNA symbols and almond blossoms. A hole drilled in the sign is ready for a bee hive.
Also in Davis, Billick created the whimsical Dancing Pigs sculpture and the Cow Fountain, both in the Marketplace Shopping Center on Russell Boulevard; the Mediation sculpture at Central Park Gardens; and the Frawns for Life near the West Area Pond.
Billick traces her interest in an art career to the mid-1970s when then Gov. Jerry Brown supported the arts and offered the necessary resources to encourage the growth of art. He reorganized the California Arts Council, boosting its funding by 1300 percent.
She maintains a compound in Baja, where she teaches three workshops a year called "Heaven on Earth." She has won numerous awards for her work.
For outstanding teaching, Diane Ullman was recently selected the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Award in Teaching from the Pacific Branch, Entomological Society of America. She is now one of six candidates for the ESA Distinguished Teaching Award. ESA will select the recipient from one of six branches—Pacific, Eastern, North Central, Southeastern, Southwestern and International—and present the award at its Nov. 16-19 meeting in Portland, Ore.
The other noteworthy event involving the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program occurs on Monday, June 2. It's the popular LASER-UC Davis event and will be held from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. in Room 3001 of the Plant and Environmental Sciences Building. (LASER is an acronym for Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous.) One of the program's teachers, Anna Davidson, a Ph.D candidate in the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences, is coordinating and moderating the event. Come by at 6:30 for socializing and networking. The program starts at 7.
Davidson has gathered an exciting program of four speakers, with a discussion and more networking to follow from 9 to 9:30:
- Gene Felice, graduate student, at the University of California Santa Cruz, will speak on "Justice in a More Human World" from 7 to 7:25.
- Michael Neff, associate professor in Computer Science and Cinema and Technocultural Studies at UC Davis, will speak on "The Gap Between Computational and Artistic Models of Movement"
- Danielle Svehla Christianson of the Berkeley Center for New Media, will discuss "The Gap Between: Computational and Artistic Models of Movement, “A Digital Forest: 01100110 01101111 01110010 01100101 01110011 01110100” from 8:10 to 8:35 p.m.
- Joe Dumit, director of Science and Technology Studies and professor of anthropology at UC Davis, will speak on "Haptic Creativity: Seeing, Scaling and Storymaking with the KeckCAVES" from 8:35 to 9 p.m.
UC Davis Art/Science Fusion co-founder and co-director Donna Billick with her mosaic ceramic sculpture, Miss Bee Haven, in the half-acre Haagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Self-described rock artist Donna Billick addresses the crowd at the opening of Nature's Gallery, UC Davis Arboretum. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
You’re in luck. Butterfly expert Art Shapiro, professor of evolution and ecology at UC Davis, will speak on “Butterflies in Illuminated Manuscripts and Renaissance Art--Homage to Vladimir Nabokov" at the LASER-UC Davis event from 7:25 to 7:50 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 2 in Room 3001, Plant and Environmental Sciences Building.
What’s LASER? The acronym stands for Leonard Art Science Evening Rendezvous. Basically, as the name implies, it integrates art and science.
The event begins at 6:30 p.m. with socializing and networking, continues with four speakers, and ends with a discussion and networking from 9 to 9:30. Organized and moderated by Anna Davidson, a doctoral candidate in the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences, it is is free and open to all interested persons.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977) was a Russian-born novelist best known for Lolita (1955) but he also made "serious contributions as a lepidopterist and chess composer," according to Wikipedia.
6:30-7 p.m.: Socializing/networking
7-7:25: Amy Franceschini, San Francisco area-based artist, speaking on “Excursions through Domains of Familiarity and Surprise”
7:25-7:50: Arthur Shapiro, professor, UC Davis Department of Evolution and Ecology, “Butterflies in Illuminated Manuscripts and Renaissance Art--Homage to Vladimir Nabokov"
7:50-8:10: BREAK. (During the break anyone in the audience currently working within the intersections of art and science will have 30 seconds to share their work).
8:10-8:35: Justin Schuetz, San Francisco Art Institute faculty member and director of conservation science for National Audubon Society, “Approximating Equations: Visual and Statistical Explorations of Truth”
8:35-9: Mary Anne Kluth, interdisciplinary artist based in San Francisco, “Narratives of Inquiry in a Contemporary Art Practice”
Amy Franceschini is an artist and founder of the San Francisco-based art and design collective, Futurefarmers. Her work is highly collaborative and usually involves a diverse group of practitioners who come together to make work that responds to a particular time and space. Franceschini creates tactile frameworks for exchange where the logic of a situation can disappear -- where moments of surprise and wonder open the possibility for unexpected encounters and new perspectives on a particular situation. This situational approach emerges as temporary architectural interventions, public programs, choreography, radical journalism and museum exhibitions. Franceschini received her masters of fine arts degree from Stanford University. She is a Guggenheim Fellow and has exhibited at the New York Museum of Modern Art, New York Hall of Sciences and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
Art Shapiro, distinguished professor of evoluation and ecology at UC Davis, monitors the butterfly population of Central California and posts on his website at http://butterfly.ucdavis.edu/. He works on butterfly biogeography, evolution, and ecology and also does research in Argentina. Shapiro received his bachelor of arts degree in biology from the University of Pennslvania in 1966, and his doctorate in entomology from Cornell University in 1970. Shapiro joined the UC Davis faculty in 1971. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, California Academy of Sciences, Royal Entomological Society (U.K.) and Explorers Club. He also was selected a Fellow of the Davis Humanities Institute. His credits also include 300 scientific publications (one book, Field Guide to Butterflies of the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento Valley Regions, University of California Press, 2007); and 16 completed doctoral and 15 masters students under his direction. He works on butterfly biogeography, evolution, and ecology.
Justin Schuetz is a visiting faculty member at San Francisco Art Institute; he co-teaches a class on scientific and artistic exploration of biological systems. “Recently I have been using images and text to explore the ideas of a Japanese mathematician whose work has changed how biologists construct statistical models of the world,” Schuetz said. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology and studio art from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine; his doctorate in ecology and evolutionary biology from Cornell University; and his master’s degree in fine arts (photography) from the San Francisco Art Institute. As the director of conservation science for National Audubon Society, he leads a team “that aims to describe relationships between birds, people, and places so that we can better shape conservation outcomes. Much of our recent work has focused on reconstructing responses of birds to historical climate change and forecasting responses to future climate change."
Mary Anne Kluth is an interdisciplinary artist who received her master’s degree in fine arts from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2008 and a bachelor’s of fine arts from California College of Arts in 2005. She says her work explores the nexus of landscape imagery, narrative, and information, and her most recent body of work deals with descriptions of landscape from the 1860s, and contemporary theme park simulations. Kluth recently completed a residence at the Kala Art Institute and exhibited at the Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz, and the Contemporary Art Center, Las Vegas. Her work has been featured in ARTnews, Beautiful Decay, and Harper's, among other publications. Kluth has written catalog essays, reviews and contributed to various publications, including Art Practical, Artweek, Art Ltd. and Stretcher. She is represented by Gallery Wendi Norris in San Francisco.
For directions to the Plant and Environmental Sciences building, see map. See you there!
Butterfly expert Art Shapiro of UC Davis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Gulf Fritillary butterfly on passion flower blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
This beetle belongs to a large and varied order: their eltrya—the hardened outer wings that form the beetles’ iconic carapices—are jeweled purple and gold, colors that shift with motion. “A Study of Stillness in Motion,” the piece would be called. This particular beetle is green, so green your eyes slide off of it, like you’re looking at the greenest of greeniness, the very Form of green, and it is not for you to comprehend.--Whitney Krupp
So begins an insect tale, illustrated with her art, at the Organism show sponsored by the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program. It started out as a one-day show on Dec. 11, but by popular demand, evolved into a three-day show.
The last day to see it is Saturday, Dec. 15 from 6 to 9 p.m. The site: Old Nelson Art Gallery in the UC Davis Art Building (across from Shields Library).
Whitney Krupp, a second-year ecological management and restoration major from San Rafael, tells the story of a beetle, a fire, and a pictographs in her piece, "A Study of Stillness in Motion." You'll have to stop by to read what happens in this thought-provoking and creative piece.
Krupp is one of 15 entomology students showcasing insect tales and art. Another memorable one is by Nhu Mai who writes about "The Demise of the Hornet Who Thought He Could."
"New Japanese Giant hornet larvae have been born and the supply of food for the colony of hornets is now running extremely low on this cold autumn night in the mountains of Japan," Mai begins.
The hornet colony grows increasingly hungry and desperately needs food. So a hornet scout sets out to steal food from a honey bee hive. Spoiler alert: hornets kill honey bees and raid the colony of honey, immature brood, and adult bees.
This particular hornet, however, encounters a strategic maneuver. The bees swarm it, vibrate heat, and smother it.
Honey bees, Mai explains, can withstand 118-degree temperature, while a hornet "can only survive up to 115 degrees...Within seconds, the hornet is lifeless."
The 15 students wrote "curious tales about insects" and illustrated those stories "through their art pieces,” said show curator Anna Davidson, a Ph.D. student who's a teaching assistant with the UC Davis Art/Science Fusion Program. “The concept behind their art pieces is based on Cabinets of Curiosities, a pre-Linnaeus collection of curiosities made popular among the affluent in 14th and 15th century Europe.”
“During this show you will experience glow in-the-dark organisms, art made of fungus, large-scale installation, live performance, and sound art and tales about insects that are so curious they are almost unbelievable!” said Davidson, whose own work includes "art made of fungus."
The Organism show is not just about bees and beetles. You'll see assorted other insects, including monarch butterflies and praying mantids, brought to life through art and text.
While you're on the UC Davis campus (Saturday, Dec. 15), be sure to attend the Bohart Museum of Entomology's open house, themed "Insects in Art," from 1 to 4 p.m. in 1124 Academic Surge on Crocker Lane.
You'll get an opportunity to make a bug button--and maybe win a prize.
Whitney Krupp with her beetle art work. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A close-up of Whitney Krupp's art work: beetles boring into pictographs. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
This art work by Nhu Mai shows a doomed hornet in a honey bee hive. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)