Panhandling won’t look the same next week as students from the University of Utah’s Art, Action and the Environment course celebrate Earth Day and take to the streets with recycled cardboard signs and original photos of Utah landscapes “begging” for more action on climate change.
Led by Assistant Professor Wendy Wischer, these students all hail from different disciplines on campus (from business to the arts, and from mechanical engineering to the social and behavioral sciences) and have come together this semester to present a socially engaged art event entitled “Rethink, Reconnect, Rejuvenate.”
“What we want,” said participating student Sabrina Stein “is for people to reflect on their daily lives and their relationships with nature.”
On Monday, April 20 from 1-3 p.m., these students along with a handful of volunteers will take their places in strategic locations across the University of Utah’s campus to communicate the need for us all to rethink, reconnect, and rejuvenate our relationships with nature – particularly our water, air, and our natural landscapes.
And, on Earth Day, Wednesday, April 23 from 1-3 p.m., these same students will move off campus and into the Salt Lake City valley to share their message more broadly.
“With this project, the students have entered the difficult-to-define practice of socially engaged art,” said Assistant Professor Wischer. “Their goal is to create a meaningful art experience that promotes social change with locally-specific environmental issues and active engagement with the local community. The intention is to use the limitless nature of art to promote creative ways of learning and new ways of discovering solutions.”
Dates and Locations:
- April 20, 1pm-3pm @ University of Utah | Marriott Library Plaza, the Hyper Highway below the Student Life Center, the plaza between the Union and the Student Services Building, at the top of Presidents Circle, the area between the UMFA and the Business School, the area between Orson Spencer Hall and the Spencer Fox Eccles Business Building, at the underpass to stadium parking lot
- April 22 (Earth Day), 1pm-3pm @ Salt Lake City | North Temple at State, 400 S at Main St., 400 S at 200 E, 400 S and 600 E, Trolley Square, the Trax stop at Rice Eccles Stadium
About the Artists:
The honors class, Art, Action, and the Environment came together to design a final project reminding the citizens of Salt Lake of the trifecta of environmental issues in the valley: air quality, water sources, and nature preservation.
Art, Action, and the Environment is offered through the Honors College at the University of Utah. As part of the class students interact with the environment and express their concerns through artistic means. The students range from all different backgrounds across campus, including the College of Health, the College of Fine Arts, the College of Social and Behavioral Science, David Eccles School of Business, and the College of Engineering.
- Wendy Wischer: Assistant Professor Sculpture Intermedia
- Justin Watson: MFA Student in Sculpture Intermedia
- Janey Heyman: Janey is studying Parks, Recreation, and Tourism and Environmental and Sustainability Studies
- Jacob Hopkins: Jacob is studying Mechanical Engineering
- Kelly O’Neill: Kelly is studying Photography
- Sloan Russell: Sloan is studying Business Marketing and Portuguese
- Sabrina Stein: Sabrina is studying Parks, Recreation, and Tourism
For more information on the project or for resources and information on protecting our environment, visit ecoart.art.utah.edu.