Art exhibit focuses on the natural world

January 9, 1998

ANN ARBOR—Deforestation, insects, grainfields, storage elevators, and discarded objects are featured in the University of Michigan’s exhibition “ART and the NATURAL WORLD” Jan. 12-28 in the Jean Paul Slusser Gallery. A public reception with the artists will begin at 7 p.m. Jan. 16. Presented in conjunction with U-M’s Environmental Theme Semester, the artists featured in this exhibition are connected by a common interest in forms which derive from the natural world. U-M faculty member Sadashi Inuzuka uses the metaphor of insects and microscopic organisms in his ceramic work to question our place in the natural world. Ann Savageau, a lecturer in art at U-M’s Residential College, questions our specie’s role and fate on the Earth through the transformation of discarded objects. And U-M visiting assistant professor of art Joseph Trumpey’s drawings deal with the loss of biodiversity caused by deforestation in tropical areas.

U-M’s Janie Paul uses landscape and natural forms in her paintings and prints to evoke the experience of memory, time and a sense of place, while Takeshi Takahara, a U-M professor of art, uses wood and paper pieces for works derived from an interest in water and in the surprising conjunction of two distinct forces. Elaine Wilson’s horizontally structured paintings and prints create both a visual and figural narrative based in images of grainfields and storage elevators of Washtenaw County.

The exhibition also includes works by area artists Susan Goethel Campbell who uses drawings to investigate the aesthetics and conflict between nature and industry and Shawn Skabelund who creates place-specific installations that encourage viewers to think about the local communities, economies and ecosystems they inhabit.

The Slusser Gallery is located in Art and Architecture Building on the North Campus at 2000 Bonisteel Blvd. and is open every day 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission is free.

Environmental Theme Semester