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Friday, October 16 • 11:00am - 12:00pm
Session 2: Critical Gardening and Interdisciplinary Collaboration - Art practice at the intersection of nature, technology and politics / Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Fields

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Critical Gardening and Interdisciplinary Collaboration (McMullen, Winkler) - This presentation introduces critical gardening as an emerging art practice that explores the ideological, political and narrative qualities of gardens at the intersection of nature and technology. Using examples from their own critical gardening art and research practice, the authors discuss challenges and opportunities for artist-led interdisciplinary collaborations in the context of a STEM-focused Midwest R1 land grant university. They also introduce the potential of art & technology collaborations to help publics narrate, debate and act on possible future natures (desirable and potentially undesirable ones) and the politics that shape them.

Shale Play (Kasdorf, Rubin) - In the parlance of the oil and gas industry, “shale play” refers to a region exploited for its natural gas by means of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling—transient industrial processes that often occur far from the populations that benefit from them. Amid polarized claims about fracking and pressure to develop these areas around the world, Kasdorf and Rubin have gathered evidence from everyday life in the Marcellus Shale Play in Pennsylvania. Poet and photographer follow in the footsteps of the documentarians of the 1930s, taking a deliberate and thoughtful approach to gather the stories of workers on pipelines and well pads, landowners and leaseholders, waitresses, ministers, farmers, retired miners, teachers, and neighbors. The poet and photographer will discuss the inception of their documentary project, their collaborative process, and offer samples of their work of witness, inviting the audience to look beyond the easy caricatures of the white working class to create an urgent, authentic representation of a sacrifice zone that fuels America.


Fabian Winkler

Fabian Winkler, MFA and Shannon McMullen, PhD are interdisciplinary artists and researchers working together as McMullen_Winkler and combining their backgrounds in new media art and sociology to produce collaborative artworks at the intersection of nature and technology, a research... Read More →

Steven Rubin

Steven Rubin is a documentary photographer whose work addresses critical contemporary issues including health disparities, rural poverty, refugee migration, immigrant detention, and the social and environmental impacts of energy development. He has photographed for national and international... Read More →

Friday October 16, 2020 11:00am - 12:00pm EDT