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Art provides new perspectives to scientific theory
31 May 2012 — 31 May 2012
Leicester, University of
Scientists and artists to debate new age theory at London railway station
Artists and a University of Leicester geologist are to debate the present and future Earth - at a London railway station.
The notion of the Anthropocene –that the Earth has entered a new geological epoch defined by man’s impact on the environment – is currently being explored by Gabo Guzzo, artist in residence at Banner Repeater, a Council-supported, not-for-profit arts space on Platform 1 of Hackney Downs station, London E8.
Jan Zalasiewicz from the University of Leicester’s Department of Geology has been a leading proponent of the Anthropocene concept, which was originally proposed by Nobel prize winning atmospheric chemist Paul J Crutzen. He will take part in a discussion about the Anthropocene at Banner Repeater on May 31, alongside conceptual artist Rasheed Araeen, author of Ecoaesthetics: a Manifesto for the Twenty-First Century, and chaired by TJ Demos, Reader in Contemporary Art at UCL. Professor Crutzen has prepared a special contribution for this event, to be announced during the evening.
Dr Zalasiewicz said: “What is happening to the world over the last century or so can no longer be described as just another phase of human history, on an Earth that will always provide for us, no matter how much we draw from it.
“We are set to live through a geological revolution that will transform our planet forever, much as it was transformed when the dinosaurs were killed off by an environmental catastrophe, sixty-five million years ago. And as Earth is that cosmic rarity - a living planet - there really is no greater drama now taking place anywhere, for many light-years in any direction.
“Art can help us see what is driving humanity to transform the Earth. And, it might help us create a more stable future.”
Gabo Guzzo said: “We need to encompass natural science, social science, the humanities – and an expanded sensitivity - to bear on the problems that affect our planet and our lives.
“Solutions can emerge from wider public discussion at the intersections of diverse creative and innovative thinking. I hope that a commonality of purpose will bring us, as Earth’s inhabitants, to allow change to take place across all domains of human life.”
The free event takes place on Thursday 31 May 2012, 7.00pm-9.00pm, and a video will be available on the Banner Repeater website afterwards. Guzzo’s artwork will be available to view until 10 June at the venue, which is open seven days a week.
'The image relates to the idea of merging of realities, a concept that I often address in my work. Also, it draws from Durkheim's thoughts according to which 'the impure is made from the pure. And vice versa.' Image: Gabo Guzzo, 2012