From science to art: All ‘eyes’ at BGSU on water quality

This fall at Bowling Green State University, the worldwide issue of water quality is crossing the boundaries of literature, science and art. Bringing the topic close to home, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, author of BGSU’s 2019 Common Read, “What the Eyes Don’t See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City,” a firsthand account of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, will give a public talk at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 1 in the Lenhart Grand Ballroom at the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.

Widely recognized as the whistle-blower who forced the state of Michigan to acknowledge toxic levels of lead in Flint’s water supply, Hanna-Attisha has been the voice of the children of Flint throughout the crisis.

The BGSU Galleries is hosting a series of events that focus on water issues, including two photography exhibitions, artist talks and a performance. In November, an expert panel will discuss “The Future of Lake Erie,” and students from the arts, sciences and humanities will give poster and art presentations. All events are free and open to the public.

Two photography exhibits are on display in the BGSU Fine Arts Center through Nov. 24. “Lake Erie: On the Edge,” photographs by Linda Butler, is in the Willard Wankelman Gallery and “The Great Lake Erie,” featuring photography by Frank Gohlke and Lynn Whitney, is in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery Lobby. Gallery hours are 11 am. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays and 1-4 p.m. Sundays.

Butler’s Lake Erie photographs have been featured in an exhibit at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Her work has been collected by numerous museums, including the Cleveland Museum of Art. She has photographed the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, and architecture, interiors and landscapes in rural Kentucky and in Japan, China and Italy. Her books include “Inner Light: The Shaker Legacy,” published by Knopf in 1985; “Rural Japan: Radiance of the Ordinary,” published by Smithsonian Institution Press in 1992; “Italy: In the Shadow of Time,” published by Rizzoli in 1998; and “Yangtze Remembered: The River beneath the Lake,” published in 2004 by Stanford University Press.

Gohlke will give an art talk, with an introduction by Whitney, at 5 p.m. Oct. 21 in the Donnell Theatre, followed by a reception for the artists in the Bryan Gallery Lobby of the Fine Arts Center. He is the recipient of two Guggenheim Foundation Fellowships, a Fulbright Scholar Grant and two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, among others. His monographs include “Landscapes from the Middle of the World: Photographs 1972-1987” (1988); “Measure of Emptiness: Grain Elevators in the American Landscape” (1992); “The Sudbury River: A Celebration” (1993); and “Mount St. Helens” (2005). His work has been exhibited at major museums internationally, and is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Art Institute of Chicago. He has taught photography at Middlebury College, Colorado College, Yale University and the Massachusetts College of Art.

Whitney is head of the BGSU photography area in the School of Art. She received a solo exhibition in 2007 at the Toledo Museum of Art, "From Start to Finish: Photographs of the I-280 Bridge Project" and has been included in the Midwest Photographer's Project at the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, from 2003-2005 and 2006-2008. Her work is represented in public and private collections including the Toledo Museum of Art, the "Bridge Project" portfolio, the Cleveland Clinic, the Lea Gallery at the University of Findlay, the Southwest Center for Photographic Studies, the University of Northern Iowa, Sterling Library and Yale University.

On Oct. 16, digital artist Miwa Matreyek will premiere a new performance, with musician Morgan Sorne, dramatizing the environmental crisis that surrounds us. The performance begins at 7 p.m. in the Donnell Theatre.

On Nov. 12, Dr. George Bullerjahn, Distinguished Research Professor of Biology and director of BGSU’s Great Lakes Center for Fresh Waters and Human Health, will moderate a panel discussion on “The Future of Lake Erie,” with Dr. Timothy Davis, an associate professor of biological sciences, and several regional experts embracing many points of view. The discussion will take place from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in 207 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. A reception will follow from 7:45-9 p.m. in the Wankelman Gallery at the Fine Arts Center.

Earlier in the day, “Water in Crisis,” poster presentations by student in arts, sciences and humanities, will be given from 2:30-5 p.m. in the second-floor clock tower mezzanine of the Union.