Featuring: Diane Burko
Exploring the confluence of arts, science, and activism Rowan University Art Gallery showcases the work of environmental artist Diane Burko in Vast and Vanishing. The exhibit is welcomed with a artists talk and public reception on Thursday, March 8 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Diane Burko’s artistic practice is at the intersection of art, science, and activism focused on climate change. For over a decade, she has been documenting glacial recession in large-scale paintings and photographs developed in collaboration with scientists, studying their research, and utilizing their data. She is especially committed to understanding and incorporating climate science and sees this intersection as crucial to her artistic development. Her activism led her to make research expeditions to the icefields of Antarctica, Greenland, Patagonia, and Svalbard where she documented and collected data for her work.
By employing many of the methods used by climate scientists such as recession lines, satellite imaging, and repeat photography, Burko’s research, coupled with her experiences, are translated into monumental paintings and photographs. The results are emotionally expansive works that function as a visual record of glacial recession, a call to action, and metaphor for the socio-political discourse on climate change. Curated by Mary Salvante, Vast and Vanishing comprise works that capture the inexhaustible dichotomies and the inescapable tension that Diane witnessed in these extreme frozen environments.
Brooklyn-born. Philadelphia-based Burko focuses her work on the monumental geological phenomenon. Since 2006 her practice has been at the intersection of art and science, devoted to the urgent issues of climate change. Her current work reflects expeditions to the three largest ice fields in the world. She has sailed around Svalbard with artists and also spent four days in NY-Alesund with scientists from the Norwegian Polar Institute. She has visited Greenland’s Ilulissat and Eqi Sermia glaciers and first traveled to the Antarctic Peninsula in 2013, returning in January 2015, and explored the Patagonian ice field of Argentina. Burko’s expeditions can be followed at www.dianeburko.com/polarinvestigations.
Aside from showing her art, Burko has gained attention from the scientific community, often speaking on how the arts can communicate science. She is an affiliate of INSTAAR and has participated in numerous conferences such as those hosted by the Geological Society of America and American Geophysical Union. She is committed to public engagement, using both facts and images to make the invisible visual and visceral.