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Human/Nature: Artists Respond to a Changing Planet

Conversation: Kurt Cuffey and Dario Robleto

April 19, 2009; 3:00 p.m.

Museum Theater

Reflecting on geologic time, human life, and the life of the planet, UC Berkeley glaciologist Kurt Cuffey and Human/Nature artist Dario Robleto will share their observations about glaciers and their meanings, and consider intersections between artistic and scientific practice.

Kurt Cuffey, who teaches in UC Berkeley’s geography department, speaks in compelling terms about the earth’s great ice sheets, and how environmental change in the polar regions offers insights into a very deep past and a far-reaching future.

In his project for Human/Nature, Dario Robleto combined sound recordings of melting glaciers with sculptural elements reflecting human loss and mourning to focus on the glaciers’ inevitable disappearance. He has often incorporated the physical residue of sound recordings—vinyl records, audiotape—into sculptural forms that explore history, memory, nostalgia, and loss. With this project, Robleto has begun to contemplate “last sounds,” for example those of an extinct species or a dying language.