Opening Reception: Shifting Ecologies II
Aug 8 2015 - 06:00 PM

SHIFTING ECOLOGIES II, curated by Marianne Van Lent, features a diverse group of artists who are exploring ecological issues and changes to the environment in their work. The opening reception will take place Saturday, August 8th from 6-9 PM at the Athens Cultural Center, 24 Second Street, Athens. The exhibition will run August 8-September 6 with gallery hours on Fridays, 4-7 PM, Saturdays 2-7 PM and Sundays 1-4 PM.

The artists included in this exhibition include Joan Ades, Nancy Azara , Sarah Barker, Kathy Bruce, Tina Chaden, Lisa Crafts, Ford Crull, Peggy Cyphers, Carrie Dashow, Tasha Depp, Steve Derrickson, Priscilla Derven, Sarah Draney, Stuart Farmery, Deborah Freedman, Mark Gibian, Kylie Heidenheimer, Carter Hodgkin. Linda Horn, Elizabeth Knowles, Ellen Kozak, Claire Lambe, Barbara Laube, Ingrid Lisowski, Dana Matthews, Theresa Nicholas, Alastair Noble, Gina Occhiogrosso, Al Peters, Sara Pruiksma, Leah Rhodes, Sam Sebren, Phyllis Stoller, Jeff Vanderburg, Marjorie Van Dyke, Marianne Van Lent, Gordana Vukovic and Riva Weinstein.

These artists embrace a culture of ecology and a sense of responsibility for defending the environment. William McDonough, a leader in promoting sustainability has said, “If everything that is received from the earth can be freely given back, without causing harm to any living system: this is ecology.” Eco artists may address the subject with on-site rigor and activism; painters address it with detached formalism and the language of painting. This show presents the way painters are reacting to the current ecology of our planet and our ecological crisis and challenge.

One of the natural conditions of life is the alteration — sometimes subtle, often overt — of our environment. Industrial and technological expansion are triggering drastic environmental changes often resulting in mutations, diseases and pollutants. These ecological transformations impact everything, from the lives of bacteria to the biological processes spanning the entire globe. The overall destruction of our earth from global warming, ozone depletion, acid rain, genetic engineering and toxic waste threatens our survival and way of life. The earth struggles to adapt to the imposed conditions and faces a succession of challenges without any certainty that it may sustain itself.

The word “ecology” was coined by Ernst Haeckel in1878 and originates from the Greek word oikos meaning house or household. Haeckel, a naturalist, biologist, philosopher, physician, professor and artist, expanded the meaning to include habitats. From habitats the word has come to mean the study of the environment: addressing scientifically the interrelationships of living creatures, and their conditions including the biological and physical sciences.

Marianne Van Lent lives and works in NYC and Athens, NY on the Hudson River. She received her BFA from Tyler School of Art and her MFA from Cornell University. Van Lent’s paintings have been widely exhibited in the United States and Europe and inhabit many public and private collections. Recent exhibitions include “Cosmologies”, “Prima Materia” and “Nature Abstracted” at the Painting Center, New York, “Reflected Light”, a solo show at Ulla Surland Fine Art. Her works can be seen online at

This exhibition is made possible in part with public funds from the Decentralization Program of the NYS Council on the Arts, administered in Greene County by the Greene County Council on the Arts through the Community Arts Grants Fund. Addition funding provided by the Athens Community Foundation.

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