Doane College, in partnership with Arts Are Basic, is pleased to host The Crossroads Project, a convergence of science, music, art and performance. Dr. Robert Davies, Physicist at Utah State University has established a collaboration with Purchase College Professor of Music Laura Kaminsky, National Geographic photographer Garth Lenz, the Fry Street Quartet, and painter Rebecca Allan to present an “ecosystem” performance of responses to climate change. Dr. Davies’s goal is to extend his investigation beyond our direct impact on the earth’s climate, to explore ways that society might respond to environmental changes.
In tandem with performance of The Crossroads Project, Rall Gallery features Rebecca Allan’s exhibition Tondos from the Crossroads Project. The exhibition features large circular canvases and a series of smaller tondino "studies" on paper; the smaller works serve as a metaphor for how localized environmental events add, compound, and ultimately have profound global effects. Allan has observed numerous watershed environments nationally and internationally. The artist uses her experiential research, along with a deep curiosity about science and environmental forces, to drive her painterly abstractions. On Allan's layered and very physical surfaces, paint is pushed, peeled, and washed away, mimicking environmental and geologic forces like soil erosion, tectonic shift, and glacial melting. Allan states that although her compositions are "grounded in the visible world, [her] paintings are sensual inventions that conflate real and conjured experiences.“ Curiously, the most abstracted facets of the paintings--seemingly untethered paint blobs scraped from a palette--explicitly connect us to the urgent realities of fragile ecosystems. By linking us to our sense of touch through abrasion, overlapping and slippery surfaces, Allan presents space beyond the statistics and grand scale that overwhelm our relationship to climate change. The artist's material process pulls us into the tactile realities of these shifting environments, making our responsibility for their current state and ongoing care undeniably apparent.
About the Artist
Rebecca Allan is a New York-based visual artist known for her richly layered and chromatically nuanced abstract paintings. Her work investigates watershed environments of the Northeast, Pacific Northwest, New Mexico, the Gulf Coast, Lebanon, France, and Norway, and is inspired by her interest in landscape ecology, botany, and geology. Exhibiting nationally and abroad for more than 25 years, Allan’s most recent solo exhibitions were presented at Ringling College of Art + Design/Longboat Key Center for the Arts, Seattle Art Museum (SAM) Gallery, and 2/20 Gallery in New York City. She has been a Fellow at the Hermitage Artists Retreat, Centrum Foundation, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and Dorland Mountain Art Colony. Allan is also the Head of Education at the Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture in New York City.