Inspired by the “Wunderkammer” (cabinet of curiosity) of the mid-16th century, the Arts|Science Initiative presents a unique series of cabaret-style cafés. Entitled The Cabinet, this monthly series entices audiences to engage the experimental and the extraordinary, feel wonder, and satisfy curiosity. A diverse group of faculty and student, from the arts and from the sciences, will give informal talks on some of their latest academic research and artistic practices. Each month features a theme; April's speakers will all consider narrative.
Originally, cabinets of curiosity displayed collections of wondrous and exotic objects — artifacts acquired from far-reaching explorations or from discoveries of natural phenomena. Together with works of art and technical objects, they provided viewers a direct engagement with the yet undefined and unknown. Today, artists and scientists continue to feel the pull of the unusual and the unexplored.
In a contemporary re-interpretation, The Cabinet seeks to generate a similar sense of wonder and curiosity through the juxtaposition of multiple perspectives and pathways. Drawing from domains spanning the university community and beyond, the series explores new modes of inquiry and production around a common theme. We invite cultural thinkers, scholars, students, and practitioners of the arts and the sciences to present their work through readings, storytelling, demonstration, music, poetry, performances, film, and visual arts.
The Cabinet is curated around a specific monthly theme such as color, silence, leftovers, narrative, detours, networks, topology, rupture, model, and many more. A diverse selection of presenters from across disciplines will give a brief, informal presentation and engage in a dialogue about each theme, exploring its ramifications, its boundaries, and its possibilities. Visionary perspectives will be favored. Audience members are encouraged to engage in the discussion of questions that may or may not have answers.
The Cabinet is curated by Julie Marie Lemon, Mollie McFee, and Jennifer Smoose of the Arts|Science Initiative.