Media Relations

Press Release:

MEDIA CONTACT:   Polly Burks
561-297-2595, pburks@fau.edu

FAU Art Exhibition Questions the Origins of Life

            BOCA RATON , FL (December 19, 2008) – The University Galleries in the School of the Arts at Florida Atlantic University presents “Designing Intelligence?: Continuing the Intelligent Design Project,” an ongoing traveling exhibition that humorously and critically interrogates the debated contemporary philosophy of intelligent design. The exhibition is a collaborative effort of featured New York-based artists Michael Zansky, D. Dominick Lombardi and recent FAU graduate AdrienneRose Gionta. It opens at the Schmidt Center Gallery on Friday, January 30, 2009 with a reception at 6 p.m., and continues through Saturday, April 4.

            “Designing Intelligence” has been shown at four other American venues. It begins with a core element developed by Zansky and Lombardi that employs historical and contemporary graphic images to visually introduce the intelligent design theory. The host institution then expands on the core element with works by contributing artists.

For the FAU version of the exhibition, Zansky and Lombardi have created a garishly colored 120-foot timeline of the history of the world that mixes their drawings, cartoons and photographs. The timeline is based on the original Timechart, a review of history that was compiled during the Victorian era and is based on a biblical history that is a scientific impossibility. Gionta has developed the FAU contribution to the exhibition. She has selected an additional group of contemporary artists, including Deborah Aschheim, Andy Holtin, Loretta Lux, Rick Newton, Samantha Salzinger and Jen Stark, whose works explore elements of creationism, evolution and intelligent design in our society.

Gionta has also organized a series of public programs to complement the exhibition. The first is a lecture entitledIntelligent Design and the Arguments for and against the Existence of God,” by FAU philosophy professor Simon Glynn. There will also be an artist lecture by Deborah Aschheim, a Los Angeles-based artist whose work reflects on the workings of the mind, and memory and a storytelling session entitledBirth: A Storytelling Event” by Caren Neile and students. In addition, there will be a symposium entitled “Who We Are and How We Came to Be: Perspectives of our Origins,” introduced by Robert McCarthy, FAU assistant professor of anthropology. The symposium will include leaders from several different religious faiths who will share their perspectives on the origin of the creation of man. Finally, there will be a week-long series of events, including lectures, a panel discussion, an educational seminar and a documentary viewing presented by the Anthropology Graduate Student Union (AGSU) in celebration of the 200 th birthday of Charles Darwin and the 150- year anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species.The schedule for these programs is available at www.fau.edu/galleries.

The University Galleries are open Tuesday – Friday 1 to 4 pm, and Saturday, 1 to 5 pm. Admission to the Galleries and public programs is free. “Designing Intelligence?: Continuing the Intelligent Design Project” is made possible in part by Florida Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts; and the Palm Beach County Cultural Council.

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