Visual Arts Center

The Visual Arts Center (VAC) is a place where art exhibition and education intersect, drawing together a uniquely diverse community of students, faculty, guest artists, and creative voices from around the world. Situated in the Department of Art and Art History at The University of Texas at Austin, it provides pivotal exhibition and research space through five distinct galleries, and serves as a creative hub in the university’s dynamic arts community.

location

23rd and Trinity Streets (map)

hours

Monday: by appointment | Tuesday–Friday: 10AM–5PM | Saturday: 12-5PM | Sunday: closed

admissions

Free and open to the public

phone

(512) 471-3713

website

utvac.org

upcoming events

November 27, 2018 | 6PM

Photographing Science: Artist Talk with Chris Linder

Yep, Sounds Like a Drill Chris Linder is a photographer, oceanographer, and conservation activist. Linder uses photography as “a tool to educate and inspire the public about science and conservation issues.” Since 2002, he has documented more than fifty scientific expeditions. His photographs have been featured in exhibits at the Field Museum and the Smithsonian, among many others. On the occasion of the International Polar Year (2007 to 2009), Linder, together with a media team, launched the NSF-funded project “Live from the Poles.” Linder and his colleagues documented four major expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctica, and connected researchers with the public through daily online photo essays and lectures “from the ice.” The still photography produced by Linder on the occasion of these travels was published in a book entitled Science on Ice in 2011. In his talk, Linder will present this project and reflect on his use of photography to communicate scientific research. Moderated by Patrick Heimbach, Co-Principal Investigator for the NSF-funded project “Understanding Arctic System Change Through Synthesis of Hydrographic and Sea Ice Observations from the Early 21st Century” and Associate Professor at the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences (ICES), the Jackson School of Geosciences, and the Institute for Geophysics, The University of Texas at Austin. Organized by the Jackson School of Geosciences and the Institute for Geophysics at The University of Texas at Austin. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Exploring the Arctic Ocean.

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November 28, 2018 | 5PM

Art and Activism: Artist Talk with John Quigley

Greenpeace expedition to Arctic Svalbard John Quigley is an artist, producer, and activist. Working with environmental advocacy organizations, Quigley established the genre of aerial art as a “unique mix of human installation, aerial photography, and political activism.” Using materials as well as human bodies, Quigley directs the creation of large-scale patterns and images on land, which are fully revealed when seen from an aerial perspective. He has created more than 200 Aerial Art images involving over 200,000 people on seven continents. In 2014, Quigley was commissioned by Greenpeace to create an installation that would highlight the effects of the rapid melting of sea ice in the Arctic. Quigley used copper strips to lay the outlines of Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man on a large ice floe. In his presentation, Quigley will talk about this and other projects, and discuss the efficacy of activist art production. Moderated by Sharon Strover, Philip G. Warner Regents Professor in Communication, Department of Radio-Television-Film, The University of Texas at Austin. Organized by the Moody College of Communication, The University of Texas at Austin. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Exploring the Arctic Ocean.

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December 5, 2018 | 6PM

Broken Line: Artist Talk with Olaf Otto Becker

Becker_LilleRenland   Olaf Otto Becker is a German photographer. In his photographic series, which he usually develops over a number of years and publishes as photo books, Becker focuses on documenting the impact of humankind on nature using a large-format camera. Since 1988, Becker has exhibited his work widely in Europe and the United States. For his series “Broken Line,” Becker worked for almost four years and covered thousands of miles by boat, photographing the coastline of Greenland. Becker, who uses a large-format camera, has adopted a slow process: he often has to wait for the right conditions to appear in order to produce a single image—a process that leaves him with only about 25 photographs per year. Though visually diverse, all of the pictures share the contemplative character of their creator. His carefully composed images resemble the powerful iconography of nineteenth-century landscape paintings. In this presentation, Becker will talk about the process of creating his photographs, especially for “Broken Line,” which is on view in Exploring the Arctic Ocean. Moderated by Teresa Hubbard, Professor for Photography and Media, Department of Art and Art History, The University of Texas at Austin. Supported by the Center for Space Research and the Department of Art and Art History, The University of Texas at Austin. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Exploring the Arctic Ocean.

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December 6, 2018 | 6PM

Visualizing the Arctic Ocean: Presentation by An T. Nguyen and Greg Foss

Nguyen_Heimbach_Arctic_Atlantification_2018 As part of their research project “Understanding Arctic System Change Through Synthesis of Hydrographic and Sea Ice Observations from the Early 21st Century,” oceanographers An T. Nguyen and Patrick Heimbach teamed up with visualization specialist Greg Foss of the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) to produce a video animation of their research results. In their presentation, Nguyen and Foss will discuss computational visualization as a method that is both a significant part of scientific data analysis and a powerful means to make the data accessible to a lay audience. Moderated by Ulrike Heine, curator of Exploring the Arctic Ocean. Organized by the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), The University of Texas at Austin. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Exploring the Arctic Ocean.

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS 

An T. Nguyen is a senior research scientist at the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences at The University of Texas at Austin and Principal Investigator of the research project “Understanding Arctic System Change Through Synthesis of Hydrographic and Sea Ice Observations from the Early 21st Century,” which is funded by the National Science Foundation. Nguyen holds a BS in Applied Geophysics from the University of California, Los Angeles and a PhD in Geophysics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her research focuses on understanding the dynamics of the polar climate system, in particular the coupled ocean sea-ice system, through observations and numerical simulations.  Greg Foss joined the visualization group of the Texas Advanced Computing Center in 2012. After completing his BFA in ceramics and a Masters in computer animation, Foss turned to visualizing science at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center in 1993. His computer graphics have been exhibited regularly at the annual Supercomputing Conference, included several years at the Association for Computing Machinery SIGGRAPH’s animation festival, incorporated in planetarium shows, and displayed in various publications.

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