Making the Invisible, Visible: Discoveries Between Art and Science

Rebecca Kamen

American Philosophical Society, Chemical Heritage Foundation, and the Philadelphia Area Center for History of Science

Friday, September 23, 2011 - 6:30pm

Time: Reception at 5:30pm, Lecture at 6:00pm Location: Franklin Hall, 427 Chestnut Street Please RSVP here. Rare books viewed during residencies at the American Philosophical Society and Chemical Heritage Foundation libraries have informed and inspired the development of Rebecca Kamen's recent work. As an artist, exploring significant history of science collections creates a unique opportunity to render and transform words into tangible, visual form. These cumulative experiences have instilled a profound sense of awe and wonder for the world, and continue to create new bridges between art and science in her work as both an artist and professor. Scientists and artists have always harnessed extraordinary gifts of curiosity and knowing as a guiding force for discovery. Before the advent of the camera, scientists, like artists, utilized drawing and painting as a means of capturing, collecting and disseminating observations. This lecture will explore the concept of Scientist as Artist and the Artist as Scientist in relationship to the development of Kamen's work, and how the fields of art and science continue to inform and inspire each other. Rebecca Kamen's work explores the nexus of art and science, informed by wide ranging research into cosmology, spirituality, philosophy and science. Kamen has exhibited and lectured about her work both nationally, and internationally in China, Hong Kong, and Egypt. She has been the recipient of a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship, a Pollack Krasner Foundation Fellowship, a Strauss Fellowship, two VCCS Professional Development Grants, and a Travel Grant from the Chemical Heritage Foundation. In 2001, Ms. Kamen was awarded a President's Sabbatical Award from Northern Virginia Community College where she has been a Professor of Art since 1978. She is the recipient of the Chancellors Commonwealth Professorship for 2011-2013, to further develop her work bridging art and science. Ms. Kamen's work is represented in many private and public collections such as, KPMG Peat Martwick Corporation, Gannett Corporation, IBM, Capital One and the Institute for Defense Analysis.