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Twenty-six dimensions: from Art to Z

Art to Z has something for everyone

By Adam Overland

Art to Z 165

February 25, 2009

Art to Z is getting the message out that the U does not discriminate against your cultural or scholarly tastes. From the two-dimensional poster, showing twenty-six letters each embedded in a square of vivid imagery, to the 26 dimensions those events represent, Art to Z has something for everyone.

While there are many high-quality arts and entertainment options in the Twin Cities, nowhere is the density of events so great as at the University of Minnesota. In its most recent installment of the popular "Art to Z" initiative, the U showcases a series of 26 on-campus events taking place from Feb. 17-May 1, available to the public (and of course, U employees) at little or no cost.

New employees
The U is a treasure trove of cultural events but new employees might not know it. That's why the New Employee Orientation (NEO) team has organized Culture Crawls--monthly events designed to help new employees get connected to the depth and variety of activities on campus. The NEO team has worked with the venues and departments participating in Culture Crawls to make them free or deeply discounted events for new employees.

Culture Crawls are just around the corner:
On February 26th, the Nash Gallery and the Department of Theatre and Dance will treat you to a stimulating evening of Art and Theatre. The Nash Gallery is currently exhibiting "Experimental and Media Arts," a look at emerging media and its crossroads with art. The evening continues at the Rarig Center for a production of Night Train To Bolina. For a detailed itinerary and registration information, see February Culture Crawl.

On March 4, Culture Crawl features an evening at the Bell Museum at the North American premiere of Live: A Journey Through Time, an exhibit that traces the evolution of life on Earth through photos by Frans Lanting and artifacts from the museum. The evening concludes with a reading and discussion with Louise Gluck, a Pulitzer Prize winning and celebrated American poet, hosted by the Department of English. For a detailed itinerary and registration information, see March Culture Crawl.

The spring version in the series (which began in fall 2008) features events that span from artistic exhibits and performances to thought-provoking lectures and discussions.

A couple you might have missed


The Spark Festival of Electronic Music and Arts, for example, recently brought a showcase of new-media music and art to the U, featuring founder Doug Geers using the popular Nintendo Wii as a musical instrument in his Princeton Laptop Orchestra. The festival even brought the famous hip-hop artist Chuck D and his band Public Enemy to the U of M homepage--a first in U history. See--and hear--that story at What's that sound?


So you missed this one, too, but never fear, we've cataloged this catwalk of clothing design. Feast your eyes on this slideshow, where a dozen budding designers from the U's Clothing Design Program displayed their creations during the EXPOSED: 41st Annual Clothing Design Senior Fashion Show. The collections included all things wearable, from work clothing and sustainable fabrics to avant-garde designs and theater costumes.

Many more to come


The sweet smells of nature tickle our nares--the openings of our nose--and have the ability to tempt, bewitch, and even repel us. Biology buffs might enjoy this presentation by Avery Gilbert, a nationally known scent expert and author of What the Nose Knows. "The Attraction of and Seduction of Scent" takes place at the Bell Museum of Natural History, Apr. 18, 7 p.m.



The evolution of life on Earth is captured in this acclaimed exhibit by Frans Lanting, which is making its North American premier. Lanting's photos capture our planet's organisms from A to zygote. Lanting's lyrical photos trace Earth's history from the beginnings of primordial life to the ascent of mammals through otherworldly landscapes and breathtakingly intimate portraits of animals and plants engaged in million-year-old rituals. Many of the exhibit's 62 photographs are matched with real animal, fossil, and plant specimens from the Bell Museum's collection. LIFE: A Journey through Time, is ongoing from Feb. 14-Apr 12, Bell Museum.

To browse all 26 selections in this spring's "Art to Z" calendar, see Art to Z.

Further reading

Not long ago in the fall of 2008, the U launched Art to Z. Find out about the origins of this artful alphabet by reading Art to Z: Scholarly and cultural events Scrabble.