Friday, April 12, 2013

Celebrate Our Springs Earth Day Event

Celebrate our Springs April 20th 
at the Florida Museum of Natural History
Join us for an 11 a.m. panel discussion
featuring springs artists and writers

Learn more about the beauty, the whimsy and the frailty of Florida’s ice-blue springs as part of the Florida Museum of Natural History’s Earth Day observance on Saturday, April 20th.
Two current exhibits – Springs Eternal and Finding the Fountain of Youth – celebrate Florida’s natural springs as they also explore past history, document current threats and lay out Floridians’ role in their preservation.
Join the artists behind the exhibits – John Moran, Lesley Gamble and Rick Kilby – for a panel discussion at 11 a.m. Saturday April 20th moderated by journalist and author Cynthia Barnett. The panel and the exhibits are free and open to the public. Families are welcome – kids and adults alike will have the opportunity to question the artists and find out what they can do to help protect our springs.
The Springs Eternal: Florida's Fragile Fountains of Youth exhibit is a 30-year retrospective of Florida nature photographer John Moran's love affair with the springs of Florida. The exhibit mixes stirring text with then-and-now pairings of photos that document dramatic changes to our springs. The project channels joy and beauty and grief and anger and is a sobering wake-up call for every Floridian who uses water. The exhibit also features an enormous, 60-foot-wide backlit translucent clerestory window photo of a pair of manatees at Crystal River.
Based on the forthcoming book by Rick Kilby, the Finding the Fountain of Youth exhibit examines how the legend of Ponce de Leon’s quest for restorative waters shaped the Sunshine State’s image as a land of fantasy, rejuvenation and magical spring-fed waters. Rich in images, this exhibition shows how the myths surrounding the discovery of “La Florida” influenced perceptions of the state that still echo today.
Reaching beyond the museum walls, Lesley Gamble’s Urban Aquifer bus project and Springs Eternal website lend additional public engagement including a fleet of Regional Transit System buses soon to bring stunning visions of Florida’s springs to the streets of Gainesville.
During the panel discussion, the three artists will show some of their favorite images, talk about the role of art in saving natural places, and engage the audience in a lively discussion about the springs.
The exhibits run through Dec. 15th. The Florida Museum of Natural History is located in the University of Florida Cultural Plaza off SW 34th St. and is open six days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 1-5 p.m.

Note: my book "Finding the Fountain of Youth: Ponce de León and Florida's Magical Waters" will be on sale in the museum gift shop. Also on sale will be the Sanlando Springs T-shirts I worked on with Vintage Roadside.

Mock-up of Urban Aquifer bus

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