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Monday, March 29, 2010

Common Ground: Connecting Humans, Music, Art and the Natural World

My cousin, Brielle, submitted this wonderful effort for Earth Day! I just love when awesome folks give back to the Earth, educate and still have fun. Common Ground is a 2 day event connecting music and the environment. Peace! Hope to see you out there!

Common Ground: Connecting Humans, Music, Art and the Natural World

Thursday & Friday April 22-23rd, 2-6pm

Ramapo College, H-Wing Auditorium

CONTACT: Emmy Black


For more info and performance times please visit

On April 22nd (Earth Day) and 23rd, Common Ground: Connecting Humans, Music, Art and the Natural World will take place at Ramapo College. Common Ground is an interdisciplinary symposium in which a variety of speakers and performers will be exploring the connectivity between people and nature through a variety of art forms and topics. This event is open to both the Ramapo community and the public.

Common Ground will combine the concentrations of music, math, art, science, and interactivity. Through lectures, screenings, performances, panel discussions, and presentations, we will explore the power of the arts to reconnect people and the natural world. The aim is to better understand the earth and our connection to it, the reasons why we explicitly feel the need to control it, and how, through education and compasion, we can experience the earth differently, knowingly, and more sustainably.

Presenters, performers and panelists include:

Ralph Abraham – University California at Santa Cruz – A pioneer of chaos theory and its applications in the fields of art, ecology, medical physiology, and mathematical economics. He created the Visual Math Institute at UCSC and frequently performs works of visual and aural mathematics.

Joel Chadabe – NYU, Manhattan School of Music - Director, Ear to the Earth, a worldwide network based on the idea that environmental sound can connect us to the environment, as well as the Electronic Music Foundation; an internationally recognized pioneer in the development of interactive music systems
Amy Lipton – Co director, ecoartspace - non-profit organization dedicated to raising environmental awareness through the visual arts. Ecoartspace promotes a diverse range of artworks that are participatory, collaborative, interdisciplinary and uniquely educational, and seeks to connect human beings aesthetically with the awareness of larger ecological systems.

David Rothenberg – NJIT – Writer, philosopher, ecologist, and musician. He is both a respected authority on deep ecology, and a jazz clarinetist known for his recordings with birds, whales, and other elements of the natural environment with improvisation and electronics.

Clyde Johnson – Ramapo professor of Environmental Science will give a talk about pollutant impacts and the tipping points of the natural world.
Ben Neill – Ramapo professor of Music will present Posthorn, an interactive audiovisual work based on Mahler’s What the Animals in the Woods Tell Me.
Jackie Skrzynski – Ramapo professor of Painting and Drawing will talk about her Silent Walks on the Half Moon project.

The Ramapo Computer Music Ensemble – Terry Riley’s In C


Author Colin Beavan, in research for his next book, began the No Impact Project in November 2006. A newly self-proclaimed environmentalist who could no longer avoid pointing the finger at himself, Colin leaves behind his liberal complacency and vows to make as little environmental impact as possible for one year. No more automated transportation, no more electricity, no more non-local food, no more material consumption…no problem. That is, until his espresso-guzzling, retail-worshipping wife, Michelle, and their two year-old daughter are dragged into the fray. What began as one man’s environmental experiment quickly becomes an experiment in how much one woman is willing to sacrifice for her husband’s dreams. Laura Gabbert and Justin Schein’s film provides both a front-row seat into the experiment that became a national fascination and media sensation, and a behind-the-scenes look at the marital challenges that result from Colin and Michelle’s radical lifestyle change.

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