Image credit: HOLOSCENES / Anthropocene Suite, photo by Lars Jan
At the Earth Now: Earth 2050 Conference at UCLA, the Laboratory for Environmental Narrative Strategies (LENS) organized a program of keynote lectures and art exhibitions to kick off the lab's inaugural year.
The LENS program kicked off with a keynote session featuring novelist and urban biodiversity expert Lydia Millet along with environmental photographer and writer Subhankar Banerjee. Next up was a dynamic showcase of UCLA faculty and student projects that reflected the lab's mission to conduct innovative research on environmental narrative in diverse contexts; to train the next generation of environmental thinkers, scientists and leaders in multimedia storytelling and strategic communications; and to collaborate with others to enhance real-world environmental communications. LENS also curated a public installation of immersive art projects that addressed timely environmental and ecological topics. These included Marina Zurkow’s hand-drawn, software-driven animation Mesocosm; Lauren Strohacker and Kendra Sollars' Animal Land installation; and a video projection about sea-level rise and climate change by artist Lars Jans (whose internationally acclaimed Holoscenes project was first developed during a UCLA residency at the Center for the Art of Performance).