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Water: Where Science and Art Meet

The Center for Creative Photography and the Confluencenter for Creative Inquiry will explore the issues surrounding water and sustainability in the desert with a panel discussion titled Water: Where Science and Art Meet on Tuesday, Sept. 24 at 5:30 p.m. in the Center’s Auditorium. The focal point of the discussion will be the Confluencenter’s highly acclaimed book Ground|Water: The Art, Design and Science of a Dry River and photographs from CCP’s Water in the West archive collection. Confluencenter director, Dr. Javier Duran, will moderate the panel, which will include Ellen McMahon, one of the editors of the Ground|Water book and a professor of art at the UA; Dr. Rebecca Senf, Norton Family Curator of Photography at CCP and the Phoenix Art Museum; Dr. Gregg Garfin, deputy director for Science Translation and Outreach at the Institute of the Environment; and Edgar Cardenas, doctoral candidate at the ASU School of Sustainability.


Edgar Cardenas is an artist-scientist. Born in California, raised in Wisconsin, educated in New England and the Southwest, he studied Psychology at Gordon College (BA), Industrial/Organizational Psychology at University of New Haven (MA), and is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Sustainability, with one foot in the School of Art at Arizona State University. Edgar’s photographs have been exhibited in galleries as well as in scientific journals. He believes the next creative mash up should be between art and science so he works in both spaces. His photographic work explores the ecological, cultural, and technological relationships humans have with their environments. He is currently researching how collaboration dynamics between artists and scientists can lead to novel sustainability-oriented outcomes. Additionally, he is exploring how Aldo Leopold approached his work as an artist-scientist and why this integrative approach should be part of the contemporary sustainability dialogue.