Almost Together

We live in a digital age, in which video chatting with someone in another country is often easier than visiting a friend across town. At the same time, we rely on physical spaces to facilitate connection and meaning — whether through a game of basketball at the YMCA, a...

Promise and Peril: A Study in Biodiversity

The natural world is in a state of constant flux. It seems that more and more often, we hear about the decline of yet another precious animal or plant species and the subsequent efforts to protect it from extinction.  Our greatest opportunity to make conservation a priority is through...

Before California: Laura Cunningham

The David Brower Center believes that art has unique transformative power, especially when placed in the service of activism. As art critic Lucy Lippard says, such art “cares about, challenges, involves, and consults the audience for whom it is made, respecting community and environment … and is engaged with...

Thinking Like A River: Art, Advocacy, and the Legacy of David Brower

Environmentalist, mountaineer and visionary David R. Brower changed the way our society thinks about natural places and, consequently, changed the world. In the year he would have been 100, we celebrate his legacy of activism with a special summer exhibition. The show features the exhibit format books pioneered by...

Land, Use: Works by Amy Franceschini and Fernando García-Dory

Amy Franceschini and Fernando Garcia-Dory share artistic interests and approaches. Using social practice methods such as direct engagement with communities, they explore themes related to humankind’s collaboration with the land. In particular, they are interested in how the development of contemporary cities has affected traditional land use such as...

Hello Tomorrow: Bay Area Artists Envision the Future

The Brower Center asked Bay Area artists to respond to David Brower’s quote: “Have a good time saving the world. Otherwise, you’re just going to depress yourself.” With over 500 submissions, we were inspired by the sheer breadth of the work. From traditional painting to installation to the conceptual...

Methods and Materials: Ecological Art in Practice with Daniel McCormick

Daniel McCormick has practiced ecological art for 25 years, installing sculptural works in damaged natural environments to effect positive ecological change. His ephemeral artworks of organic materials are used as silt traps and erosion control weavings, and are intended to evolve and recede from view over time. In the...

Running the Numbers: Chris Jordan

In Chris Jordan’s series Running the Numbers: An American Self-Portrait, begun in 2005, the artist represented the staggering statistics of American consumption. Two million bottles were depicted in a larger-than-human-scale digital photograph entitled Plastic Bottles, 2007, literally representing the number of plastic beverage bottles used in the United States...