Speaking Sustainably

Douglas Gayeton and his wife, Laura Howard Gayeton, have spent the last five years focused on sustainability, largely because they believe the concept has become empty. “It’s a word that actually is meaningless. It’s a term that’s been completely appropriated and hijacked,” Gayeton said at the opening for The Lexicon...

Lexicon of Sustainability Exhibit Opens This Week at the David Brower Center

You may be familiar with Douglas Gayeton and Laura Howard-Gayeton’s multimedia project, “The Lexicon of Sustainability,” which has been showcased at PBS.org/food. (And I’ve interviewed Douglas for a previous Bay Area Bites post.) They’ll be premiering a whole new series of videos in early February, and a photography exhibit will be opening at the...

Front Porch Farm – experiment in diversity

Peter and Mimi Buckley had no previous farming experience when they started a 110-acre organic farm outside Healdsburg four years ago. With careers in fashion, followed by founding nonprofits like the Center for Ecoliteracy and the David Brower Center in Berkeley, they wanted to apply their environmental ideals to agriculture. “I was one of those Michael Pollan farmers,”...

Richard Misrach: Photographing beauty can be tricky

“It’s impossible to photograph clouds for their beauty anymore. We know too much about what is going on,” said photographer Richard Misrach wistfully on a recent weekday evening. He should know. The Berkeley-based photographer has made a name for himself capturing striking images of man’s impact on the planet...

The Chemical Corridor

Merging art and activism can be a tricky thing. Many artists waver in their negotiation of aesthetics and argument, and end up falling on one side or the other. In the exhibit Petrochemical America: Project Room, internationally acclaimed photographer Richard Misrach manages to walk that tightrope with expert equilibrium....

Snapshots of a blighted future at David Brower Center

The combined works of photographer Richard Misrach and landscape architect Kate Orff in The David Brower Center’s exhibition of “Petrochemical America” portray a haunting reflection on the destruction caused by industrial growth in America. Focusing on the polluted stretch of the Mississippi River between Baton Rouge and New Orleans,...

How we Gather

In a world where people like to speak of “connecting,” many artists — or, in the present case, curators — have taken on the mantle of reminding us how digitally mediated relationships fail to substitute for the old-fashioned kind. Almost Together, a juried group show now on display at...

Paint Slowly and Carry a Small Brush: Artist Jeff Long Channels Audubon’s Muse

Internationally acclaimed painter Jeff Long, known primarily for his abstract works, has lately taken up his brush in defense of Western birds and other wildlife. Referencing the classic bird illustrations of John James Audubon, Long’s monumental and highly detailed paintings depart from the master by including elements of the...

1,000 Words: Blast from the Past

When she was a child growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Laura Cunningham always wondered what her house and her neighborhood looked like before the creation of San Francisco, Berkeley, and Oakland. For the next 30 years she went about acquiring the artistic skills and scientific knowledge...

Before California

Artist-naturalist Laura Cunningham works primarily as a scientific illustrator, rendering fossils for paleontology publications by the likes of UC Berkeley and the Smithsonian Institution. Her background comes through loud and clear in her first ever solo exhibition, Before California, which reads like aterrifically illustrated textbook about the effect of human activity...