Arts & Environment Gallery at the School for Environment and Sustainability: A Personal Vision Converges with a New School Direction

Friday, November 2, 2018, 1:45-3:15pm

As an ecologist and visual artist, my notion of sustainability knows no boundaries and as such, although my role at the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS) was to address natural science aspects of conservation, with time I have been able to integrate the arts within the school fabric. In February 2011, I created an art gallery right in the heart of the school, where SEAS community spends significant time. The gallery has featured painting, ceramics, printing, installation, fiber art, photography and mixed media sculpture and the subject matter has ranged from celebrations of nature’s beauty to explicit messaging on detrimental roles humans play on the state of planet. The presentation will document a personal journey and the significance of the work at the gallery for a school dedicated to sustainability.


Sara Adlerstein is an applied aquatic ecologist and obtained a MS at the University of Concepcion Chile and a MS and PhD at the University of Washington. At the University of Michigan she is currently a Research Scientist in the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS). She is also a visual artist and has been painting for as long as she has been a scientist. Her works have been published in books and magazines, shown in galleries and museums in Chile, Europe, Canada and the US and are part of public and private art collections. She is currently a member at the Washington Street Gallery in Ann Arbor. Within academia her research focuses on addressing environmental stressors affecting Great Lakes ecosystems and she advocates for a vision bridging arts and sciences. Consistent with that vision she has taught art and environment related courses in the School of Art & Design, Program in the Environment, the Residential College and SEAS. Also, she has served in graduate student committees in art related academic units. She consistently organizes and participates in activities to immerse the arts within the endeavors of the university. Among those, she created and runs the Art & Environment Gallery at SEAS and advises an interdisciplinary Rackham sponsored student group artEco.



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