Last modified: Tuesday, February 13, 2007
IU arts and humanities faculty receive $1 million funding for innovative new projects
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 13, 2007
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Exciting new scholarly and artistic explorations of Senagalese culture, Shakespeare and climate change are among the Indiana University projects that have received $1 million in grants from the New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities Program, an IU initiative funded by the Lilly Endowment.
Now in its third year, the New Frontiers program supports innovative projects, workshops, performances and visiting scholars and artists that expand cultural capital in the state and beyond.
"Excellence in the arts and humanities has traditionally been one of IU's greatest strengths, and New Frontiers is now a vital program that enables us to continue to build on this tradition in new and dynamic ways," said Michael McRobbie, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs on the IU Bloomington campus.
New Frontiers is funded with a generous gift from the Lilly Endowment. Since its inception, it has enabled all eight IU campuses to expand their scholarship in the arts and humanities in ways that have provided new insights into the human condition and adventurous new directions in artistic and scholarly creativity.
New Frontiers focuses on a yearly theme of broad and topical interest providing intellectual focus for the program. The theme for this competition, "Technology and the Arts and Humanities," included a diverse range of technologies from stone wheels to virtual reality.
With New Frontiers support, Terri Bourus, professor of English at IU Kokomo, will build on the success of the 2005 IU Kokomo acting residency experience (The Actors from the London Stage) by bringing to campus The American Shakespeare Company's Blackfriars Stage Tour, a world-class Shakespearean troupe that travels to several U.S. universities each year with their unique educational program.
"IU Kokomo continues to reap the benefits of the New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities grant program," says Bourus, who has been awarded three New Frontiers grants over a number of years. "Shakespeare is alive and well in central Indiana thanks to these funding opportunities, and the success of the programs confirms my belief that we will be able to develop a Center for Early Modern Studies on the IU Kokomo campus."
Sarita Soni, IUB vice provost for research, emphasized the quality of the projects supported by New Frontiers funds.
"We have already seen the impact of past years' funding through a number of new scholarly activities, exhibits, performances and publications. These projects have forged new partnerships that extend across disciplines and geographical boundaries," Soni said.
Selected projects funded by New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities for 2007 include:
- David Bodenhamer, IUPUI professor of history and director of The Polis Center, will work on a conceptual framework for managing and visualizing complex humanities data in a GIS environment and test solutions using the North American Religion Atlas.
- Richard Weiner, IPFW professor of history, will trace the debate concerning Mexico's legendary wealth, in the first in-depth investigation of Mexico's wealth from independence to the mid-20th century.
- Colin Allen, IUB professor of history and philosophy of science, and Karola Stotz, IUB professor of cognitive science, received New Frontiers funding for a future symposium that will explore the controversy between nature and nurture in behavior. Experts will examine interdisciplinary issues that may help resolve the unhealthy dichotomy.
- Elisabeth Lloyd, IUB professor of history and philosophy of science, will examine the confirmation and testing of climate change models from a philosophical perspective and investigate the divide between skeptical scientists and the modelers in their views and conclusions regarding global warming.
- Brian Jones, IUSE professor of fine arts, will study the complex layers associated with past traditional studio practices and digital technology and how these practices and traditions have expanded various art forms in all studio media. More specifically, Jones will explore the possibility of hybrids within the layers for innovative developments in his own creative work.
- Heidi Gealt, IUB professor of fine arts and the director of the IU Art Museum, and Robert Shakespeare, IUB professor of theatre and drama, will collaborate to re-imagine the façade of the IU Art Museum, which celebrates the 25th anniversary of the I.M. Pei-designed campus landmark in the fall of 2007.
- Eileen Julien, IUB professor of comparative literature, will host writers, filmmakers, and scholars for an international symposium on Senegalese literary and social history, the esthetic legacies of Birago Diop and Léopold Sédar Senghor, and their impact on Senegalese culture and society today.