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For over 40 years, Diane Burko has travelled around the Americas and Europe, taking pictures and making sketches of volcanoes, hot spring fissures, glaciers, mountains, and rain forests in order to paint these landscapes in her Philadelphia studio. She has had more than 30 solo exhibitions in museums and galleries across the United States.
This year (2013), Burko was selected to participate in a collaborative voyage to the Arctic in the company of other artists, scientists and journalists sponsored by the nonprofit organization The Arctic Circle. Burko has also recently travelled to Antarctica. Both trips have given her unprecedented access to the far reaches of our planet and opportunities to continue her ongoing study of glacial geology and climate change. This exhibition of paintings and photographs reflects Burko’s interest in extreme landscapes and her ability to transform visual and technical data into dynamic views of some of the most sublime landscapes on earth. Working within the traditions of nineteenth-century landscape painting, Burko reinvents the genre by integrating contemporary climate concerns and political activism into the heroic conventions of the sublime landscape. Making the difference in glacial movement and snow levels from the recent past to today visually present, she turns aside the distracting political debates to call attention to the facts of climate change.
Organized by Donna Gustafson, Andrew W. Mellon Liaison for Academic Programs and Curator, with the assistance of Jenevieve DeLosSantos and Kelsey Brosnan, PhD candidates in Art History, Rutgers, and Andrew W. Mellon Summer Interns. The exhibition and programs are a collaboration with the Arctic Studies and Climate Change groups at Rutgers University.
Supported by income from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Endowment Fund