Rochester Contemporary Art Center and Genesee Land Trust will celebrate the connection between artists and the changing nature around them in a new exhibition slated to open Feb. 1.
“Landscapes and the Unbuilt” will reflect artist interactions with land and natural places and will feature a diverse group of artists who span multiple generations and artistic mediums brought together by a common interest in the landscape and the environment.
The exhibition will run through March 16 at the East Avenue gallery.
“We want our collaboration with Genesee Land Trust to lead to creative ideas and meaningful discussions about our interactions with the environment—not just as artists, but as agents in the ever-changing landscape in which we live,” RoCo Executive Director Bleu Cease said in a statement. “‘Landscapes and the Unbuilt’ is a celebration of protected natural lands, those who work to preserve them and their timeless role in the creative process.”
An artist talk, at which each artist will discuss their chosen unbuilt location and how they approached creating new artwork for the exhibition, will be held at RoCo Feb. 2.
The collaboration brings attention to the protection of natural lands and waterways, not only for creative inspiration but for environmental conservation and overall quality of life as well. Genesee Land Trust preserves and protects natural lands and waterways that enhance the quality of life in the Greater Rochester region, providing wildlife habitat, locally grown food and connections to nature.
“Land forms the foundation of our lives—from habitats for wildlife, trails for recreation, nature that improves our health and wellbeing and inspiration for creative spirits as celebrated with our partnership with RoCo,” said Gay Mills, executive director of the Genesee Land Trust.
To encourage people to get outside this winter, RoCo and Genesee Land Trust are sponsoring an Instagram exhibition and competition. The community is encouraged to share an image of their favorite unbuilt landscapes on social media using the hashtag #unbuiltrochester. One photographer will be awarded a naturalist-hosted tour for four of a special, privately protected property.
The “Landscapes and the Unbuilt” exhibition grew out of an exhibition concept proposed by Rochester-based landscape artist and preservationist, Connie Ehindero.
“We need artists’ visions and voices,” Ehindero said. “We need natural spaces, unbuilt places where the soul and creative spirit can expand and soar. It’s an ancient connection, one not always present in our modern world.”
Genesee Land Trust is a nonprofit land trust organization that was founded in 1989. The organization has conserved more than 5,500 acres of natural lands and waterways in its three decades.