Earth Day at Avery Point to include climate change art, 'Moby Dick' puppet show
Groton -- The University of Connecticut will celebrate Earth Day at its Avery Point campus on Thursday with a climate-change inspired art installation and a one-woman puppet performance of "Moby Dick."
The shoreline campus' lighthouse and buildings will be lit up after sunset with a multimedia artwork installation focused on climate change, designed by a New London-based artist and educator.
The socially-distanced celebration will begin at 6:30 p.m. with the musical styling of Connecticut-based quintet Hitch and Giddyup, followed UConn graduate student Felicia Cooper who will entertain guests with her show, an all ages puppet show ISH, inspired by Herman Melville's tale of "Moby Dick."
After the puppet performance, guests will be served Coastal Crunch ice cream from the UConn Dairy Bar as night falls and the campus' buildings are lit up with an audiovisual art exhibit called "Reading the Wrack Lines."
Syma Ebbin, who teaches courses in environmental and marine science and policy at UConn, said in a statement that the exhibit "seeks to integrate the personal creative reflections of students focused on coastal environments and the human footprint — encompassing climate change, marine debris and plastics, among other topics they've explored this semester — within a generative and interactive video."
Created by Connecticut College professor Andrea Wollensak, the exhibit will feature the words of local students, from Connecticut College and UConn Avery Point, who have written about climate change. Their thoughts on the climate will be set to videos that will be projected on campus structures such as the lighthouse.
"I think the project themes resonate with and amplify the meaning of Earth Day and will generate deeper understandings in both students and the larger audience," Ebbin said.
The exhibit is being presented in part with the Groton-based Alexey von Schlippe Gallery of Art. "Reading the Wrack Lines" and ISH are both supported by funding from Connecticut Sea Grant.
The Earth Day events are free and open to 200 attendees, under state guidelines for outdoor events during the COVID-19 pandemic. Attendees will be required to wear masks, social distance and are asked to bring their own chairs.